We all know that Canada is awesome, right? Their Prime Minister is a ridiculously handsome tattooed dude who openly hangs out at Toronto Pride and knows how to dance Bollywood style. They have the worlds smallest jail cell (24sq metres fact-nerds) and they have a restaurant chain called Tim Horton’s where you will almost always hear a who.
But did you also know that right now in the global shit-storm that is 2016 they’re pretty much number one at kicking ass in the entertainment industries too?
We know what you’re saying. What the hell are we talking about? How can they compare with towering US imports such as Westworld and American Horror Story or even Good Old Blighty’s more restrained offerings like The Night Of and The Fall.
It’s a fair question. But luckily you’ll find listed below all the reasons why the Canucks are leading the way in artistic innovation, so sit back and strap yourself onto your moose because here comes the good stuff, friends….
- WEBSERIES: OK so first off, purely in terms of output Canada is knocking it out of the park when it comes to webseries produced in the last year. And yes the quality can be mixed at times but overall the general standard of the scripts, acting and cinematography is pretty darn impressive. From crowd-funded thrillers such as Haunted or Hoax to professionally produced uber hits like Carmilla or Inhuman Condition (both made by Smokebomb Entertainment/hosted by KindaTV) these Internet based shows are offering up high concept stuff complete with quality visuals. And if you don’t believe us, just try asking the hundreds of Creampuffs who turned up to New York Comic Con simply to get a glimpse at the actors/producers on the Carmilla panel. A panel you should note, at a major Comic Con event not for a movie or TV show with an outlandish advertising budget but for a humble Canadian webseries that gained momentum simply through word of mouth.
- LGBTQA+ REPRESENTATION: Yup, not surprisingly the Canadians are also leading the way in promoting and representing the queer community- offering us not just gay and lesbian characters to love/hate but bisexuals, pansexuals and non binary ones too. The Carmilla series mentioned above is a great example but on top of this you also have fantastic show creators like Emily Andras mapping out a new more open-minded TV terrain (check out her newest offering Wyonna Earp where one of the central relationships involves two women) and other writers such as R J Lackie who continue to add to the LGBT fun in digital media hits All4One and Couplish. Not good enough? Then how about big league actors such as Ellen Page throwing their weight behind the movement; her latest TV docutainment series Gaycation garnering positive responses worldwide and bringing issues of homophobia and heteronormitivity to the attention of the masses.
- THE QUALITY OF THE ACTORS: And yes we know, the world seems overflowing with American, Australian and British names on the billboards not Canadian ones at the moment, right? Are you sure about that though? You want to put some money down. After all, what about the cheeky charmer himself Ryan Gosling? He’s already hit our funny bone with The Nice Guys this year and will soon be seen changing it up in La La Land, an old school musical from the director of Whiplash. What about Twitter Maestro Ryan Reynolds? He was main man Wade in Marvel’s sarcastathon Deadpool back in February and a month later rocked it out serious style in Kevin Costner spy thriller Criminal. And what of the women? Rachel McAdams, say? Last known for her sober role in the real life drama Spotlight she’ll soon to be blowing minds in Scott Derrickson’s superhero debut Dr Strange. And this ain’t just a big budget thing, folks. Even on the small screen the acting master-class given by Tatiana Maslany in Orphan Black (where she plays so many different roles that no-one can actually remember how many there are) won her a primetime Emmy this year (and deservedly so.) So anyone who tells you Canada ain’t a major player on the acting scene… you have our full permission to ninja kick them in the face, yeah?
- DIRECTORS: Canada’s always had a surplus of great director. Atom Egoyan, David Cronenberg (fantastically known as the King of Venereal Horror) and Sarah Polley to name only a few. But this year has seen a surge of talent return to the big screen with full force. Denys Arcand (Oscar Nommed for Les Invasions Barbares in 2003) is finally behind the camera again working on documentary short Burghers of Vancouver after a hiatus in the industry. James Cameron is currently working on Avatar 2 after lighting up the silver screen with last years (uh, divisive) Terminator: Genisys. Denis Villeneuve is following up the big hit Sicario with 2016’s Arrival and then the super mysterious eagerly awaited sequel Blade Runner 2049, due in cinemas next year. Add to that Ghostbusters Legend Ivan Reitman producing his ass off with five new projects in the work while his son Jason (already having completed short film Roast Battle) currently films Tully, a Diablo Cody scripted comedy starring Charlize Theron and you basically have one big visual tsunami of Canadian talent heading our way. Surf’s Up Bitches.
- MISCELLANEOUS AWESOMENESS: Eh, we kinda feel like we’ve already made our point to be honest. However, if you were still umming and ahhing like a Bible Belt Voter right now then as a kindness to you we also proffer the following as evidence of Canada’s greatness:
- Margaret Atwood and Nathan Fillion’s hilarious put downs on Twitter to their haters (see @MargaretAtwood and @NathanFillion for deets)
- Leonard Cohen’s newly released Album You Want it Darker coming out to great applause from Rolling Stone and other music critics.
- The cutest and most polite social media battle of this year between Daniel Munro and Ian Mendes over Donald Trump’s comments about women.
- And the fact that at the beginning of this month a man in Ontario was charged with impaired driving after running HIMSELF OVER with his own car. Not someone else. So who pressed charges?!
Anyways that’s it.
Canada 1, Rest of the World 0.
*Drops the mic (Myers) and walks off stage*
*Exeunt chased by a freaking bear*