The latest Now On Narcity podcast episode just dropped!
Cormac: I don't believe it! You guys have tuned into Now On Narcity again. I'm Cormac.
Brit: I'm Brit. I can't.
Lea: I'm Lea.
Tyeler: Sorry, you really caught me off guard because I thought you weren't gonna do it again.
Brit: I also! He did it more somehow.
Cormac: I did it more. Yeah.
Tyeler: And I'm Tyler and welcome back to the digital dive bar.
Lea: You know what time it is: shot in chaser. Let's go.
Cormac: The world naked bike ride cycles through Toronto this weekend. While some participants say they do it to support human powered transportation, safe streets and body positivity. Others are there for the good old fashioned chafe.
Brit: Literal nightmare fuel.
Tyeler: Chafe is almost as bad of a word as moist to me, chafe.
Brit: Ya it's not cute.
Tyeler: Canada's mortgage stress test rules have just changed and it means you need more money to buy. If the word mortgage doesn't already scare the shit out of you, a mortgage stress test should do the trick. absolutely terrifying.
Lea: Trudeau took a shot at Ford's government for how they're handling the pandemic. You know what they say pandemic words are sober thoughts.
Cormac: I love this. These two are my favorite frenemies. What did Trudeau say now?
Brit: Throughout the pandemic relationships have been a little extra strained. I'm sure we can all relate from roommate debacles to relationship meltdowns. It's, it's been tough. There's been lovers' quarrels and one of these lovers' quarrels is between Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Ontario's premier Doug Ford. It has been dramatic. It has been ongoing and it has been a saga. Oh, yes. They're —
Lea: They're in a rough patch. So I'm in Montreal, and I have no idea what's happening outside of Montreal. So what is going on?
Brit: Let's back it up, back to August 2020. When the two seemed to be serious homies and everything was really crusey.
Tyeler: Simpler times.
Brit: Yes. Honestly. August 2020. Ford said that Trudeau was doing an "incredible job as prime minister during the COVID pandemic." And the prime minister in return, described Doug Ford as a particularly good friend.
Tyeler: How the tables have turned.
Cormac: Yeah, right.
Brit: As the pandemic progressed, things did take a turn. And Justin Trudeau urged political leaders to "do the right thing." He was kind of asking them to enforce tighter COVID restrictions. The thing is, this came just days after Doug Ford had suggested that he wanted to scrap travel restrictions in Ontario, regardless of whether or not the federal government approved.
Cormac: So is this like, just before the second wave or something?
Brit: It was just before the second wave. So I think people were sort of moving towards lifting restrictions, and Trudeau wanted things to be tighter. Because Doug Ford had just said that he wanted to scrap travel restrictions. It felt pretty pointed, I imagine from Ford's perspective. And so naturally, he clapped back and he said that we don't need the nannying state telling us what to do. We understand our provinces.
Cormac: Do you think he knows that Justin Trudeau does also live in Ontario?
Brit: This was kind of the first at least public show of tension between the two, especially one where they both spoke and kind of, like, clapped back on one another. And so move forward all the way to March 2021, which is quite recent. I mean, just the spring, and Ford said that Trudeau government was majorly dropping the ball with the vaccine rollout. Trudeau Of course, comes back and says one of the easiest things to do is try and point fingers and deflect. Keeping it calm, cool and collected but with a little side of sass.
Tyeler: Oh Ford did not keep it calm, cool and collected. We in Ontario, we're watching the news. Not calm, cool and collected. Cormac can attest to this too.
Cormac: Yeah, I mean, when I think of three adjectives to describe Doug Ford, I don't think any of those words are coming to contention. But I do love that, like, it's so easy to point, like it's so easy to point fingers and deflect feels like such a great like no context Facebook status that like someone in school would throw out there like, like not, you know, it's kind of sub-tweeting. Yeah, yeah, exactly. So sweet.
Brit: Yeah, it's so true. And I mean, like, yeah, Ford was pressed, like, homeboy was red in the face every time he talked about it like it, he was not calm, cool and collected by any means.
Tyeler: Honestly, being in Ontario and like seeing tfeud in real time on like the weekly news and in press conferences, it's been just like a roller coaster. But I can't look away. I'm like, it's so entertaining. It's sad, but it's entertaining. And it seems like, yeah, these two just can't agree on anything. When it comes to the response to the pandemic.
Brit: This whole thing, I'm not gonna say, it's concluded, because I just, I feel like that would be premature.
Tyeler: Never over.
Brit: There's more to come, likely. But Trudeau said just this month that, "Ontario has really struggled with this pandemic, from a political level." So that, that's pointed, I gotta say, like, Who else could he be talking about? Um, he described the provincial government as being somewhat uneven in its responses. You know, and he accused, the officials of playing politics. And so he says, from a political level, and the government and the officials and I think that the government, the officials, and the politicians are all Doug Ford, that he's referring to one can imagine. But Trudeau did go on to say that he's not interested in picking a fight with Ford, which is a funny thing to say, like, nearly a year into this.
