Knight and Squire

September 30, 2010

I like to think that I’m an easy-going person. I can laugh at life’s numerous absurdities, or smile inwardly at the nonsense I face daily, say nothing and move on. I’ve grown to expect the Country/Planet to continue to go to hell in a handcart. But sometimes it’s the little things that drive me to despair. Have you looked at the Subtitles on TV recently ?? They are supposed to help the hard-of-hearing. They seem to be produced by people who are short-on-braincells. What is going on ?? Are they produced by robots who can’t decypher anyone’s accent. If they are written by real people then those real people must be locked in a room without a TV. One glance at the screen would give them a clue that “No is time for the whether four cash” isn’t right. News and Sport are incomprehensible gibberish and if I thought I’d get through I’d ring up and complain…..

Then later I’m reading the back page editorial in a recent DC comic about the upcoming “Knight and Squire” miniseries written by Paul Cornell. Having re-invented just about every “hero” ever featured in their comics since WW2 I suppose it was their turn. Briefly featured in an early Batman comic (No 62) as an armour-clad UK version of the dynamic duo I presume they’ve now been updated to the modern day. But my blood boiled when Janelle Siegel, Assistant Editor (whoever he/she is ) said:-

I received the first script only to have to respond “Could you please translate some of this slang for me?”……so you’ll be seeing an additional text page at the end of every issue explaining certain ….Britishisms……we wanted to make sure the issues were fun and approachable for fans anywhere.

I have read umpteen DC etc comics from the age of 6 upwards and have managed quite well without a page explaining “Americanisms” !! Does the whole world have to continue dumbing down ?

PS: As usual the villains look the most interesting characters…..

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2 Responses to “Knight and Squire”

  1. adameterno Says:

    “I have read umpteen DC etc comics from the age of 6 upwards”

    Yes, and you were doubtless exposed to a fair amount of informal American English from an even earlier age via TV and cinema. As was I. But the cultural exchange between the UK and the US is not equal. American kids don’t tend to get the same kind of exposure to British TV, films and reading material, leaving them ill-equipped to deal with Britishisms from young adulthood onwards.

    In my experience this extends to the understanding of the formal differences between US and British English; the Yanks tend to be poor at telling the difference between an error of grammar, spelling or punctuation, and usage that is correct in British, but not in American, English (I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve had to explain that “defence” is not a typo).

    Americans: bless ’em, they’re not all stupid, but they ain’t well-schooled.


  2. Yeah..I know…two countries separated by a common language…

    We made a perfectly satisfactory TV show called “Life on Mars”. They couldn’t show it is the USA in case they wondered why the policemen had different hats on. So they re-did it in americanese…..bless ’em…..


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