Young dialect mimic with a future?

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The young man doing 24 accents of English in this video is in fact a remarkably talented dialect mimic.


Ignore the dull and self-deprecative 60-second introduction and the obligatory apologies for personal or ethnic offense (his accent clips generally involve some choice obscenities and a few stereotypes). Yes, there are slips that reveal where his command of a dialect is shaky (he is not good on Jamaican, and not all that good on American English). But don't obsess on those. If you've heard a few British and Commonwealth dialects, you will see that he gets a lot of things spot on. This is a young person with some real career options in front of him: actor, comedian, impressionist, broadcaster, voiceover man, spy, confidence trickster, or even (oh, let it be, let it be!) linguist teaching phonetics and phonology?

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  1. Pharmamom said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 1:21 pm

    That was marvelous! His "o" sounds do give him away in American English, but his southern accent was better. I couldn't understand the second Irish bit at all, which seems about right. I bet with a bit of work he could get the Iron Range accent. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Andy Averill said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 1:22 pm

    In my American ignorance I think of his native accent as some form of Estuary English. Is that right, or is it something else?

  3. Nathan said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 1:24 pm

    That was throughly enjoyable. Loved it.

  4. rootlesscosmo said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 2:09 pm

    I (born US 1942, never lived outside the country) think his first US accent is close enough that I'd be fooled on the phone.

    A nice range of regional UK voices can be heard on telecast snooker matches. One host, a Scot (if my untrained ears don't betray me), began a broadcast in the first BBC television studio, pointing out the ancient cameras and lights and then dropping briefly into 1950's RP to note that "Very few accents like mine were heard round here" before continuing in her own variant.

  5. Mark Liberman said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 2:22 pm

    I'm not sure whether we noted it at the time it was posted, but Amy Walker's 21-accent video is also pretty impressive.

  6. цarьchitect said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 2:32 pm

    Interesting that his "generic american" is so much less obscene and belligerent than the other, lower-class dialects that he imitates. I wonder if this difference has much to do with what he's getting from media and what he's getting from contact with actual people.

  7. Kathleen said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 2:35 pm

    "Aliens? In Cardiff? I don't think so!" I laughed at this one.

  8. Ray Girvan said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 2:49 pm

    @ Andy Averill: some form of Estuary English

    Yes: somewhere in the middle of the continuum between RP English and Estuary.

  9. Ellen K. said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 3:20 pm

    I think his General American has too much New York City.

    Note: Make sure annotations are turned on. He does identify his own accent in an annotation in the closing section. As well as other comments during the video.

  10. Picky said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 3:21 pm

    I disagree. Somewhere substantially more on the London and SE side of Estuary English.

  11. Urvashi said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 4:50 pm

    I rather think his UK, US, Australian, and Nigerian accents are far better rendered than th eimitations of Chinese, Japanese, Indian, and South African ones.. Is my impression wrong?

  12. tudza said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 4:54 pm

    I have friends here in the states that have taken to using "taking the piss" I think it is.

  13. Pensive Nomad said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 5:54 pm

    What, there's "a future" in imitating accents?? Someone please pay me to do that sort of thing for a living.

  14. Eric P Smith said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 6:23 pm

    Phenomenal talent.

    In his natural accent, this young man pronounces /ð/ as [v] ('with' [wiv], 'other' [ʌvə] etc). I have met many people who believe that when speakers from in and around London do this, it is because they cannot say [ð]. This young man disproves that emphatically, because when he impersonates other accents he pronounces [ð] effortlessly.

  15. greg said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 6:38 pm

    I couldn't understand a word he was saying with his Italian accent. I couldn't see his hands.

  16. Adrian Morgan said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 6:43 pm

    His Australian accent is labelled as "general" but it is not — it is extremely broad. Except for the word "shower", for which he slips into a more mainstream pronunciation.

  17. Pflaumbaum said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 6:53 pm

    GKP said: he is not good on Jamaican

    To be fair he's not attempting Jamaican, he's attempting what he calls 'British (Jamaican influenced) Southern English – London – street slang/chav/thug'. In other words, it's MLE, which I believe is influenced about as much by Cockney and South-East Asian accents as it is by Caribbean ones.

    It's true that it's one of his weaker ones, but at least it's a good bit closer to MLE than it is to Jamaican!

  18. AntC said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 7:21 pm

    Sorry to rain on GKP's parade, but I reckon most Brits can mimic quite a large range of English accents at least as well as this young man. (And if you haven't picked up the knack by his age, you're probably not going to.)

