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Stilly River Sage Hearing & identifying an accent - TV & Film (29) Hearing & identifying an accent - TV & Film 19 Jan 21


This could easily expand into a larger conversation, but it's starting from a rather annoying commercial that plays on PBS (yes, commercial free, but sponsors of programs get to stick these in before the start of programs). Fidelity has a couple who change their financial plans according to their daughter's family growing.

Here are the particulars from a site that offers a lot of information about TV commercials: https://www.ispot.tv/ad/ZqHs/fidelity-investments-grandparents-song-by-tears-for-fears. I found this on Reddit, where there is a thread called "The Obnoxious Fidelity "change in plans" Couple."

What I find interesting is that the man in here clearly has a British type of accent, not necessarily from the UK, maybe from South Africa or another colonized area. Not American. Yet when you break it down, he only says four words in the whole thing. So how my ear pick this up so quickly is what I've been thinking about. The vowels, I think. He says "Twins" and then later, "Change of plans." That's all.

I started trying to look up the commercial to get the actor's name so I could find where he's from, and that hasn't panned out. The "hive mind" (as WYSIWYG often called Mudcat) can probably suss out the details I can't find.

From here, I will remark that we all have talked about how actors are sometimes known for the accents they master as they take on roles. Meryl Streep and Nicole Kidman are the examples that comes to mind now, but there are many. Some not as successful as others. I remember a British program from years ago, about a vet at an exotic zoo at an estate in Britain somewhere. As the series progressed an American vet or marine biologist comes into the plot, and mostly her accent worked, except in one script I think they were talking about something an animal ate and out of her mouth came the words "bottle top." Wow. My head lurched around, realizing this was a British actor doing an American accent. Because in the US, bottle cap is the term. And the way she said it, well, an American actor would have alerted the script folks that the word was wrong.

Okay, enough background. My initial question is about that guy in the commercial - where is he from?


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