Growing up in the 1980s, I heard a lot of Doug and the Slugs music.
The group’s music videos for tunes like “Too Bad,” “Making It Work,” “Tomcat Prowl” and “Day by Day” were MuchMusic staples. Heck, I have “Day by Day” as part of my most-played songs on my iPhone. But, aside from knowing they were from Vancouver and created some wild videos, Doug and the Slugs has been a bit of a mystery to me.
Debuting Sunday at 8 p.m. on CBC, Doug and the Slugs & Me follows filmmaker Teresa Alfeld as she explores the story of Doug Bennett. And while he led one of the most iconic 80s bands in Canada, Alfeld only knew him—during her childhood—as the cool dad of her best friend next door in East Vancouver.
Unlike most music documentaries that simply trace the birth and growth of a band, Doug and the Slugs & Me adds Alfeld’s personal journey, including chats with her mother, to round out Bennett and the band’s story. That, along with interviews with the Slugs, Bob Geldof (who worked with Bennett before Doug and the Slugs formed), Bif Naked, Steven Page, Ron Sexsmith, Michael Williams, Denise Donlon (who was the band’s publicist!) and Terry David Mulligan—and treasured home video—paint a wonderfully moving picture not only of Bennett but capture a slice of Canadiana well worth checking out.
Doug and the Slugs & Me airs Sunday at 8 p.m. on CBC.
Image courtesy of Hans Sipma.