Friends, when last we were here together, the nation was on the cusp of a momentous event. And then it happened – Our Glorious Leader (OGL) was defeated. Whether by skulduggery or by the opposition pandering to the baser instincts of an addled nation, it transpired.
The puzzling fact that famine and pestilence did not immediately follow will, no doubt, preoccupy scholars of OGL's reign for decades to come. We wish them well, those scholars.
As an admonition in the dying days of the election campaign, OGL's team warned us darkly about "brothels in our communities" and "easier access to marijuana" should OGL's enemies triumph. (They left out "famine and pestilence." It was assumed we knew that.) This was discombobulating.
A few days ago, on my return to this great nation, I fully expected Canada Border Services at Pearson International Airport to recommend local knocking shops and promote some notable purveyors of the demon weed. Didn't happen. They hadn't got the memo yet, presumably. They were just very rude, as usual.
Wednesday's great TV event is called, in the TV listings, "Trudeau Government Swearing In" (CBC, CBC NN, CTV, 10 a.m.), which is what it says – coverage of the ceremony in which prime-minister-designate Justin Trudeau and his cabinet are sworn in. The Prince of Hair (PoH) takes over. Coverage lasts for two hours, which is about as long as PoH's honeymoon period will last, since people expect him to spread kindness and goodwill like fairy dust and bestow great hair on all Canadians.
Before everybody relaxes and goes back to wondering whether Jennifer Garner will take back Ben Affleck after that alleged business with the nanny, let us pause and assess.
This column takes note of the epic shift in our nation and sees it as the occasion for a complete changing of the guard in the Canadian TV racket. Things change, things come to an end. It's time for a clear-out, now that PoH's reign has begun.
Rex Murphy. In the name of all that's salutary, what is Rex Murphy doing, still harrumphing away on The National? While it remains a pleasure to hear somebody – anybody – speak with an appetency for the viscera of the English language, the Murphy bit is seriously tuckered out. His slot, currently called Point of View, might be more accurately called "Stating the Bloody Obvious."
Even CBC itself seems deaf to Murphy these days. Look up his bio on the CBC website and it includes this: "Once a week he offers commentary on The National's Point of View, and is additionally the host of CBC Radio's long-running Cross Country Checkup. He also writes Japes of Wrath, his Saturday column for The Globe and Mail." Seriously, that's what it says.
Inside the CBC, perhaps they gather and chant, "I don't know but I've been told/All our news is four months old!" Half of that bio is no longer true. It's as out of date as Murphy's point of view.
Pastor Mansbridge. Need I say more? Surely he's blathered and twaddled through his last election campaign.
Saving Hope on CTV. If Hope isn't saved yet, in the name of God, give it up. Canada's Worst Driver, on Discovery. It's now at season 11. We get it. All this show accomplishes is encouraging to people to drive badly and get on TV. In the name of national road safety, stop!
Also, I wouldn't mind seeing the end of Tornado Hunters, which airs on Country Music Television Canada, of all places. We get enough weather-porn coverage on most local channels and that's enough, thanks.
Listen, let's take this seriously. A list has been started here to honour the arrival of PoH. But I'm going only so far. I'm not suggesting CBC cancel Heartland. That would definitely bring famine and pestilence to the country.
Also airing Wednesday
The 49th Annual CMA Awards (ABC, City, 8 p.m. ET) is bound to be a helluva hootenanny. Country music's finest get awards for their songs about critters and heartbreak. Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood host; performers include Keith Urban, John Mellencamp, Eric Church, Hank Williams Jr., Thomas Rhett and Fall Out Boy. It won't be as lurid as ABC's wonderful Nashville, but on the day when PoH takes over, it's a suitable toe-tappin' party.