Hollywood New England

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.

"I dwell 'neath the shade of Harvard
In the State of the Sacred Cod,
Where the Lowells speak only to Cabots,
And the Cabots speak only to God."

Richard Clarke Cabot

Ah, New England: Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine. Cradle of The American Revolution, home of Plymouth Rock, Ben and Jerry's, Walden Pond and the Red Sox, and chock full of fish.

In media, by contrast, New England gets Flanderized into...well, there's kind of a duality here.

On one side, we have the highbrow intellectuals who go to Ivy League universities, write books, dabble in philosophy and end up as magnificent eccentrics. Many of these are scions of the "Codfish Aristocracy," uber-exclusive old families who can trace their ancestry back to the Mayflower passenger list (none of whom were named Kennedy, incidentally; that family is famously Irish Catholic and made their money in real estate, the stock market, and Prohibition-era bootlegging). All this snootiness comes in very handy when a producer requires a Black Sheep... or just wants an excuse to film in and around Kennebunkport, Hyannisport, or Martha's Vineyard.

On the other side of the coin, we have the tough immigrant laborers, folksy down-home farmers, and of course the crusty flannel-wearing fishermen who give us the seafood we so crave. All of these people will be veritable founts of down-to-earth wisdom, generally dispensed using as many goofily inscrutable metaphors as possible ("Cold enough to freeze the skin off a beanpole!")

Come to think of it, fish is brain food, so maybe it all fits together after all...

In reality, New England is one of the oldest regions of the United States: six separate states with a mountain range up the middle and the Gulf Stream just offshore, meaning the climate and geography are all a lot more variable than that found in most other regions of the country. (Don't like the weather? Wait five minutes.) Seacoast Massachusetts is a very different place from the Lakes Region of New Hampshire, the "Northern Plantations" of Maine or the Green Mountains of Vermont, and each region has its own variations of culture, accent and traditions. All of which is pretty much lost on Hollywood.

The standard protocol is for the lowly, regardless of region, to be given a generic Down East accent. The grand get the Boston-specific version, as heavily popularized by JFK and family. The irony here is that no other person in New England actually speaks like the Kennedys. Their infamous accent actually has a touch of the Queen's English mixed in, because the founding generation spent a fair amount of time in the UK while growing up (family patriarch Joseph P. Kennedy, Sr., was Ambassador to the Court of St. James's 1938-1940 and had other business there as well).

Their ubiquitousness on the cultural scene, meanwhile, has resulted in 95% of Hollywood having no idea how to use a Boston accent, thus bolstering the careers of Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, and brothers Mark and Donnie Wahlberg. For that matter, non-New Englanders generally don't realize that there are in fact four versions of the "Boston" accent, only one of which is the stereotypical version—and in real life, it's hardly as exaggerated as depicted.

This trope mostly covers Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Rhode Island, and eastern Massachusetts (Boston, Plymouth, Cape Cod, and the islands). When Connecticut appears, it tends to be depicted as a bunch of rich suburbs of New York City filled with insufferable geniuses who are/were educated at posh universities like Yale. Western Massachusetts ("west'a Woostah"), for all intents and purposes, does not exist (if you ask a lot of people from West Mass this is truth in television, particularly when dealing with a Bostonian). As anyone from Boston will tell you, it's a wicked good city. In addition, there's a new competitor in the cliché-stakes: "Southie", home of the Southies, which (as depicted in media) is not so much South Boston as it is a crime-ridden, extremely northerly borough of New York. Whaya they tawk funny.

Rural Hollywood New England is where you usually find brilliant autumn foliage displays, and picturesque snowy winter landscapes. This is largely Truth in Television; they look like scenes from a Norman Rockwell painting because they are. Keep in mind, of course, that this is also Lovecraft Country.

The phrase "Pahk my cah in Hahvad Yahd, 'cuz that's a good ideer" is a well-known shibboleth of the accent.

Contrast California Valley Girl speak, which, like, migrated over to the northeast, found it wicked awesome, and stayed.

