snit ytv

A Toronto TV legend from your childhood is back from the dead after decades

Anyone who experienced the turn of the 21st century as a kid in Canada probably remembers the charismatic personalities of YTV from that era, including one particularly memorable bundle of circuits, teeth, and a thick coating of indistinguishable purple slime.

The character, known simply as Snit, was a product of the Y2K era, where everything had to have that digital, high-tech feel, but with a weird dystopian cyberpunky twist. Basically, Snit was the television host equivalent of a Day-Glo Laser Quest birthday party circa 1998.

And after decades off the air, the iconic and very sticky-looking television personality has returned.

Accompanied by legendary PJ (program jockey) Phil Guerrero, Snit's digitized voice would blare from YTV's The Zone segments, looking like what my late 90s child brain assumed was some sort of hybrid Frankenstein of a CRT screen wrapped in a satellite wrapped yet again in a congealed mass of chewed-up grape bubble gum.

The duo's long-lost purple host returned to airwaves — in the form of streaming — over the weekend with its first on-screen appearance since the early 2000s, albeit without the company of his energetic human co-host.

Though (PJ Fresh Phil) Guerrero is absent from the fan-made return, Snit is joined by original puppeteer Atul Rao operating the gangly robotic limbs, googly eyes, and fake chattering teeth, as well as providing Snit's distinctly choppy voice.

It brings back the question of a reunion, though the authentic Phil and Snit team will never truly reunite in their original form, as the current puppet is but a reconstruction, the result of a fan-led effort to resurrect the lost TV icon.

Snit fanatic and Canadian media professional Rob Tosh was interviewed by un/Culture earlier this year, discussing Snit's history, his tribute website, snit.ca, and his efforts to rebuild the famous puppet from scratch.

Dubbed Snit 2.2, the modern replacement is actually an improvement over the original in almost every way, but despite a huge volume of videos kicking around on the interwebs, finding high-resolution references proved a major roadblock in getting the recreation off the ground.

Tosh teamed up with a builder and pored over all of the available footage to get a clear sense of not just what Snit used to be, but what Snit was capable of becoming.

So what is next for this lost relic of Canadian 90s/2000s youth culture brought back from the dead?

The website states that "with this new SNIT puppet, we plan to expand the SNIT universe with original fanfiction in the form of FAN SERIES and FAN FILMS along with other great Video Content."

There's no word on what that means specifically, but as a 90s kid clinging to these fleeting nostalgic flashes of my long-gone youth, I patiently await the release of more details.

Lead photo by

snit.ca


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