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Missing Erica

Leonicka Valcius: Missing Erica

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Missing Erica

Tomorrow is Wednesday and I have nothing to which I can look forward. She would come by every week to fill my heart with laughs and tears. But now she's gone. I miss her already.

Okay, maybe that's a tad overdramatic. But when "Being Erica" had it's season finale almost a month ago, I was left with an entertainment void that has been hard to fill. It's amazing how attached one can get to television.

This time last year, I was in South Florida preparing to move to the arctic tundra. My first priority was to catch up on pop culture. Though I would be a repatriated Canadian (I was born in Montreal, raised in Florida, and now lived in the Greater Toronto Area) I did not for a minute think I would be exempt from culture shock. So, I changed my homepage to cbc.ca and tried to learn Canadian culture by osmosis. It didn't work.

Flash forward to January. Walking through Union Station I was bombarded with the building's wall to wall "Being Erica" wraps. There was something unnerving about walking over the face of a smiling woman. Still I paid no attention. Until that fateful day when I accidentally clicked the sidebar ad for the show. Don't you hate that? You're on the internet trying to procrastinate and then some ad pops up and next thing you know you can't even remember what you were trying to do in the first place! Very annoying.

The ad brought me to the "Being Erica" website, which led me to the blog. It was hilarious. So I did the logical thing and watched the episodes that were online. Fabulous. From that day on I was hooked. I watched every episode as soon as I could both on TV and online. I would then immediately run to Erica's wall (because by this time of course, Erica was my Facebook friend) and leave comment. Then I would scurry over to the Facebook group dedicated to the show. It was great fun. Before I knew it, I had a favorite show in Canada.

That was invaluable. Prior to "Being Erica" I was scouring YouTube for episodes of my favorite American programs. I remember bawling because I missed the finale of "Top Chef Season 4." But now there was a show that was Canadian through and through: it was shot in Toronto with Canadian actors and was aired on CBC. That's as canuck as you can get with out picking up a hockey stick. There was a sense of community and exclusivity; I had the joy of both recognizing my city as the backdrop to the show and of knowing that for once Americans were clamoring to find a Canadian show. (A quick aside: I find it strange that ABC Family has picked up "Sophie" which was kind of lame in my opinion, while, as far as I know, no American stations have picked up "Being Erica.")

And then, all too soon, it was over. The show concluded with an emotionally charged cliff-hanger of a finale. Then nothing. The marketing team, who up to this point had been amazing on giving Erica presence off the show, cut the cord and left viewers desperate for more. The video blog that preceded the season was not resumed. Erica's Facebook page is not updated. And every Wednesday at 8:59 EDT I realize that there's nothing to watch.

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