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Eagleland in live-action TV.

The Beautiful

  • A Bit of Fry and Laurie used this trope more than once, most memorably in song form, when Hugh Laurie, wearing a plaid flannel shirt and a headband (he was making fun of Bruce Springsteen, obviously overlooking the fact that the song "Born in the USA" is actually highly critical of America), sang a song that consisted only of the words "...America, America, America..." and "...the States, the States, the States..." and ended with Stephen Fry punching him in the stomach.
  • Doctor Who:
    • Captain Jack Harkness is a sort of toothy, conspicuously good-looking Loveable Rogue type. He has an American accent but isn't necessarily from the United States as we know it, since he's from the 51st century and apparently didn't grow up on Earth. Noted for acts of heroic derring-do, as well as shagging anything that's up for it.
    • "Daleks in Manhattan"/"Evolution of the Daleks" is meant to be an affectionate pastiche of Depression-Era America with glamorous showgirls and scrappy Hoovervillians putting on that American can-do attitude to help the Doctor fight the Daleks. Unfortunately, the story was so cheesy and the stock BBC New York accents were so over the top, it made viewers in the UK uncomfortable.
    • "Turn Left": After Britain is devastated when a spaceship crashes into London and floods southeastern England with radiation, America was going to send 50 million quid in financial aid...but then 60 million Americans dissolved into adipose.
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    • "A Town Called Mercy": The town called Mercy is a microcosm of everything good about America: it's a diverse place full of good-hearted people who just want to start their lives over and live in peace...and they all have guns and know how to use them.
  • Super Sentai:
    • An episode of Samurai Sentai Shinkenger features a very offensive portrayal of an American who's more eager than intelligent when it comes to learning the ways of the samurai.
    • In Shuriken Sentai Ninninger, Sixth Ranger Kinji is a mess of American stereotypes: he's a cowboy, he loves rock music and partying, and he goofs off in fights slightly by taking time to take selfies with the monsters. But while he's kind of silly, his ninjitsu is entirely self-taught out of admiration for master ninja Yoshitaka Igasaki, and he's extremely friendly, becoming fast friends with the Ninningers even as he would periodically attack them to prove his strength to Yoshitaka. Unlike a lot of cases, his loud and Hot-Blooded nature is pointed out not as an American cultural trait, but something that makes him a lot like Takaharu (ie, a Stock Shōnen Hero).

The Boorish

General Examples:

Individual Shows:

