Trailer Park Boys Discuss Their Community Service Variety Show
Trailer Park Boys took its first breath in the form of a black and white movie “mockumenting” the booze fuelled shennanigans of Sunnyvale Trailer Park’s trashy occupants in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. Although initially turned down by The Comedy Network, in next to no time the show rocketed to Canadian cult status with the misfortunes and sui generis capers of Ricky, Julian and Bubbles successfully residing on Showcase for a walloping seven-season run.
The ‘Boys’ are all set to pack their suitcases to bring their ‘Community Service Variety Show’ for three exclusive live dates in London, Glasgow and Dublin in May. Although Ricky, Julian and Bubble never tend to break from their ex-convict personas, even for interviews, we managed to get hold of them in a moment of serenity to find out just what we can expect, should they make it through British Customs.
When you were at school you were always playing practical jokes on people and getting into trouble. What was the worst practical joke you played on anyone and what was the punishment?
When we were younger we put a hit on Pat Roach, “Randy”. We drew a cornflake penis on his front lawn. It was giant. Seven boxes. A rake did nothing. He needed to use his vacuum cleaner and destroyed it in the process.
How did you manage to find time to shoot the Trailer Park “pilot” mockumentary whilst busy working other jobs?
We did what we had to do – shot and edited on weekends and at night. We called in sick a lot. Haha.
I have read that Bubbles was only created during the filming of this pilot. How did Bubbles come about?
It was a character that Mike Smith had been doing for years. He used to do the character while we were filming the pilot and after the series was picked up we wrote the character into the show.
What do you think it was that Barrie Dunn, and later Showcase, saw in the show that made them jump at turning it into a TV series?
We think probably the unique characters, backdrop, and the fact that when you strip out all the guns, dope and swearing, the show is really about love.
The Trailer Park Boys movies have been great and well received. Can we expect the next movie any time soon?
We are in fact shooting a third movie next month.
Most, if not all, of your interviews are in character? Would you say you are all pretty similar to the characters you have created? If not, why the choice to keep in character outside of the show?
We are not a lot like our characters unless we’re drunk. We do our press sometimes in character to keep with the whole ‘mockumentary’ feel to it all.
I’ve also heard that a lot of stuff is improvised, so a lot of what you bring to the characters must be from your own personalities? Is this true and how much of the improv actually makes it to the final cut?
Everything is fully scripted, but often times we’ll play around and improvise based on the script. Quite a few of these scenes actually make it to the final cut. Our characters are based on people we grew up with or looked up to.
So you’re bringing a short tour to the UK and Ireland in May. What can we expect? Is it going to be like the series or something completely different?
Bubbles is going to shoot himself out of a cannon, there’s going to be a puppet show, a monkey and lion juggling act and they are under strict order by the court to explain to everyone the pitfalls of using drugs and alcohol.
Doing a live show always begs for accidents or mistakes to happen which are completely out of your hands. What would you say was the worst or funniest disaster either on the live circuit or whilst filming?
The gas pedal in the shitmobile got stuck while shooting a scene and two of the three people inside the cat shit themselves….One of them not being Julian.
Trailer Park Boys are live at London’s Hammersmith Apollo, Glasgow’s O2 Academy and Dublin’s Olympia Theatre on the 3rd, 7th and 8th of May respectively. All ticket information can be found here.
Be sure to keep up to date with Ricky, Julian and Bubble on the Trailer Park Boys official Facebook page.