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Accents in the Show


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I think I read an article where it said that for the accents, they're selecting the main actor or actors who have most of the dialogue from a specific region, and then adjusting the other actor's accents to match that actor.  This makes sense...It's easier to keep consistent with an accent if you only use it for a line or two.  But it means that it's hard to predict accents without knowing the casting.

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On 2/5/2022 at 3:41 PM, Jsbrads2 said:

So I noticed the two primary Ghealdan characters seem somewhat Spanish, have a Spanish accent, I hope that continues, I think it will improve the show.

What accents would you like to see for other nations?

Is there an accent you think would work well for Illian?

What about the Seanchan?

 

If 'Pirate' was a nationality...

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3 hours ago, zacz1987 said:

Obviously Two Rivers, Cairhien and Malkier/Shienar had similar or the same accents going by Moiraine, Lan and the Two Rivers Folk.

Bit tricky to do regional accents when you are limited to being as diverse as Rafe has structured WoT.

 

Same problem with applying any real cultural differences…

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3 hours ago, Raal Gurniss said:

Bit tricky to do regional accents when you are limited to being as diverse as Rafe has structured WoT.

 

Same problem with applying any real cultural differences…

Yeah.

 

I just find it funny when you consider Ghealdan is probably the closest culture to Two Rivers considering they both were originally part of Manetheren  yet they are the one place with a distinct accent apparent cultural differences. 

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26 minutes ago, zacz1987 said:

Yeah.

 

I just find it funny when you consider Ghealdan is probably the closest culture to Two Rivers considering they both were originally part of Manetheren  yet they are the one place with a distinct accent apparent cultural differences. 

Well that is also an issue that the show creators have burdened themselves with…They chose a path but can/will they stick to it or will they start type casting for the other factions…
 

I just find it humorous that they dug themselves a hole and I am interested on how they intend getting out…I suspect they will gloss over it and try to distract by having as few people in view or have speaking roles per faction as they can get away with.

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I'm not convinced they're really worrying about it. Priyanka Bose and Álvaro Morte just aren't native English speakers and I don't think they can do an accent that isn't their natural accent. Maybe they'll try to cast all Indians as Arafellins and Spanish as Ghealdanin at least for recurring characters, but not for redshirts. Deal with it. Richard Madden and Sophie Turner didn't sound much like each other. Neither did Hugo Weaving and Liv Tyler, or Sean Bean and David Wenham. Actors have limits. They didn't look much like each other, either.

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8 minutes ago, AdamA said:

I'm not convinced they're really worrying about it. Priyanka Bose and Álvaro Morte just aren't native English speakers and I don't think they can do an accent that isn't their natural accent. Maybe they'll try to cast all Indians as Arafellins and Spanish as Ghealdanin at least for recurring characters, but not for redshirts. Deal with it. Richard Madden and Sophie Turner didn't sound much like each other. Neither did Hugo Weaving and Liv Tyler, or Sean Bean and David Wenham. Actors have limits. They didn't look much like each other, either.

That would be the glossing over part I mentioned..

 

Regional diversity in WoT is largely costume only and even then its pretty much uniform throughout, only the Whitecloaks stand out…And they ARE in uniform.

 

In the books it was like Tar Valon was French, Caemlyn British, Cairhairn Spanish etc, they all had regional deviation from each other, accents, traditions, food, customs etc…

 

I saw precious little of any of that..There was a definite dearth of such things, even the the Ogier were bland.

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There is this great line in another show, something like, “you sound a bit northern” to which the response was “Where I come from has a north too.”

I like all the different ideas, but RJ never really bothered to go out of his way for most of the cultures. These people sound a bit like their, those people sound a bit like their land. But when it came to particularly Illian and Seanchan, RJ went out of his way to stress their different speech.

looking forward to what they do, but understand practical and etc. 

Do you have any accents in your mind from when you read the books?

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27 minutes ago, Jsbrads2 said:

There is this great line in another show, something like, “you sound a bit northern” to which the response was “Where I come from has a north too.”