Examples of Hollywood New England include:


  • The old-money life is spoofed with abandon and made gangsta in this ad for Smirnoff Tea. "High tea in the pawlah makes the ladies hawlah!"
  • "Pepperidge Fahm remembahs!"
  • There was a fast-food commercial where a recent[when?] trade to the Boston Red Sox was eating his burger as he listened to a tape teaching him how to speak New Englander. "Hahd. I like to play wicked hahd. Hahd."
    • It was an ad for Dunkin Donuts featuring Curt Schilling, the Sox' star pitcher at the time. The ad played on the fact that there are two things that make Boston great: the Red Sox, and Dunkin Donuts.
    • There's a similar commercial for McDonald's coffee. Two flannel-dressed guys on a pier correct each other's New Englandisms (like how to pronounce Worcester). "Best Broadway show ever?" "Wicked"!
      • There's another one in the same vein where a guy quizzes his girlfriend on her New England trivia.
  • Southie accents get a workout in an ad for the Hopper satellite dish system.
  • Tourism advertising for the states themselves often falls into this. If you listen to Massachusetts' tourism board, the entire state is Cape Cod and the Freedom Trail. Similarly, Vermont is happy to tell you at length about its trees and skiing. And apparently, all Connecticut consists of is two enormous casinos.

Comic Books

  • When made man Nicky Cavella first appears in The Punisher, he and his partners arrive in New York from Boston. The first thing his liaison to the local mob families asks him is, "So you guys are from Boston too, huh? Did ya leave ya cahh inna pahkin' laht?"
  • Mort Walker and Dik Browne were both from Connecticut, so their comic strip Hi and Lois took place there, but depicted the usual small towns positively instead of mocking them. There would occasionally appear beautiful landscape drawings in the panels!
  • While the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles originated in New York they spent a while after getting chased out by the Shredder in and around Springfield Massachusetts, which is where their creators hail from.


  • The Departed being set in Boston uses this.
  • Dead Poets Society is set in Vermont, focusing, of course, on the highbrow intellectual side. Given that it was a high-end boarding school, it's unlikely that all of the students were actually from Vermont, and it was filmed in Delaware.
  • Jaws takes place in the fictional New England town of Amity. The first film was filmed on Martha's Vineyard.

Ellen: "In Amity you say yahd."
Martin: "They're out in the yahd, not too fah from the cah. How was that?"
Ellen: "Like you're from New York."

    • Roy Scheider makes a rookie mistake in saying "yadd" instead of "yahd." Which actually makes sense, since Martin isn't actually from the Cape.
  • On Golden Pond - set in rural New Hampshire and actually filmed there on beautiful Squam Lake.
  • Hitchcock's The Trouble with Harry takes place in rural Vermont, with gorgeous autumn location footage to match.
  • Good Will Hunting
  • Gone Baby Gone is set in the Boston neighborhood of Dorchester.
    • If Worcester is pronounced 'Woostah", how come Dorchester isn't pronounced "Doostah"?
    • And The Town takes place in Charlestown, another Boston neighborhood. Maybe we should just rename this trope Ben Affleck New England.
      • There is a line in one trailer for The Town that the Boston-based SlashFilmcast couldn't let pass without comment. Apparently, there are "over 300 bank robberies in Charlestown" every year. Which means that we should be hearing about at least one bank robbery per day.
  • What About Bob? was set in rural New Hampshire but actually filmed in southwest Virginia.
  • The Perfect Storm, though Gloucester, Mass. doesn't actually figure much in the story.
  • The Cold War comedy The Russians Are Coming, the Russians Are Coming takes place on a fictional island off Gloucester.
  • Summer of '42 is set on Packett Island, a fictionalized version of Nantucket.
  • In the Bedroom is set in coastal Maine.
  • Tom Hanks in Catch Me If You Can has one of these accents, making his memorable "knawk-knawk" joke all the better. Especially cute in an outtake where he tries to speak with a mouthful of food, flubs the line and says "But you could hear the accent, right?"
  • The Social Network - set at Harvard
  • Me Myself and Irene was basically about a road trip from Rhode Island to Vermont. Unlike most movies filmed about the area, the filming locations were actually in Rhode Island and Vermont (not Massachusetts, which was odd, since there is no easy way to drive from Rhode Island to Vermont without passing through it).
  • Outside Providence takes place, well, in the suburbs of Providence, Rhode Island. Despite being written by famed local directors Peter and Bobby Farrelly (of Dumb and Dumber fame), and based off of Peter's 1988 autobiographical novel, it actually wasn't directed by them as often assumed, but by Micheal Corrente.
  • The Fighter takes place in Lowell, Mass.
  • In Ronald Colman's one Academy Award-winning film, A Double Life, he has an affair with a coffee shop waitress (Shelley Winters' film debut) who tells him that he sounds like Baaston.
  • A Summer Place is set primarily at the titular locale, an upscale Maine island resort.
  • Scooby Doo and the Witch's Ghost is set primarily in a Hollywood New England town. Complete with accents, autumn foliage, legends of witch trials, and a replica pilgrim village. A major character in the movie is a rather obvious expy of Maine native Stephen King.
  • Jumanji has the town being located in New England. The film was shot in Keene, New Hampshire (where the film is supposedly set) as well as North Berwick, Maine (the location of the Parrish Shoes Factory).
  • Beetlejuice was set in the fictional village of Winter River, Connecticut; the exteriors were filmed in East Corinth, Vermont.


