Canada's Worst Driver

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Canada's Worst Driver
FormatReality television
Developed byProper Television
Written byAndrew Younghusband
Presented byAndrew Younghusband
Country of originCanada
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons9 as of 2013
No. of episodes72
Production
Executive producer(s)Philip Dharamraj
Producer(s)Guy O'Sullivan
Running time60 minutes (including commercials)
Broadcast
Original channelDiscovery Channel Canada
Original runSeptember 26, 2005 (2005-09-26) – Present
Chronology
Related showsCanada's Worst Handyman
Britain's Worst Driver
Don't Drive Here
External links
Website
 
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Canada's Worst Driver
FormatReality television
Developed byProper Television
Written byAndrew Younghusband
Presented byAndrew Younghusband
Country of originCanada
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons9 as of 2013
No. of episodes72
Production
Executive producer(s)Philip Dharamraj
Producer(s)Guy O'Sullivan
Running time60 minutes (including commercials)
Broadcast
Original channelDiscovery Channel Canada
Original runSeptember 26, 2005 (2005-09-26) – Present
Chronology
Related showsCanada's Worst Handyman
Britain's Worst Driver
Don't Drive Here
External links
Website

Canada's Worst Driver is a Canadian television series on Discovery Channel, based on Britain's Worst Driver, and is part of the Worst Driver television franchise. It and sister series Canada's Worst Handyman are the two highest-rated programs on Discovery Channel. The series is produced by Proper Television, whose president, Guy O'Sullivan, was the director for the original Britain's Worst Driver series; as such, Canada's Worst Driver is considered to be the production company's flagship show.

Unlike other Worst series around the world, the Canadian version emphasizes the learning process of the contestants and the science of driving, and as such is often more serious than the other Worst shows around the world, which are mainly played for laughs. It is the longest running of any Worst series to date.

The series is also aired dubbed in French in Canada, as the Les zéros de conduite on Canal D.[1]

Format[edit]

In each season, eight drivers and their nominators are taken to the Driver Rehabilitation Centre, where they compete in challenges designed to improve their driving skills, in an effort to not be named Canada's Worst Driver. In the first challenge, the contestants begin at a location about an hour's drive from the Driver Rehabilitation Centre; they must drive to the Driver Rehabilitation Centre, following the directions that are given to each contestant. After arriving at the Driver Rehabilitation Centre, the driver's licence of each contestant is confiscated (for the first two seasons, their car keys were confiscated instead). The first episode concludes with an obstacle course challenge, meant to evaluate the skills of the individual drivers.

The series is well known for their obstacle course challenges; contestants must routinely manoeuvre their cars through tight spaces with less than an inch of clearance on either side. To show that the challenge can be done without hitting obstacles by an average driver, host Andrew Younghusband performs each challenge before any contestant attempts the challenge.

Beginning with the end of the second episode, each contestant meets with a panel of four experts and Andrew for an evaluation of their performance, and after all remaining contestants are interviewed, the judges and Andrew deliberate on which contestant and nominator pair have improved enough to graduate from the Driver Rehabilitation Centre. The driver who has graduated is eliminated from the competition, and is sent home with their licenses returned to them; the contestants typically drive off with their nominators in the car that they used to arrive at the Driver Rehabilitation Centre. The experts also reserve the right to not graduate anyone for any episode, or to graduate multiple contestants at the same time. The experts may also choose to expel any contestant who does not show any incentive to learn, or who the experts believe should not continue driving or who can not continue the rehabilitation program, often for medical or legal reasons. In this case, the contestant is eliminated from the competition and their licenses are returned, and they are given a ride home.

The elimination process continues until only three contestants remain (the original intent was for two contestants to remain, but due to the first season containing an episode in which no-one graduated, there were three; every season since has had three finalists). The remaining contestants are then given the Mega-Challenge, an obstacle course challenge with elements of almost every previous challenge,[2] as well as a driving examination through the busy streets of a major urban centre in Canada near the Driver Rehabilitation Centre. Based on these two challenges, the experts determine which among the three is named Canada's Worst Driver. With the exception of the second season, the contestant who fared the second worst is deemed to not have graduated from the Driver Rehabilitation Centre, while the third contestant is considered a graduate.

Unlike other versions of the Worst Driver series around the world, where being eliminated early or being the Worst Driver is either rewarded with a new car or had their car destroyed, no prizes are given for being eliminated early or for being named Canada's Worst Driver, aside from a commemorative trophy in the latter case.

Challenges[edit]

With the exception of the challenges in the first and last episodes, challenges are specifically tailored to each contestant, designed by show host Andrew Younghusband and the driving school sponsoring the series (whose head instructor is one of the judges). Challenges typically range from traditional driving school lessons such as parallel parking, reversing, and driving with a trailer, to those not normally found in a beginner's driving course, such as driving a standard transmission vehicle and extreme driving manoeuvres (such as the Scandinavian flick). However, there are some challenges that are reused from year to year.

Nomination[edit]

The contestants are chosen by nominations submitted to Proper Television. Canada's Worst Driver and Canada's Worst Handyman are filmed alternately, with one season of Driver followed by one season of Handyman. Currently, Driver is filmed during the summer and Handyman in winter. Nominations for the next season of one are accepted shortly before the airing of a season of the other on Discovery Channel. Candidates may be nominated by multiple nominators, though only one nominator accompanies the contestant to the Driver Rehabilitation Centre.

Home Video/Internet Availablity[edit]

Seasons 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7 are currently available for download in Canada from iTunes in Standard Definition (480i/p) Anamorphic widescreen. Season 8 is available from iTunes in both Stanadard Definition (480i/p) Anamorphic Widescreen and High Definition (720p/1080p); Season 9 has yet to be released on iTunes. Each season has also been posted on Discovery Channel's Canadian website in the past for streaming, with only Seasons 5, 6, 7, and 8 currently being available. There has been no news on whether the series will be released on DVD/Blu-ray.

Seasons[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Canal D, "Les zéros de conduite" (accessed 20-01-2013)
  2. ^ The standard transmission balancing challenge, among others, is not part of the Mega-Challenge, but every challenge that is practical to include gets included.
  3. ^ Bolichowski, Jeff (June 18, 2011). "Bad drivers hit St. Catharines street". St. Catharines Standard. Retrieved June 19, 2011. 

External links[edit]