5 Scottish Characters Who You Should Never Call Irish
Ah, Scotland. Land of heavy fog, moors, sheep and kilts. They're not skirts, you know? But on top of all that, Scotland is a land steeped in proud tradition, and if you ever meet anyone from Glasgow or Edinburgh, you'd do well to avoid confusing them with the Irish. Or the English, for that matter. They're Scottish, and they're proud. Bigger and hairier than the Irish, Scottish characters have made for some of the best movie characters ever to hit the cinema. And unless you fancy a punch in the face (or a broadsword upside your head), don't call them Irish, OK?
William Wallace, "Braveheart"
When people think about Scottish movies, they almost always think about "Braveheart." At least, most Americans do and for good reason. This sweeping epic, starring the insane-in-the-membrane Mel Gibson, told the story of the great William Wallace who organized a rebellion against the hated English. The movie is full of all sorts of brutality, not the least of which involves Wallace's torture at the end of the movie. Even after being castrated and cut in order to be drawn and quartered, Wallace wouldn't betray his beliefs. If he can stand that, what do you think he would do to someone who called him Irish? Crush their head with a rock, probably.
Connor MacLeod, "Highlander"
The story of an immortal Scottish guy seems a little silly, and it kind of is. But it's also kind of awesome, thanks to Christopher Lambert's portrayal of Connor MacLeod in "Highlander." Also, Clancy Brown as the brutal Kurrgan, and Sean Connery playing a Spanish guy named Ramirez with his thick Scottish accent help add to the awesomeness. But Connor himself is not a man to be trifled with, given his skill with a sword and penchant for decapitation dudes. The movie may take place more in NYC than Scotland, but the rolling hills have their moments as well.
Scotty, "Star Trek"
Montgomery "Scotty" Scott is a true legend. He's responsible for the technology behind "beaming" dudes aboard spaceships, without which Captain Kirk would have died roughly a million times. Scotty was on hand to beam Kirk and Co. aboard the Enterprise at just the right moment more times than can be counted. On top of that, Scotty kept an eye on the shields, which were always under assault from Klingons, Romulans, and all other varieties of space-faring a-holes. The man was proud of his noble Scottish heritage, and he had every reason to feel that way.
You can't beat a real Scottish person playing a Scottish character, even if that character is a heroin addict who unknowingly did the nasty with a fifteen year old girl. But hey, the guy was trying to get clean, so cut him a break, OK? Renton doesn't exactly wear his nationalism on his track-marked sleeve, but he does have a certain enjoyment of football/soccer hooliganism. Well, in between his grim hallucinations and attempts to beat his addiction. Given that, it's a safe bet that Renton would be none too pleased if you mixed up with an Irishman, provided he was lucid enough to understand you.
Rob Roy, "Rob Roy"
Rob Roy was living a peaceful life, when a simple loan turned his whole world topsy-turvy. Whether Rob Roy was noble or stubborn is a matter up for debate, but he was fiercely loyal to his friends and his family, just like any good Scottish folk hero should be. A Robin Hood-esque character, Rob Roy's refusal to lie about his friends leads him to some hardship, but by sticking to his guns, not to mention his swords and his kilt, he's able to achieve some vengeance. All the dukes and marquis in the land couldn't get this guy to renounce his heritage, so it stands to reason that calling him Irish would be a bad move for your health.