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Mistaken Nationality

 Mistaken Nationality
type
FeatureClass
 Mistaken Nationality
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality
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MistakenNationality
 Mistaken Nationality
comment
Advertisement:propertag.cmd.push(function() { proper_display('tvtropes_content_3'); })In Real Life, people far too often make erroneous assumptions about others based on flimsy or non-existent evidence. This is especially the case when regarding those who in some way are "outsiders". Often, hilariously wrong assumptions will be made based solely on appearance, failing to take into account the behaviour of the subject or other relevant circumstances. One common form of this is to presume that a foreign-looking person belongs to such-and-such nationality and getting it very wrong.
This also happens with people of nationalities with animosity towards each other, e.g. some former Soviet countries assuming people are Russian.
For example: in East Asian countries like Japan or China, anyone with sufficiently pale skin will usually be presumed to be Americans, despite this nationality only constituting a minority of "Western" visitors to these countries. A related form is assuming that foreign-looking people with the same nationality and native tongue as yourself are foreigners ignorant of your language. Or assuming that people who both look foreign and are foreign are ignorant of the local tongue, when they are in fact fluent.
Advertisement:propertag.cmd.push(function() { proper_display('tvtropes_content_2'); })Interchangeable Asian Cultures is a Sub-Trope dealing specifically with confusing or lumping Asian ethnicities and cultures together. Mistaken for Foreigner is another sub trope. May result in Misaimed Stereotyping. Non-Specifically Foreign is when no-one knows what country the character is from.
Compare I Am Not Weasel, where the problem is a mistaken species. Contrast Fake Nationality and its sub-tropes.
 Mistaken Nationality
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2019-07-04T03:29:11Z
 Mistaken Nationality
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2019-07-04T03:29:11Z
 Mistaken Nationality
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Dropped link to AccidentalMisnaming: Not an Item - FEATURE
 Mistaken Nationality
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 Mistaken Nationality
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 Mistaken Nationality
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Dropped link to CHIKARA: Not an Item - IGNORE
 Mistaken Nationality
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 Mistaken Nationality
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 Mistaken Nationality
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 Mistaken Nationality
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 Mistaken Nationality
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Dropped link to FlightOfTheConchords: Not an Item - UNKNOWN
 Mistaken Nationality
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 Mistaken Nationality
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Dropped link to InterchangeableAsianCultures: Not an Item - FEATURE
 Mistaken Nationality
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 Mistaken Nationality
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Dropped link to TitoSantana: Not an Item - IGNORE
 Mistaken Nationality
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 Mistaken Nationality
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 Mistaken Nationality
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 Mistaken Nationality
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 Mistaken Nationality
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VetHard
 Mistaken Nationality
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HumanAlien
 Mistaken Nationality
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Series: Flight of the Conchords
 Mistaken Nationality
processingUnknown
Webcomic: Eternal Night
 Mistaken Nationality
processingUnknown
CaptainPlanet
 Mistaken Nationality
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Hey Arnold!
 Mistaken Nationality
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DBTropes
 Mistaken Nationality / int_111a44e
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_111a44e
comment
In Himitsu no Akko-chan from the 1980s, Akko is trying to communicate with a lost child who speaks only English. As it happens, Akko's special ability is taking on the appearance and skills of any person she can capture the image of in her magic compact mirror. Akko sees an obviously foreign woman and assumes she's American — but when she gets back to the lost child, discovers that the child still can't understand a word Akko is saying. Turns out the copied woman was Spanish....
 Mistaken Nationality / int_111a44e
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 Himitsu no Akko-chan (Manga)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_111a44e
 Mistaken Nationality / int_13600c0c
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_13600c0c
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Edilio Escobar from Michael Grant's GONE series is from Honduras, but is often referred to by the ignorant townsfolk of Perdido Beach as "The Mexican one", much to his chargin.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_13600c0c
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1.0
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 Gone
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Mistaken Nationality / int_13600c0c
 Mistaken Nationality / int_1b71921c
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_1b71921c
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In Misfile, Missi is accused of liking Japanese cars for no other reason than she's Japanese, and she angrily retorts that she's actually Chinese.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_1b71921c
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 Misfile (Webcomic)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_1b71921c
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_223121b6
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In The Replacements (2000), Nigel Gruff gets confused for an Irishman. He angrily retorts that he's Welsh.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_223121b6
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1.0
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 The Replacements (2000)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_223121b6
 Mistaken Nationality / int_2269f5c6
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_2269f5c6
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A running gag in Rules of Engagement is Russell forgetting that his assistant Timmy is South African and referring to him as English.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_2269f5c6
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1.0
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 Rules of Engagement
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Mistaken Nationality / int_2269f5c6
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_227431b6
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When the Runaways got stuck in New York City circa 1907, leader Nico Minoru was repeatedly called a "Chink" or an "Oriental" by various locals. When their host, the Swell, calls her a "Chinee", she's annoyed enough to correct him by stating that she is "from Japan, by way of Glendale" — which is to say that she considers herself every bit as American as the Swell. This, of course, does not stop her from being rounded up by the bigots of the Upward Path.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_227431b6
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1.0
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 Runaways (Comic Book)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_227431b6
 Mistaken Nationality / int_261c8d3f
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_261c8d3f
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In an episode of The Simpsons, Homer, Abe, Ned and Apu buy medicine in Canada in order to smuggle it over the border. Abe gets very enraged when the clerk at the pharmacy assumes him to be a fellow Canadian, forgetting for a moment that posing as Canadian citizens is the whole point.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_261c8d3f
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 The Simpsons
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Mistaken Nationality / int_261c8d3f
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Mistaken Nationality
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In the film In Bruges, Ray argues with, and punches, a loud-mouthed Canadian tourist in a restaurant, thinking him to be American.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_2b60ae0f
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 In Bruges
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Mistaken Nationality / int_2b60ae0f
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Mistaken Nationality
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In Heroes, Hope refers to the Japanese Hiro and Ando as "Chinese".