  • Little Women and the rest of Louisa M. Alcott's stories are set in and around her native Concord, Mass. Alcott's father Bronson was a prominent Transcendentalist, a philosophic movement whose leaders—likewise native to the area—also included Thoreau and Emerson. Virtually all of America's great silver age writers were either from or lived in Concord, including Nathaniel Hawthorne.
  • Nearly all of Stephen King's books are set in Maine, which is perfectly reasonable considering he lives there. In fact, the isolation of its island communities provided the entire plot of Storm of the Century. "According to Stephen King, there's something nasty buried under every small town in Maine."
  • Amelia Atwater-Rhodes' books in her Nyeusigrube series take place around Massachusetts. In the Forests of the Night takes place specifically in Concord and the main character, Risika's, house is based on a real house where a friend of the author lived. In Persistence of Memory, Erin is given a phone number with Boston Suffolk County's 617 area code.
  • Almost all of Jodi Picoult's novels take place in New England, usually either Massachusetts or New Hampshire.
  • Most of John Irving's novels (The World According to Garp, The Cider House Rules, A Prayer for Owen Meany) take place in New England. Write What You Know applies again.
    • The same holds true for the other well-known "Johns" of mid-to-late 20th century American literature, Cheever and Updike. When their stories weren't set in Manhattan they were generally set here.
    • Updike's The Witches of Eastwick cross-pollinated Hollywood New England with Lovecraft Country. The fictional town of Eastwick has since become conflated with the actual town of Ipswich since much of The Film of the Book was filmed there, while the setting of the book was modeled after a small village in Rhode Island named Wickford which looks pretty much like a cross between the two.
  • The Devil and Daniel Webster makes much of its New Hampshire setting.
  • As H.P. Lovecraft set most of his stories in the region, Lovecraft Country is virtually coterminous with New England. For example, The Case Of Charles Dexter Ward has been described as a "hymn to Providence."
  • William Dean Howells' classic The Rise Of Silas Lapham is set in Boston.
  • Lemonade Mouth is set in Rhode Island, although Disney moved the setting of The Movie to New Mexico.
  • Gace Metalious' Peyton Place is set in a small town somewhere in New England. The fictional setting was apparently a composite of several real-life New Hampshire towns in which the author had lived.

