When Paddington first arrives in London, very few people seem surprised to see a talking bear.

  • Keep your eyes down. There's some sort of bear over there.
  • Probably selling something.

At some points people act as if a talking bear is unusually rare, but at other times it seems commonplace.

Are talking bears common in London? If not, why is nobody surprised to see one?

  • 2
    People get surprised when they see a bare person... Not a bear I guess... Yes... I'm leaving... :D Jan 30, 2018 at 5:44
  • 10
    Realistic Londoner behaviour. After a few years in London you see enough strange stuff in the streets that your reaction to a talking bear would be "Probably selling something". Or "typical, talking bears getting in my way when I'm in a hurry". Jan 30, 2018 at 12:07
  • 2
    Don't forget that Paddington also has an Aunt Lucy, who has gone to live in the Home for Retired Bears in Lima. Given that such a home exists, it can be inferred that talking bears are common in the Paddington universe. There aren't many of them in London, but there are enough that the sight of a bear (talking or not) doesn't cause alarm.
    – Tim
    Feb 1, 2018 at 18:58
  • @Tim Would you be willing to turn that into an answer? Feb 15, 2018 at 18:25

1 Answer 1


Because they're common.

Well, maybe not as common in London as in other parts of the world, but common enough that Londoners don't see one as being unusual.

Remember, in the Paddington Universe, Paddington is not the only talking bear in the world. He has an Aunt Lucy, who lives in a Home For Retired Bears in Lima, the capital city of Peru.

This indicates that there a many talking, sentient bears in the world.

So for Mr Brown, such a bear is nothing more than another struggling immigrant.

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