Season 3 of CBC’s hit series Son of a Critch showcases a young Mark Critch as “king of the castle” as he begins his final year of junior high.
The latest season, which debuts Jan. 9, will say goodbye to the playground at St. Bridget’s, the fictional school that uses the real-life St. Bon’s in St. John’s as its setting.
Audiences will also see many of the familiar characters and classmates that the main character — based on creator Mark Critch’s childhood self — has grown up with over the past two seasons.
Critch has big plans for the new season, including flashbacks and dream sequences that recreate pivotal — and sometimes bizarre — moments from his early life.
“We recreate the  Colonial Building riot that happened because Pop, as a young man, steals the chairs that the politicians sat in during the riot, which is a true family story,” he said.
Actor Benjamin Evan Ainsworth plays the young Critch, and viewers have watched him sprout up, like his character, too.
“It takes a second to get used to Benjamin being a young man,” Critch said. “And then, boom — you just fall right into watching him and get taken away by the performance.”
Since the show’s successful takeoff in Canada, it has branched out and attracted a healthy American audience, too.
“Things are going well. We are the No. 1 comedy on The CW, and we got great reviews from Wall Street Journal, the L.A. Times and the New York Post,” Critch said. “It went better than I thought it would.”
Critch said the success of the show in the United States is actually getting some of our southern neighbours curious about where the show is made.
“At the end of the day, the issues are all pretty universal,” Critch said.
“Being in love for the first time, getting bullied, things like that. So people connect with it, but they find the little Newfoundland-isms just kind of interesting and cool, and might send a few more people Googling Newfoundland.”
The 1980s nostalgia that Son of a Critch showcases is another attraction for viewers.
“You put things in the background you don’t even think about, with an incredible wardrobe department, incredible props department and sets,” Critch said.
“And then you go online, and you poured your heart out in this script about kissing a girl for the first time and people are like, ‘Did you see the old bottle in the back?'”
Critch thinks if his parents were still around to watch the show, they’d likely have mixed feelings about it.
“If Mom and Dad had been around for this, I think they would feel the same way my brother does: equal parts proud and mortified,” said Critch.
Critch already has thoughts for a potential fourth season, which would see him starting high school. He said while he was a student at Holy Heart of Mary Regional High School, he fell in love with performing.
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