Why is Hollywood so bedazzled by British accents? Not only does the movie industry employ plenty of actors from the British Isles, studios often force American thespians to attempt a cut glass intonation (with diverse outcomes).
Comedian Bill Maher took a stab at explaining the phenomenon on his Friday evening show Real Time, concluding that Americans rely on the British tone to “convey gravitas” because his “childish" countrymen are fundamentally not “a serious people.”
“Our reliance on the British accent to convey gravitas is kind of our way of admitting that we know we’re not really a serious people,” he said. “We drink wine out of boxes. We invented Mormonism. Our best-selling author is Bill O’Reilly. Most Americans don’t know that ‘The Big Bang Theory’ is also a theory.”
Climate change denial, Sarah Palin and pajama jeans, he continued, are what define America.
George W. Bush shakes hands with former British Prime Minister Tony Blair after presenting him with a Presidential Medal of Freedom
Maher continued: “We know we’re the ones who gave the world Kim Kardashian’s giant ass -- by which I mean, Kanye West. And therein lies our ‘special relationship’ with England. They have the gravitas, we have the swag.”
Showing a picture of George Bush and Tony Blair, he said: “We have the air craft carriers, but they have the guy who knows a sentence needs a subject and an object. That war sounded a whole lot better coming out of Tony Blair’s mouth -- which is why the British accent is dangerous.”
“It should always come with a warning: ‘This movie isn’t really that profound, this reality show judge isn’t really that smart, this war isn’t really a good idea’.”
Watch the Bill Maher clip above.