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Top 10 Things Brits Are Bloody Good At

VO: Richard Bush
Written by Paul Grover Is there anything we can’t do? Welcome to WatchMojo UK and today we’re counting down our picks for the top 10 things the Brits are bloody good at! Sometimes it’s a well established fact that the British are bleedin’ brilliant at something, while some of our other talents are vastly under-appreciated. For this list, we’re ditching our stereotypical modesty for just a few short minutes to take a look at our strongest specialties. Special thanks to our user WordToTheWes for submitting the idea on our interactive suggestion tool: WatchMojo.comsuggest
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Top 10 Things Brits Are Bloody Good At


Is there anything we can’t do? Welcome to WatchMojo UK and today we’re counting down our picks for the top 10 things the Brits are bloody good at!

Sometimes it’s a well established fact that the British are bleedin’ brilliant at something, while some of our other talents are vastly underappreciated. For this list, we’re ditching our stereotypical modesty for just a few short minutes to take a look at our strongest specialties.

#10: Theatre

Forget Broadway, London’s West End is the true pinnacle for stage performers! Not that we’re in competition with New York or anything… but if we were, we’d totally win! Boasting mainstay productions of shows like the most watched musical in the world - “The Phantom of the Opera”, plus the “Wizard of Oz” retelling - “Wicked”, and even the Michael Jackson Musical - “Thriller”, “Les Mis” has run continuously since 1985, plus “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child” ran for almost two years before NYC even got a look in. There’s basically something for everyone under the bright lights of London’s theatre scene.

#9: Playing Hollywood Bad Guys

For whatever reason, Hollywood seems to typecast us Brits as the villains. And that’s probably because we are pretty darn great at it! Whether it’s the legendary performance of Alan Rickman - playing foil to Bruce Willis in “Die Hard” - or Gary Oldman’s villainous turn in “Bram Stoker’s Dracula”... Or “The Fifth Element”... or “Air Force One”, or… you get the point! Clearly no one nails an ominous, threatening or iconic antagonist better than the raft of gargantuan actors hailing from these shores!

#8: Educational Institutes

Yes, Harvard and Yale are pretty impressive. But they pale in comparison to our own prestigious universities - Oxford and Cambridge! Fostering future Prime Ministers, Presidents, leading academics, scientists, actors, actresses and business tycoons, amongst an endless list of notable graduates, the legacies of these institutions are second to none. Not to mention that Oxford is the oldest English-speaking university there is, and second oldest in continuous operation in the world! Many of the all time great minds have been shaped in Britain!

#7: Unique Slang

You best know about our unique slang, fam! If not, you must be off your nut, fella! Either way, we’ll leave it there, pet. From the cockney rhyming slang popularised during World War II, to the globally-influenced, hybrid street slang of London, heard in films like “Kidulthood”, there’s no shortage of superb slang spoken in Britain. There’s also the lingo that’s specific to the North, plus a barrage of brilliant terms from the West Country, and Wales, North of the border dialect in Scotland, and countryside colloquialisms from East Anglia. By gum!

#6: Music Festivals

Glastonbury alone is probably enough to validate this entry, but throw in Reading and Leeds, Isle of Wight and Download festivals to name but a few, and it’s almost overkill. Anyone who’s anyone in almost any genre of music has played (or wants to play) at one, if not all, of these iconic venues at some point in their careers. The usually lousy British weather just adds to the experience, as festival goers wear their coatings of mud like badges of honour. And music aside, you can’t beat few drinks and a good ol’ fashioned sing-along around the campsites!

#5: Inventing Sports

Football, tennis, rugby, cricket, table tennis, golf, ice hockey and even baseball are all sports that originated in the UK. You’re welcome, rest of the world! We haven’t done too badly at most of them either, especially tennis, rugby and boxing in recent years… But globally, football is the most popular sport of all. And though England hasn’t won a World Cup since way back in 1966 - much to everyone’s continued misery - the English Premier League is still the most watched league in the world, with players from all countries queuing up to play in it.

#4: History

Britain’s a pretty small island, but it’s steeped in more recorded history than almost anywhere else, and has long been a top tourist destination for eager culture vultures. True, the widespread rule of the British Empire isn’t always remembered with great fondness, but the UK has historically proven an important and positive influence in Europe and the Commonwealth. And few countries can match Britain for impressive castles, important battle sites, stately homes, national parks or inspired architecture. There’s just really, really old stuff everywhere you look.

#3: Comedy

No one, and we mean no one, does sarcasm or self deprecating humour quite like the British... Along with our thriving economy, stable political leadership and predictable weather, it’s what we do best… Throw a few inventive, sodding swear words into the mix, and you’re onto a winner. And then there’s the steady flow of stand-out films and sitcoms, from “Monty Python” to “Mr. Bean” to “Peep Show”. As well as the long list of British comedies that America has tried to remake, before failing miserably. You just can’t beat the originals, can you.

#2: Writing Influential Books

It’s British authors behind the lion’s share of the best selling books of all time, with Charles Dickens’ “A Tale of Two Cities” and J.R.R. Tolkien’s “The Lord of the Rings” toward the top of that list! And J.K. Rowling’s “Harry Potter” books are also the best selling series of all time. But more than the massive numbers, British writers have also been influential in shaping literary styles and genres. From the gothic glory of Mary Shelley’s “Frankenstein” to the gritty realism of Irvine Welsh’s “Trainspotting”, when the Brits write the whole world reads.

#1: Producing Influential Music

The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden, Queen, Bowie, Oasis, Radiohead… We could dedicate an entire list to the influential British bands and musicians - and in fact, already have! And it’s not just the rock and pop genres we’ve revolutionized, either. The grime scene is another home-grown phenomena, with the likes of Stormzy leading the charge. Pick any era from the past century and the UK could provide the soundtrack to it. And a bloody good one at that
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