    The jumps in the video suggest he needed several attempts at some of those. (So Amy Walker's continuous switching is more impressive.)

    Regional and overseas accents are now ubiquitous on TV soaps — in a way they weren't when GKP (and I) were growing up.

    Accent is so woven into the UK class system (not just regional variation), that you can't help but be aware of it, in my experience. It's a small step to mimicry.

    BTW I'm not impressed by his attempted Australian — he needs to listen to more Neighbours.

    [I grew up in W. London suburbs, lived in East Anglia, central Yorkshire, West Yorkshire, worked in Manchester, E. Lancs, Wales North and South, now live in N.Z.]

  19. Xmun said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 7:26 pm

    Why no attempt at the New Zealand accent? It's not the same as the Australian one. Not remotely like, even. Nice, by the way, to see the sheep-shagging joke applied to the Welsh for a change.

  20. Levni said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 7:33 pm

    I disagree with AntC: many people think they can do accents well, but it's actually very difficult to pull off, and this young man's talents set him apart. I'm also a Londoner, and I don't think at all that most Brits can match either his range or his accuracy; if they could, his video wouldn't have gone viral, as no-one would have any cause to be impressed.

  21. AntC said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 7:43 pm

    … his video wouldn't have gone viral …

    Thanks Levni, do you have a metric for 'going viral'? And a measure for why? Is it because viewers are impressed by his mimicry, or by the accumulation of obscenities? Or his facial hair, or the Norwegian Wood?

  22. Levni said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 7:56 pm

    AntC, the video has been watched almost nine million times, and most of the thousands of people who've left comments (and there are many Brits among them) praise the young man's talent, some irrelevant remarks on his facial hair notwithstanding. Without conducting a thorough study on the matter, I think I can say with some confidence that the reason for the video's success is that a large number of people are more impressed than you are with the boy's skill at imitating accents.

  23. AntC said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 8:25 pm

    Well, I'll go to 'foot of our stairs. [Bolton accent, with a dash of Chorley]

  24. Bob Violence said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 9:08 pm

    More support for the "gone viral" claim: a local friend of mine here in China showed me this video a couple of months ago, and I was led to understand it was well-known here, at least among English speakers and learners. Wish he'd been a bit more creative about it, since eight minutes of almost non-stop swearing is awfully exhausting. Now I sort of understand how my parents feel when they complain about the language in The Big Lebowski and such.

    There is also a very popular video here with a young Chinese man trying on various (mostly non-native) English accents. I can't access Youtube from this computer, but I believe this is the one.

  25. Londres said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 9:31 pm

    On the Jamaican accent, Geoffrey. He isn't trying to do a Jamaican accent. It's MLE, which is influenced more by Caribbean variants and other second-language varieties. I just saw that Pflaumbaum noticed this also.

    Pflaumbaum, I'd say that it's spot on. I say that because I went to a school in central west London where we all spoke in this variety with friends.

  26. AntC said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 10:18 pm

    Specifically on the attempt at Australian, the Youtube comments I sampled are about evenly split on how close he gets. Given the regional variation in Aus., I'd say he was (trying to be) closer to Sydney (Neighbours?, Earls Court crashpads?) than Adelaide or Queensland.

    I guess it's all relative: is his mimicry good for a South Londoner as judged by a W. Londoner? Is it better than in Monty Python's Bruce sketch? [yes, much!] Is it good for a S. Londoner as judged by a Queenslander? If you included his attempt amongst several samples from genuine Sydneysiders (who) would pick it as fake?

  27. Charles in Vancouver said,

    June 10, 2012 @ 11:03 pm

    Just listened to the Amy Walker video. It was great *except* the Toronto accent was a ridiculous "Bob & Doug Mackenzie" stereotype. Torontonians sound much more like her Seattle or California example.

  28. Victor Mair said,

    June 11, 2012 @ 1:07 am

    As a German friend of mine sometimes writes when he is trying to imitate an American accent, all that I can say is "Féäntéästic!"

    Having just come back from Cardiff, I can aver that the young man's Welsh accent sounds very much like what I heard in the pubs there. Truly remarkable! I suspect that he'll end up as an entertainer, even if he does what GKP's last sentence hopes he'll do.

  29. Julian Bradfield said,

    June 11, 2012 @ 1:55 am

    Urvashi, to my ears his Indian (specifically Hindi/Urdu) accent, his Chinese (specifically Cantonese) and South African (specifically Afrikaner, not Anglo) accents are pretty good.

