One of the most awkward day trips of my life was the time I went to Victoria, British Columbia, with my mother. I was pregnant with my firstborn, who I would go on to give up for adoption, and it was this huge Thing. But I lived in Port Angeles, just across the Strait of Juan de Fuca from Victoria, and my mom and I were by-Gods making the trip. And because it’s one of the weird things my mom and I share, we went to the British Columbia Parliament Buildings. (I now live in Olympia, Washington, and have taken my mom on the tour of our capitol building here as well.) And as we stood before the enormous picture of Queen Elizabeth II, I said to my mom, “Wow, she really does look like Scott Thompson!” To which our tour guide responded with an enthusiastic, “I know!”
IMDb lists him as having played “various characters” on The Kids in the Hall. A full list would be ridiculously long. There’s a Christmas episode where he plays both Elizabeth II and Buddy Cole, who in the show’s universe are old friends. It’s a masterpiece of filming for a relatively low-budget show. It was difficult for me to narrow down which character I’d show him as, though there was no doubt that, yes, I think of him first from The Kids in the Hall. The sketch I wanted to use is so minor that there are, to my knowledge, no stills of any kind online and no YouTube videos of decent quality—and I still don’t own the series, though I want to. But which of the others?
I will always associate Scott Thompson, in particular of the group, with a very specific era in my life. Bruce, too, I suppose. Alas for them, this is mostly because I don’t think of them in anything else—Dave has NewsRadio and Celebrity Poker Showdown, and Kevin has Lilo & Stitch, and Mark has Slings & Arrows. But Scott (and Bruce) . . . that’s the mid- to late-’90s, the era when I discovered the show and latched onto it. I babysat an eight-year-old who liked to pretend to be Francesca Fiore—and make her four-year-old brother play Bruno Puntz Jones. And that’s just one of the associations in my mind with that time.
Mind you, this is not intended to be a criticism of Scott’s talent. (I always think of them by their first names.) For one thing, I think he’s amazing in Brain Candy, an unjustly derided film. Two of the characters he plays are quite obviously in need of real help—one is gay but closeted only to himself, and one is lonely and in need of love. The film certainly doesn’t deny that real people exist, and one of the problems with the way the drug is marketed is that it’s not limited to people who actually need treatment and instead treated as “how to just never be sad.” Indeed, in many ways he plays the emotional center of the film and does it well.
But . . . somehow, I’ve just never seen most of the non-Kids stuff he’s done. I mean, a couple of episodes of the Lilo & Stitch TV show, where he’s Pleakley’s mom because Pleakley is Kevin. (I need to rewatch one of those episodes to figure out why Dave plays a priest and not a Pleakely.) He’s on the Odd Squad episode “Crime at Shapely Manor,” along with Kevin and Mark. Buddy Cole was on Colbert a few times. But most of his non-Kids stuff, I’ve just missed. Though because he’s Canadian, he’s done the DeGrassi thing, and apparently they’ve made a couple of TV movies of Bruno & Boots that I need to catch, as the only non-Canadian who cares.