Lea: After you fired some shots at him.
Cormac: Yeah, I mean, that's a, that's a little too, like, you push a kid and say, "Hey, listen, man, I don't want to fight. I don't want to fight."
Brit: I love how you chose like a kid as the example.
Cormac: Well, this does seem — this does explicitly seem like it's a bit of a playground spat. There's a lot of, there's a lot at stake, but for whatever reason, it just, it feels to me like we're especially in these moments when they're like doing their little, you know, on the news back and forth. It feels a little eighth grade.
Tyeler: Totally. Middle School.
Tyeler: All right, Cormac, line them up, shot and chaser round two.
Cormac: Let's go. 200 people through a rave in Toronto's Riverdale park with lights, a DJ and dancing. Someone threw a massive party and I didn't get invited. Nature truly is healing.
Lea: Meghan Markle just gave birth to a baby girl and her name pays tribute to Harry's mom. Spoiler alert, her name is mommy.
Cormac: Oh, I get it now. Okay. I see that I see that — I see the relation now.
Tyeler: Okay, well, not quite. Meghan Markel did give birth to a seven pound 11 ounce baby girl on Friday of last week. But her name is not mommy. Her name is Lillibet or Lilli Diana Mountbatten Windsor. absolutely adorable. And her name pays homage to Harry's late mother Princess Diana of course and Lilibet is actually a nod to the queen. So, turns out Lilibet is Queen Elizabeth's nickname.
Brit: She doesn't seem like much of a nickname gal.
Tyeler: That's what I thought the Queen doesn't seem like a nickname kind of gal to me.Lea: Like a Liz.
Cormac: Makes sense that her family doesn't call her Queenie.
Tyeler: Honestly, with everything that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex have been through over the last three years. It's nice to hear good news like this that can actually be celebrated, like, between begging between Meghan's explosive Oprah interview to their departure from Royal life and plot twist Harry landing a job in tech in the Silicon Valley for haven sake like it's been a busy time for them, no doubt.
Cormac: And a busy public time as well.
Tyeler: Yes, exactly. And all of this, like, keep in mind all of this while still parenting Archie as well, who's like a toddler.
Brit: What's interesting to me about the Royals, particularly, they've always been kind of like free floating. And I haven't. It's not, like, anchored into my life at all. But I feel like in the last couple years with them having maybe come to live in Canada, and, like, vacationed in BC and things like that, they've just become really on our radar. And it's brought it back into like, more of a celebrity and gossip sort of interest than it has been in a really long time. And I know that they have a long and dramatic past of being in the tabloids. And they have a difficult relationship with the media, as Harry spoke out about. But it's really captivating and really interesting. And I feel like the crux of it all was this big Oprah tell all that just blew us all out of the water and exposed everything. And it is just the monarchy just seemed absolutely untouchable until literal Oprah walks in and rocks the boat.
Tyeler: Brit, I was thinking about that the other day because I was watching The Crown. And I was thinking about Meghan and Harry and how, like the big waves that they've made. And I was like, I wonder if there'll be a future season years from now covering this whole thing, because that would be so binge worthy.
Cormac: I can't wait for the existential crisis that I'm going to get when they start making documentaries about stuff that I was around for.
Brit: One thing I'll say is that I think that there are a lot of people in the world, particularly younger people that are just like, quote, unquote, not news, people are like, don't keep up with the news. And this year has completely rocked the boat in the way that you can't possibly not be a news person. Like there are so many giant historical events unfolding around us and everyone is so plugged in. This is like these are the conversations you just can't, you can't be ignorant
Lea: Everyone's depending on stuff happening so that they can return to their normal lives. So we're all feeling the same way. Like how many times does that happen, you know, in life.
Tyeler: I think that's a really interesting take is, like, this may be one of the only things that almost everyone can agree on. That everyone wants life to go back to normal, everyone wants the same, ultimately the same kind of thing. The same outcome.
Lea: And we still managed to be divided on a lot.
Tyeler: Divided on almost anything else. But we all really want to go and sit in a restaurant.
Cormac: For a pretty long time, I think Kim's Convenience was seen as sort of a Canadian TV show that was just good vibes. It was just like, lovely people, lovely script, lovely show. Everyone I know who loves that show was just like, perpetually seemed like they were in a good mood because of it. Unfortunately, that has really changed over these past few weeks. This is something I've been writing about quite a lot on the trending team. This is something people really have been reading, people are very, very interested in this. It started back about a month and a half ago now when Kim's Convenience really quite suddenly announced that they were ending the show after season five was finished, when the news broke that it was ending wasn't a happy ending.