 Mistaken Nationality / int_2bb4ae0f
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1.0
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 Series: Heroes
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Mistaken Nationality / int_2bb4ae0f
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Mistaken Nationality
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In Saints Row: The Third Philippe Loren is constantly mistaken for French by the Saints. He is always quick to correct them that he is Belgian, growing more agitated with the mistake each time.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_2cbf2a8b
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1.0
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 Saints Row: The Third (Video Game)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_2cbf2a8b
 Mistaken Nationality / int_334a1e25
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_334a1e25
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Brazilian people are often confused with Portuguese people. Carmen Miranda, for instance, starred in many Brazilian musicals, including The Three Caballeros, but was actually born in Lisbon, Portugal. She settled in Brazil with the age of ten months though, and never returned to the country where she was born ever again. Given that Brazil is a former Portuguese colony, many Brazilians have Portuguese ancestry. As well, a variety of Portuguese (older than the one used in modern Portugal, but still) is the national language. So this is a mistake that can be understood.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_334a1e25
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 The Three Caballeros / Disney
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Mistaken Nationality / int_334a1e25
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_36795c0f
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In Falling Down, Prendergast interviews the Korean shopkeeper Mr. Lee (Michael Paul Chan) and asks Detective Brian (Steve Park) if he can translate for him. Brian says no, because the shopkeeper is Korean, and he's Japanese-American. (In Real Life, Park is Korean and Chan is Chinese.)
 Mistaken Nationality / int_36795c0f
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 Falling Down
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Mistaken Nationality / int_36795c0f
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Primo Colón initially assumed Curt Hawkins and Zack Ryder were Canadian (because they were Edge lookalikes), so when they threatened him about what they could have La Familia do to them he's flabbergasted that they're apparently Latino (they're not that either, and were called "La Familia" because Edge had them unofficially brought into the Guerrero family when he became engaged to Vickie Guerrero) and starts to cuss at them in Spanish before Carlito Colón calms him down. Incidentally, Primo does have Canadian family, including his brother Carly. For that matter, Zack Ryder's real last name is "Cardona", so he could be Latino, or at the very least could pass for it.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_36d2a85c
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1.0
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 Wrestling: Zack Ryder
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Mistaken Nationality / int_36d2a85c
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_3e5de40b
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Carla from Scrubs is Dominican, and gets angry when people (particularly her husband) think she's from Puerto Rico. This is the subject of her song in The Musical.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_3e5de40b
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1.0
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 Scrubs
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Mistaken Nationality / int_3e5de40b
 Mistaken Nationality / int_41fb40f3
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_41fb40f3
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From the same author, Yotsuba&! has a group of students who find Yotsuba asleep on the school's stairs (long story) speak to her in English, assuming she's a foreigner due to her green hair. She actually is foreign (place of "an island to the left"), but has spent most of her life in Japan.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_41fb40f3
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 Yotsuba&! (Manga)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_41fb40f3
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_42810c2c
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Leo and Sana Halford from Angel Densetsu are blond Japanese middle schoolers with a white father. They are often assumed to be foreigners despite having lived in Japan all their lives; people assume they know English and don't even understand Japanese, and Leo's classmates are surprised to see him do well at a particular arcade fighting game because "Gaijin usually suck at these games.". Ikuno uses this to make a point to Leo about main character Kitano Seichiro having a Face of a Thug: just like Leo doesn't know English despite looking white, Kitano similarly isn't evil despite looking scary.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_42810c2c
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 Angel Densetsu (Manga)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_42810c2c
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_4522fd1
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When Generator of the Whateley Universe starts school at Whateley Academy, some cliquish girls tell her to go back to China. She was born in Topeka, Kansas. She does have some Japanese ancestry.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_4522fd1
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 Whateley Universe
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Mistaken Nationality / int_4522fd1
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_455e3038
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King of the Hill:
In the episode where the Souphanousinphone family is introduced, the page quote exchange takes place. Amusingly, Hank's irritable and somewhat bigoted father knows immediately Kahn is Laotian, possibly from being a World War II vet. Even more amusing is that "next to Vietnam" doesn't ring a bell, given Hank's age.