Live Action TV

  • M*A*S*H had Major Charles Winchester III, a Back Bay-bred Boston Brahmin.
    • Trapper John McIntyre was also from (a presumably less fashionable part of) Boston. Given his name (in full, John Francis Xavier McIntyre), it's likely he's a Southie, although neither the film nor TV version used that specific accent.
    • Hawkeye Pierce was supposedly the son of a lobsterman from Crabapple Cove, Maine, though (perhaps wisely) neither Donald Sutherland in the film nor Alan Alda in the series ever attempted a proper downeast accent, though it is mentioned in the original novels.
  • Thurston Howell III, from Gilligan's Island, spoke with a stereotypical "Larchmont lockjaw" accent.
  • Murder, She Wrote, set in small-town Maine. Featuring William Windom, Tom Bosley and a slew of random extras using phony Down East accents thick enough that they may qualify as the network-TV version of Dick van Dyke doing Cockney in Mary Poppins. Bosley's attempts were particularly egregious.
  • Cheers (or should we say Cheeahs?) was set in Boston Bawstin, though the only character with the accent was Cliff. There was still a fair bit of local color on the show, such as Sam's history with the Red Sox, Carla's fanatical defense of Massachusetts sports teams, and a guest appearances by Speaker of the House Tip O'Neill and a few Kennedys.
    • Making it particularly jarring when the most Ivy League milquetoast character on the cast was retconned, in the spinoff series, to be from the Pacific Northwest. Yeah, right.
    • Most of the local color can be seen in the background - the producers showed off serious knowledge of Boston minutiae, for instance having extra characters wear shirts from local high schools in the appropriate colors. (There's more than one Somerville High School in this country, after all.)
      • Not surprising, given that they took a local Boston TV production (WCVB's Park Street Under) and filed the serial number off it without giving any credit to the original creators.
  • Wings was also set in Massachusetts, but on the tourist island of Nantucket.
  • Boston Legal; the name is a give away (even if little else is). Most of the cast being rich lawyers doesn't help. Also see such other David E. Kelley shows as The Practice, Ally McBeal, and Boston Public.
  • Newhart is set in a (highly eccentric) small Vermont town.
  • Mr. Wick from The Drew Carey Show describes Vermont as "the state that makes New Hampshire nervous".
  • Stars Hollow, Connecticut in Gilmore Girls definitely fit the small town version of this trope, with the elder Gilmores fitting the upper-class WASP stereotype to a T. And Rory, of course, goes to Yale for much of the later seasons.
  • Both Fringe and Leverage are set in Boston.
    • As of the end of the second season of Leverage, it looks like there will be a change of scenery like the end of the first season.
  • Spenser: for Hire was not only set in Boston, it was actually filmed there.
    • And still fell prey to this trope occasionally. Chase scenes were notorious for starting in one town, turning a corner, and finding the characters miraculously transported to a town on the other side of Boston in a split second.
  • Jay Leno can't open his mouth without reminding people he's from Andover, MA.
  • In 30 Rock, Jack Donaghy's love interest Nancy Donovan grew up with him in Boston. Nancy is played by Julianne Moore with a painfully forced Hollywood New England accent.
    • The exaggerated accent was spoofed in the next season when Liz is writing a TV movie about Jack and Avery, with Nancy played by Cynthia Nixon with an equally horrible Boston accent. When she asks why she has to do the accent, Liz says that all people from Boston sound like that to her.
  • The whole crew from This Old House but especially Norm Abrams and Tommy Silva.
  • The '60s sitcom version of The Ghost and Mrs. Muir was set in a Maine fishing village. Other than a few supporting background characters, no one in the cast had anything sounding like a Maine accent. While Carolyn Muir and her children were from out of state and obviously wouldn't sound like natives, one would expect that Captain Gregg and his descendant Claymore would.
  • In News Radio, a botched speech therapy session has Lisa speaking in her native Boston accent, which she had dropped for being too embarrassing. It's also implied that it might have been intentional to ruin her radio voice.
    • Also in the series finale, Jimmy James retires and moves to New Hampshire, and wants to take the rest of the staff with him. In the second to last episode he actually takes a chair and sits down in NH in the middle of a field of cattle.
  • In a Season 4 episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer Sarah Michelle Gellar takes on the role of Faith. She adopts a Boston accent in several scenes, since it was part of the character and due to Eliza Dushku being from Boston.
  • Several X-Files episodes are set in New England, both falling victim and averting this trope. It is noted that Mulder grew up on Martha's Vineyard in Massachusetts, which averts this trope, but the rest of the episodes set in New England get things wrong. Though they are in completely different parts of New England, none of the characters have distinctive accents, vocabulary, or mannerisms.
    • One particularly egregious example was the portrayal of Vermont; the season seven episode "Chimera" was set there. The timestamp places the story in early April, and it opens up to an Easter picnic scene. The grass is green, the children are running around in little suits, and it's apparently warm enough that no one needs a jacket. Never mind the fact that in early April in Vermont, the average temperature hovers somewhere around 40 and there is usually a good deal of snow on the ground. And if there isn't snow, it sure as heck isn't green. It's called "mud season" for a reason. This seems rather humorous, since other details like area code and zip code were absolutely correct—according to the episode, the fictional "Bethany, Vermont" is actually Bethel.
  • On the recurring Saturday Night Live sketch "Boston Teens", starring Jimmy Fallon and Rachel Dratch as Sully and Zazu, a teen couple who fight and makeup constantly and are obsessed with Red Sox shortstop Nomar Garciaparra.
    • When Glenn Close hosted in 1992 they did a game show sketch called "Whats The Best Way?". In it the host and all three contestants were New Englanders and the questions were all about the best way to get from one place in New England to another:

