The adventures of an impossibly upright Royal Canadian Mounted Police constable and his American colleagues in the city of Chicago.The adventures of an impossibly upright Royal Canadian Mounted Police constable and his American colleagues in the city of Chicago.The adventures of an impossibly upright Royal Canadian Mounted Police constable and his American colleagues in the city of Chicago.
Due South is a courageous show. Week after week, the writers put the comically unflappable Mountie Fraser in center court, fighting crime in his bright red ceremonial uniform. This raised eyebrows and started snickers. It was ridiculed for its ostentatiously feel-good storylines and ignored as "another one of those cop buddy series". But those who overcame their initial cynicism and stayed to watch a full hour of the show discovered a gem. The message of the show was - don't be afraid to show what's in your heart and mind. Due South the series, by being on air and gaining a loyal following, led by example.
Due South promotes old fashioned virtues. Mountie Fraser opens doors and helps old ladies cross streets. He always goes the extra mile for everyone he knows. Detractors claimed that the character was cartoonish. But again, they missed the point. I am reminded of a forwarded e-mail that encouraged the reader to wear bright colored clothes to improve the mood, spike the energy level and increase productivity in general. Another e-mail said to smile frequently so that one will feel better about oneself and be attractive to others at the same time. Due South embodies the spirit of those quaint but universally sound advice. You bring out the best in others by exhibiting the best in yourself. In our modern world of depressing grays and browns, Fraser's scarlet served as a flashing reminder that passion, over any issue, causes us to care about others and may yet redeem us from the selfish, individualistic blackhole that society is sleepwalking towards.
And my favorite reason, Due South is about friendship. Fraser and Ray took bullets for each other. I can recall a few other cop and soldier shows that had the lead characters do the same but more often than not, it's done to grandstand the machismo of the protagonists. Due South says what's really important is to be a hero for your loved ones, the people who actually need that from you. In real life, those who were passionate about the show became good friends, making full use of the (then) infant Internet to clamor for the revival of the show after its first season. I made friends with fantastic people who shared my love for Due South, people who understood and placed a high value on the kind of "through thick and thin" relationship that the show emphasized.
Due South resounds with the hope that we will remember to have love in our hearts and empathy in our actions. It doesn't try to shock or sensationalize. Instead, it requires the viewer to reflect a little after the television set is switched off. It appeals to the brain as much as it does to the heart and the funny bone. It will always be one of the best shows I know.
- Jan 12, 2000