Ed the Sock

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Ed the Sock
Edthesock.jpg
Portrayed bySteven Joel Kerzner
Information
GenderMale

Ed the Sock is a sock puppet character, created and voiced by Steven Joel Kerzner, that became a Canadian television personality who first appeared in 1987. He is best known for his hosting appearances on MuchMusic and his own talk show, Ed's Night Party (later renamed Ed & Red's Night Party for its final season).[1] Ed the Sock is a gray sock puppet with green hair, round eyes, a scowl, a cigar and a rough, gravelly voice.

History[edit]

Early years[edit]

Kerzner was a producer in the 1980s at Newton Cable,[2] during this time the show went through several co-hosts which included Harland Williams, Eric Tunney and Tim Rykert. After Newton Cable was purchased by Rogers in 1993, Kerzner repackaged the program for a wider cable audience with Ed the Sock as the star.

The new show attracted the interest of producer John Brunton, who took the program to CITY-TV. This show, co-hosted by "Humble" Howard Glassman (better known as half of the local radio morning show Humble & Fred), debuted on February 10, 1995, at 10:30pm Eastern time. Brunton later departed the show citing creative differences with Kerzner, as well as Humble Howard after a feud with Kerzner that was quite contentious:[3]

I don't want to say anything about Ed or the midget that has his hand up his ass that hasn't already been said by just about everyone that's met him.

— Howard Glassman

Politics[edit]

Kerzner was also a political aspirant, running unsuccessfully as a candidate for school trustee and for the Progressive Conservative Party of Ontario in the 1990 Ontario provincial election. A fiscal and foreign-policy conservative, Kerzner's political heroes at the time included Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan. In recent years, however, he has offered left-of centre views, stating in a 2009 interview that he is no longer a conservative.[4] He has vigorously defended Justin Trudeau in the SNC-Lavalin scandal.[5]

Ed's Night Party and other projects[edit]

The logo of Ed & Red's Night Party

Night Party aired in the late-night slot because of its overt depictions of sexuality, primarily involving sexualized, scantily clad (even topless) women and Ed's off-colour remarks. In its final season the series was also broadcast on the G4 Network in the U.S. Ed also frequently made appearances on MuchMusic, and hosted Ed's Big Wham Bam, a weekly live two-hour program that featured viewers performing talents like singing, dancing, and cooking. In the late 1990s Ed also took over as host of Much's Fromage, an annual special which mocked the year's "cheesiest" music videos, following the departure of former host and Fromage creator, MuchMusic VJ Christopher Ward. Ed also hosted a short-lived series in which he and guests watched and made fun of bad movies called Ed's Nite In.

Ed's co-host on Night Party after Humble Howard's departure was Canadian comedian Craig Campbell for the first several seasons. Arguably Ed's most popular co-host, Campbell took a more polite approach with the audience, playing "good cop" to Ed's cruder antics.[6] In a surprise move for what would become its final season, Campbell was replaced by Steven Joel Kerzner's real life wife Liana Kerzner (billed as "Liana K" and frequently referred to as "Red" by Ed). Ed's first female co-host, she was a busty redhead who produced a pin-up calendar of herself which was offered on Ed's official website. For several years, Liana had been the co-producer and co-writer of all Ed's projects. After the addition of Liana as co-host, the show was renamed Ed & Red's Night Party in 2008 for what would become its final season, which increasingly emphasized appearances by porn stars, strippers in a hot tub, and the kind of frat-party excess that Ed used to pillory,[7] resulting in criticism and complaints, largely from alienated female viewers who grew tired of the shows rampant sexist clips and comments.

In June, 2008 Rogers announced that Ed & Red's Night Party would be canceled as of August 31, 2008 in an effort to attract female viewers[8]. This also marked the end of Fromage as Ed's relationship with City-TV ended when new owners re-branded the channel, but Kerzner did use that show's style as a template for what would become I Hate Hollywood on CHCH-TV.[9][10][11]

After Night Party's cancellation, Kerzner stated that the Ed character would likely live on in other projects that were already in the works, including other shows and a feature film, though these projects did not materialize and he remained off the air for more than two years.[12]

Return to television[edit]

This Movie Sucks! as seen in the first episode

In 2010 Ed finally returned to television on CHCH-TV Hamilton[10][11] with This Movie Sucks!, which was similar to his old City-TV show Ed's Nite In. The show was once again co-hosted by his wife Liana K and featured comedian Ron Sparks. In each two hour episode Ed has guests over to watch (and make fun of) a bad movie. This Movie Sucks! was named one of the five best television shows of 2010 by Toronto Entertainment[13] and one of the three best new shows of 2010 by Excalibur Magazine.[14][15] A third season of This Movie Sucks! was reported to be in production but never materialized, with CHCH announcing that no future episode screenings were planned.