Host: Ok folks, back to our game. From Hartford to Sturbridge -
(Katie buzzes in)
Katie (Glenn Close): Ok, now that's straight on route 84, but you're gonna want to avoid the tourist traps up there, now, if you go up Manhill Road,you'll see a pretty Bed and Breakfast in Bradford - but that's a little out of your way, but it's very reasonable. And there's a farm (fahm) down the hill where you can get fresh Maine blueberries, of course, but that's only in the summer -
(wrong answer buzz)
Host: Sorry Katie, I didn't finish the question. From Hartford to Sturbridge, how many Dunkin Donuts along the way?

  • Dawson's Creek was set in the fictional town of Capeside, Massachusetts, but actually filmed in North Carolina. The only character that had a New England accent on the show was Jen's grandmother.
    • Then there's the episode that had them skinny-dipping in November. In Massachusetts.
  • The '90s drama series Providence was set in that Rhode Island city, and most of outside filming was shot there during its first season. Naturally, the local NBC television station would not shut up about the show for months. By the time of the second season, only establishing exterior shots were shot in Providence and the rest in California.
  • The North American remake of Being Human is set in Boston but shot in Montreal. And it turns out Montreal is not the best Expy for Boston: the geography is all wrong (their neighborhood could maybe pass for the Back Bay or the South End, but the streets are still too wide). This Boston-resident Troper didn't even realize it was supposed to be set in Boston until he saw the establishing exterior shots.
  • Season 6 of I Love Lucy had the Ricardos and Mertzes moving from New York City to Westport, Connecticut.
    • Samantha and Darrin Stephens, of Bewitched, also resided in Westport.
  • Soap was set in the (fictional) town of Dunn's River, Connecticut, and plays this trope straight - Dunn's River might as well be on Long Island for how much time the characters spend in Manhattan.
  • The clam-centric episode of Good Eats culminated in production of New England style clam chowder. And had a New Yorker with tomatoes (representing fans of Manhattan-style) and a New Englander with a bottle of cream glare at each other while Alton explained the history of the two variations...before getting into a brawl.
  • The real world portion of Once Upon a Time takes place in Storybrooke, Maine.
  • The short-lived '90s Molly Ringwald sitcom Townies was set in Gloucester, Massachusetts.
  • Due to the fact that WGBH, Boston's PBS affiliate, produces a fair chunk of their programming, many of PBS's syndicated shows are shot in Boston or the surrounding areas.


  • New Kids on the Block. And, you know, we probably ought to mention their infamous Band Toon here but... the voice actors and the writers Just Didn't Care.
  • You can't talk about music and Boston without mentioning "the bad boys from Boston", Aerosmith!
  • Boston, obviously.
  • The Dropkick Murphys
  • J. Geils band.
  • The Fools, best known for their classic: "Life Sucks, Then You Die."
  • "Wicked Little Critta" by They Might Be Giants plays with the accent, as does "A Self Called Nowhere."
  • Galaxie 500, formed by three Harvard students.
  • While the '60s garage-rock classic "Dirty Water" has become an iconic Boston anthem, the band that recorded it (the Standells) were actually based out of L.A.
  • Johnathan Richman is from Natick, part of Greater Boston, and his best known song, "Roadrunner" is about driving around the city listening to your car radio. He seems to use the accent too, to judge by his reference to "the Southern sho-ah".
  • The Cars.
  • Mighty Mighty Bosstones
  • The Shaggs, who pronounce every word with 'ome' in it as 'om'. Naturally this means they "have no time to rom" and "have to go hom" regularly.
  • Phish
    • Arguably the ultimate example: none of them were from Vermont, the state they're most associated with, and only one of them is even from New England. They're controversial in the state itself for propagating a certain view of the state as a hippie paradise, which is often at odds with the reality of the situation.
  • Grace Potter and the Nocturnals
  • Several noteworthy Metalcore bands: Killswitch Engage, As I Lay Dying and Shadows Fall among them.
  • Blue Oyster Cult
  • At the end of Tom Lehrer's "The Elements", he sings the word "Harvard" in such a way that it rhymes perfectly with the word "discovered."
  • Aerosmith aka "The Bad Boys from Boston"

