Last night’s/this morning’s World Series Game 5 broke all sorts of records, if not baseball itself, with umpteen dramatic comebacks and exploding home runs and rumors of slippery baseballs. (It was on pace to be the longest nine-inning game in MLB history, until it failed to end in nine innings, the Houston Astros eventually emerging victorious in the tenth.) For observant viewers, though, it also had an even deeper meaning: as a guidebook to how this World Series is secretly all about Degrassi: The Next Generation.
The first clue came with a Wells Fargo ad that’s been running incessantly on Fox throughout the Series, involving something about a woman whose cat suspects her of cheating on it with a dog. If you (like me) thought the actress was suspiciously familiar, and (like me) immediately Googled her, you may have discovered that this was because of your fandom (like mine) for a particular long-running Canadian high school soap opera, on which Stacey Farber played recovering cutter Ellie Nash for six seasons.
Returning to the game, one key moment was in the top of the eighth, when Dodgers center fielder Chris Taylor failed to tag up and score on a fly ball, because he thought third-base coach Chris Woodward was shouting, “No!” when he was in fact yelling, “Gotta go!”
Wait, Chris Woodward, why is that name familiar? Not because he previously coached Taylor in Seattle, no. Something about when he was a player for the Toronto Blue Jays, and, oh, right: In the season three Degrassi: The Next Generation episode “Rock and Roll High School,” a battle of the bands required a celebrity guest host, and who should step into the breach but one local ballplayer helpfully identified in the credits as “Toronto Blue Jay Chris Woodward” for anyone not up on their .235-hitting utility infielders.
Best of all, the band battle overseen by Woodward actually featured Stacey Farber’s character: After a plotline involving something about song lyrics referencing one character cheating on another and getting her friend pregnant (this being Canadian TV, she wasn’t forced to have the baby), Ellie’s band Hell Hath No Fury eventually lost to competitor Downtown Sasquatch, which featured this guy on guitar:
If you want to watch this 2004 slice of amazingness yourself, you can do so below. In the meantime, we’ll be taking bets on whether it’ll be Caitlin or Joey who catches the winning home run ball in Game 6.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on October 30, 2017