How has stuttering been portrayed in popular culture? It is often through popular culture that myths and stereotypes become commonplace. Here we have compiled some portrayals of stuttering in popular culture, the good and the bad.
Porky Pig (1935)
This animated Looney Tunes character led to Warner Bros. donating $12,000 to the Stuttering Foundation after receiving multiple complaints that the character was being used to demean stutterers.
A Fish Called Wanda (1988)
The character Ken in the film portrays a prevalent stereotypical image of stutterers – he has a severe stutter, has low self-esteem, and is a recluse. Upon release, the film caused controversy among stutterers who disliked the film for the stereotypical portrayal.
The Waterboy (1998)
In this film, Adam Sandler plays a socially inept stutterer who works as the water boy for a football team. This all changes when a new coach transforms him into a football star.
The King’s Speech (2010)
This Academy-Award winning film tells the biographical story of King George VI and his stutter. It closely examines the friendship between King George VI and his language therapist.