Click to viewWere you shocked to realize Sarah Connor (Lena Headey) was secretly British? When you were mining through Battlestar Galactica DVD bonus features, did you start yelling at the screen when Lee Adama spoke with a British accent? It turns out American science fiction is crammed with aliens — British and Australian people, that is — doing fake American accents. But some of them are better at it than others. We rank the Brits (and a few Aussies) playing Americans in scifi, from best to worst.
The adorable Lee Adama from Battlestar Galactica is actually British. The first time I heard him speak in his native tongue in the Razor special DVD I was completely floored. His American accent is spot on. Bamber, who grew up in London, wins first place for most convincing American accent in scifi. Check out his interview at BSG Con below.
Also another surprise, James grew up in London but talks American lingo in Jericho.
Proof that the Scottish can master American grammar better than most Americans. McKidd grew up in Scotland and starred in Journeyman.
Agent Smith's hard 'Ah's in "Mr. Anderson" were like nails on a chalk board. The Matrix wouldn't have been the same without him and his weird stretched-out speech. Bravo, Hugo — you've mastered the annoying nasal "A" sound that I get teased incessantly about.
McGregor gets a gold star in the accent book for his work as Lincoln Six Echo and Tom Lincoln in The Island. Plus he does a pretty mean Alec Guinness as Obi-Wan.
British actress Headey nails it, nails it, nails it playing Sarah Connor in The Sarah Connor Chronicles. Her accent is flawless, take a listen.
Nailed the farmer speak in Signs, but how much of his accent even still exists I wonder? So he's a questionable member of this list.
Grew up in Wales and the UK, and talks American in Batman Begins, The Dark Knight, Equilibrium, and the forthcoming Terminator Salvation. Does great — except when he's overdoing the Bat-growl.
Ledger's accent in The Dark Knight as the Joker was just like his character, pretty committed to crazy. But it's pretty easy to lose your accent when the range of your character goes high to low in pitch alone. So for this scifi performance alone he's in the middle of the pack, but not bad by any means.
Ms. Watson does a so-so job with her American accent in Equilibrium, but she's much more charming with her original dulcet British tones.
Now the accents start to get a little lazy. Kidman slipped in and out of sing-song Australian to nasal New Yorker, and they clash in The Stepford Wives and Invasion.
Our Wolverine likes to slip back into his Australian accent now and again in his X-Men get up. But the times are few and far between. Plus no one really knows where Logan has been all of the time, so maybe he spent some time down under?
While I love the Commander of the Enterprise's elegant sentence structure and poise, with every lofty word, he's showing his hand, especially as Professor Charles Xavier in X-Men.
I didn't even realize Owen was doing an American accent in Sin City until someone told me. Even when he was doing the voice-over, he slipped in and out. Awful, terrible blach words. I much prefer your natural UK sound, Clive... like in Children of Men.
He may be dead sexy without a shirt on in Wanted, but his character Wesley constantly slipped back into his Scottish brogue.
Michelle Claire Ryan
Worst American accent ever. Sorry Ryan, your London roots kept creeping up in your dialog as Jaime Sommers the Bionic Woman, and the bland American accent led to bland acting. Many times it looked like she was actually thinking about her vowels instead of acting.
Next week: terrible British accents coming from Americans. James Marsters, your time has come.
Additional reporting by Andrew Hudson