  30. Chris said,

    June 11, 2012 @ 5:29 am

    Excellent stuff. Interestingly, to my ears at least (born, bred and still live in London, UK), the posh English and then the Manchester are by some margin the worst. Could it be that he has more exposure to all the other accents than to the posh English one? It's possible…

  31. togi said,

    June 11, 2012 @ 5:42 am

    It's always amusing to see how attempts at a Welsh accent (at least, as made here in the UK) often swerve towards an Indian accent, as happens a little here. Oddly, he uses the same 'bloody bastard' refrain for both accents. Also, the Japanese gets a bit Nigerian towards the end.

    It's an often impressive bunch, but I'd like to see him practice the flow of the various accents. While he gets the sound of, say, Mancunian quite well, the timing and pauses felt all wrong. The sounds in Mancunian tend to merge more, with the words not being anywhere near as well defined. Obviously, some of this is due to him trying to think up things to say on the spot, but I think the sign of a truly skilled accent mimicry is when the more 'invisible' stuff like timing and intonation are done right.

  32. Brian T said,

    June 11, 2012 @ 7:35 am

    So impressed. I've never said this before, but this man could be the next Ruth Draper. The next step for him would be to get better material, preferably showing a broader range of emotions besides anger/annoyance, and a story line. I hope he becomes aware of Draper (1884-1956), an incredible actress who not only mastered many accents, but also wrote touching and hilarious material for one-woman dramas that she performed around the world. Draper spoke several languages well enough to perform entire playlets in them for an English-speaking audience who would understand the action without knowing the meaning of the words. For one of her scenes, she invented a vaguely Slavic language no one could possibly understand, and yet (even in an audio-only version) she's riveting. One of the great regrets of my life as a consumer of the arts is that there's no way for me to witness Ruth Draper except through her audio recordings and transcripts. This fellow (who needs to put his NAME on his videos) could turn into a rewarding consolation prize.

  33. Tim Morris said,

    June 11, 2012 @ 8:43 am

    The General American accent in this video is, IMO, a really good "airport accent," our deracinated all-purpose accent common to suburban kids of Generation Y and after. Well done!

  34. Pflaumbaum said,

    June 11, 2012 @ 9:18 am

    @ Chris –

    Isn't it likely to be that you're just more sensitive to inaccuracies in accents you're more familiar with? I'm also from London, and like you I felt that the 'posh' accent was weak and the Mancunian was terrible, as well as the MLE being so-so as mentioned earlier. Whereas the Nigerian and South African sound pretty much perfect to me.

    That said, his Scouse also sounds good to me (as do his Cockney and RP, which presumably he can code-switch into like many of us).

  35. The suffocated said,

    June 11, 2012 @ 1:18 pm

    I find his remark (shown during 5:52 in the clip) that people keep telling him the "Chinese accent" is Cantonese very interesting. It is interesting because stereotyped "foreign" accents are usually exaggerations (and distortions) of real accents, so that there are often some true elements in them, but stereotyped Chinese accents — i.e. those spoken with by typical Chinaman-living-in-China-Town characters in movies, like the one that the young man performs very well — are in general rather dissimilar to true Chinese accents (Mandarin, Cantonese, etc.). I wonder how one's conception of a foreign accent is shaped by movies rather than by real encounters. Every time I hear a "Russian" or "east European" accent in a movie, I just can't stop thinking if the people there really speak English like that.

  36. Circe said,

    June 11, 2012 @ 2:58 pm

    Julian Bradfield, Urvashi:

    To me, his "Indian" accent sounds like that of someone from Punjab or Haryana(more specifically, from around the Delhi region) with some sparkling of a Hindi accent.

  37. boynamedsue said,

    June 11, 2012 @ 3:58 pm

    Contrary to Mr Pullman, I actually found his American accents very good, and his Manchester and Liverpool a bit dodgy. The Jamaican was shan whatever way you look at it, but to be fair to him, he was trying to do London Jamaican, and it's very hard to get an accent right that is halfway between your own and someone else's.

    That suggests that he was a little bit off on all of them, but you only notice the mistakes on the ones you are most familiar with.

    Having said that, with a bit of work put into it he could get ny of them absolutely spot on. He really should studt linguistics, I reckon he'd be a natural.

  38. Ellen K. said,

    June 11, 2012 @ 4:23 pm

    Pullum, not Pullman.