On the other hand, in a Japanese Steak-house, Cotton calls the Hispanic cook a "Tojo", causing the cook to ask, "¿Qué es 'tojo'?" ("What's a 'Tojo'?")
 Mistaken Nationality / int_455e3038
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 King of the Hill
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Mistaken Nationality / int_455e3038
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_4962e658
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Mean Girls: Mixed with a bit of casual racism as Mrs Norbury hears that the new student 'just moved here from Africa' and gives a warm welcome to a black student, who replies 'I'm from Michigan' in bewilderment. To her defense, the actual new kid was a very white redhead and that girl was the only black student to be seen in the classroom.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_4962e658
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1.0
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 Mean Girls
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Mistaken Nationality / int_4962e658
 Mistaken Nationality / int_4d3c38d5
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_4d3c38d5
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Brilliantly used in The Spanish Prisoner because "nobody suspects Japanese tourists".
 Mistaken Nationality / int_4d3c38d5
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1.0
 Mistaken Nationality / int_4d3c38d5
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 The Spanish Prisoner
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Mistaken Nationality / int_4d3c38d5
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Mistaken Nationality
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In Just Shoot Me!, Maya is often mistaken for Puerto Rican. There was an entire episode about this one. The most painful bit was when a starving Elliot mistakes a visiting Japanese businessman as a Chinese food delivery guy.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_4f067404
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 Just Shoot Me!
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Mistaken Nationality / int_4f067404
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Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag:
Edward Kenway responds to being called "Englishman" with an emphatic "I'm Welsh."
Just before storming a fort, Edward asks his quartermaster Adéwalé, a former slave, if he'll return to Africa and live like a king with his share of the gold they'll take. Adéwalé then explains that he was born in Trinidad. When Edward asks if he'd feel more at home in Africa, Adéwalé asks if Edward would feel at home in Paris.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_4f2ad444
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 Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag (Video Game)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_4f2ad444
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_4f9a3b9f
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In Plain Sight: Marshall, trying to make small talk with a witness, comments that Albuquerque must be a big change from Moscow. The witness responds that she is from Kiev, but Marshall continues to assume that she's Russian, and she has to explain that Kiev is in Ukraine.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_4f9a3b9f
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 Series: In Plain Sight
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Mistaken Nationality / int_4f9a3b9f
 Mistaken Nationality / int_502c87a3
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Mistaken Nationality
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In the CHERUB Series, the training instructor Yosyp Kazakov is Ukrainian. ''Not'' Russian. Call him a Russian, and he will not be happy.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_502c87a3
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 CHERUB Series
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Mistaken Nationality / int_502c87a3
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Mistaken Nationality
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On WWE's 2001 DVD release Divas in Hedonism, which was filmed in Jamaica, there is a scene of Jacqueline, who is an African-American woman from Dallas, Texas, shopping at an outdoor market and talking about how the Jamaicans mistook her for one of their own.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_5ae0bec6
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 WWE (Wrestling)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_5ae0bec6
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Mistaken Nationality
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Wolverine once went to Japan to deliver a ransom for a friend's son. The gangsters who greeted him were surprised; they hadn't expected an American. Wolvie callously states that he's Canadian, bub. The lead gangster laughs, saying that it doesn't make any difference (and hinting that he might not know the difference). This is almost a Running Joke, since readers forget that he's Canadian due to how much time he spends with the X-Men.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_5b344855
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 Wolverine
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Mistaken Nationality / int_5b344855
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_5c783167
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In the Affectionate Parody Murder by Death, this is the Poirot Expy's Berserk Button:
 Mistaken Nationality / int_5c783167
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 Affectionate Parody
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In Pet Alien, there is an English kid who is always mistaken for Norwegian despite his obvious Englishness — tea and crumpets and everything.
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Mistaken Nationality / int_5f0c7ed4
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In an episode of Azumanga Daioh, Yukari attempts to show off her English skills by running up to a random white person on the street and jabbering at him (for as all Japanese know, gaijin are always Americans). She then runs away in embarrassment when she discovers her target is, in fact, German.
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 Azumanga Daioh (Manga)
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Captain America: The First Avenger: "I'm from Fresno, Ace."