Newspaper Comics

  • Much of the comic strip Non Sequitur is set in in the fictional town of Whatchacallit, Maine.
  • One FoxTrot strip had Peter and Jason deciding to adopt this accent while eating clam chowder, with Peter even saying "Pahk the cah in tha Hahvahd Yahd" in the throwaway panels. They stop upon threat of violence from Paige.


  • In a modern twist on the intellectual side, both halves of the radio comedy team Bob & Ray were born and raised in Massachusetts—in middle-class Boston and blue-collar Lowell respectively—and sounded like it. (In one early Boston-based show they do a funny bit on how to impress a local waitress by pretending you're from out of town. Their main suggestion is to "hit your 'R's verry harrd." "Yerss, I will have some erggs and orrange juice, please!")
  • The Magliozzi brothers of NPR's Car Talk. East Cambridge natives, auto mechanics...and both graduates of MIT.
  • One of the recurring characters in the "Allen's Alley" segments on The Fred Allen Show in the '40s was Titus Moody, a curmudgeonly New Englander with a thick "Down East" type accent.
  • Jim Rome loves to play this up on his radio show, particularly involving one of two things: Pete Gillen's "Duke is Duke" comment ("They're on TV more than Leave It To BEAHVAHHHH!... reruns."), or his favorite movie, Good Will Hunting ("Let's go beat up some rich kids-AAAAAAAAHH!").
  • Howie Carr


  • The play Spike Heels (a Pygmalion Plot set in Boston) benefits significantly if the actors (and the audience) understand the difference between upper- and working class Boston accents.
  • Almost, Maine makes a point of distinguishing rural, northern Maine, where the play is set, from the common "Down East" stereotype of the state.
  • Our Town by Thornton Wilder is set in southern New Hampshire, but does not use the exaggerated traits discussed above for this trope. It's just a small town at the turn of the last century.
  • The setting of Carousel is a Maine fishing village.
  • The Children's Hour is set at a New England girls' school.
  • Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? takes place at an unnamed small New England college.

Video Games

  • The town of Silent Hill is located in New England, according to the manual for the first game. An obscure tidbit found on one of the soundtrack covers places it in Maine.
  • The Scout from Team Fortress 2: deliberately 'off' however, as all the character classes represent stereotypes.
  • The Commonwealth, mentioned in passing in Fallout3, is implied to be based in Massachusetts. Or at least the Boston area. It's also mentioned, however that aside from its Institute, it's not much better off than the Capital Wasteland.
  • Trauma Team doesn't outright state their exact location, but recognizing some towns and areas they name puts them in Portland, Maine.

Web Comics

  • Questionable Content is a rare exception to the "western Massachusetts doesn't exist" rule, taking place in Northampton. Of course, this is because the creator lives in that area.
  • Misfile is also set in western Massachusetts in the fictional town of Tempest which appears to be somewhere in the Berkshires, not that far from Springfield. However other than a few references to Boston and one trip to Cape Cod the comic could take place anywhere since the New England setting doesn't much figure into the story, and no one ever uses any New England colloquialisms.
  • The 21st century parts of The Dreamer are set in Boston, MA.
  • American Elf is set in Burlington, VT.
    • It is also published weekly in Seven Days, the local Burlington alternative weekly newspaper.
  • Something*Positive takes place mainly in Boston, with side-trips to Texas since that's where two of the three main protagonists originate from.

