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Trivia / The Red Green Show

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  • Actor-Shared Background: Steve Smith also worked as a handyman in his youth, and continued to use his skills in Handyman Corner and other segments. His being a car buff also repeatedly factors into the show (such as the frequent Take Thats against Chrysler K-Cars).
  • Cast the Expert: The late Joel Harris (who played Young Walter) was a professional stuntman and the show's stunt coordinator, making him all the more qualified to portray one of Possum Lake's resident butt monkeys.
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  • Creator Breakdown: Patrick McKenna began suffering this in the late '90s. In part, he was burned out from working on both The Red Green Show and Traders at the same time. He also felt increasingly ridiculous playing a supposedly teenaged Harold when he himself was in late thirties. As a result, Harold was Put on a Bus for a couple of seasons. Once McKenna had taken a break for two years, The Bus Came Back with McKenna now playing an adult Harold who works as a director of public relations for the company that hired him after he went to college.
  • The Danza: A few Season 9 episodes featured a later version of the "Quality Time" segments, which involve Dalton spending time with a younger kid. The first version of the "Quality Time" segments, instead featured Red spending time with a younger boy named Max or Dave. Max and Dave were both played by Steve Smith's real life sons, and shared the names of their characters.
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  • Dawson Casting: An egregious example; McKenna was 29 or 30 years old when he started playing teen-aged Harold. Averted in the later episodes, in which Harold was portrayed as an adult.
  • Directed by Cast Member: Steve Smith (Red) directed every episode of Season 1, and Rick Green (Bill) directed every episode between Seasons 3 and 6.
  • Doing It for the Art: The 4th-6th seasons. As Steve Smith mentioned on the DVD sets, the company had to buy time slots in order for the show to air (this is also why the show was titled "The New Red Green Show" during this time, to differentiate it from seasons 1-3 that were still airing in reruns). Luckily, by season 7 they had secured a deal with CBC, so they didn't have to pay to air their own show anymore.
    • This is also why Steve Smith decided to end the show at the 15th season: He didn't want to start letting down loyal viewers by delivering a sub-standard product.
  • Executive Meddling: Steve Smith isn't too fond of the second season, during which the executives at CHCH-TV pressed him to make the show into more of a sitcom. Hence the expanded cast and plotlines that we actually saw develop, as opposed to simply being related by Red. When Smith got back full creative control from the third season onwards, he went back to the old format. That said, one major aspect of the show did originate in the second season and was kept thereafter: The possum squeal sound effect which signaled the start of the lodge meeting.
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  • Name's the Same: Stinky Peterson, although Stinky is probably a nickname in this show's case.
  • Network to the Rescue: Steve Smith credits the CBC both for giving the show a bigger budget (as he put it, "now we could really go nuts") and also for putting an end to the grief he had for the first few years dealing with Executive Meddling and trying to find airtime for the show.
  • Real-Life Relative: Dougie Franklin's brother Benjamin was played by Ian Thomas' older brother Dave Thomas.
  • Recognition Failure: Steve Smith has said that he will be mobbed in public when he wears Red's Iconic Outfit of a plaid shirt, suspenders and a fishing hat. However, when he wears any other kind of clothing, no one ever recognizes him.
  • Troubled Production: The show had a rough first few years, albeit more because of issues with TV networks rather than problems with actually producing the show. Steve Smith repeatedly butted heads with CHCH-TV executives over the show's content, including the network's demanding the show be more like a sitcom. Later, during the 4th-6th seasons, the show's production company had to buy its own timeslots and pay the networks to air the show. The production of the first season also gave the show very limited studio time, so they had to do some marathon shootings to film everything. Smith notably praised Patrick McKenna for his ability to work through all that material.
  • Written by Cast Member: Taken to its literal conclusion. Steve Smith co-wrote all 300 episodes. Rick Green co-wrote every episode from Seasons 1 through 8 and Seasons 14 and 15 as well as a few Season 13 episodes. Other cast members also contributed to many episodes in their own right. Some examples:
    • Peter Wildman (Buzz) was credited with co-writing every episode between Seasons 4 and 7, as well as a few episodes of Season 8.
    • Bob Bainborough (Dalton) was credited with co-writing every episode between Seasons 8 and 10, as well as most of the episodes of Season 7. He was also a contributing writer on many episodes of Seasons 5, 6, 11 and 12.
    • Jeff Lumby (Winston) was a contributing writer on many episodes between Seasons 5 and 12.
    • Patrick McKenna (Harold) was a contributing writer on Season 3.
  • You Look Familiar: George Buza appeared as Mike's "guardian angel" in the Season 9 episode "Angel" before taking on the role of Dwight Cardiff. He also played a motel manager in The Movie.

