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Film

Classic Canadian TV Compendium

Posted by Jerrold Litwinenko / December 18, 2006

Canadian TV is often the brunt of many jokes. While we do have a tendency to export a lot of our talent and also let Hollywood onto our streets to shoot their big budget blockbusters, there have been a number of homebrewed Canadian TV shows throughout my lifetime that I was glued to and enjoyed. Or one of my brothers or sisters "made me watch it".

Here's a tribute to my love for Canadian television - a look at some of the classics, all hosted on YouTube, and presented in approximate chronology.

It has taken me about 5hours to compile the following 43 video clips, which are either fully or partially Canadian-made and/or were originally aired on Canadian Networks (CBC, CTV, TVO, CityTV, etc). A list of wanted videos is also included.

HINTERLAND WHO'S WHO (1972)

Videos included here:

Just Like Mom, SCTV, Harriet's Magic Hats, Today's Special, The Edison Twins, Littlest Hobo, The Friendly Giant, W5, The Beachcombers, Toronto Rocks, You Can't Do That On Television, Fraggle Rock, Danger Bay, Kidstreet, Speaker's Corner, Degrassi Junior High, Blue Jay 1992 Champs, Kids in the Hall, Hockey Night in Canada (Coaches Corner), The Sunday Night Sex Show, and Electric Circus, The Raccoons, My Secret Identity, The Hilarious House of Frightenstein, Read All About It, Au Pays de l'Arc-en-ciel, Telefrancais, Video Hits wth Samantha Taylor, Mr. Dressup, CBC Promos (1982, 1989), Bizarre, Definition, Passe Partout, Hinterland Who's Who, OWL TV, The Log Driver's Waltz, Twitch City

The Mighty Hercules (1963)

Rocket Robin Hood (1966)

Au Pays de l'Arc-en-ciel (1971)

The Hilarious House of Frightenstein (1972)

Participation (1977)

FABLES OF THE GREEN FOREST (1978)

THE LOG DRIVER'S WALTZ (NFB, 1979)

SCTV (1979)

Bizarre (1980)

PASSE PARTOUT (1980)

HARRIET'S MAGIC HATS (1981)

JUST LIKE MOM (1982)

CBC Promos (1982)

TODAY'S SPECIAL (1982)

THE EDISON TWINS (1983)

Read All About It (1984)

LITTLEST HOBO (1984)

THE FRIENDLY GIANT (1984)

W5 (profiling a young John Candy) (1985)

Telefrancais (1985)

Video Hits with Samantha Taylor (1985)

THE BEACHCOMBERS (1985)

TORONTO ROCKS (1985)

OWL TV (1985)

THE RACCOONS (1985)

YOU CAN'T DO THAT ON TELEVISION (1986)

DEFINITION (1987)

FRAGGLE ROCK (1987)

DANGER BAY (1988)

KIDSTREET (1989)

MY SECRET IDENTITY (1989)

CBC Promos (1989)

SPEAKER'S CORNER (w/ Barenaked Ladies) (1990)

DEGRASSI JUNIOR HIGH (1990)

JAYS WIN THE WORLD SERIES (1992)

KIDS IN THE HALL (w/ Neve Campbell) (1992)

HOCKEY NIGHT IN CANADA: COACHES CORNER (1992)

Mr. Dressup (1995)

THE SUNDAY NIGHT SEX SHOW (1995)

ELECTRIC CIRCUS INTRO (1998)

TWITCH CITY (1998)

There were a few I couldn't find as well. If you can point me to any if the following, or have suggestions for other clips to add, please comment below. Thanks!

Videos wanted: The Polka Dot Door, Street Cents, Parlez-Moi (Sol the Hobo Clown), Supermarket Sweeps (Canadian version), Dear Aunt Agnes, Ready Or Not, Bumper Stumpers, King of Kensington, Wok with Yan, Tales of the Riverbank (Hammy the Hamster), ...