 Mistaken Nationality / int_65d07453
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 Captain America: The First Avenger
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Though the comic's art style makes discerning anyone's ethnicity difficult, Adrian Raven was apparently mistaken for a Russian in the past, as the former head of The Men in Black attempted to deport him there. Some out-of-canon moments suggest that he's actually British.
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 The Men in Black
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Marvel Cinematic Universe:
Captain America: The First Avenger: "I'm from Fresno, Ace."
Captain America: The Winter Soldier: Turns out Dr. Arnim Zola is actually Swiss.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_69d15cc0
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 Marvel Cinematic Universe (Franchise)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_69d15cc0
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The Stormlight Archive:
Fantasy version. One of the first signs that someone is looking at a Herald (immortal men and women who have been wandering the world in anonymity for five thousand years after abandoning their duties) is when the modern character can't figure out what ethnicity the Herald is. It's quite likely that natural ethnic drift has rendered all of the original races of the Heralds extinct.
Worldhoppers have a similar, but different problem. All the races of Roshar except for the Shin have epicanthic folds in their eyes, so the Shin are described as having "wide, childlike eyes." Since epicanthic folds are more rare on other worlds, worldhoppers are often mistaken for having Shin ancestry.
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 The Stormlight Archive
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In Fallout 3's Mothership Zeta expansion, Paulson (a 19th century cowboy) refers to Toshiro Kago (a 16th century Samurai) as a "Chinaman" until he is corrected.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_6c1d09b3
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 Fallout 3 (Video Game)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_6c1d09b3
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_6ecd1807
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Subverted in Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip, where a Nevada judge (also played by John Goodman) merely pretends to mistake a Chinese guy for Japanese.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_6ecd1807
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 Series: Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip
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The Strange Calls: Nobody can decide where Lola comes from, whether she's Swedish, Danish or Hungarian, and they keep confusing what European country she's from. She'a actually a mermaid.
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 The Strange Calls
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_71a7789
comment
In Kodomo no Omocha, the But Not Too Foreign character is assumed to be foreign.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_71a7789
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1.0
 Mistaken Nationality / int_71a7789
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 Manga: Kodomo no Omocha
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Mistaken Nationality / int_71a7789
 Mistaken Nationality / int_75622e41
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_75622e41
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Meta-Example: Most readers assume Bishop from X-Men is African-American, when he is actually an Australian Aborigine. On one hand, this wasn't revealed until ten years after the character was introduced. On the other hand, even in the beginning his features never were quite right for someone of African descent.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_75622e41
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1.0
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1.0
 X-Men (Franchise)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_75622e41
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_761daaf7
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In the Australian comedy The Games, John Clarke tries to demonstrate the multinational nature of his team by first explaining that his parents were from Scotland, then asking where an obviously Asian character comes from, which turns out to be Sydney. John tries to probe further, and it turns out that his family has lived in Australia for several generations.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_761daaf7
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1.0
 Mistaken Nationality / int_761daaf7
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1.0
 Series: The Games
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Mistaken Nationality / int_761daaf7
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_774384b6
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When Eli Drake and Scott Steiner were challenging LAX for TNA's Tag Team Titles, Steiner, in oh so many words, basically mistook Konnan for a Mexican. Konnan's most successful and best known work is in Mexico but the man is a Cuban, a Cuban who is also a US citizen!
 Mistaken Nationality / int_774384b6
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1.0
 Mistaken Nationality / int_774384b6
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 Scott Steiner (Wrestling)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_774384b6
 Mistaken Nationality / int_82439e64
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_82439e64
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On The Office (US) Michael Scott comments that Karen looks "exotic", and goes on to ask, "Was your dad a GI?"
 Mistaken Nationality / int_82439e64
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1.0
 Mistaken Nationality / int_82439e64
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1.0
 The Office (US)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_82439e64
 Mistaken Nationality / int_869a0304
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_869a0304
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In The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Lizbeth Salander's boss, Dragan Armansky, is stated as having been born in Croatia to an Armenian Jewish father from Belarus and a Bosnian Muslim mother of Greek extraction. Because of his mother, he is considered Muslim, but the Swedish immigration authorities supposedly list him as a Serb (an ethnicity that is, of course, famous for being associated with Muslims.) And apparently, despite having no Arab ancestry, there are still people who call him "the Arab".
 Mistaken Nationality / int_869a0304
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1.0
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1.0
 The Millennium Trilogy
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Mistaken Nationality / int_869a0304
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Mistaken Nationality
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Really more of a Mistaken Ethnicity, but in Glee Rachel makes the claim that Natalie Wood was Jewish, when, in fact, she was Russian Orthodox...
