Remember a few months ago when I replaced a ton of minor character’s lines with other people’s voices? And I thought I’d never have to go back and do that amount of revision again? Turns out I was wrong. I was recently contacted by a listener of Indian descent who received an unpleasant shock when she came across the Patil twins, due to the accent used.
It’s a strange walk that got me to this point. A lot of HPMoR is comedy, especially the first half. When I was doing all the voices myself I did a lot of goofy accents. In addition to highlighting the comedy, it also was fun for me, and it helped to differentiate all the characters when I was the only one doing the voices (both in my head and, I presume, to my listeners). Millicent Bulstrode had a ridiculous French accent, Dean Thomas had a spaghetti-western Cowboy drawl, Seamus was a cross between the Lucky Charms leprechaun and Groundskeeper Willy, and Zabini still has a crazy Eastern European/Russian accent (because I refused to let anyone else take him on. I just loved doing him too much, and as an Eastern European immigrant myself I feel I have some license to those jokes). It was all part of the silly fun.
But as more and more voices were replaced by people using their own, distinct voices, the silly fake accents disappeared. With very few exceptions the accents that are now in the podcast are natural accents from people who aren’t native English speakers.
The actress who voices the Patil twins was a friend of mine, who has since moved away, and who was merely following my precedent of voicing the twins with an Indian accent. She did some research beforehand and did her best to be authentic, but she didn’t employ a voice-coach. As a result she is a white woman putting on an Indian accent, and doing so in a less-than-perfect manner. It was far enough off to cause pain to a listener. The listener mentioned that such accents were affected at her school to belittle her. Given the Patil’s prominence in the anti-bullying SPHEW arc, I found that particularly upsetting.
Fortunately, Amanda is more than happy to rerecord the Patil lines without the accent, so this will be fixed in the near future! To anyone who came to the show recently and was jarred by the one goofy accent in a sea of normal voices – I apologize. That was entirely my fault, please don’t hold it against anyone else.
Music: Viginti Tres, by Tool, with just a touch of Never Say Die at the end
Podcast: Play in new window
Oh man, after hearing nothing but my own voice for so long, it was a very welcome relief to have someone else to work with again! I hadn’t realized how much I had gotten used to hearing other people while I working on these episodes. It turns out I enjoy the vocal variety a lot, and hearing just myself for so long may have made the episodes quicker and easier to update, but it was becoming a hell of a drag. Hooray for Dumbledore!
I hope my Dumbledore impression wasn’t too awful. I recorded Drake reading all of those Quirrell lines as if Dumbeldore was saying them, and then tried to mimic his pace and inflection when I read them. That was fun. :)
I debated a bit about the Description of this episode. I really, really wanted it to be “Surprise, Mugglefucker!” to most closely mimic the meme. But HPMoR has very conspicuously avoided the more severe caliber of American swear words, and I didn’t feel I had the right to cross that line. So Mugglefugger it is, even if it’s less funny that way.
Also I’ve written a little Beginner’s Podcasting post for anyone who’s interested in that sort of thing.
Noitilov detalo partxe tnere hoc ruoy tu becafruoy ton wo hsi
SFX: Hiss, FiendFyre
Music: A Lost Mexican City
Podcast: Play in new window