Discussion

33 Comments

Hamish Grant / December 18, 2006 at 08:02 pm
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Just as an aside - it's a shame that there's no youtube of Toronto Rocks when it was hosted by the man who started it, John Majhor. The youtube post incorrectly identifies JD Roberts as being the originator - Roberts was on The New Music, with Jeanne Beker. Majhor has been kicking around here and there and has a <a href="http://myspace.com/majhor";>myspace page</a> where he explains that in August of this year he was diagnosed with ADENOCARCINOMA, a malignant form of Cancer. The meds to make what remains of his life more livable are very expensive and he's asking for donations. It's a real shame! Toronto Rocks! was a big entry point for so many of us teens in Toronto to the world of music videos before MuchMusic really made it big.
Matt / December 18, 2006 at 09:59 pm
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This is the greatest thing you have ever done. EVER DONE FOR THIS BLOG. And you have done great things, my friend, great things. But this takes the taco.
Tanja / December 18, 2006 at 10:27 pm
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Talk about comprehensive. If I could only add one thing, it'd have to be The Raccoons. I need to find that Beta tape around here somewhere.
jerrold / December 18, 2006 at 11:22 pm
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@Tanja: added the Raccoons

@Matt: gee, thanks! :)

@Hamish: It may just be a matter of time, and the clip you'd like may show up. Remember, YouTube is still pretty young.
Roxanne / December 19, 2006 at 12:34 am
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Oh my gosh! at my summer camp, we'd do the kidstreet clap, i totally forgot about that!

to make it complete for me, though, it would have street cents - but classic street cents with just benita, jamie and jonothan!

roxanne
Tanja / December 19, 2006 at 01:45 am
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YAY, RACCOONS!
Bob / December 19, 2006 at 09:30 am
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What, no clip of "The Trouble With Tracy"?
jerrold / December 19, 2006 at 09:39 am
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@ Bob: I'm not familiar with it, but I'll seek it out :)
jerrold / December 19, 2006 at 08:04 pm
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Added Dec19: The Raccoons, My Secret Identity, The Hilarious House of Frightenstein, Read All About It, Au Pays de l'Arc-en-ciel, Telefrancais, Video Hits wth Samantha Taylor, Mr. Dressup, CBC Promos (1982, 1989)
jerrold / December 19, 2006 at 09:20 pm
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Added: Bizarre, Definition
jerrold / December 19, 2006 at 09:59 pm
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Added: Passe Partout, Hinterland Who's Who
jerrold / December 19, 2006 at 10:13 pm
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Added: Owl TV (1985)

Updated: WANTED LIST
Carrie / December 20, 2006 at 10:35 am
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Of course my favourite was Jeremy (the stop animation bear)on TVO. I tried finding it for you but could only find the English "Barnaby" version which is just NOT THE SAME! or the French -- bah!

Then there is Simon..."Well you know my name is Simon, and the things I draw come true"...

Which reminds me, Mike Myers used to do his Wayne character as filler between shows, I believe, for Rogers? Really low tech before he took it to SNL.

And don't forgot, Ziggy's Mushmusic.

Brian Linehan interviews.

Wok with Yan.

Twitch City.

ANNE OF GREEN GABLES!!!!!!!!!!

I'll remember more later.
Sara / December 20, 2006 at 11:29 pm
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Coincidentally I was looking for all these things on youtube last night... was Harriets Magic Hats Canadian? The Green Forest ("Trouble! Trouble!")? I've been looking for a show I can't remember the name of it but it had a live mouse, hamster (hammy) and guinea pig (GP) and they lived in a little town by the river. Where the River ends? Riverbend? I can't remember! One episode, the mouse was involved in a flood and had to ride a raft to save himself. Also, took a trip underwater in the diving bell. Anyone remember?
jerrold / December 21, 2006 at 08:42 am
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Fables of the green forest was actually made in Japan, but translated into English exclusively for TVO.