Produced concurrently with This Movie Sucks! on CHCH-TV was another Ed-hosted series called I Hate Hollywood. It was originally supposed to premiere in September 2010,[16] but was pushed back several times until it finally began airing on Wednesday nights, beginning May 2, 2012. The show, once again co-hosted by his wife Liana, made fun of the latest celebrity gossip and news but only lasted a few episodes.[17]

Ed the Sock has not had a show on network TV since this show's cancellation by CHCH.

FU Network and live show[edit]

In late 2016, Ed the Sock created the FU Network, a video sharing website, from which he would share old and new clips as well as live stream a new live show with Liana K from the entrance/lobby of the Planet Hollywood restaurant in downtown Toronto, Ontario called Live from Canada, It's Ed the Sock. The show was plagued by poor production values and technical difficulties. Audiences were usually a handful of people, and in return for letting them use his lobby as a broadcast location, the restaurant's manager would be given time to personally advertise Planet Hollywood souvenirs such as hoodies and T-shirts. The show only lasted five episodes, from November 17, 2016 til January 5, 2017.

In April 2017, Ed gained media attention after he posted a video on to his YouTube channel titled "Who Murdered MuchMusic", documenting what he refers to is the demise and downfall of the Canadian music channel by pointing the finger at Bell Media and claiming that their behind the scenes management killed the station.[18] The video was pulled by YouTube after Bell Media complained about copyright infringement stemming from the use of footage and logos still owned by the company. Ed was unable to live stream on YouTube for 90 days because of this, but his video did remain live on Facebook. In July 2018, he launched an Indiegogo campaign to have the network officially launch online and had reached his goal of $35,000 through Indiegogo donations and PayPal donations.

Inspirations[edit]

Ed is based on two actual people, a friend's father and step-father, whose names remain undisclosed. The name Ed was inspired by actor Ed Asner who was also a basis for the initial Ed character.

Triumph the Insult Comic Dog[edit]

Steve Kerzner has accused Triumph the Insult Comic Dog's creator Robert Smigel of ripping off Ed the Sock. The controversy dates back to 1997 when Kerzner claims Ed was set to appear on Late Night with Conan O'Brien but was suddenly cancelled, only months before Smigel's Triumph debuted on that show.[19][20] Ed afterwards expressed such resentment towards Triumph and Smigel that NBC (the network that aired O'Brien's show) stated they "didn't want Ed anywhere near Triumph" when Conan visited Canada for a week of shows during February 2004[21], with the Canadian network complying.

Other appearances[edit]

Ed has made some radio appearances[22] and has guested at several sci-fi conventions. He and Liana K co-hosted the first ever Constellation Awards in 2007.[23] He also was an advice columnist for Faze Magazine in 2001 and 2002.[24]

Steven Kerzner sponsored the Toronto-based Futurecon convention, co-created and chaired by his wife Liana, and his character Ed appeared annually on the show (held every year on New Year's Eve) from 2010 until the convention ceased to exist in 2012.[25]

On June 23, 2011 Ed and Liana began hosting the short-lived Ed & Red's Podcast for gwmp.tv.[26]

In 2012-2013, Ed made several appearances as Frank D'Angelo's sidekick on The Being Frank Show, a paid infomercial program on CHCH-TV, the same network which formerly produced This Movie Sucks! and I Hate Hollywood.

In 2018 Ed appeared as a guest on the fourth episode of Quillette's Wrongspeak podcast.[27]

Ed has made several attempts to be asked to appear on the Juno Awards but has not yet been successful.[28]

FU Party[edit]

Shortly before the start of the 2011 federal election, Ed announced his intention to run for Prime Minister of Canada as head of the new "Fed-Up Party". The FU Party's stated goals include fighting apathy and stupidity in government.[29] Throughout the campaign the "FU Party News Centre" posted links to various articles and videos trying to encourage people to vote and criticizing the political establishment, especially the government and re-election campaign of Stephen Harper. Around this time, Ed also started his own WordPress blog called "Nobody's Puppet!" where he elaborated his thoughts on politics but also on the media industry.