Tyeler: Really? How so?
Brit: Yeah. What do you mean?
Cormac: The first indication that things weren't as rosy as they have been over the past few years was when Simu Liu spoke out on Twitter, when the news broke again that this was ending. He plays Jung on the show. And he tweeted something quite cryptic, which was for reasons that I'm sure we will get into someday we must prematurely bid farewell to Kim's Convenience. And he said that he had a lot to say about the finale and or about the show ending but that he couldn't. He said Instead, it would contribute to plenty of years of therapy for him.
Tyeler: So there's probably an NDA involved in there where he can't speak about it for a few years, maybe?
Cormac: Well, it didn't take him that long. It took about maybe I want to say a month and a little bit. Basically, he went on this kind of massive, fiery Facebook rant about the drama behind the scenes of the show. Talking about that there wasn't enough Asian representation in the writers room. There was infighting amongst the cast.
Cormac: He said there was a lot of upset about how his character was portrayed in the storylines his character was on. And like a lot of criticism he got for being in Hollywood. He's about to star in a Marvel film. And what I think of the most interesting parts of this was he directly called out Schitt's Creek, another obviously Canadian classic. And he said that they had the cast of Kim's Convenience was paid a quote, absolute horse poop rate compared to Schitt's Creek.
Tyeler: Oh, wow. There's so much from what you just said Cormac that, you know is worrisome. And like, obviously, sad to hear, especially with a show that's so centered around like, an Asian storyline, you would, you would hope that there would be representation involved in the writing and the production and the cast and everything right?
Cormac: Totally. I mean, if this, you know, this show is being held up as like a really great example of Korean and East Asian representation in Canada and Canadian culture, and so to have one of your main stars come out when the show ends and say stuff like this. I mean, it's totally undercut, I think how a lot of people will have viewed the five seasons in the show in its entirety. Unfortunately, it didn't end there. Jean Yoon, who plays Umma on the show, she stepped in on Twitter to back up Simu Liu, and the stuff that she said went even further, she also talked about the lack of representation. She also talked about the cast received drafts of all season five scripts in advance of shooting because of COVID, at which time, we discovered storylines that were overtly racist, and so extremely culturally inaccurate, that the cast came together and expressed concerns collectively. Which is heartbreaking.
Tyeler: It's really sad to hear because the — it's such an opportunity, like you said, to have representation and to create another amazing show like Schitt's Creek, that's a Canadian classic. And to hear that, you know, the curtain's kind of been pulled and we're seeing what's happening, or what's happened behind the scenes. And that's so disappointing to hear.
Brit: It's, it's true. And so something I'm curious about Cormac in in the initial set of tweets, like in the more cryptic one before, all the details started to come about. He said that it was ending prematurely, and so was there supposed to be more seasons, or did it not make it to the finale? Like Was it an abrupt ending? Or do you know?
Cormac: So as far as I can tell, what happened was that the show runners stepped away and the show runners, two men called Ins Choi and Kevin White, Ins Choi is the original playwright of the Kim's Convenience, it started out as a play. They stepped away and they own the show, they own the copyright to the show. So Netflix, CBC, none of the sort of partners could do anything with it, once they decided to step away. That was that. We don't know why they stepped away. I've reached out to both Kevin White and Ins Choi separately for these articles. We haven't heard back from them. We haven't heard any sort of like, defense of the show any of these statements from the other side, again, these two actors making these allegations. So yeah, they stepped away. We don't really know why. But as far as we can tell from the actors, they weren't happy where the show left off, they weren't happy where the characters ended in the world of the show. So I think Yeah, abruptly is probably a nice way of putting it.
Lea: You know, it's easy to see a cast full of Asian people or a cast full of Arab people — Like, I don't know if you guys have watched Remy?
Cormac: I've heard about it. Yeah, yeah.
Lea: You know, Crazy Rich Asians, a cast full of Asian people. And so you would think, Oh, this is diverse. Where the whole cast is a certain race, or we have a lot of different races in the cast. But we don't often think about it because we don't often see it, but who is actually writing the stories, who is actually producing, who makes up the leadership in a certain, like, show or movie setting. And at the end of the day, like the companies that own the scripts, the companies that are running the show that, financing and, and planning and hiring people. More often than not, they're run by white men.
Brit: I think we forget about it because we get caught up in the idea of a production seeming new and interesting and progressive, even. But we don't know what's happening behind the scenes. And it's too bad that we have to wait for people who are behind the curtain to come out with these really vulnerable statements to understand what they're going through.