 Mistaken Nationality / int_8d7f29ec
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1.0
 Mistaken Nationality / int_8d7f29ec
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 Glee
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Mistaken Nationality / int_8d7f29ec
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_8d817ccb
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In season 1 of Lost, Hurley repeatedly refers to Sun and Jin as being Chinese. Michael eventually corrects him.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_8d817ccb
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1.0
 Mistaken Nationality / int_8d817ccb
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 Lost
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Mistaken Nationality / int_8d817ccb
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_9a869900
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In Boston Marriage, it's a running gag that Anna persists in the belief that her maid Catherine is Irish, no matter how many times Catherine reminds her that she's actually Scottish. When Anna is particularly annoyed at her, she goes into an entirely misplaced rant about how the Irish brought the Potato Famine on themselves.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_9a869900
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1.0
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 Boston Marriage (Theatre)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_9a869900
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Mistaken Nationality
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20,000 Leagues Under the Sea: Subverted, The novel emphasizes the mystery of Captain Nemo hiding his nationality. Even when his eyes are black and his skin is pale, Aronnax lampshades that he is not sure invoking Interchangeable Asian Cultures:
Although The Mysterious Island reveals Nemo is actually an Indian fighting the British in revenge for the death of his family, he appears Caucasian in the original illustrations because Verne first planned to make him Polish and fighting against the Russian oppressor. As France was an ally of Russia at the time, his editor had him pick a different origin. The search for an expansionist power that would be an Acceptable Target to the French presumably did not take long.
While the crew of the Nautilus speak their own tongue, Arronax is stunned to discover one is French due to instinctively yelling for help in his mother tongue.
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 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea
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Mistaken Nationality / int_9af804ae
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_9d884a07
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In Leisure Suit Larry: Magna Cum Laude, Larry Lovage starts off talking to Analisa by speaking Spanish to her, thinking she's Mexican. She then rudely barks back, "Hey, fucko! I ain't Mexican, you prick; I'm Italian."
 Mistaken Nationality / int_9d884a07
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1.0
 Mistaken Nationality / int_9d884a07
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1.0
 Leisure Suit Larry: Magna Cum Laude (Video Game)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_9d884a07
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_9f3561fe
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In the Gravitation anime and manga Yuki Eiri is often mistaken as a foreigner, a cause of shame for his conservative Buddhist monk father. Seguchi Tohma also has very foreign features and takes Eiri to New York as a teenager hoping that he will feel more comfortable outside of Japan.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_9f3561fe
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1.0
 Mistaken Nationality / int_9f3561fe
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 Manga: Gravitation
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Mistaken Nationality / int_9f3561fe
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Mistaken Nationality
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In Sayonara, Zetsubou-Sensei, when Mr. Itoshiki first writes his name on the chalkboard, his students, at a loss as to how to parse the kanji of his name, briefly speculate that he might be Chinese. Predictibly, Itoshiki gets a good rant in about this.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_9fa7d06a
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 Sayonara, Zetsubou-Sensei (Manga)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_9fa7d06a
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Mistaken Nationality
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Psycomedia has this preceded by a great deal of foreshadowing by one host, until it's used to introduce their episode on prejudice.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_a11d9f9e
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1.0
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 Psycomedia (Podcast)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_a11d9f9e
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Mistaken Nationality
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A running gag in The Affix: Matt keeps forgetting Henry Bartlett is from New Zealand, not Australia, over and over. Mostly it's because he made a joke earlier that the next villain to pop out of the woodwork would be "Crikey the Australian" and the idea of it got stuck in his head. It probably doesn't help that Matt undergoes serious Sanity Slippage throughout the book.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_a54538ec
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 The Affix
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Mistaken Nationality / int_a54538ec
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Mistaken Nationality
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Quite some Walloon people are often thought to be French. Jacques Brel, Hergé and Georges Simenon, for example. Django Reinhardt, however, although born in the Walloon part of Belgium, was a French national (his parents came from Alsace, originally, and on Django's birth certificate they are stated to be Parisians) and ethnically Manouche (Sinti).
