ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, SEPT. 23, 2009
It’s hard to know which character from Trailer Park Boys is most favoured by fans. Some folks are particularly fond of Bubbles (Mike Smith), the kitty-loving, kindhearted weirdo with the outrageous eyeglasses. Others prefer Julian (John Paul Tremblay), the musclebound dreamer whose lips only leave his rum-and-Coke long enough to describe his latest moneymaking scheme.
And then there’s Ricky (Robb Wells), the sweatpants-wearing, sideburns-sporting hooligan who feels that getting his Grade 12 would be the ultimate accomplishment in life but whose intellect just can’t agree.
Last November, TPB creator-director Mike Clattenburg officially announced plans to end the Showcase TV series after seven seasons. The good news is that Ricky and his pals will have their last hurrah in Trailer Park Boys: Countdown to Liquor Day, which opens Friday (September 25). Over the phone from Halifax, where the movie is premiering at the Atlantic Film Festival, Wells says that he’s going to miss bringing his loudmouthed loser to life. He figures there’s a little bit of Ricky in all of us.
“I guess it’s everyone’s alter ego to some extent,” he explains. “I mean, everybody at some point in their life feels like tellin’ someone to fuck off, and playing Ricky is the chance to do that without backing down. But it’s more about people that I met through my experiences growin’ up, I guess, and through Mike Clattenburg’s direction. It’s just a character I’ve learned to love and love to play.”
Countdown to Liquor Day sees the three reefer-crazed residents of Sunnyvale Trailer Park being released from jail and instantly butting heads with their archenemies, trailer-park supervisor Jim Lahey (John Dunsworth) and his beer-bellied assistant/lover, Randy (Patrick Roach).
Canadian acting veteran Dunsworth comes close to stealing the show as Lahey, a raging alcoholic who falls heavily off the wagon and lands with his head hilariously wedged up his ass. Dunsworth also figures prominently in the movie’s big chase sequence, during which his hapless character gets comically peed on by the hotheaded Ricky.
“We were a little worried about that whole thing,” recalls Wells of the pissing scene, “but after seein’ some of the rushes, I think it worked. It’s kinda gross, but I think it was more funny than gross, so funny won.”
Funny always wins when Ricky and his mates get up to their usual lowbrow antics. And even though the show’s principals are closing shop and moving on to other projects, cowriter Wells says there’s still a chance they may revisit Sunnyvale in the future. He’s happy to admit that the series did better than anyone expected.
“When we started out, we hoped a few people would tune in and just wonder, ”˜What the hell is this?’ and kinda have to stay tuned. In the beginning, we realized that if we were gonna develop these ridiculous characters, they needed to have a lot of redeeming qualities, a lot of heart and love, and I guess that went over a lot bigger than we anticipated. People do get all the heart and love out of it, which is great.”