While the CBC may not be as famous as the BBC, there are still plenty of popular Canadian shows that have made their way to televisions everywhere. To celebrate some of Canada’s great contributions to television, here are some fantastic fan art pieces from a few of the country’s most popular TV exports.
1. Kids in the Hall: Scott Thompson sketches Danny Husk
Perhaps the most popular Canadian TV show throughout the world, Kids In The Hall remains as ridiculous and hilarious as ever, even almost 20 years after the show was cancelled. The show launched the acting careers of Dave Foley, Bruce McCulloch, Kevin McDonald, Mark McKinney, and the always fantastic Scott Thompson, who we interviewed in 2010 when he launched a comic book about one of his reoccurring characters on the series, Danny Husk. Here are some of artist Kyle Morton’s early sketches for the lead character featuring a few of Thompson’s expressions he used while playing the character.
2. Kids in the Hall: Chicken Lady
Of course, one of the most memorable characters, and most disturbing, was the half-chicken, half-human Chicken Lady. Here she is in all of her terrifying glory thanks to DeviantArt user Progressive Carousel.
3. Kids in the Hall: Cabbage Head
Another odd but fantastic character from the show was Cabbage Head, who never actually looked quite so charming as he does in this digital drawing by DeviantArt user BrentSmith-aloadofBS.
4. Kids in the Hall: Mr. Tyzik
Perhaps the one character that is best remembered from the show though is Mr. Tyzik, whose game of head crushing remains popular even amongst those who have never even seen the show. Even legendary Vincent van Gogh is subject to a head crushing in DeviantArt user fig13’s tribute to the show.
5. Trailer Park Boys: Their Ride
While Trailer Park Boys was strictly a Canadian favorite for years, the show’s relatively recent release to DVD and Netflix, plus the movies released after the show’s end, have resulted in a rapidly growing fan base south of the border. For those that haven’t seen it, the mockumentary follows the exploits of Ricky and Julian as they try to hustle their way into money through any means necessary despite having trailer park manager Jim Lahey try to stop them at every turn. This poster by DeviantArt user wild7 even features most of the show’s main characters, and the gang’s death-trap of a car.
6. Trailer Park Boys: Bubbles
While the show may have a bevy of memorable characters, kitty-loving Bubbles is and has always been the fan favorite. Here is DeviantArt user angelazilla’s take on the character, complete with a kitty on each shoulder.
7. Trailer Park Boys: Toys
Fans of urban vinyl toys may never get an official line of Trailer Park Boys toys, but these three custom toys made by DeviantArt user everythingerika are certainly a great substitute. She was even selling some on her Etsy shop, but it appears that she has now sold out.
8. Orphan Black: Clone War
It may only be one season old (and a property of BBC America), but Orphan Black, which is produced and filmed entirely in Canada, has become one of the most unexpectedly popular shows of the year. This minimalist poster by DeviantArt user city-dreams perfectly illustrates how Sarah Manning felt upon discovering that she is one of many identical clones.
9. Orphan Black: Sarah Manning
Of course, Orphan Black wouldn’t have been remotely successful, were it not for amazing actress Tatiana Maslany, who is able to seamlessly portray an array of characters even in one single scene. This portrait of the show’s main character, Sarah Manning, is DeviantArt user lemgras330’s tribute to the actress.
10. Orphan Black: Tatiana
A damaged, childish murderer, Helena may be Tatiana’s most impressive role on the show as the character is such a strange collection of contradictions. DeviantArt user MoishPain has managed to capture the complexity of Helena in this wonderful digital painting.
11. Degrassi: Holly J. and Declan
I admit, I have never watched Degrassi and know nothing about the show, and everything here is from the artist’s descriptions and a few quick web searches, so please excuse my ignorance of the topic.
Because so many of the show’s fans are preteens, a lot of the fan art related to the show is admittedly not that great. DeviantArt user Lmk-Arts provides a notable exception with this beautiful pencil illustration of Holly J and Declan kissing.
12. Degrassi: The Zits
Just like all teens, the Degrassi characters are way into music, in fact, Wheels, Joey and Snake even started their own band, The Zits, in 1987. Here is DeviantArt user Konstance’s tribute to the group.
13. Degrassi: Eli Goldsworthy
According to Urban Dictionary, Eli Goldsworthy is “The hottest character ever one (sic) Degrassi. Most girls only like him because he is hot, but he is also, witty, funny, deep, mysterious and obviously a really good kisser…” I don’t see any of those things in this Bieber-esque portrait by DeviantArt user Celebrity-Portrait, but that doesn’t make the artwork itself any less impressive.
14. Lost Girl
Admittedly, this scifi series might not be one of the biggest Canadian shows on TV, but it is popular enough and has inspired a lot of fan art. DeviantArt user hanukara’s anime style isn’t totally representative of the show, but the dark colors and bad attitude of Bo make this artwork instantly recognizable to anyone who watches the program.
15. Lost Girl: Bo
It’s rare to see fan art reach the level of quality used by fine art creators, but this impressive watercolor and pencil creation by DeviantArt user weeddemon is something actress Anna Silk (Bo) could be proud to hang on her wall.
16. You Can’t Do That On Television.
There aren’t that many fan art pieces from this popular kids' show, but I’d feel remiss if I failed to include it in this list, being as how it was the first Canadian show many of us Americans were exposed to as children. Here is legendarily disgusting Barth of Barth’s Burgers saying his famous catchphrase, “Duh, I heard that,” courtesy of DeviantArt user therealsuperhappy.
While there are obviously tons of Canadian TV shows out there, I tried to pick the ones that would be most recognizable to all of our readers that also had a good amount of fan art (I wanted to include Todd and the Book of Pure Evil, but I couldn't find enough good fan art). Even so, I’m sure there are plenty more great shows that deserve to be here, so if you notice any glaring omissions, let everyone know about them in the comments.