For This Hour Has 22 Minutes, entering its 24th season tonight is astounding longevity. For Susan Kent, entering her fifth season as a full-time cast member is equally astounding.
Some of her favourite recent sketches are one of Mark Critch’s from last season inspired by the fact that a Breaking Bad writer is rebooting Anne of Green Gables for CBC, and the Heritage Minute spoofs by writer/comedian Adam Christie, including one where Kent’s little boy character got to name Winnie The Feces Bear.
“What a job,” she said. “It’s your dream as a performer to get a gig that’ll last a couple of months because that’ll give you time to hustle to get the next gig, so to have four solid years of work is a dream.” She breaks into song: “I cannot believe this is true.”
Kent breaks into song and voices sporadically, a funny and relaxed performer even in an interview. The gig isn’t all fun and games, though. She describes the rapid-fire schedule of putting together the show, which starts on Tuesday morning with the first pitch meeting and ends on Monday night with a live taping in front of an audience.
By Wednesday evening they know what sketches they will shoot starting Thursday, and the art department and props get busy. “Oh dude, it’s crazy, and the only thing open is Walmart. You call in favours, make things yourself—we’re like MacGyvers on Wednesday night.”
Her boyfriend also works for the show, otherwise she says she would never see him. “It’s important to understand why your spouse is happily stressed out and won’t look you in the eye because they’re figuring out how they’re going to write that sketch or make that robot.”
This Hour Has 22 Minutes airs Tuesdays at 8:30 p.m. on CBC.