I like all the different ideas, but RJ never really bothered to go out of his way for most of the cultures. These people sound a bit like their, those people sound a bit like their land. But when it came to particularly Illian and Seanchan, RJ went out of his way to stress their different speech.

looking forward to what they do, but understand practical and etc. 

Do you have any accents in your mind from when you read the books?

Well it’s comparative…RJ may not have gone into minute detail but when compared to Rafe….

 

 

Well you have to admit that a little is much more than none.

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33 minutes ago, Jsbrads2 said:

There is this great line in another show, something like, “you sound a bit northern” to which the response was “Where I come from has a north too.”

I like all the different ideas, but RJ never really bothered to go out of his way for most of the cultures. These people sound a bit like their, those people sound a bit like their land. But when it came to particularly Illian and Seanchan, RJ went out of his way to stress their different speech.

looking forward to what they do, but understand practical and etc. 

Do you have any accents in your mind from when you read the books?

It's a little odd for me, going over my headcanon for the accents.

For some of the cultures, I imagine their accents as being similar to real-world people with similar physical appearance.  For others, I imagine it as being similar to real-world people with similar cultures.

 

In my head, Cairhienin look east Asian, and so sound that way.  Even though the Shienarans have the most Asian culture.  On the other hand, in my head Aiel look Irish, but sound like a cross between Native American and north African - the way I picture their culture.

 

Tairens, with their darker skin and oiled beards, always sounded (and looked) like Spaniards.

 

Andorans are plainly English.

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But all the cultures are all mixtures, Chinese food, Spanish architecture, middle eastern dress for Tanchico. But Andor isn’t English, the dominant rule of a queen reminds us of Wales today, Andor doesn’t. Camlyn has colorful domes which is middle eastern. Also the relative relaxed attitude of class is not English, I don’t know who is the most relaxed about class, but English is the most uptight about class, so…

I thought of the Cairhein being the bluest of blue blood English, because of their uptight culture, tho the Cairhein have French garden, French hair. Saldeans have an Italian sensibility and tho everyone says Asian, I thought Persian appearance, Faile = Jasmine, Polish Cavalry… because they are all mixtures of more than one culture, you can pick one of their attributes, assign it dominance, but that is always a choice, not a fact based on evidence. 

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In all this discussion of accents, how is it that no-one mentions the Universal Translator aspect of having averyone across an entire continent speaking the same language?  Even if they all spoke the same before the Breaking, that and the wars and splintering that followed would have created far greater divergences than after, say, the fall of Western Rome (and double the time has passed since the Breaking).

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9 hours ago, EmreY said:

In all this discussion of accents, how is it that no-one mentions the Universal Translator aspect of having averyone across an entire continent speaking the same language?  Even if they all spoke the same before the Breaking, that and the wars and splintering that followed would have created far greater divergences than after, say, the fall of Western Rome (and double the time has passed since the Breaking).

This one is just a limitation of writers. Constructing languages is difficult if you're almost anyone but Tolkien. It's probably better that RJ mostly did not bother to try, but yes, in reality there is no way the Sharans and Seanchan would still speak the same language as the mainline characters after a thousand plus years with no contact. As it stands in our world, Middle English didn't even exist yet a thousand years ago.

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32 minutes ago, AdamA said:

I'm not glossing over your point. I'm not responding to it at all. I'm responding to the actual thread prompt, about regional accents, not culture in general.

I meant that would be the showmakers glossing over, rather than you..

 

You did after all describe what they tried so far.

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14 hours ago, EmreY said:

In all this discussion of accents, how is it that no-one mentions the Universal Translator aspect of having averyone across an entire continent speaking the same language?  Even if they all spoke the same before the Breaking, that and the wars and splintering that followed would have created far greater divergences than after, say, the fall of Western Rome (and double the time has passed since the Breaking).

 

5 hours ago, AdamA said:

This one is just a limitation of writers. Constructing languages is difficult if you're almost anyone but Tolkien. It's probably better that RJ mostly did not bother to try, but yes, in reality there is no way the Sharans and Seanchan would still speak the same language as the mainline characters after a thousand plus years with no contact. As it stands in our world, Middle English didn't even exist yet a thousand years ago.