Web Original

  • New England is its own country in the Alternate History Decades of Darkness, where it also encompasses the Canadian Maritimes, New York, New Jersey and Michigan. It plays the socially liberal, democratic/socialist foil (apart from a brief period of fascism vitalism) to the US, which serves as The Empire.
  • College Humor's video "Federal Maashals" features the College Humor office being raided by two Federal Marshals with incomprehensible Boston accents. The go around the office shouting "GO SAAHX" (Boston Red Sox), humming their theme song, asking confusing questions and beating people up. Hilarity Ensues.

Western Animation

  • Pete White from The Venture Brothers. Series co-creator Jackson Publick claims to have copied the character's voice entirely from his own father.
  • Family Guy also takes place in New England- specifically Rhode Island, or RhoDYlan as the natives call it. Peter and Lois have prominent Rhode Island accents. Indeed, the show's creator, Seth MacFarlane, is a Connecticut native and went to college in Rhode Island. Seth based Peter's voice on a portly Rhode Island police officer he got into a situation with while at art and design college.
    • Though Peter pronounces Pawtucket wrong, the locals pronounce it "Puhtuckit"
    • Special mention goes to Mr. Bottomtooth, who does to this accent what Boomhauer does to the Texan accent.
    • The show often throws in references that only Rhode Islanders or people familiar with Rhode Island could really appreciate. These references were especially frequent during the show's original run, and continue to pop up here and there post-un-cancellation.
      • The skyline that can very often be seen from the Griffins' front yard? It's the skyline of Providence. Peter, Joe and Quagmire standing in front a building Peter's about to jump off of because he's temporarily immortal? That's Kennedy Plaza, overlooking the Rhode Island School of Design and Brown University!
  • Although set on the Great Barrier Reef, the stereotypical Bostonian accent appears in Finding Nemo courtesy of a lobster (a New England culinary staple) who relates part of the tale of the fishes' adventure ("...and so they go all the way down into the dahk, it's like wicked dahk down theah...") The director, Andrew Stanton, is native from Massachusetts.
    • "Hayeh, hayeh, hayeh, hayeh, hayeh!"
  • In Futurama, Elzar's accent is, contrary to popular belief, a New Bedford (Bedfid) or 'Fawl Rivah' accent. Elzar is, of course, ethnically Neptunian, but apparently hails from Massachusetts anyhow. He is supposed to be an Emeril Lagasse Expy.
  • As mentioned below, The Simpsons has Mayor Quimby and his family, Kennedy parodies all. One episode has Quimby's nephew Freddy harassing a French waiter over his pronunciation of "chowder". "Shau-dere? Shau-dere? It's 'chowdah'! Say it right!"
    • New England is very proud of its claym chowdah. Unlike that inferior Manhattan kind.
  • The same accent is used to great effect by the JFK clone in Clone High, which is strange, considering that his foster parents who raised him from birth aren't from New England (they're a male gay couple with somewhat generic American accents).
  • In The Mighty B!, one time character Sissy Sullivan has a stereotypical Boston accent.

Sissy: Pahk tha cah in Hahvahd Yahd.

    • But also subverted in the sense that Bessie's knowledge of Boston is based on hilarious Critical Research Failure: She's uncertain if Boston is even part of the United States and if they speak English there, and takes it for granted that they don't have Chinese restaurants.
  • One episode of Ugly Americans had the amoeba in Mark's group accompanied by a thick-accented green amoeba with a Red Sox cap.