  39. Andy Averill said,

    June 11, 2012 @ 6:06 pm

    @Brian T, nice to find another Ruth Draper fan. Her tour de force was The Italian Lesson, which depicts an upper-class New York woman multitasking while she gets ready to leave the house in the morning. What makes it so brilliant is that the woman uses a different voice for everyone she talks to — the maid, the cook, the children, a puppy, the Italian tutor ("Signorina"), "Count Bluffsky", etc.

    I'm pretty sure all of Ms Draper's recorded dialogues are still available on CD, but I don't know of any existing film of her, except a snippet of a home movie.

  40. Barbara Partee said,

    June 11, 2012 @ 7:58 pm

    (1) So glad Geoff left the comments on! They are fun to read. (A few do remind me of the pundits trying to place Eliza Doolittle's accent … ) I know very little about most of those dialects — all I can say is that he sounds to me very much like real people I've heard from many of those places, and to my untutored ear it's quite amazing what he can do.
    (2) @boynamedsue — "He really should study linguistics, I reckon he'd be a natural." — [!!] Oh my goodness, what is it you think linguistics is about? I think exceedingly few of us are good at mimicry. Really, I think one can even be a great phonetician without being able to actually produce all the sounds one is studying (though undoubtedly mimicry ability is nice for teaching or for telling about one's research). But overall that comment sounded to me even more misguided than the usual "So you're a linguist. So how many languages do you speak?" Or maybe I missed some tongue-in-cheekness, as I often seem to do.

  41. Jason Reid said,

    June 11, 2012 @ 8:18 pm

    (I hope this comment works. It seems like I've been banned here or something. Not sure why.)

    @ Barbara Partee:

    "…But overall that comment sounded to me even more misguided than the usual "So you're a linguist. So how many languages do you speak?…"

    To be fair though, don't most linguists know more than one language? I could definitely be wrong about that though. I'd love to see statistics on it.

  42. John B said,

    June 11, 2012 @ 10:37 pm

    Australian accents are hard, maybe because most imitators don't get enouugh exposure. (Or maybe they're just plain hard: even Meryl Streep in Evil Angels wandered towards New Zealand.)

    His is way off: high vowels too high, "your last" rendered as /jɔr last/ rather than /jəlast/, "visit" as /vɪzɪt/ rather than /vɪzət/.

  43. Michael W said,

    June 12, 2012 @ 12:24 am

    It is interesting to compare the Amy Walker video to his. She seems to be doing 'stage' voices and most of them seem more like impressions (for instance, her 'Texas' sounds like Jodie Foster). The young man here appears to be making up a voice generally in a particular accent, though likely influenced by certain people he's heard.
    I wonder if there is a different skill at work in mimicking one voice or in combining heard voices into a generalized imitation.

  44. Joyce Melton said,

    June 12, 2012 @ 1:26 am

    I got the impression that his British accents were narrow focussed where his American accents were "types" rather than specific place accents. That is, he did general American as heard on hundreds of sitcoms and movies, NY Italian as heard in gangster movies and Southern "Redneck" as heard in movies where it is usually being done by someone who is NOT from the South.

    But he didn't do anything equivalent to his rural Glaswegian or his various metropolitan and Estuary accents. No Tejano from San Antonio, no iggle from Pennsylvania, no Inland Empire California whine.

    I bet he could do those though, if he heard them.

  45. iching said,

    June 12, 2012 @ 2:50 am

    I agree with GKP and most commenters: most impressive. I am an Australian English speaker from Melbourne, and did not find the accent particularly broad, but rather city, middle-class and well-done.

    What's with the comments about facial hair and obscenities? Absolutely irrelevant.

  46. Matt said,

    June 12, 2012 @ 2:54 am

    As a native of southern California, I found the US "general accent" pretty convincing. If I'd heard this cold, I'd have assumed he lived part of his life in New England and moved to the west coast in middle school. During the part where he's agitated, the vowels are overly nasal, but then as he calmed down it got very west coast. He really nailed the "I'll see ya later dude."

  47. Richard Wein said,

    June 12, 2012 @ 4:32 am

    Very impressive. I found his Russian reminded me of the fake accents we tend to get in films and dramas, where Russian characters are rarely played by Russians. I wonder whether he's picked up the accent more from watching Hollywood films than from hearing genuine Russians. (In any case, as someone who speaks some Russian but with an execrable accent, I'd be happy to have his Russian accent.)

