Tonight, after 15 seasons and 277 episodes, the host of the Rick Mercer Report will give his final, indignant rant before signing off. From his start on This Hour Has 22 Minutes to Rick Mercer Report, and a sitcom called Made in Canada in between, the St. John’s native has been Canada’s most pointed political satirist for a quarter century. He’s interviewed rock stars and prime ministers. He’s had Stephen Harper read him a bedtime story. Gone a few rounds with heavyweight George Chuvalo. Did the CN Tower edge walk with Jann Arden. But he will perhaps best be remembered for introducing average Canadians to other Canadians. The show defied conventions of television. Not quite The Daily Show news satire, a travelogue like Rick Steeves: Europe, a sketch show like Air Farce nor a talk show like The Social, the show picked up 12 Canadian Screen Awards and four Geminis. But before the Rick Mercer Report, Rick broke into prominence on This Hour Has 22 Minutes. That’s where he began those weekly, in-your-face, often political rants. In 2014, Mercer was appointed an officer of the Order of Canada by Governor General David Johnston for his “ability to inspire and challenge Canadians through humour.” Rick says there was no “singular” moment that caused him to wrap the show which wraps up tonight on CBC.
By the way, a Toronto Star survey shows of over 8,880 votes that, yes, it feels like the end of an era at almost 88%.
(Source: thestar.com; Image: goodreads)