The cultural impact of the Canadian sitcom, Schitt’s Creek is undeniable. When it started on Pop TV in 2015, Schitt’s Creek may have had a slow start in the United States, but thanks to the network’s marketing budget and the move to allow viewers access to every episode from season one on demand, viewership of the sitcom’s sophomore season grew to 331,000 from season one’s 263,000.
Thanks to a deal with Netflix, which co-creator and star Dan Levy “game changing,” Schitt’s Creek ratings surged. By the time the show ended its six-season run in 2020, it had received 178 award nominations and 65 wins, including sweeping the major comedy categories at the 2020 Emmy Awards.
The show’s legacy went beyond the accolades it received. In 2019, fans of Schitt’s Creek raised approximately $20,000 for Ontario’s LGBT Youth Line in celebration of Levy’s birthday. A letter written to the Schitt’s Creek cast by a Facebook group called “Serendipity Doo-Dah for Moms, Home of the Momma Bears”showed how deep the impact of Levy’s character, the openly pansexual David, and his relationship with Patrick, played by Noah Reid, had on its fanbase.
Schitt’s Creek impact can also be shown in an article for the British news publication, Metro. The publication produces a series of articles for the publication’s website called What It Feels Like…, explained by Metro as “not only shares one person’s moving story, but also the details and emotions entwined within it, to allow readers a true insight into their life changing experience.”
In the latest article of the series, “What It Feels Like… to Realise You’re Gay as a Christian Minister”, Australian church minister, Craig Brown details how breaking his patella during a work trip in Montreal, gave him time to think. It was during this time at home in 2019, one of Brown’s friends recommended him to watch Schitt’s Creek.
I was always considered theologically ‘progressive’ – supporting refugees, the LGBT+ community and other marginalised groups.
So watching David (Dan Levy) and Patrick’s (Noah Reid) romance on Schitt’s Creek and declaring that ‘they were the best couple on TV’ was absolutely in step with my progressive views.
When Patrick sang Simply the Best to David in season four, I was captivated. Entranced. Sure, I was hooked on this life-affirming show, but there were other thoughts. Other feelings.
Like, ‘I want Noah to sing to me like that’ and ‘I want to be looked at the way Dan is looking at Noah’.
Normally, with the bustle of work, family and life, such thoughts were brushed aside. Maybe a casual mention that Noah had made it on to my ‘top five celebrity crushes’ list? Nothing more than that. But stuck on the couch? With no company or distractions aside from these thoughts and feelings?
Not this time, bebe. Not this time.
I realised that I was gay. It was a world-shattering moment that over the next few weeks became real. As shocking as it initially was, as I looked back over my life it made sense.
The glass shattered, and I was looking at a new me. And I had no idea what came next.
Brown recalled having an attraction to men during his teens but thought it was just a phase. After getting married in his twenties and becoming a minister in his church and having three kids by his mid-thirties, being gay never crossed his mind.
The realization brought on a deep depression in Brown, which he vehemently stressed was not because he was gay but “because I thought I was ruining my life and the lives of those I loved most.” Brown expounded:
After six weeks, I told my wife, who’d noticed my mood crashing but had put it down to my injury and disappointment. She was shocked – but also, not really that shocked. She was brave, compassionate, and supportive. I don’t know what I would’ve done without her.
This was a pattern with her, our kids, and close friends over the next months: not many people were shocked. My kids even mentioned to me the list of my man-crushes when they found out! Suddenly, I was hopeful – maybe not everyone would reject me?
I was – in the words of my wife – ‘lighter’. She was right. A weight I’d never known I was carrying was lifted.
Brown ends the article by telling of the acceptance he received at his church and his Christian contract work and while he doesn’t know how accepting his larger circle in his Christian circles will be, he said:
I’m up for it. I’m no longer scared of rejection.
Because I’m authentic and, dare I say, it’s beginning to feel simply the best.
After sharing his article from Metro’s website on his Twitter account, Brown received a wonderful surprise in the form of a tweet and a like from the official Schitt’s Creek Twitter account.
— Craig Brown 🏳️🌈 (@rustycraig39) June 27, 2021
You just made my day!
— Craig Brown 🏳️🌈 (@rustycraig39) June 28, 2021
You can read Brown’s article in its entirety on Metro’s website.
Let us know what you think in the comments or on our social media accounts.