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Mistaken Nationality / int_a9af209a
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Mistaken Nationality
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"Boris" is actually a Ukrainian named Sergei Malatov, but everyone in Baltimore assumes he's Russian the moment they hear him speak, and they insist on calling him Boris, much to his confusion. For somebody who kills and dismembers people for a living, he takes it pretty well.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_abfcff6a
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1.0
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 Rocky and Bullwinkle
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Mistaken Nationality / int_abfcff6a
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Mistaken Nationality
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In the last episode of Father Ted, Ted attends the "It's Great Being A Priest" conference where he saves the life of a suicidal young priest. A nun speaks to a black priest stating that she thinks all the work being done in Africa is wonderful. The priest says, "Sure I wouldn't know. I'm from Donegal." in a thick Donegal accent.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_acb92fd0
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1.0
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 Father Ted
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Mistaken Nationality / int_acb92fd0
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_af72ead7
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Although The Mysterious Island reveals Nemo is actually an Indian fighting the British in revenge for the death of his family, he appears Caucasian in the original illustrations because Verne first planned to make him Polish and fighting against the Russian oppressor. As France was an ally of Russia at the time, his editor had him pick a different origin. The search for an expansionist power that would be an Acceptable Target to the French presumably did not take long.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_af72ead7
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1.0
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 The Mysterious Island
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Mistaken Nationality / int_af72ead7
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Mistaken Nationality
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A Saturday Night Live sketch from the early '90s revolved around the Turkish-American owner of a convenience store, which would be repeatedly vandalized by the same man (John Goodman) every time the US found itself in an affray in the Mideast — the oil embargo, the Iranian hostage crisis, the Gulf War, etc. — Goodman's character repeatedly assuming that the owner is from the nation involved.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_b0fc9724
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1.0
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1.0
 Saturday Night Live
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Mistaken Nationality / int_b0fc9724
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_b3a1c7b6
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Subversion in The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. It is mentioned that Marcy (who is usually played by an Asian-American actress) is new to the county, a new transfer student from Virginia, to which Leaf responds with something to the effect of, "Virginia's a beautiful country". (In addition, some productions have Rona misread the line as "new to this country" only to correct herself after some response by Marcy.)
 Mistaken Nationality / int_b3a1c7b6
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1.0
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1.0
 The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (Theatre)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_b3a1c7b6
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Mistaken Nationality
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In Mingamanga: On Korbinian's first day in school, the teacher mistakes him not only for a girl, but a Pole. Reasons: His last name Panikowski (because of a great-grandfather who was a soldier from Prussia who stayed in Bavaria), his thick dialect which renders his home village Kleinbierbach to "Kloabirboch", which is mistaken for "Globirbow", which sounds Polish indeed.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_b60323a4
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 Mingamanga (Comic Book)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_b60323a4
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Mistaken Nationality
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Occurs repeatedly in the movie Crash.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_b9bfa46d
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1.0
 Mistaken Nationality / int_b9bfa46d
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1.0
 Crash
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Mistaken Nationality / int_b9bfa46d
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Mistaken Nationality
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El Patron Alberto called Glamour Boy Shane a "Yankee" even though Shane is Canadian.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_bbfffed
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1.0
 Mistaken Nationality / int_bbfffed
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1.0
 Wrestling: Alberto Del Rio
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Mistaken Nationality / int_bbfffed
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Mistaken Nationality
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El Goonish Shive:
Though the comic's art style makes discerning anyone's ethnicity difficult, Adrian Raven was apparently mistaken for a Russian in the past, as the former head of The Men in Black attempted to deport him there. Some out-of-canon moments suggest that he's actually British.
Ashley complains that she's had people assume that she's an Asian immigrant, when her family has lived in California for generations and the only language she speaks is English. She's not sure herself what ethnicity she actually is, except she is fairly certain that she's not Japanese.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_bd310eaa
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1.0
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 El Goonish Shive (Webcomic)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_bd310eaa
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Mistaken Nationality
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In Project X Zone, Gemini and Erica think that Sanger is a Japanese samurai, though he never says what nationality he is anyway.note He's German by the way.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_bdf6d43e
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1.0
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 Project X Zone (Video Game)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_bdf6d43e
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Mistaken Nationality
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Doctor Who: In "Rosa", Yasmin Khan, a Brit of Pakistani descent, is mistaken for Mexican by various racist locals in 1955 Alabama, something which she snarks about several times, including noting that there probably aren't many South Asians in the area.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_c43df4d8
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1.0
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 Doctor Who
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Mistaken Nationality / int_c43df4d8
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Mistaken Nationality
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In Asterix and the Great Crossing, Obelix and Asterix mistake Native Americans for Cretians and then Iberians. The viking crew that picks them up also mistake the Gauls for Natives.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_c511c682
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1.0
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 Asterix (Comic Book)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_c511c682
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Mistaken Nationality
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Steve Corino berated Ring of Honor referee Dan Tanaka for not being able to speak Japanese, not realizing Tanaka was from Boston.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_c6b738c4
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1.0
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 Ring of Honor (Wrestling)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_c6b738c4
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Mistaken Nationality
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In Blood Diamond an American journalist mistakes Danny Archer (Leonardo DiCaprio) for South African. He comments that he's in fact from Rhodesia (intentionally using the old name for Zimbabwe).
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 Blood Diamond
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Mistaken Nationality / int_c93e9a74
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Mistaken Nationality
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Hercule Poirot is commonly assumed to be French by people who do not know that more than one francophone country exists. Especially ironic since Frenchmen and Belgians tend to disparage each other. At least once it almost caused serious problems: Poirot was arrested while abroad, and one of his acquaintances promised to inform the French Consulate immediately of his plight. Luckily he managed to shout "Belgian Consulate!" as he was being dragged away.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_c9d6c480
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 Hercule Poirot
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Mistaken Nationality / int_c9d6c480
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Mistaken Nationality
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The Wire has a few examples.
