Trailer Park Boys working on drug and drink-fuelled children’s show parody

HALIFAX — Would you believe the former Trailer Park Boys are doing a children’s TV show?

HALIFAX — Would you believe the former Trailer Park Boys are doing a children’s TV show?

As you might guess, it’s a kids’ show that’s decidedly not for youngsters, and if there’s any doubt the title should fill you in: “The Drunk and on Drugs Happy Funtime Hour.”

Mike Smith, Robb Wells and J.P. Tremblay have left Bubbles, Ricky and Julian behind in Sunnyvale Trailer Park to take over the set of a demented parody of television for tots that starts taping six episodes in May in Halifax.

It’s expected to air on Showcase in the fall of 2010.

“The idea just came from our warped minds,” Tremblay said Thursday. “Two years ago we started brainstorming for the show, and now we’ve been greenlit, so we’re pretty happy.”

The trio said goodbye to their well-known TV personas this fall with the release of the second feature film “Trailer Park Boys: Countdown to Liquor Day.”

After a decade of Bubbles’ coke-bottle glasses, Ricky’s Reveen-esque goatee and Julian’s rum and cokes, they knew they wanted to keep working together.

“We didn’t want to look like those characters, so now we’re going to play multiple characters and use prosthetic makeup so you can’t tell who is who,” said Smith.

“From that, we had to come up with a reason why we were going to play all these very bizarre characters, and why they’d be in the same show and in the same place, and that’s when the show started to take shape.”

“The Happy Funtime Hour” is actually the show within the show, taking place in the sleepy hamlet of Port Cockerton, which is also inhabited by a bumbling gang of small-town hoodlums and a mysterious cult. On the show itself, it seems a German scientist hired to teach nutrition to kids has cooked up a batch of hallucinogenic berries that have been ingested by the cast members, causing them to think they really are the characters they were formerly playing in make-believe.

As an added bonus, the scientist is played by Rush guitarist Alex Lifeson, a huge fan of “Trailer Park Boys” who also appeared on the show and in the films.

Fans will get a better idea of what “The Drunk and on Drugs Happy Funtime Hour” is like when an online trailer for the show is posted on www.showcase.ca in the near future.

Smith said the format will be similar to the thematic sketch comedy of the U.K.’s “League of Gentlemen” and the American ensemble “Mr. Show,” with a nod to the low-budget Canadian children’s programs they all grew up with.

“We were all big into ’The Friendly Giant,”’ he said. “I had the whole ’Friendly Giant’ suit when I was a kid, and I went around with a little chicken in a bag.

“I was a big ’Mr. Dressup’ fan too. He was a badass, although he was a bit weird too with a kid living in the tree out back and all those strange costumes. I guess it was a lot weirder than I thought.”

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