The Rise of Lisps in Commercials

Posted by james on Oct. 27, 2009

I've always paid a lot of attention to people's speech patterns. I usually notice the hint of an accent or lisp, it just stands out to me. Sometimes it's fun, a little personality to someone's voice. Other times it's just incidental, but otherwise ignorable.

Lately I've noticed a ton of commercials featuring narration by people with very noticeable lisps. I have a few friends with lisps, it can be cute. But I really don't recommend that they do professional voiceover work. These commercials have really started to bug me, and I have to mute the commercials whenever they come on.

Two of the worst offenders: mozy and target. All I can think is, why would anyone choose these people to narrate a national commercial? Who was in charge of casting? Do these people not hear the slurred misspoken S's?


(from mozy.com)

In a related note, what's wrong with that actor Brian F. O'Byrne in FlashForward?? I knew his accent couldn't be real (turns out he's from Ireland, thanks IMDB), but what accent is he trying to model exactly? Right now I'm calling it the brain-damaged bostonian.