I first started following Darcy Micahel's career in his early days doing stand-up in dingy cafes and half-empty bars. Today, Darcy is headlining comedy festivals across Canada, is a regular on CBC Radio's "The Debaters" and is about to start filming his first supporting role in a sitcom. I had the opportunity to sit down with the self-proclaimed skinny bitch as he packed his bags for Toronto, to discuss his role and thoughts around this next phase of his career in comedy.
Recently it was announced there will be an industry seminar asking the all-important question: how to get people watching Canadian TV shows? The problem with discussing what's wrong with Canadian TV is first even defining the criteria. And perhaps looking at the issue as a glass half full vs. a glass half empty.
A recurring gripe of mine is how many Canadian movies and TV shows slavishly pretend they aren't Canadian -- such as by disguising Toronto as New York or as a generic "Anytown, North America." So how to best test this idea...and have fun at the same time? Let's make a drinking game out of Canadian references!
The fact that Canada has spent a decade creating nothing comparable to House of Cards, Game Change and many more political dramas is a shame, but hardly surprising. We're a plucky lot -- and certainly no slackers in the world of entertainment -- but this is one realm where we're hopelessly out-gunned. There's never been (and never will be) a compelling Canadian political drama for one simple reason: Canadian politics is not interesting. "Yes sir, we'll get right on that, sir" isn't the sort of dialogue from which compelling scripts are made.
Seems that when you spend an hour watching Canadian TV news stories about politics, you get only about 15 minutes of real information. These scary numbers come from the highly respected charitable Samara Institute today. Samara has spent months doing all the research, the number crunching, and the drawing of conclusions. Will the newsrooms listen? Probably not.