Ed declared victory for the FU Party on April 28, 2011, citing that he had successfully assailed apathy after the record turnout at advance polls, and because to him the "Orange Surge" showed that Canadians had learned that they have a choice. While not officially endorsing the New Democratic Party, Ed stated that the "NDP has become the FU vote" and as such withdrew from the race. While the election did grant the NDP a record number of seats in Parliament, actual voter turnout was not much higher than in 2008, which helped the governing Conservative Party to win the majority of seats.[30] Ed stated he hopes the FU Party will continue to provide "smartass commentary for a dumbass political establishment." Fed-Up was purely a joke political party and was never registered with Elections Canada.

Ed's Nite In[edit]

Ed's Nite In
StarringEd the Sock
Country of originCanada
Original language(s)English
Release
Original releaseJanuary 18, 2005 (2005-01-18) –
March 24, 2008 (2008-03-24)
External links
Website

Ed's Nite In is a Canadian short-lived TV series on Citytv in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, hosted by Ed the Sock. Ed would screen bad movies with his co-host/wife Liana K and invite friends/guests over to watch and make comments on the films.

The show was slightly different from Ed's later bad movie show This Movie Sucks! in that the movies they broadcast were more current and in Ed's Nite In Ed and his friends did not make comments during the movies.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Ed the Sock brings his wisecracks back to TV The Canadian Press, May 13, 2010 (Article by Bill Brioux)
  2. ^ The rough life of Ed the Sock Archived 2011-07-18 at the Wayback Machine TV GUIDE, 2010-06-03 (Article by Janine Oliveira)
  3. ^ Ed the Sock on his Feud with Humble Howard
  4. ^ Sock it to me! At home with Ed The Sock's creator The Toronto Star, April 4, 2009 (Article by Rita Zekas)
  5. ^ Ed the Sock Weighs in on the SNC-Lavalin Scandal
  6. ^ [1]
  7. ^ Ed the Sock June 19, 2008 (Article by JD)
  8. ^ [2] THE TORONTO STAR, June 25, 2008 (Article by Raju Mudhar)
  9. ^ Hamilton
  10. ^ a b CHCH expands programming for fall Media in Canada, July 27, 2010 (Article by Katie Bailey)
  11. ^ a b CHCH-TV 'tweaks' format THE HAMILTON SPECTATOR, August 26, 2010 (Article by Steve Arnold)
  12. ^ "Citytv socks it to Ed". Toronto Sun. June 25, 2008. Archived from the original on June 28, 2008.
  13. ^ Phung, Wei. "Looking Back At All The Best of 2010", Toronto Entertainment, 27 December 2010
  14. ^ Miller, Amy. "The Best New Shows of 2010", Excalibur Magazine, 6 January 2011
  15. ^ The Best New Shows of 2010
  16. ^ Ed the Sock brings his wisecracks back to TV with new indie show on CHCH Archived 2011-07-16 at the Wayback Machine The Canadian Press, May 13, 2010 (Article by Bill Brioux)
  17. ^ Ed The Sock Returning To Save Television Archived 2011-07-08 at the Wayback Machine CHARTattack, May 14, 2010 (Article by Kate Harper)
  18. ^ Former TV Personality Ed The Sock Comes Under Fire Over Who Murdered MuchMusic Video Entertainment Tonight Canada, April 6th 2017 (Article by Rachel West)
  19. ^ “This Movie Sucks” Discussion bureau42.com, July 11, 2010
  20. ^ Is Triumph just a poor man's Ed the Sock?? Archived 2009-07-08 at the Wayback Machine
  21. ^ Ed the Sock Everything 2, Originally posted on June 19, 2008. Retrieved on May 4, 2011
  22. ^ Ed The Sock Headlines This week’s edition of The Sports Guys[permanent dead link] January 21, 2011
  23. ^ 2007 Constellation Awards Archive
  24. ^ ASK ED & RED... Faze Magazine
  25. ^ Futurecon
  26. ^ Ed & Red's Podcast Archived 2011-07-16 at the Wayback Machine gold water moving pictures
  27. ^ "Wrongspeak Podcast". SoundCloud. Retrieved 7 September 2018.
  28. ^ "Ed the Sock's Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved 26 April 2019.
  29. ^ Ed the Sock for Prime Minister - TV Legend announces new party to fight apathy & stupidity Archived 2011-08-07 at the Wayback Machine Ed the Sock Website, March 23, 2011. Retrieved March 29, 2011
  30. ^ Low voter turnout Monday helps deliver Conservatives' coveted majority[permanent dead link] The Canadian Press, May 3, 2011

External links[edit]