The secret script for ‘Fox News North’ - Macleans.ca

The secret script for ‘Fox News North’

Deride hippies. Assail Starbucks. Introduce guest with alternative view. Cue head-shaking.

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iStock/ Illustration by Taylor Shute

Sun TV News—which instantly acquired the nickname Fox News North—says it will begin broadcasting at the crack of dawn on Jan. 1. A few hours later, it is expected to name Stephen Harper as its Man of the Year for 2011.

Run by the former chief spokesman for the Prime Minister, the “populist” news channel promises to offer a right-wing perspective, combative personalities and a catchy, non-partisan slogan like “We report, you decide” or “Michael Ignatieff: Just visiting.”

Will Fox North turn a profit? It’s got a good shot, especially when you consider that the network’s flagship talk shows will likely recycle the exact same script night after night.
Sun TV News: Talk Show Script

Graphics. Martial music. Fade in on the Sun TV News logo: an angry beaver holding a flag and brandishing a shotgun.

Introduction of program host. Description by host of new political development. Expression of outrage at said development. Furrowing of brow ensues. ABRUPT INCREASE IN VOLUME.
Investigation of recent remarks made by opposition politician. Question raised as to intellectual capacity of said politician. Inquiry made as to what planet said politician is living on. Strong implication put forth that said planet is not Earth.

Heroism of military troops confirmed. Confusion registered as to why opposition politicians openly rooting for our troops to be butchered. Sad day for Canada declared.

Softening of host’s demeanour commences. Deep affection for Canada stated. “Average Canadians” revered. Blanket assertion made as to what “average Canadians” truly value and desire. Striking similarity achieved between said desires and those of host. ABRUPT INCREASE IN JINGOISM.

John Baird’s charisma alleged.

Introduction of first guest. Establishment of guest’s credentials as a) a member of the Fraser Institute, b) a past member of the Fraser Institute, or c) a person named “Fraser” (after the Fraser Institute).

Assertion made by host as to the failure of liberals and lefties to get “it.” Enthusiastic agreement by guest as to the lack of “it” being in any way gotten. Synchronized shaking of heads in dismay.
Starbucks assailed.

Commercials. Claim advanced as to convenience and comfort of adjustable beds. Avowals made regarding merits of reverse mortgages, cholesterol drugs and bran.
Return of host. Assertion put forth as to the grave nature of climate-change crisis. Prankish nature of assertion revealed by exaggerated wink of eye. Laughter directed by host toward own mastery of mirth.

Hippies derided.

Creation of straw man. Refuting of straw man’s flawed perspective. Triumph over straw man dwelled upon.

Need for relief from day’s solemnity claimed. Video shown of mouse riding atop a duck, which in turn is riding atop a kitten. Hilarity alleged. Reference made to video as documentation of NDP caucus meeting.

Introduction of second guest. Warning to audience that second guest holds Alternative Point of View.

Solicitation of said point of view. Commencement of eye-rolling. Aspersion cast upon Alternative Point of View. “Go smoke another doobie” facial and hand gesture executed.

Patriotism of guest called into question. Absence of Canadian flag on lapel remarked upon. ABRUPT INCREASE IN CONSERVATIVE TALKING POINTS.

Elitists assailed.

Voice of host lowered. Dark conspiracy alleged. Dubious motives suggested. Host’s own blog referenced as being uncannily representative of public opinion.

Spectre of coalition raised. Grim picture of Canada under Liberal-NDP rule painted. Return to barter system predicted. National butter knife registry deemed likely.

Way of life of “average Canadian” defended by host. Canadian children revered. Several national landmarks cited. Moisture fills eyes at mention of love of country. Spontaneous recitation of lyrics of national anthem. (English only.) Quivering of chin. Immigrant hugged.

Time on clock noticed. Papers collected and shuffled. Own performance as host praised. Hugged immigrant instructed to go warm up car. ABRUPT 10-PART KEN BURNS RETROSPECTIVE ABOUT THE LIBERAL SPONSORSHIP PROGRAM.