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On the hot seat: Jimmy Kimmel tends to Rob Ford’s brow on the set of Jimmy Kimmel Live in L.A. this week. (Randy Holmes/AP)
On the hot seat: Jimmy Kimmel tends to Rob Ford’s brow on the set of Jimmy Kimmel Live in L.A. this week. (Randy Holmes/AP)

Marcus Gee

The Ford Show is riveting, but soon we’ll stop believing it Add to ...

From: The producer

To: The writers

Re: The Rob Ford Show

When you pitched me a show about a rogue mayor from Toronto, I thought you were nuts. Toronto? What ever happens in Toronto? As my man Bill Clinton said, the show smashes every stereotype about Canadians. But I was wrong. The Rob Ford Show is a crazy success – like, Game of Thrones crazy. The whole world is watching. Jimmy Kimmel is obsessed. Your creation Rob Ford is the most compelling TV character since Tony Soprano, only funnier.

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You had me hooked right from the start. I howled when you had him call the cops on the comedienne in the breast plate. I had fits when he was caught reading behind the wheel and giving the finger to that mom from his van. I died when he tackled that lady councillor in the council chamber. Boom! I could watch that in slo-mo a million times.

Last season, when you showed me the crack scripts, I thought you were going too far. A mayor of Toronto smoking crack? In a crack house, with crackheads? I was wrong again. It was good to go dark. Dark is big box office these days. Except that Rob Ford makes Breaking Bad look like The Care Bears. Walter White has nothing on your Rob.

The mystery packages in the gas station? The partying at city hall? The sketchy friends like “Sandro” and “Princess.” Princess! Ha! Courtney Love kills it in that role.

The show keeps getting weirder. “Enough to eat at home”? Those stiffs at broadcast standards weren’t happy about that one, believe me. And who dreamed up the episode where Rob rants about the police chief at the (adore the name) Steak Queen? In Jamaican! Whatever you guys are smoking back there, smoke some more – and bill me.

You had me on the edge of my bar stool with the police angle. Would they get the goods on Rob and drag him away in cuffs? Now we find out the cops are fighting each other and it looks like he’s home free. Who saw that coming? Still, you guys may be going too far for real this season. The latest episodes stretch our viewers’ willingness to “suspend disbelief” (I think Spielberg said that).

A mayor who votes against naming a street after Nelson Mandela (then says it was a mistake)? I mean, Nelson Mandela! A mayor who claims to be an ordinary Joe – loyal friend of the poor, fearless foe of the elites yada yada – tries to bully his way into an exclusive lounge at a hockey game? Come on. How does your rich boy get off pretending to be real people now?

The bit about the Easter parade was good, sure. He gets banned from the parade and gets stuck with 10,000 Easter eggs. I laughed.

But with the Ben Johnson stuff, you went way over the top. What guy who is in trouble for drug use brings out a guy infamous for using steroids and poses for the cameras with him? It just reminds voters of the whole crack thing in the middle of an election campaign. Here I am, folks, the most notorious Canadian in the world – standing next to the guy who used to be the most notorious Canadian in the world. What real-life person would do that?

For that matter, what kind of guy says in one breath that he is the greatest mayor the city has ever had and in the next tells his first campaign rally that his mistakes have taught him humility? “I have learned,” says the guy who in just the previous episode was caught on video – another video! – swearing like a jacked-up bro outside City Hall.

Don’t get me wrong. Rob Ford is a great show and I don’t want to sit on your cupcake. But we need to keep people believing that events like these could actually happen.

Your latest script has him running a close second in the election polls. Do you really think our viewers will accept that after the crack, the videos, the drinking, the lying, the cussing and everything else, your Rob is still a contender for mayor of the biggest city in Canada? Now that is simply unbelievable.

Follow on Twitter: @marcusbgee

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