  48. boynamedsue said,

    June 12, 2012 @ 4:47 am

    ""He really should study linguistics, I reckon he'd be a natural." — [!!] Oh my goodness, what is it you think linguistics is about?"

    Don't you think that the ability to recognise slight differences between sounds and accurately reproduce them is an excellent headstart in the study of linguistics, especially phonology? Also he has quite a good ear for inter-dialect grammatical differences.

    As a person who is pretty good at languages, and has an amateur interest in linguistics, I can't catch a lot of the tiny differences in sounds that linguistics are trained to recognise, whereas this kid would just be putting a symbol to a sound he already knows.

  49. H Klang said,

    June 12, 2012 @ 9:10 am

    "He really should study linguistics, I reckon he'd be a natural."

    Sounds like what mathematicians sometimes hear at cocktail parties re arithmetic. If you're super-quick at figures it doesn't make you a mathematician, but the processing power sure helps. Can even be the foundational of genius.

    On the other hand, perhaps it's easier to be a dyslexic mathematician than a tone-deaf linguist. Math wanders even farther from its concrete base.

    I guess there's a pretty abstract kind of linguist who'd want it clear that his knowledge is of language, rather than any specific human language. Crisp and recursive? Most of us also love the historical and phonological details.

  50. Army1987 said,

    June 12, 2012 @ 1:54 pm

    Magners is known as Bulmers in the Republic of Ireland!

  51. Army1987 said,

    June 12, 2012 @ 2:01 pm

    Italian accent (very stereotypical)

    Indeed. No real Italian I know (and I'm Italian) actually has that kind of intonation, but whenever a non-Italian tries to fake an Italian accent they invariably use that. How comes?

  52. LDavidH said,

    June 12, 2012 @ 2:23 pm

    As an ESL speaker, living in the UK and unsuccessfully trying to shed my Swedish accent, I think it's very impressive. I find it most annoying that I can't hear my own accent (except when listening to recordings of myself), and so struggle to know what needs changing. All I want for Christmas is a nice south UK accent, not too posh and not too Estuary…

  53. m.m. said,

    June 12, 2012 @ 2:57 pm

    Im surprised its taken this long for the video to appear here, as one might notice its old and like the amy walker video, quite popular

    Ellen K. said,
    I think his General American has too much New York City.

    +1

    Joyce Melton said,
    no Inland Empire California whine.

    what does THAT sound like O_o

  54. Svafa said,

    June 12, 2012 @ 4:29 pm

    In defense of his American accent, if I heard it on the street, I'd peg it as American, even if no one I know speaks anything like it.

    As for his southern accent, being from the south, it's a bit exaggerated and I'd likely roll my eyes at his pronunciation. But then, as much as I might hate to admit it, there are actual southerners that put his exaggerated stereotype to shame, so yeah… /rolleyes

  55. Pflaumbaum said,

    June 12, 2012 @ 4:30 pm

    @ LDavidH

    It's funny you should say that. I've been working with a Swedish guy who's been living in London for a decade or so. His English is superb, and he has a good accent which is close to RP with a few East London elements like glottal stops and the occasional labialised dark 'l'. But the accent is also unmistakably foreign, and I can't work out why. I listen carefully and the only thing 'wrong' I can pick up is /əʊ/, which tends towards something like [ɛ:u]. My guess is that it's mostly to do with stress and pitch, with more variation in pitch than is usual for English accents (except perhaps Geordie). But it may be that subtle stuff like pre-aspiration of stops is eluding me.

  56. a George said,

    June 12, 2012 @ 6:34 pm

    I was entertained, but in several places only because my biases were nurtured. It is a good act, but like most good acts a bit caricatured. Specifically I did not like the French “bon jur” and the sound of “non” – a person with a French accent would have had French words up to scratch. In the German, I have a similar complaint about “Heinrich”. The Russian reminds me of Tom Lehrer’s “Lobachevsky” (“Plagiarize”): I’ll never forget the day. The Italian does not sound like any English spoken by an Italian that I have heard: “anothing I could ado” is plain ridiculous stereotype. Give me Johan Storm any day!

  57. Chris C. said,

    June 12, 2012 @ 11:57 pm

    I haven't posted here, so I'm sorry if I'm taking someone else's "tag".