  • A Bit of Fry and Laurie does this occasionally, notably in "Kicking Ass" and "From Here To Just Over There".
  • Some El Chapulín Colorado episodes had the hero facing his rival Super Sam, an American dressed like Superman and Uncle Sam that liked to meddle in Mexico's business and wielded a bag of money as a weapon. He is just as clumsy and frail-looking as Chapulin, but more selfish and is rejected by the citizens who "prefer what is theirs" even if Chapulin isn't the sharpest tool in the shed. Sam does win in one episode, where he was actually trying to be helpful despite Chapulin's spiteful attitude towards him.
  • The Chaser's War on Everything used to dedicate parts of its programme to showing that Americans can't figure out how many sides of a square there are, or when 9/11 took place.
  • Doctor Who:
    • The William Hartnell serial "The Chase" has a Wacky Wayside Tribe sequence involving the TARDIS crew meeting an offensively-accented tourist from Alabama who is so thoroughly The Ditz that he can't work out that the time-travellers aren't shooting a movie, or that the Dalek is a horrible bug-eyed space monster. Said Alabaman was played by Peter Purves, who would go on to join the show as a companion at the end of the very same story, indicating someone was impressed enough by that performance to give him a permanent job.
    • Two bumbling CIA field agents in "Delta and the Bannermen" end up bickering with each other more than helping. As per BBC stock accents, one is a Southerner in a white suit and the other is a fat New Yorker dressed conspicuously in a Yankees Jacket and cap.
      Diamanda Hagan: I'm not sure if white, loud American is a race, but this is nearly racist.
    • During "The Christmas Invasion", after aliens are clearly involved, one of the characters informs the Prime Minister, Harriet Jonesnote  "I'm getting demands from Washington, Ma'm. The President's insisting that he take control of the situation." To which she replies, "You can tell the President, and please, use these exact words: He's not my boss, and he's certainly not turning this into a war."
    • The "special relationship" between the US and UK is not universally approved-of, something which comes through in depictions of the US government (although generally not its people) in modern UK shows. Take the penultimate episode of Series 3, "The Sound of Drums", for example, where the US President arrives on UK soil to bullishly demand first contact with aliens take place under UN terms with the US in charge. The Prime Minister acquiesces. Prez sets up the meeting on a flying aircraft carrier, demanding his official seal in clear view during the proceedings and generally behaving like a bit of a dick. Of course, it turns out there's more going on than he realizes, and his hubris is cashed in when the PM reveals himself to be an Evil Genius and Magnificent Bastard, and vaporizes him. Oh, and the Reset Button of the final episode only erased the events immediately after the President's demise. As a side note, a trio of Buffalo Bills-supporting teens watch the President getting zapped live on TV, and while they don't speak, they are portrayed in Letterman Jackets/a Cheerleader outfit, eating fried chicken and pizza. The fried chicken tub has a star spangled banner on it, this probably meant to simply show that they are American to UK viewers. What, no cowboy hats nor six-shooters?
    • It's subverted a bit with Torchwood: Children of Earth. The American general who shows up makes many (deserving) accusations against the British (in the context of this universe anyways) during his visit. There's even a bit of a nod towards the tendency towards Boorish Eagleland when at the end, the Prime Minister intends to save his career by blaming it all on America.
    • Also pretty well subverted in "The Impossible Astronaut"/"Day of the Moon", which are set in the US. The American characters are pretty sympathetic, if a bit trigger-happy (many of them are, after all, FBI agents). Even Richard Nixon gets a pretty kind portrayal.
    • "Arachnids in the UK": Jack Robertson is a Corrupt Corporate Executive (and Take That! to a certain real-life person) who engages in shady business practices, and doesn't understand why the Doctor and company don't just shoot the problem, instead of taking a more humane view.
  • Lexx in its Season Four is very much America the Boorish in its portrayal of the United States. Stupid moralistic rednecks, the prison industrial complex, crazy survivalists, suburban misery behind a facade of perfection, teenage druggies, criminals, heartless porn stars, reality TV... And the evil, crooked, and not-too-intelligent president is armed with nuclear weapons and is a puppet of a pure evil being. Of course, every country comes off badly on Lexx.
  • In Spooks, the Special Relationship between the UK and US leads to facepalm-inducing situations that at the very least would be cause for armed conflict if it were occurring in a country which doesn't rollover like a dog on command. The behaviour of almost every American character, barring one, makes it seem that the US has continued the American Revolution into a Cold War.
    • This dialogue sums up many seasons of Spooks:
      US Government: 'Sup UK, can we just kidnaps this random citizen in Wales without proof of any terrorist connections?
      UK Government: Sure, you can even kill a civilian or two and we'll just pin it on a left-wing lobby group for the Opposition.
      MI 5: Sir I don't think you should do that.
      UK Government: Shut up you public school pissant, WE'LL BE RICH.
      MI 5: Shit they just offed the PM's Daughter/UN General Secretary's Wife/The PRC Premier's Son!
      CIA: Hey we even framed your own security services for the hit and distributed Stinger missiles and dirty bombs to every anti-Government group in sight, that way you'll be dependant on us to stop the carnage thus furthering our Neo-Conservative views and subjugating your people, also here's Chocolate coin.
      UK Government: Shiny Coin is Shiny!
      US Government: Oh and you owe us half your annual budget for that coin.
  • Star Cops: In "Trivial Games and Paranoid Pursuits", the series indulges in the "Americans are jingoistic war-mongers" stereotype. Commander Griffin is a cigar-chomping, Soviet-hating hothead.
  • In Super Sentai's Official Parody Hikonin Sentai Akibaranger, one case of messing with Sentai history involved turning it into a Japanese adaptation of an American show instead of the other way around. The Americanized "Powerful Rangers" became arrogant bullies that considered Sentai a cheap Japanese knockoff until the Akibarangers brought them to their senses and reminded them of true heroism.
  • Taken: In "High Hopes", Jacob Clarke's teacher's lessons are extremely jingoistic tirades in which he continually compares the Russians to crusaders who are fighting a holy war against the United States with communism as their religion.
  • Top Gear (UK) is particularly infamous for going over the top Boorish in its portrayal of US. Not only do the presenters call Americans fat, lazy, and stupid with every mention of anything American, but the show proceeds to present mock evidence to all stereotypes. They took this to new heights during the American Challenge special (Series 9, Episode 3), where the presenters went on a cross-country drive; in fact, the US state department retaliated to the bad publicity of the American Challenge episode by revoking their filming visas. Among the highlights of that episode; a lawyer of a "charitable" organization tried to extort money from them. Even the "American Stig," the American version of the racing driver that tests their cars, was wearing stuffed overalls to appear obese.

