Created By: sephalon on August 12, 2009
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Accent Relapse

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Do We Have This?

This is when a character who has been speaking perfect, unaccented english (or whatever the language of the audience is), gets revealed to be a spy or covert operative from some other country. From that point on, he instantly reverts to a thick accent from his native language.

This is Distinct from Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping in that it is not a poor acting display by the performer, but instead a deliberate (and inexplicable) thing written into the story.

Examples:
  • Spies Like Us - Once the mission contacts are revealed to be Russian spies, in the subsequent interrogation scene, they both have thick Russian accents.
  • The Rocketeer - The German Spy, Timothy Dalton, after speaking perfect English the whole movie, ZUDDENLY HAZ ZE GERMAN ACCZENT VUNCE HE IZ EXPOZED!
Community Feedback Replies: 10
  • August 12, 2009
    halfmillennium
    Might want to change that, 'unaccented English' doesn't exist. Could also cover accents of one country.

    • I seem to remember Poirot doing this once with a supposed socialite who reverted from RP to a Cockney accent after being exposed.
  • August 12, 2009
    johnnye
    Norm in Theres Something About Mary - he even forgets himself and nearly uses his real accent in front of the woman he was trying to fool, before trying to recover but giving up and telling the truth.
  • August 12, 2009
    FishStampede
    When the King of the Rennaissance Faire is deposed and hit with a sexual harassment lawsuit on King Of The Hill, he immediately reverts from Ye Olde Bucharde English to a thick Texas accent.
  • August 12, 2009
    rgoro
    I don't know if it was a shout out, or halfmillennium misremembering, but in an episode from Doctor Who (4th series, the one with Agatha Christie) there's the socialite who gets exposed and goes back to Cockney.
  • August 12, 2009
    Umptyscope
    The King Of The Hill reference is even funnier when you realize the voice actor in question was Alan Rickman.
  • August 12, 2009
    halfmillennium
    rgoro, must have been a Shout Out, the Poirot episode was definitely made before the episode of Doctor Who (The Unicorn and the Wasp, specifically).
  • August 12, 2009
    Silent Hunter
    Unknown Troper 192.252.76.200: On CSI:NY, a man pretending to be Jewish is revealed to be a German former Hitler's Youth soldier. Even after 64 years of pretending to be a non-practicing Polish Jew, marrying a Jewish woman, and raising an Orthodox Jewish son, he reverts to his German accent when his crime is revealed.
  • August 12, 2009
    Umptyscope
    Done by Ann-Margaret in Neil Simon's The Cheap Detective, when detective Peter Falk tricks her into revealing that she's Russian -- she is unable to pronounce the word "baubles."
  • August 12, 2009
    Unknown Troper
    Happens to a German spy who had tried to infiltrate Hogan's Heroes.
  • August 12, 2009
    Kaybor
    On 30 Rock, Liz realized Jack's girlfriend was a con artist when she slipped from her usual British accent to American.
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