One of the ways Jordan minimized that effect was by having various periods throughout that 3,000 years of history where the nations were all in regular contact with each other - even having a single empire unifying the entire continent for a time.  Even at the present time, there is trade via river and ocean that spans everything from the Borderlands to the Sea of Storms.  And the effect of the White Tower would be similar.

 

In real life, it wouldn't be enough, but it would have at least some ameliorating effect.

 

Another thing would be the effect of the underlying history of the Old Tongue in every current land.  Kind of the way all the Romance languages today are at least somewhat mutually intelligible, even though they are clearly different.

 

It also wouldn't be enough in real life, but I don't think I've ever encountered a work of fantasy that handles languages realistically.  Lord of the Rings explored languages more than most, but that was Tolkien's avocation.  But even in Middle Earth, everyone could talk to each other - and they all started out different.

 

It's actually something Game of Thrones did better than others, with different lands having different languages.  And the Mother of Dragons needing an interpreter.

Edited by Andra
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On 2/8/2022 at 10:54 AM, Raal Gurniss said:

I meant that would be the showmakers glossing over, rather than you..

 

You did after all describe what they tried so far.

Okay, I get what you're saying. Yeah, I don't think they're going to bother to try and go for consistent regionally distinct accents. At least from what I can see of other television and film projects that involve largely fictional cultures, this is hard to do. The Expanse kind of did it with Belter Creole, but not consistently. Battlestar Galactica was pretty terrible at it, claiming each colony had a specific accent, but I couldn't hear it listening to them speak. The Gaius code switching wasn't convincing.

Edited by AdamA
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25 minutes ago, AdamA said:

Okay, I get what you're saying. Yeah, I don't think they're going to bother to try and go for consistent regionally distinct accents. At least from what I can see of other television and film projects that involve largely fictional cultures, this is hard to do. The Expanse kind of did it with Belter Creole, but not consistently. Battlestar Galactica was pretty terrible at it, claiming each colony had a specific accent, but I couldn't hear it listening to them speak. The Gaius code switching wasn't convincing.

It’s not an easy thing to do and requires specific regional casting or extensive coaching, Expanse gave it a good try but they only did the one…

 

WoT eradicated it pretty much completely and seem to go the route of a one perhaps two people to stereotype the entire regional factions fashion, accents and culture…The background extras might as well be the same dozen or so people in all the other factions with a very minor costume change if any…

 

WoT in my opinion struggles with verisimilitude, which shouldn’t really be much of a hurdle given the whole fantasy thing, but it doesn’t so much miss the mark as just not even bother with it at all…It’s utterly rife with things that make little sense unless you fictionalise 10x as much as they show to rationalise it.
 

I mean there is far fetched, then there is far fetched within a far fetched fictional fantasy setting.

 

And that is just detrimental to any story.

 

 

 

 

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On 2/7/2022 at 10:01 PM, Jsbrads2 said:

But all the cultures are all mixtures, Chinese food, Spanish architecture, middle eastern dress for Tanchico. But Andor isn’t English, the dominant rule of a queen reminds us of Wales today, Andor doesn’t. Camlyn has colorful domes which is middle eastern. Also the relative relaxed attitude of class is not English, I don’t know who is the most relaxed about class, but English is the most uptight about class, so…

I thought of the Cairhein being the bluest of blue blood English, because of their uptight culture, tho the Cairhein have French garden, French hair. Saldeans have an Italian sensibility and tho everyone says Asian, I thought Persian appearance, Faile = Jasmine, Polish Cavalry… because they are all mixtures of more than one culture, you can pick one of their attributes, assign it dominance, but that is always a choice, not a fact based on evidence. 

 

There's definitely a lot of mixing of cultures going on, evident in what may on first glance appear to be haphazard combinations of  physical appearance, mannerisms, accents, hairstyles, clothing, social dynamics, etc. I think RJ wanted to keep people guessing.

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