    They also purposely and openly trolled Southern locals with stereotypical things Southerners weren't supposed to like painted on their cars, and were chased off by people angered by the Top Gear crew being condescending assholes. Well, they got the reactions they wanted, which made for good filming—but it's hard to say if they enjoyed it.
    • Jeremy Clarkson once flirted with an American audience member by saying "You can't be American. You're not nearly fat enough."
    • Clarkson's comments about Americans are particularly ironic given that if he were American, he'd be the archetypal Boorish. Which is the reason a lot of British people don't like him any more than they do the US.
    • Also, the whole gang loves American muscle cars, which are basically The Boorish in automotive form.
    • This continues when the presenters transferred to a new show, The Grand Tour. The new test driver is simply referred to as "the American", the presenters made jokes about how he thinks everything is Communist, and he spent all his test runs complaining about the foreign cars and the hosts. He was replaced after the first season, in Hammond's words, "because you all hated him."
    • Also in the first season of The Grand Tour, when filming internationally, both episodes filmed in America involved the presenters indulging in Cultural Posturing (the RAF vs. the US Air Force in one, which sport deserves to be called "football" in the other) that provoked an argument with the audience and escalated into an offscreen fistfight. (All clearly staged and Played for Laughs.) It probably would have been a Running Gag had the crew not shifted to a permanent studio in later seasons.
  • On an episode of What Would You Do, the crew planted two outrageous Boorish Americans in Paris, just to test out that "snooty French" stereotype. It was pretty painful to watch. Oddly enough, the actual French citizens shown were all very patient and polite, if also mildly annoyed (some of them even seem to find the boorish Americans Actually Pretty Funny). It was actually the other American tourists who called out the actors, with one woman even scolding them like a mother and reminding them that they were guests in another country and should quit acting like a bunch of jerkasses.


