This video I came across on YouTube just cracked me up like crazy. A nicely done piece that I enjoyed, it’s made by the people behind The Ming Thing. The writing is clever and with good comedic timing, and the performance entertaining. To me these guys and girl from Malaysia should be on TV. I can’t wait to check out their other videos.
I don’t bat an eyelid at Asians I don’t know who happen to have western accents. For all I know, they were born and grew up in a western country, and thus their accent.
But the personal acquaintance or two who I met again after not seeing them for some time, who I suddenly realise now affected a western accent, well there’s a certain morbid fascination in that. You don’t really process quick enough whether it’s tragic or hilarious, so you can’t decide whether you need to hold back laughter, or refrain from staring at the person with your mouth open in genuine surprise, which would be just plain rude of course. In the end you just nod solemnly and look away, and maybe make excuses to get away.
Like indicated in the video, it’s never a foreign accent of another Asian country, because of course that’s eww, just another Asian country. It’s always western accents that these fools feel compelled to fake (American, English, Australian, etc). Sometimes, what adds to the hilarity is that the accents are mixed up, as if the person can’t decide whether he wants to pretend to be American or English, for example. More likely he’s just not aware he got them mixed up. Another source for helpless giggles, is when the command of the English language is really bad, but the western accent is still laboriously affected like his life depends on it.
Related: Fake western accents. Part 2! (30 October 2013)