    I thought his "General American" accent was off, even if there really were any such thing. To my ear it swerved alarmingly between Southern California and upper Midwest, maybe Wisconsin, but didn't correspond to anything in particular, even broadly. I didn't hear much NYC in it, as someone mentioned above. If I encountered someone speaking like that I'd probably assume he was American barring any information to the contrary, but that accent would be very, very puzzling, and I'd almost certainly ask where he was from.

    I watch professional sumo whenever I can so I get quite a lot of Japanese in my ears even if I only have enough of it to understand the set-form ringside announcements, and his Japanese accent seemed way off. To me it came across mainly as a stereotyped tone of voice, but even that wasn't right for what he was saying, IMO.

    The Italian-American was funny. He says he got it from gangster movies, so he was actually imitating someone doing a bad imitation of an accent not theirs in the first place. He'd have been better off imitating a genuine Italian-American actor like Sylvester Stallone or Joe Pesci.

  58. Eliza B said,

    June 13, 2012 @ 2:34 am

    Found this video a few days ago and found a lot of it very accurate! (Much more accurate than a lot of people who like to imitate a lot of accents, anyway.) As a native Australian I found the Australian one very refreshing in terms of people putting on an Australian accent, and it was reasonably accurate, but just… sounded discomfortingly and very strangely wrong. No idea why. Maybe because he got so close it had a bit of an uncanny effect?

  59. army1987 said,

    June 13, 2012 @ 2:56 am

    Really, I think one can even be a great phonetician without being able to actually produce all the sounds one is studying (though undoubtedly mimicry ability is nice for teaching or for telling about one's research).

    I seem to recall John C. Wells saying that to get his degree in phonetics he had to pass an exam where he was supposed to be able to pronounce all the sounds on the IPA table (or something), and describing his efforts with the [r] trill.

  60. Jason Reid said,

    June 13, 2012 @ 6:52 am

    @ army1987:

    Yes, I remember that too. He had a lot of trouble with [r] (as do I). But do all aspiring phoneticians have to be able to pronounce every sound on the IPA table or was it just the English ones who went to his particular school at that particular time?

  61. Ellen K. said,

    June 13, 2012 @ 9:41 am

    Chris C.: I didn't hear much NYC in it, as someone mentioned above.

    It's not that there was a lot of NYC in it. Just more than there should be (or so it seemed to me listening). It doesn't take much to be too much.

  62. Eneri Rose said,

    June 13, 2012 @ 9:42 am

    I was more astonished by this young man's ability to ad lib. I thought he was very funny. He reminded me of Kevin Spacey's amazing ability to mimic famous voices.

  63. Chris C. said,

    June 13, 2012 @ 5:36 pm

    Ellen K.:

    It's not that there was a lot of NYC in it. Just more than there should be (or so it seemed to me listening). It doesn't take much to be too much.

    I had no idea it was so offensive. How much "should" be in a "General American Accent", which I'm not sure exists outside of television newsrooms, and which therefore contains nowhere near as many colloquialisms as he used?

  64. Matt McIrvin said,

    June 13, 2012 @ 8:50 pm

    American accent #1 sounded like Steve Buscemi to me.

  65. Joyce Melton said,

    June 14, 2012 @ 12:18 am

    The Inland Empire Whine is heard from girls and women in Riverside and San Bernardino counties in southeastern California. It's nasal, with slightly lengthened terminal-syllable vowels and a sing-song intonation in the upper pitch range; probably part of the same speech pattern family as Valley Girl and Malibu surfspeak. I live here and I find it annoying though it seems to be less prevalent with younger speakers than it used to be.

  66. Luke said,

    June 14, 2012 @ 4:16 pm

    I' d say his scouse, Welsh, Cockney, rp, south African (Jaape/Dutch rather than Anglo) were great. Also Nigerian and maybe Irish (almost Ulster? And he avoided cliched Kerry). I'll pass on US and Australia (but wish he'd had a go at NZ). But I wish he'd had a go at differentiating Manchester from Yorkshire- I can hear it when I'm there but can't do it.

    Italy was a weak spot.

  67. Sandra wilde said,

    June 20, 2012 @ 6:36 pm

    I was struck not just by the accents but by the content of each one's attempting to be representative. Remarkable for such a young guy not a linguist or actor.

    several years ago, I saw a production of Uncle Vanya set in Canada but playing in portland, OR. They had a dialogue coach so that all the Canadian accents were very well done. One exception, so bad it almost ruined the producton: the odd, somewhat British accent of a young actress who was the girlfriend of the visiting movie star playing the lead.

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