  • Doctor Who:
    • Two CIA agents appear in a story from the Seventh Doctor's era, "Delta and the Bannermen", complete with thick Texan accents and embarrassingly patriotic dialogue. However, they're good natured enough and do work alongside the Doctor.
    • The first Dalek in the new series showed up as a prize in an American laboratory, populated by rich bastard van Statten, Simmons, whose job largely consisted of torturing the Dalek, and an idiot security guard who didn't listen to the Doctor's advice. But the American women in that environment seem particularly strong and non-stereotypical, such as van Statten's right-hand woman who eventually has him mind-wiped and put in some city beginning with "S" and the brave young female trooper who faces down the Dalek on the stairs long enough to buy Rose and Adam enough time to escape. As depictions of Americans in Doctor Who goes, it's actually one of the better ones.
    • The US President in "The Sound of Drums" is a subversion of the Boorish; he acts like one and will say so himself, but at heart he is Beautiful, albeit misguided. Notably, he's right that PM Saxon is a boob who's mismanaging the situation and not following protocol, and the President puts UNIT, a United Nations group, in charge of the operation.
    • Despite the previous seasons leaning more towards Boorish, as of Series 6 (along with Torchwood: Miracle Day) the series has tended towards depicting Americans as a bit trigger happy, a bit boisterous and overconfident, but not overtly negative (though it is clear they're still leaning on stereotypes for some characters).
    • The majority of the Americans in "The Impossible Astronaut"/"Day of the Moon". Aside from being a little gun-happy (which is justified in the majority of them are Secret Service Agents) it's one of the better portrayals of America in recent Doctor Who seasons. According to the producers, America appears to be a place where everyone is a jovial, if slightly thick and dim-witted, patriot, and random spurts of melodramatic processional music accompany the President everywhere.
  • On Downton Abbey, Martha Levinson (played by Shirley MacLaine)—Lady Cora's mother—is forward-thinking, open-minded, and loves modernness and technology. She is also meddlesome, brash, and blunt. Very much a mixed example.
  • At face value, the American guest in the "Waldorf Salad" episode of Fawlty Towers can be seen as Boorish in that he is loud, swears a lot, and is very demanding. However, at the end of the episode, he inspires the other British guests to speak out against Basil's rudeness and apathy towards guests, whereas at the start of the episode, said guests felt that complaining would be seen as rude. In the commentary on the 2009 DVD release, John Cleese believes the American guest was in the right, and he wanted the lesson of the episode to be that sometimes you should complain in order to get things to change. (oh, and the actor was Canadian).
  • It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia: The patriotism displayed by many of the side characters (such as Ben the Soldier) tends towards the Beautiful. However, whenever the Gang decides to get patriotic, it immediately descends into the Boorish, to the point that they sometimes justify their crassness with the excuse "It's American."
  • Kamen Rider Drive offers a few strange examples. Though he's ethnically Japanese, Second Rider Gou Shijima/Kamen Rider Mach has spent the last few years in America training and comes back to Japan with a boisterous, in-your-face American attitude (complete with a long introduction Catchphrase said every time he transforms), and is initially a bit of a Jerkassnote . However, it's revealed he has a pretty big Freudian Excuse (His father is the Big Bad and the one who started all this mess to begin with by inventing the Roidmudes), and over time he mellows out.
    • We also have Gou's mentor, Professor Harley Hendrickson, who only puts in a couple of appearances but is portrayed as a genial, boisterous, Santa-like genius on a motorcycle who helps the heroes out whenever he can. Drive's mentor/sentient Transformation Trinket Mr. Belt (Krim Steinbelt) MIGHT countnote ; he's a good-hearted and noble scientist who comes to view Shinnosuke as family, but his main flaw is keeping secrets, which he drops early in the show.
  • The Lone Gunmen: Byers is polite, patriotic, and a borderline Wide-Eyed Idealist, considering this is The X-Files universe. (And yes, the actor was Canadian) However, he's in a universe where Boorish Americans are way too common. The contrast between the idealistic Byers and the obnoxious reality around them is usually Played for Laughs.
  • Steven Moffat does seem to be trying to take a step back from Russell T. Davies' Boorish stereotype into more of a hybrid on Doctor Who, but on Sherlock, he didn't have quite so much luck. He decided to switch the New Jersey native Irene Adler to British, but since that gave us Lara Pulver as a badass dominatrix, there weren't many complaints about that. However, this had the unfortunate side effect of making the only American characters in the series the CIA operatives. The only one who had any substantial characterization screamed Boorish, threatening to kill Watson to make Sherlock open a safe and beating up Mrs. Hudson (whose age isn't given, but her actress is in her mid-70s) to make her reveal the location of a piece of evidence. No one really cried when he "fell" out the window (multiple times).
  • Captain Archer of Star Trek: Enterprise is from a single-government future Earth, but his American origins are still evident. He envisions himself as a Bold Explorer, but is highly judgmental of alien practices, and actually brings his dog to a sacred tree grove on another planet. His moral grandstanding often gets him in trouble and bothers his Vulcan first officer, but sometimes his blunt approach does have good results. When put on trial by the Klingons at one point, his defense lawyer's argument boils down to "he's a bumbling idiot, but his heart is in the right place."
  • Even the high-minded Star Trek: The Next Generation wasn't immune to this trope. In "The Neutral Zone", a highly volatile encounter with the Romulans is botched by the reappearance of three 21st century failures—a druggie country singer, a New Jersey homemaker, and a wannabe Gordon Gekko type from the eighties—who used their riches to become Human Popsicles. Of the three, the businessman is the most malevolent. The singer adjusts the quickest to 24th century life, and is invigorated at the prospect of reintroducing Earth to his music. This episode qualifies as both types.


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