Harriet's Magic Hats was an Alberta thing on ACCESS, the provincial educational television channel.
jerrold / December 21, 2006 at 09:22 am
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Added: THE LOG DRIVER'S WALTZ (1979)

Added: Still images for some of our wanteds.
jerrold / December 21, 2006 at 09:28 am
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Added: Twitch City (1998)
Sara / December 26, 2006 at 03:52 am
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OH, just remembered Rocket Robin Hood, Hercules, Barbapapas, ParticipAction, Noddy, Dr. Snuggles & "The Sweater" (when the kid gets the wrong hockey jersey). There's also this weird cartoon about toothbrushes, soap & sponge that sing "brush your teeth, round & round, circle small..." can't remember.
Jerrold / January 11, 2007 at 07:04 pm
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Added:
Rocket Robin Hood
The Mighty Hercules
Participaction
Pete / January 24, 2007 at 10:53 am
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The Hinterland Who's Who almost brought a tear to my eye. Sigh ... I didn't know that Rocket Robin Hood and Hurcules were Canadian!
Pierre Montsion / February 28, 2007 at 04:31 pm
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missing two really great shows.

Higher Ground...from which Hayden(Darth Vader...lol) Christensen launched his Hollywood life.

Comedy...Robson Arms?...too funny!!

Or Super Dave...spin off of Bizarre
lesley / November 10, 2007 at 09:29 pm
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I was devistated to see the Friendly giant clip was unavailable. For anyone who could help: I NEED to see more giant!
beartrader / November 10, 2007 at 10:41 pm
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looking for a tv filler program-it used to air after childrens programs and was done using animated stills-host was naration and main character was a mouse-think called max-involved history clips-any ideas?
John / August 11, 2009 at 09:55 am
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What about Stars on Ice and Circus!??
Fred / May 5, 2010 at 06:56 am
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Big Comfy Couch!
Book Mice.
Sharon Lois & Bram's The Elephant Show.
Eric's World
Variety Tonight
Rufus the Dog
Panda Bear Daycare
Snelgrove Snail
The Waterville Gang
Party Game
The Frantics Four on the Floor
History Bites
Adventures in Rainbow Country
Night Music with Rainer Schwartz

Fred / May 5, 2010 at 07:09 am
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Butternut Square
1964-67
(staring Fred Rogers-Mr. Roger's Neighborhood & Puppeteer Ernie Coombs-Mr. Dressup

Razzle Dazzle 1961-66
starring Howard the Turtle & Alan Hamel (best known as being husband to Suzanne Sommers)
Fred / May 5, 2010 at 07:09 am
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Big Comfy Couch!
Book Mice.
Sharon Lois & Bram's The Elephant Show.
Eric's World
Variety Tonight
Rufus the Dog
Panda Bear Daycare
Snelgrove Snail
The Waterville Gang
Party Game
The Frantics Four on the Floor
History Bites
Adventures in Rainbow Country
Night Music with Rainer Schwartz
Lori / November 26, 2010 at 02:54 pm
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Hi,

I'm trying to identify an uncredited actor from the movie "The Graduate". Someone told me he might have been in a classic canadian kids show. Can I send an image?
Lori / November 26, 2010 at 02:55 pm
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Hi,

I'm trying to identify an uncredited actor from the movie "The Graduate". Someone told me he might have been in a classic canadian kids show. Can I send an image?
Lori / November 26, 2010 at 02:55 pm
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Hi,

I'm trying to identify an uncredited actor from the movie "The Graduate". Someone told me he might have been in a classic canadian kids show. Can I send an image?
Lori / November 26, 2010 at 02:55 pm
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Hi,

I'm trying to identify an uncredited actor from the movie "The Graduate". Someone told me he might have been in a classic canadian kids show. Can I send an image?
Cheryl / July 30, 2012 at 10:34 am
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Great collection. I don't see Chez Helene http://www.google.ca/search?q=chez+helene&;ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&hl=en&client=safari. And maybe it's before your time, but this was a long running show from my childhood - The Forest Rangers. http://www.google.ca/search?q=the+forest+rangers&;ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&hl=en&client=safari. Then there was Razzle Dazzle. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Razzle_Dazzle
Tim / December 20, 2012 at 07:19 pm
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Anyone remember a canadian show from the 70s where a group of actors did old plays? I remember in the intro they rolled into a field in a gypsy styled wagon.

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