List of segments on The Red Green Show:

  • Adventures With Bill: Black-and-white segment featuring tons of slapstick as Bill tries to do something for fun but fails spectacularly. Red narrates the proceedings. Eventually, other characters joined the fun. During seasons 9-12, Bill was replaced by Walter, a younger guy (played by Joel Harris, the stunt coordinator for the series). Walter would stick around when Bill returned to the show, however.
  • Auto Biography: Only seen during season 6. A Possum Lodge member waxes about their favorite vehicle.
  • Buddy System: Debuted during season 4. Red and another character address the camera about a problem they just created (usually something stupid the unseen character said to his wife).
  • The Experts: Harold reads a letter from a viewer, asking their advice on a topic. It's always answered by Red and another character. Harold's place was occasionally taken by another character during and after his absence.
  • Famous People In Possum Lake History: Debuted during season 9. Red would present a biography of an interesting person of Possum Lake, and other characters would add their two cents.
  • Fishing Conversations: Debuted during season 11. Red and two other characters (usually Mike and Dalton) would talk about various topics while fishing. The topics tended to be serious, but jokes were peppered in anyway. This segment is notable because it doesn't contain audience laughter or a laugh track, at least not until the last joke.
  • Handyman Corner: Red uses various scraps to create inventions, (almost) always ending each segment with a Catchphrase: "If the women don't find you handsome, they should at least find you handy." While this segment used to be limited to Once an Episode, around the 9th season there were multiple Handyman Corners throughout an episode: A short one featured as a Cold Open, then the main one during the first segment, and another short one during the third segment.
  • Harold at the Office: Only aired during season 9. Red would visit Harold at his office in the big city, where Harold would usually be exceptionally busy and Red would embarrass him.
  • Harold's Handy Crafts: Debuted during season 5. A Harold version of "Handyman Corner".
  • Harold's Hobby House: Debuted during season 14. Harold and another character talk about some crafts they made. This segment is notable among Whose Line Is It Anyway? fans for having a special guest appearance by Colin Mochrie as Frank Kepke, a sausage and wiener sculptor.
  • Harold's Segments: Debuted during season 3. Harold addressed the teenagers in the audience about various topics. Often ended with Red crashing the sketch and making a snarky comment.
  • If It Ain't Broke, You're Not Trying: Debuted during season 7. Ostensibly a fix-it segment, the emphasis is more on explaining how the item in question was broken in the first place, such as Dalton's wife hitting him over the head with a tennis racket.
  • Male Call: Letters from viewers.
  • Men Anonymous: Debuted during season 6. A parody of "Alcoholics Anonymous", except with the men declaring that they resisted acting like a stereotypical man for a certain amount of time.
  • Mike's Teen Talk: Debuted during season 9. Identical to "Red's Advice to Teenagers", but with Mike instead of Red.
  • New Member Night: Debuted during season 8. Red invites lodge members to introduce prospective new members, all of whom have some special quirk that the introducing member finds appealing, and then Red has the lodge members vote whether to let him. The introducing member usually convinces everyone to vote yes by giving them an incentive for doing so.
    • In a commentary by Steve Smith on a Red Green DVD, the prospective new members are actually played by someone from the studio audience that the actors on the show would randomly pick to stand up there in front of everyone and make jokes about.
  • North of Forty / Red's Sage Advice: Debuted during season 4. Red, sitting at his desk, gives humorous advice, usually to middle-aged married men. Always ended with the Catchphrase "Remember, I'm pullin' for ya; we're all in this together."
  • Poetry / Winter of Our Discount Tent: Red reads a poem or passage from a book. During seasons 1-3, the poems often took on a theme based on a season (e.g. "It is winter/It is spring").
  • Possum 911: Debuted during season 6. A character calls in to Possum 911 about a problem, usually trivial.
  • Possum Lodge Word Game: Debuted during season 5. One member has to get another to guess a word, but always has difficulty doing so. The word is frequently guessed by accident. The winner receives a very crappy prize that is either initially teased as a much better one, or offered by a strange business. The host was initially Harold, but it began rotating between various characters during and after Harold's absence.
  • Ranger Gord's Educational Films: Debuted during season 9. A series of animated cartoons done by Ranger Gord (in real life, animated by Bryce Hallett, with Peter Keleghan [who also played Gord] doing all the voices). Gord was portrayed as a handsome, buff stud, while Red and Harold were portrayed as a possum and beaver respectively (one episode also had Dalton and Mike as a bear and raccoon). Ironically, it was Red and Harold who gave the correct advice, while Gord was always wrong.
  • Red's Advice to Teenagers: Similar to "Red's Sage Advice", except it addresses teens and usually takes place outdoors.
  • Red's Campfire Songs: Red plays guitar while singing a song with a punchline. Harold accompanies on "percussion". This segment was absent from seasons 9-13 before making a brief return appearance in season 14's Christmas special.
  • Talking Animals: Debuted during season 8. Animal expert Ed Frid fearfully introduces the day's animal.

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