Thursday, May 17, 2012

Accents In Game Of Thrones Part 2

Rose Leslie as the stroppy Man City supporter, Ygritte
For the last few weeks as John Snow has headed north over the wall I've been thinking that we were finally going to hear some Scottish accents on Game of Thrones but we haven't. You'd think the people over the wall (a Westeros equivalent of Hadrian's wall between England and Scotland) would have a different accent than the ones south of it and when they cast Rose Leslie, who is Scottish to play Ygritte, I expected that finally we were going to hear some Highland vowel sounds. But instead of that they've asked Leslie to do a Manchester/Lancashire accent which she does brilliantly but even so its a little bit of a let down. There are at least half a dozen Scottish actors in Game of Thrones and four or five Irish actors but so far all the accents on the snow are English or quasi English (Yes I'm looking at you Peter Dinklage). There's a couple of very mild accidental Irish accents (Littlefinger and Catelyn Stark) but everyone else either speaks home counties or with a Lancashire/Yorkshire northern accent. Game of Thrones is filmed in Belfast and previously I've expressed some disappointment not to hear a single Belfast accent anywhere near the show. They've filmed in Magheramorne where my grandmother's from and at Red Hall in Ballycarry where I used to play when I was a kid. They've also filmed up in the Glens of Antrim and down in Strangford, areas I know really well and I can tell you that all those places have distinct, old fashioned very interesting accents. Maybe give an extra a line or two? 
The week before last we did get a hint of Geordie which was nice but really the casting people should be less conservative and let the native Irish, Scottish and Welsh actors use their own voices. Americans could handle Welsh accents or Scottish ones or Ulster or even Brummie. And it beggars belief that in a continent 1000 miles from top to bottom you would only hear two different accents. 
This guy can do six different Scottish accents (and he forgot 
Glasgow). His Belfast is ok but his Boston and Maine are beyond terrible. Incidentally on a good day I can do 7 different Northern Ireland accents: Derry, Larne, Carrick, Ballymena and 3 Belfast accents: South Belfast/Malone Road, Scary West Belfast & Camp Julian Simmons Style West Belfast.