Real Life

  • John F. Kennedy, of course, and his broad and varied extended family. Also various parodies, notably his Simpsons counterpart, Diamond Joe Quimby, and the teenage JFK clone in Clone High.
    • Same for the mayor of thaCittaBossun, Thomas "Mumbles" Menino.
      • Mumbles doesn't have an accent, he has a speech impediment. That or he is certifiably insane. Thank woo!
      • Knowing Menino it's probably a bit of both, since he is from Hyde Pahk.
  • The Low family was settled in Salem as well as in NY and were noted among the shipping families. Helen Auger wrote a history of them titled, Tall Ships to Cathay. It is a hard book to get unless you run across it by chance or happen to be shopping online.
  • Ben Affleck and Matt Damon.
  • Stephen King
  • Edgar Allan Poe
  • H.P. Lovecraft (Sensing a trend here...)
  • Uma Thurman
  • The red-headed goddess known as Alicia Witt.
  • Denis Leary
  • Conan O'Brien
  • Jay Leno
  • Marshal Dodge, the Maine comedian and brains behind the comedy ensemble Bert & I whose catchphrase "You can't get theyah from heyah" (You can't get there from here) gets referenced nearly as often as Hahvahd Yahd.
  • Boston comedian Jimmy Tingle, who famously responded to "Can you say 'Pahk the Cah in Hahvahd Yahd'" with "What are you, retahded?" (Pron: "Whad' ah ya, retahded?")
  • Eliza Dushku, best known for playing a Southie who kicks vampire ass.
  • James DeBello
  • Eli Roth(see H.P. Lovecraft)
  • Seth MacFarlane (and his sister, obviously)
  • Madeline Zima
  • James Woods
  • Leonard Nimoy. Even Mr. Spock sounded like Baaston at times.
  • Emily Dickinson
  • Steven Wright
  • Robert "Boston Rob" Mariano of Survivor fame.
    • Not to mention first season winner Richard Hatch, who is a Rhode Islander.
  • Lenny Clarke, Cambridge-born comedian
  • Ben Foster, one of the Y-Generation's great up-and-coming hams.
  • Liv Tyler, even before finding out who her father is, grew up in Maine.
  • Mr. Boston
  • Amy Poehler.
  • Maine stand-up comic, Comedian Bob Marley
  • Charlie Adler
  • Chris Bojalian, author of books like Midwives, lives in Vermont. Many of his books are set in fictional Vermont towns. He also has a column in the local Burlington newspaper, The Burlington Free Press.
  • Howard Frank Mosher, author, lives in and sets most of his books in the northeast corner of Vermont.
  • Frank Miller, the man behind graphic novels like 300 and Sin City, was raised in Montpelier, Vermont.
  • Jay Craven, film director and screenwriter, is from Vermont. One of his first films was the above Vermont native Howard Frank Mosher's book A Stranger in the Kingdom.
  • Grace Potter, singer (and her band, The Nocturnals), are from Vermont. She just did a duet with Kenny Chesney recently[when?].
  • Joseph Smith, founder of Mormonism, was from Vermont.
  • M. Emmett Walsh, actor, was raised in rural Vermont.
  • The band Phish was formed at the University of Vermont.
  • Mandy Moore is from Nashua, New Hampshire.
  • John Irving, author of The Cider House Rules, was born and raised in New Hampshire.
  • A surprisingly large number of popular web comic artists all live in Massachusetts, including Randall Munroe, Andrew Hussie and Jeph Jacques.
  • Samuel Clemens, aka 'Mark Twain', was born in Missouri and became famous in California, but actually spent most of his life living in Connecticut. The "If you don't like the NE weather, just wait five minutes" quip is one of his.
  • The Dulles family, which has an airport named after them. One of them was a spymaster, one a diplomat, and one a priest. One wonders a bit about what their ancestors getting off the Mayflower would think about that last one.
  • Samuel Eliot Morrison was a Boston man, a scholar and the go-to guy for the history of the World War Two US Navy.
  • Henry Wadsworth Longfellow from Portland, Maine was long one of America's favorite poets and his works have stood the test of time despite intellectual fashion. He was also an all-round nice guy who loved his wives (his first unfortunately died), counted many friends among fellow academics, and was a Friend to All Children. He was basically the "Grandfather" or maybe "Uncle" of New England. He wasn't the sort of stereotyped intellectual who liked womanizing and plotting revolutionary politics and ended up doing something weird. He liked his books and his Fire of Comfort and his Local Hangout and was very much a Gentleman and a Scholar.
  • The "Codfish aristocracy" literally was so. That was how many families bootstrapped their way to power and many kept a finger in that. They latter branched out into merchant shipping, whaling, and so on and some made a stab at more stereotypically inland investments like fur and cattle (fur actually had a connection because it could be gotten from Oregon and was one of the few things that would sell in China). They made Hawaii a rich port of call, and through a convoluted and long political process a US possession. The sea was as much New England's Frontier as the West, perhaps more so.