"Boris" is actually a Ukrainian named Sergei Malatov, but everyone in Baltimore assumes he's Russian the moment they hear him speak, and they insist on calling him Boris, much to his confusion. For somebody who kills and dismembers people for a living, he takes it pretty well.
Sergei's boss is a man known only as "the Greek", but when the boss skips town at the end of Season 2 he notes, "I'm not even Greek." Subtle clues suggest that he's either Pontic Greek, (i.e., from northern Turkey with Greek heritage) or from the island of Cyprus, again with Greek heritage.
There's also a more meta-example. In one episode Kima randomly gets asked by a shop keeper if she's "one of those black-Vietnamese mixes". (Possibly from a black soldier in Vietnam and an Asian Baby Mama). While Kima's ethnic background is never elaborated on, the actress playing Kima is part black and part Korean.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_ca08598f
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 The Wire
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Mistaken Nationality / int_ca08598f
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Mistaken Nationality
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Put in the movie Fanboys, possibly as a moment of did not do research. The Star Wars fans and the Star Trek fans are fighting, and one of the Trekkies proclaim Captain Picard is British. The character of Jean-Luc Picard is French. The actor who portrays him, Patrick Stewart, is English.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_cac82d00
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 Fanboys
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Mistaken Nationality / int_cac82d00
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Mistaken Nationality
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Puerto Rico Strong: Tito in the autobiographical comic Blame It On 'Rico lived in Brazil for a while. Many people didn't think he was American because of his brown skin and black hair. When told he was Puerto Rican, one guy still called him Mexican. Depending on what country he's in, Tito also has a tendency to get mistaken for numerous other nationalities and ethnicities including Brazilian, Colombian, Iberian, Pakistani, and Italian. Being Puerto Rican, he admits that he might have some of those in his DNA considering how multiracial Puerto Rican is.
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 Puerto Rico Strong (Comic Book)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_ced06ac3
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Mistaken Nationality
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Waterworks: A Running Gag is for Jose to be mistaken for a French man, much to his frustration.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_d10cb262
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1.0
 Mistaken Nationality / int_d10cb262
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 Waterworks (Webcomic)
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Mistaken Nationality / int_d10cb262
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Mistaken Nationality
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Captain America: The Winter Soldier: Turns out Dr. Arnim Zola is actually Swiss.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_d3381e70
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1.0
 Mistaken Nationality / int_d3381e70
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1.0
 Captain America: The Winter Soldier
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Mistaken Nationality / int_d3381e70
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Mistaken Nationality
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More than a few first time viewers assume the Epic Meal Time chefs are American because of the greasy foods they partake in once a week.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_d556752c
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1.0
 Mistaken Nationality / int_d556752c
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 Web Video: Epic Meal Time
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Mistaken Nationality / int_d556752c
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Mistaken Nationality
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On Silicon Valley, Dinesh is mistaken for Mexican by Chuy, the Mexican artist Erlich wants to hire to design their company's logo. He agrees only because he believes the company has hired a Latino. Dinesh is actually Pakistani (played by Pakistani-American Kumail Nanjiani), but Erlich doesn't correct Chuy until later.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_d6fa84c7
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1.0
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 Silicon Valley
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Mistaken Nationality / int_d6fa84c7
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Mistaken Nationality
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In the reboot of The Karate Kid, Dre is ordered by his mother to practice his Chinese while on a plane. So he turns to a Chinese guy sitting near him and says something, only for the guy to respond, "Dude, I'm from Detroit."
 Mistaken Nationality / int_d8c756b9
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1.0
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 The Karate Kid
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Mistaken Nationality / int_d8c756b9
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Mistaken Nationality
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South Park:
Pip Pirrup, who's unmistakably British. All the other kids assume he's French, though.
Reversed in the movie, where Cartman assumes walking French stereotype The Mole is English.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_d9c602eb
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1.0
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 South Park
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Mistaken Nationality / int_d9c602eb
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Mistaken Nationality
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The Legend of Korra plays with this: shortly after Korra meets Bolin, he correctly deduces her nationality/ability; when she replies that she's actually an earthbender, he hastily apologizes for the assumption. She enjoys confusing him further by stating that she is indeed a waterbender, as well as a firebender.
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 The Legend of Korra
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Mistaken Nationality / int_db96ded4
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Mistaken Nationality
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In the The Atrocity Archive, Bob believes his co-worker Boris to be a Russian spy. In The Fuller Memorandum, Bob corrects his mistake by revealing that Boris is a native British subject who suffers from Foreign Accent Syndrome induced by close encounters with eldritch abominations.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_dd1ed43
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1.0
 Mistaken Nationality / int_dd1ed43
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 The Atrocity Archive
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Mistaken Nationality / int_dd1ed43
 Mistaken Nationality / int_e6758d93
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_e6758d93
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In the fiction section that opens Scion: God, Coyote hears that Yukiko (daughter of the Japanese god Susano-o) is after him to retrieve the golden cup from the Wishing Staff of Sun Wukong (a Chinese god) and assumes she's Wukong's daughter, saying, "I thought you looked Chinese." He is corrected very quickly. At swordpoint. What is more, Sun Wukong is a monkey god.
