Will Toronto mayor Rob Ford appear on an upcoming episode of 'Dan for Mayor'?
CTV.ca goes to one of the creators of the series to find out.
Now in its second season, “Dan for Mayor” finds fringe candidate and former bartender Dan Phillips (Fred Ewaniuck) thrust into the mayor’s chair in the fictional city of Wessex, without a clue about the business of running a city.
In the first season of “Dan for Mayor,” when Dan was still on the campaign trail, one of the show’s unique twists was that it featured many cameo appearances by Ontario mayors including Carl Zehr (Kitchener), Brenda Halloran (Waterloo), and David Miller (Toronto).
While they were “blink-and-you’ll-miss-it” type spots, the appearances of the politicians added cute wink-and-nudge moments to the series; their presence seemed to let audiences know they were in on the joke, and were perhaps a nod to the farcical elements that can run rampant in politics at every level.
Coincidentally, the first season of “Dan for Mayor” wrapped with a not-ready-for-primetime candidate put into a position of power, seemingly foreshadowing the NDP leader Jack Layton’s surprise move into the leader of opposition position in Canada’s federal government.
As for Toronto’s recent mayoral race…I’m not going to go out on a limb and suggest that the eventual winner, Rob Ford, is a real-life “Dan for Mayor,” though Ford does seem to have his way with unconventional photo-ops (the graffiti power-sprayer, anyone?).
So does that mean that Ford will follow in Miller’s footsteps and do “Dan”?
Well, sort of.
According to Paul Mather, one of the creators of “Dan for Mayor,” we won’t be seeing the infamous mayor Ford on the series himself, though he did suggest that a Rob Ford-type character will be involved in a confrontation with Dan, who at one point hosts a mayors’ convention.
Mather did say that he would like to get beloved Mississauga mayor Hazel McCallion on the series at some point (and it should be noted that Canadian politicians seem to be drawn like flies to primetime comedy… think Paul Martin and Stephen Harper’s appearance on “Corner Gas” for starters).
When it comes to writing a series about municipal politics, Mather says that he’s more interested in the characters and telling their personal stories than trying to get into the gritty reality of city governance.
“It’s not ‘The Wire.’ We’re not trying to show what it’s really like,” says Mather.
“For me, the funny part is that Dan is trying so hard, and he’s in way over his head. He’s not a stupid guy. So you can tell city stories, and wherever you live there’s some garbage strike, or some stupid road. You can think of the kinds of things that city councils get involved with… it’s pretty universal.”
Before working on “Dan for Mayor,” Mather was the showrunner for “Corner Gas,” and produced seventy episodes of the series. He also had the same role on “Little Mosque on the Prairie” and “Men with Brooms,” a sitcom he created.
Mather created “Dan for Mayor” with Mark Farrell and Kevin White, who also serve as executive producers.
“Dan for Mayor” airs Sunday nights on CTV, with full episodes available online at CTV.ca.
Tyrone Warner has been with CTV.ca since 2005, covering news, entertainment and everything related to CTV. When he’s away from the computer, you can find him writing, recording and performing his own music, running his own record label and dabbling in photography, painting and creative collage. Follow him on Twitter!