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Doing the jobs Bubbas won’t do

My wife was watching the TeeVee show Nashville and I happened in. And two people were speaking with southern accents because it’s Nashville. The accents had a sort of familiarity to them that I couldn’t place. And then I said to my wife:

Are these a bunch of Brits playing people with southern accents, like in The Walking Dead?

She replied: He’s from England, so’s she. And I think he’s Australian.

So, I got to wondering why so many Brits were playing folks with southern accents on TV. There’s a few of them in TWD.

Is there some similarity between the two accents or are they just good actors?

17 Responses to “Doing the jobs Bubbas won’t do”

  1. jason Says:

    I know that the aristocratic southern accent was closely related to British aristocratic. I doubt there’s any similarity–it would depend on the type of southern accent and which type of British accent the actors have.

  2. Jeff the Baptist Says:

    They’re going to be affecting an accent anyway, so it’s probably not that much harder to learn a southern regional instead of midatlantic, etc.

    I’m more weirded out by Chip Eston on that show. Considering I mostly remember him from Hoedown segments on Whose Line Is It Anyway and now he’s playing a serious hard drinking character. It’s like when I saw Hugh Laurie doing House after only seeing him as his usual fop character on Blackadder.

  3. Huck Says:

    Having been stationed in Alabama while in the Air Force (1974-75) and transferred from there to England (1975-77) I’m here to tell you that there’s a major difference in the accents of both areas. It’s hard to describe but anyone who’s been in the Heart of Dixie and Jolly old England will definitely notice the difference.

    Anyone who thinks that Americans and Brits speak the same language will be in for the same surprise that I experienced when I first set foot in Limeyland. American and English are to all intents and purposes different languages. When it comes to hard to understand accents, you’re in for a real treat when you first meet a Cockney. The Welsh aint much easier to understand than the Cockneys are.

  4. Sean D Sorrentino Says:

    I’ve been told that Shakespeare’s English is actually closer to the accents of Tennessee than BBC.

  5. Mike V. Says:

    The “King’s English” or Shakespeare’s English is more like the dialect used by our grandparents and great-grandparents, in the mountains especially, than we use today. TV and improved education robbed us of it.

  6. Zack Says:

    When I was in London, I could understand maybe half of what they said. When I in the south, I can understand everything. I’m from Ohio/Indiana. I’m pretty sure the English can’t really speak english.

  7. Glenn Says:

    A long time ago I was a musician on a tour of Scandinavia with a bunch of people from all parts of America and the UK. After the night ended we would always gather at the hotels and continue drinking and start swapping stories. At first we were fine, but by about 4 AM NONE of us could understand each other but it wasn’t from slurring. It was from each of us reverting back to our old accents and dialects. Boy from AL couldn’t understand boy from WA, let alone Wales or Scotland. And boy from Ireland etc.

    That said, the only pockets left in the world of any remnant of Shakespearean English are in East Tennessee. They are very similar. A well trained Shakespearean actor should be able to fake a good Southern American accent.

    And they are probably very good actors.

  8. JTC Says:

    Saw that post title and thought, shit those little mexbros took all the landscaping and carpentry jobs, they’re fast replacing us at the ballot box as guest-voters at the invite of obammy, now they’re going after the redneck roles on teevee?

    Oh well, when it comes to southern accents who better than them from *way* down south? comprende, y’all?

  9. Drang Says:

    British actors practice a variety of accents. Was watching Dead Again and got halfway through it before I realized it was Kenneth Brannagh and Emma Thompson. watch Bob Hoskins in Who Framed Roger Rabbit?
    Then watch Costner in Robin Hood
    We need to close the dramatic speech coach gap!

  10. Bram Says:

    My ancestors from Wales and the rural areas of England and Scotland were the original rednecks. Might not be too hard depending on where exactly they are from.

  11. W Says:

    The Brits probably say the same thing when they watch Kevin Costner playing Robin Hood, and half way through the movie the accent is all but gone!


  12. Fred Says:

    Sean D. is partly correct as is Bram. The middle English spoken by the lower classes is what the folks who settled Appalachia (aka-the bible belt) spoke. You, Uncle, would have figured that out if you had been reading your King James Holy Bible instead of watching that reprobate, pagan, idolatry with sinful lusts in your heart. (smile)
    Want to know why everyone in the south talks the same? their ancestors all learned English here, as children, from the same book. Ya’ll might should read it sometime.

  13. Fred Says:

    And Yes, the bible was the primary text for secondary English studies. The crime was near zero and the gov didn’t need to feed and house half the population. We did that ourselves for each other.

  14. Shawn Says:

    I thought the same thing when I watched Lawless. Everyone in the movie is from Southern VA, but when I watched the extras I realized almost the whole cast was British. Are there no true country actors left. Think Ben Johnson or even Auddy Murphy

  15. Matthew Akin Says:

    Good actors — maybe — but it’s easier to imitate a caricature and have most people buy it than it is to sound like an authenticate American (southern or otherwise). House does an excellent job of sounding like a regular American without caricature, but that kind of skill is rare. Just ask the Brits what they think about the typical Hollywood British accent…or the Irish how they like the standard movie Irish accent. The Walking Dead actors sound more like these type of screen standardized accents than the real thing.

  16. LCB Says:

    Several years ago there was a show on PBS talking about the Southern accent and where it came from. According to the show we can thank the Scotts/Irish migrations of the 1700’s and early 1800’s. Quite a few of them moved in to the back country of the Applachian mountains and kept their accents for several generations. Eventually the seclusion caused the accents to morph in to the Eastern KY/TN drawl.

    And it’s spreading, because as anyone who moves south will tell you, it’s way too easy to start talking just like your neighbors.

  17. Adam Lawson Says:

    Matthew Akin: I agree. As a Southerner the Walking Dead got on my nerves when Rick kept calling for his son, “CORAL!”

    For the longest time Hollywood had two Southern accents: Gone with the Wind (for an educated Southerner) and an extremely ridiculous one for the rednecks that I’ve never actually heard. Meanwhile, a chunk of people I know sound closer to De Kelley from Star Trek.

    I’ve known people from all over the US. My favorite is the similarity some New Orleans accents have to Archie Bunker — “terlet” for toilet, “boyd” for bird… they totally transpose the er/oi sounds!

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