Big Land laughs: Familiar duo have new Labrador-based comedy web series

·2 min read

A new comedy web series based in North West River features a pair that will be familiar to fans of reality TV.

The series "The Last Stop to Nowhere?" is the creation of Leander Baikie of "Last Stop Garage" fame and features Baikie and Ross Humby (who was also on "Last Stop Garage") doing short, humourous improv bits about Labrador culture and heritage.

"Last Stop Garage," which aired on the Discovery Network for two seasons, revolved around the people who work at and pass through CRB Automotive in North West River, the Baikie family business.

Baikie said the COVID-19 pandemic was the final blow for the show, and they decided to apply for a grant from the Canada Council of the Arts. He was approved for a $70,000 grant — under the Creating, Knowing and Sharing: the Arts and Cultures of First Nations, Inuit and Métis Peoples program — to create 24 short, humourous videos that celebrate the culture of Labrador.

Baikie said they shot the show, which will be released Sunday, in an old community TV studio in North West River.

“I don’t think anyone had used it in 10 years,” he said. “It was this old TV studio with all these old big TVs and all VHS recording and all these cool backdrops, so we used it for the show.”

Baikie said they tried to make it funny and educational, having episodes devoted to things such as setting up a tent, how to boil a kettle over an outdoor fire and how to cook rabbit heads.

Labrador is unique because of the isolation, he said, with every community having its characters.

“We just wanted to showcase that and continue on with the funny antics of our forefathers,” he said. “People can watch a funny skit about Labrador and hopefully they’ll learn something, but it’s more about trying to create humour in an uncertain world, creating humour in a stressful time for people who can’t get out but can watch their phone or computer or TV.”

The shows, which will be available on YouTube, Facebook and Instagram, also features original music from Baikie and Humby, both lifelong musicians.

Baikie said they would like to continue it beyond the initial 24 episodes, and he has applied for another Canada Arts Council grant to do another 16 episodes, and is hopeful they will get approved.

Evan Careen, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Telegram