Monday, January 28, 2008

An American Replies: "Pensioners Who Wear Red? Huh?"

Newbury Today, January 28, 2008, "If you don't mind the blood, you will not regret the trip to see Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street", by Mike Beharrell

"It is small wonder that American tourists are reportedly staying away from good old London town, what with its reputation for fires, plagues, rippers, and cabbies who are experts on their home-country politics. There is evidence that some Americans still think that London is populated by Beefeaters, pensioners who wear red and live in Chelsea, and chimney sweeps who say things like ‘Luv a duck’ and ‘Gor blimey’ in a Dick van Dyke sort of way."

I defy you to find any Americans who know the part of London where the pensioners who wear red reside. In fact, I'm quite the Anglophile and I had no idea what this wearing red business meant until I googled it and found this.

Time elapsed since premiere of Mary Poppins:

15,856 days.

Time elapsed since someone mentioned D.V.D.'s accent:

3 days

Friday, January 25, 2008

Cockney Envy

The News (Portsmouth), Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber Of Fleet Street, January 25, 2008

Johnny Depp's singing voice is good enough – although he sounds uncannily like David Bowie on his Sixties novelty single The Laughing Gnome. Just as he does in his role as Captain Jack Sparrow in Pirates Of The Caribbean, Depp adopts a cod cockney accent Dick Van Dyke would be envious of.

Wouldn't a cockney accent D.V.D. would envy be an accurate cockney accent? He wouldn't envy one worse than his own, would he? Why is it that every time someone drops an "H", regardless of how well they do it, the reviewers all mention D.V.D.?

I do like the term "cod cockney", though. That's new to me.


I do want to mention two of the Google ads that popped up when this item came through the Gmail virtual transom:

English Accent Reduction
Personal Accent Reduction Coach In Silicon Valley. Request Free Tips!

Learn a British Accent
Master a British accent in 15 min a day. Start Your Lessons Right Now!

Either would be a perfect birthday gift for Madonna.

Time elapsed since premiere of Mary Poppins:

15,853 days.

Time elapsed since someone mentioned D.V.D.'s accent:

2 days

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

More Tales of Everyday Madness

Celeb Grapevine, In the News, January 22, 2008

It might not have been a proper British accent, but at least it was Britney.

However she's at least picked up something from Ghalib - a dodgy British accent. After finally showing up to a deposition in her custody battle with ex-husband Kevin Federline, Britney responded to questions about Ghalib in an accent straight out of the Dick van Dyke school, saying: "I don't know who that is… I have never met him before."

Time elapsed since premiere of Mary Poppins:

15,851 days.

Time elapsed since someone mentioned D.V.D.'s accent:

7 days

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

A Reference to a Reference to D.V.D.'s Accent

At last, someone else who recognizes the Dick Van Dyke reference as a cliche!

Digital Spy, Tuesday, January 15 2008, "A trifle uncool" by Dek Hogan

"Nothing on offer here then to trouble Friday Night with Jonathan Ross where typewriter-collecting Tom Hanks came across as a typically ill-informed American tourist. We were taking bets about whether there would be a Dick Van Dyke reference, so shockingly bad were Hanks's attempts at British accents. Sure enough we got one."

Also today... and seeing as we've heard about this movie before, I suspect we will again...

Irish Voice, January 16, 2008, "This Dream Is A Nightmare"

"There’s so much to lament about Cassandra’s Dream that it’s difficult to know where to start. First of all there’s the casting. Ewan McGregor, a Scotsman, and Colin Farrell, an Irishman, play two working class Londoners with the kind of Dick Van Dyke gawd bless you gov’ner accents that sometimes make you wonder if they’re being ironic."

Time elapsed since premiere of Mary Poppins:

15,844 days.

Time elapsed since someone mentioned D.V.D.'s accent:

5 days

Friday, January 11, 2008

D.V.D. as Ironic Champion of Londoners

Class snobbery in England cuts both ways. Today's mention of D.V.D. comes in the form of someone fantasizing about visiting Cambridge University and exaggerating his own lower-class accent just to annoy the stuffed shirts. "So, whatcha fink of me London accent as angry, ironic blackface?"

The Guardian, January 11th, 2008, "All change at the top", Joe Baden

"I was ready to go to Cambridge, class on my sleeve, Bermondsey accent to the fore with verbal knuckle duster at the ready, or perhaps dressed as Dick Van Dyke from the film Mary Poppins giving an ironic rendition of "de ole bamboo"."

The Mary Poppins costume and that song would be a double-whammy, seeing as D.V.D. sang it in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. And it's called "Me Old Bamboo". Two bonus points.

Time elapsed since premiere of Mary Poppins:

15,839 days.

Time elapsed since someone mentioned D.V.D.'s accent:

2 days

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

"A Case a the Dick Van Dykes" is Now a Disease!

Oh dear. First we saw his name used as a verb, and now the poor man has been reduced to something that sounds like a bowel complaint. HE'S STILL ALIVE, YOU INSENSITIVE BASTARDS!

Islington Gazette, January 9th, 2008, "Gwyneth's CDs help to dodge 'a case a the Dick Van Dykes'"

Help is at hand for tongue-tied thespians thanks to an actress who has launched a series of accent coaching CDs.

Dick Van Dyke's calamitous "cockney" in Mary Poppins may be a perennial favourite but Gwyneth Strong - best known as Cassandra in Only Fools and Horses -is hoping to make bad accents a thing of the past.

Time elapsed since premiere of Mary Poppins:

15,837 days.

Time elapsed since someone mentioned D.V.D.'s accent:

32 days

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Half Marks: No mention of his accent...

The Guardian has an article today about big acting. D.V.D.'s performance as Bert in Mary Poppins gets a mention here not for the bad accent, but for the bad acting.

The funny thing is, big acting isn't actually all that common. It is not to be confused with bad acting, ham acting or over-acting. It's not Jeremy Irons in Dungeons & Dragons, Dick Van Dyke in Mary Poppins, or Charlton Heston bellowing, "GOD DAMN YOU ALL TO HELL!!!" at the end of Planet Of The Apes.