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 Mistaken Nationality / int_e6e72f96
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_e6e72f96
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In In the Loop, the American General Miller gets into a pissing contest with the Scottish Malcolm Tucker, ending with calling the Scot a "little English bitch." Malcolm doesn't mind any of Miller's profanity, but bristles at being called English, which leaves Miller confused.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_e6e72f96
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 Mistaken Nationality / int_ef305472
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_ef305472
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An exchange between three elderly cowboys early on in the film 7 Faces of Dr. Lao:
 Mistaken Nationality / int_ef305472
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 Mistaken Nationality / int_ef305472
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 Mistaken Nationality / int_f724b70d
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_f724b70d
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In the two-parter Code Lyoko prequel "XANA Awakens", this happens to Yumi Ishiyama at least twice.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_f724b70d
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Mistaken Nationality / int_f724b70d
 Mistaken Nationality / int_fa1cb509
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Mistaken Nationality
 Mistaken Nationality / int_fa1cb509
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Dr. Terror's House of Horrors: When Biff first meets calypso singer Sammy Coin in a club in the Caribbean, he assumes that he is West Indian. It turns out that Sammy is actually a Londoner.
 Mistaken Nationality / int_fa1cb509
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The following is a list of statements referring to the current page from other pages.

 Mistaken Nationality
processingCategory2
National Stereotyping Tropes
 Zootopia / Disney / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Assassin's Creed: Rising Sun / Fan Fic / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Fan Fic: Russian Roulette
seeAlso
Mistaken Nationality
 Shadowchasers Series / Fan Fic / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Fan Fic: The Ed, Edd n Eddy Project / int_8eec5224
type
Mistaken Nationality
 The Newest Challenger / Fan Fic / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 The Last Alarm / int_8eec5224
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Captain America: The Winter Soldier / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Film: DC Cab / int_8eec5224
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Film: Dear Lemon Lima
seeAlso
Mistaken Nationality
 Falling Down / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 In the Loop / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 L'Avventura / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Franchise: Shadowchasers
seeAlso
Mistaken Nationality
 Literature: A Singular Destiny / int_8eec5224
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Crazy Rich Asians / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Die Kinder aus Nr. 67 / int_8eec5224
type
Mistaken Nationality
 For Whom the Bell Tolls / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Literature: The Mysterious Affair at Styles
seeAlso
Mistaken Nationality
 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 A Singular Destiny / int_8eec5224
type
Mistaken Nationality
 In the Loop / int_8eec5224
type
Mistaken Nationality
 J.T. Edson
seeAlso
Mistaken Nationality
 Contributor's Page make a to do send a pm add to watchlist drop watch go to watchlist Landstander
seeAlso
Mistaken Nationality
 Misadventures Of Awkward Black Girl / int_8eec5224
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Contributor's Page make a to do send a pm add to watchlist drop watch go to watchlist Petro
seeAlso
Mistaken Nationality
 Project Runway / int_8eec5224
type
Mistaken Nationality
 make a to do send a pm add to watchlist drop watch go to watchlist Yotsuba&! / int_8eec5224
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Detective Conan (Manga) / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Himitsu no Akko-chan (Manga) / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Music: Tito Puente
seeAlso
Mistaken Nationality
 Radio: The Adam Carolla Show / int_8eec5224
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Roleplay: Persona Requis Aeterna / int_8eec5224
type
Mistaken Nationality
 AKBingo! / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Series: Bitchin' Kitchen / int_8eec5224
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Degrassi: The Next Generation / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Desperate Housewives / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Last of the Summer Wine / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Lexx / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Series: The Lunchroom / int_8eec5224
type
Mistaken Nationality
 The Thick of It / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Boston Marriage (Theatre) / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Criminal Case (Video Game) / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Dr. Crafty (Web Video) / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Web Video: Epic Meal Time / int_8eec5224
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Web Video: OMFG Cata / int_8eec5224
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Web Video: Trialof Leaves / int_8eec5224
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Webcomic: Niels / int_8eec5224
type
Mistaken Nationality
 SPRINGIETTE (Webcomic) / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Website: Microaggressions / int_8eec5224
type
Mistaken Nationality
 The Onion (Website) / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Code Lyoko / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 King of the Hill / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Wrestling: Alberto Del Rio / int_8eec5224
type
Mistaken Nationality
 Joyeux Noël / int_8e3980c7
type
Mistaken Nationality