American children now speak with British accents and use words like ‘telly’ after watching the English cartoon Peppa Pig during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The so-called ‘Peppa effect’ had children mimicking the main character even before the pandemic, but the lockdown and stay-at-homes made the effect wider.
Parents were working from home, and in order to be able to have Zoom conversations without distractions, they allowed their children to have more screen time.
But now they discover that their children now speak in polished British accents – just like Peppa, the main character of the show.
American children now speak with British accents and use words like ‘television’ after watching the English cartoon Peppa Pig during the Covid-19 pandemic
The so-called ‘Peppa effect’ had children mimicking the main character even before the pandemic, but the lockdown and stay-at-homes made the effect wider. Pictured: A Peppa Big booth at Comic-Con International in San Diego, California in 2019
Dani, a five-year-old kindergarten teacher from California, surprised her parents when she asked her mother, who said she was going to the eye doctor, in an English accent, “Mom, are you going to the optician?”
“And we were like, ‘the what,'” Dani’s father, Matias Cavallin, told the… Wall Street Journal. ‘That’s like a university-level word. At least I didn’t use it.’
Dani has now changed a lot of her vocabulary — all because she watched Peppa Pig during the pandemic after Mr. Cavallin let her watch while he worked from home and his wife worked in an office.
“It was almost a happy accident when I tried to find a pseudo-nanny during Zoom meetings,” said Mr. Cavallin, a public relations manager in El Cerrito, of finding the cartoon at the start of the pandemic.
But now Dani calls Mr. Cavallin “daddy” in a British accent instead of “daddy.” She also says “gas station” instead of gas station and “biscuits” instead of cookies, and when her father has a cup of coffee, Dani asks, “Are you drinking tea now?”
Parents notice that their kids now speak in polished British accents – just like Peppa, the show’s lead character.
He also tweeted: ‘On a recent vacation, my 5-year-old dared to tell me she loved her vacation. I told her we speak American in this house…and Spanish too.”
Cavallin told the news station that Dani’s grandparents, who mostly speak Spanish after emigrating from Argentina, joke, “We don’t understand her to begin with, and now she speaks British?”
The family is not alone in their predicament, as Peppa Pig has left behind many American children who have now adopted a British accent.
Peppa Pig was the world’s second most requested children’s cartoon for the 12 months ending February after “SpongeBob SquarePants,” according to data from entertainment consultancy Parrot Analytics. The show also jumped to the world’s 50th most requested program of any kind, up from 203rd the previous year.
The family is not alone in their predicament as Peppa Pig has left behind many American children who have now adopted a British accent
“Young Peppa fans see her as a friend…and as we do with friends we admire, some of their traits pick up,” Peppa Pig owner told Entertainment One Ltd. in a written statement to the outlet. “Imitation is the most sincere form of flattery,” it added.
Meanwhile, six-year-old Aurelia from North Scituate, Rhode Island, has pushed for the British holiday tradition of baking mince pies for “Father Christmas” after watching Peppa Pig religiously, her mother Lauren Ouellette said.
‘It gave us the space to discover something new. Is Santa Claus the same man as Santa Claus? And why is his name like that?’ she said.
Aurelia now also asks, “Can we turn on the television?” and called the bathroom a water closet.
“I thought, ‘What did she learn that from? Was she on the Titanic in a past life?'” Ms Ouellette said, adding that it became clear why her daughter had picked up a British accent as they watched the cartoon together. .