A character is obviously "not from around here", but where they actually are
from is kept a mystery. They don't even name a No Communities Were Harmed
pretend country like Qurac
It's possible that it's All There in the Manual
, but you won't get any hints in the show itself. Their name doesn't give any hints, it just Sounds Foreign
, and their accent doesn't sound like that of any real country
They're likely to talk about The Old Country
a lot without ever telling you what it is. Can be played for drama to hint at a character having a Mysterious Past
, but more common as a way to create the ultimate Funny Foreigner
- you can use all the best stereotypes without offending anyone
Other characters may have their own assumptions, but these will be met by conflicting evidence, disagreement from others and offended denials by the foreigner himself
("Hungarian!? The Hungarians are our mortal enemies!
"). The author, if pressed, will probably respond with a Shrug of God
A popular variant in the UK is the "Eurotrash" character, someone whose origin can be loosely classed as Central/Western Europe but no narrower than that, speaking fluent English with an accent that hopscotches between Swedish, French, German, Italian...
Their reticence to talk about where they come from may be an early hint
that they're a Fauxreigner
Compare Ambiguously Brown
, which can overlap with this trope. Contrast But Not Too Foreign
. See also Where The Hell Is Springfield?
, for when it's the setting of the show that's ambiguously located. The real life version as applied to versatile actors is Plays Great Ethnics