Lea: A 20 year old man in a pickup truck ran over a Muslim Pakistani family that was out for a walk in London, Ontario this past Sunday, and an intentional terrorist act of violence and Islamophobia. The attack left four dead and a nine year old boy in hospital with injuries. We want to remember Salman Afzaal and his mother, his wife, Madiha Salman, and their 15-year-old daughter, Yumna Afzaal. There's a GoFundMe campaign launched to provide Sadaqa-Jariya, or charity, to the remaining family members. The link will be in the description of this episode so that you can donate, along with a page with more information on what Sadaqa Jariya means in the Islamic community.
Tyeler: All right, time for Last Call, this is actually going to be the last Last Call of season one of Now On Narcity. It is time for a little summer break, if you will. Your four co hosts have a lot of ideas and tricks up our sleeve for season two that we're really eager to get started on. So we're gonna be taking so we're gonna take a brief break, and we'll be back with Season Two coming in hot. Brit, what are you looking forward to this week?
Brit: Well, as we know, it is Pride Month, and we are so fired up for Pride Month, especially as Canada is beginning to open up. And we're seeing some pride events in the various provinces and in ways that people can actually gather in outdoor settings or on patios, or what have you, depending on provincial restrictions. But something that's also coming down the pipe soon, again, might be international travel. And it is important to remember that for the LGBTQ+ community, travel isn't as accessible as it may be for others. And there are some places that are still not as accepting or as safe to travel. And there's actually a list that's come out with really LGBTQ+ friendly travel destinations. And I just really want to share it because it is Pride Month and because travel might be a frickin thing again soon. And on this ranking, which we'll link in the bio, the top place for LGBTQ+ travel is Sweden, followed by the Netherlands, Spain, France, the UK, Germany, Canada is in seventh, and the list goes on. And so it's definitely a really exciting list of really cool travel destinations. So I encourage you to check it out. But yeah, it's Pride Month. And I just want to see the celebrations unfold in different, of course, but fun and exciting and really community based ways. Lea, what are you looking forward to this upcoming week?
Lea: Well, I don't know if it's this upcoming week or just the summer. But I just wrote an article this past week about how the city of Gatineau is installing two new gender neutral bathrooms and changing rooms in pools. Like where you know, where you change at an outdoor pool. So I'm really looking forward to that. I'm really glad that the city of Gatineau is trying to reduce discrimination against gender nonconforming people by installing these bathrooms. And they're starting a public awareness campaign so that people can understand why they're doing it. So I just think it's a great initiative, and they should be installing it this summer. So I'm kind of looking forward to that. What about you Cormac?
Cormac: Well, Lea, I'm looking forward to something that you probably know quite well, because it's an article that you wrote. I am not looking forward to the article because the article is already out. And I'm enjoying it, but I'm looking forward to seeing some change come from it. This is an MTL Blog article that Leah wrote and published on June 4. It's an incredible story. It's a serious story. And probably one of the first and definitely the best investigative piece that I think MTL Blog has ever written and published about sexualized violence on the McGill campus, a petition with 50,000 signatures in three days calling on the university to make a statement and take action against a student who has been accused of sexual violence against five McGill University students. This is something that is a massive problem for universities across Canada and the states. So I'm just like so stoked to see MTL Blog and you Lea write this incredible story about it. And I'm looking forward to people reading it and I'm looking forward to you know, shit getting done from you having written this, I think it's an incredible piece of journalism. And I think you should be very proud of yourself for writing it.
Lea: Thank you. I'm gonna shamelessly self promote, and I'll put it in the bio, the description of this episode. I really want everyone to read it. Not for my own selfish means. But just because it was a huge undertaking six months of work. And all these women that trusted me and told me their stories and trusted me to keep their names anonymous. So it was it was quite touching. Definitely the biggest undertaking I've ever done on my own with the help of my editor, so thank you guys.
Cormac: Tye, as we start this summer vacation. What are you looking forward to?
Tyeler: Oh my gosh, phase one in Ontario starts today. And yours truly managed to get one of the first resumes on a patio. Tonight, I am hitting a patio for Margarita with a friend. And I am just so relieved. And I hope this sticks and I hope it's a domino effect. And we see salons open up and I just hope to see some normalcy this summer and this is a great start. So I'm really looking forward to being on a patio with music and chatter and just all of it. I absolutely can't wait and I'm excited to see other Torontonians out and about this weekend.
Cormac: Absolutely. Whether you are listening to us on a patio in Toronto, or you're listening to us as you read some beautiful, beautiful Doug Ford, Justin Trudeau fanfiction, we want to say thank you for taking the time to listen to Now On Narcity not just this week, but any of the past eight weeks. It's been a total pleasure bringing you season one and we are so excited for what season two is gonna bring. I'm Cormac.
Brit: I'm Brit.
Lea: I'm Lea.
Tyeler: And I'm Tyeler. And we'll see you at the digital dive bar real soon.