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Fergie Olver Will Haunt Your Dreams
April 17, 2010 12:39 PM   Subscribe

Fergie Olver was a well-known Canadian sportscaster, who used to hang with the likes of Wayne Gretzky. When not working on Toronto Blue Jays broadcasts, he co-hosted the 80s game show Just Like Mom with his wife, a former Miss Canada. Like fellow game show host Richard Dawson, Olver had a penchant for kissing his contestants on the lips. One problem: his contestants were prepubescent girls. The results are more than a little unsettling.
posted by kalimotxero (77 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

 
Saw this the other day. So fucking creepy.
posted by Saxon Kane at 12:43 PM on April 17, 2010 [2 favorites]


Cringeworthy.
posted by weezy at 12:44 PM on April 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


Yikes.
posted by him at 12:46 PM on April 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


metaphilia?
posted by ennui.bz at 12:47 PM on April 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


I only watched the first (22-second) segment and was more creeped out than I ever have been.
posted by Dee Xtrovert at 12:53 PM on April 17, 2010


Whoa. It sure was a different time.
posted by sveskemus at 12:55 PM on April 17, 2010


Yeah, I can't watch that.

Seriously? Nobody thought that was weird at the time?
posted by Afroblanco at 12:58 PM on April 17, 2010


It just doesn't seem to be that long ago when sexually blackmail prepubescent girls was considered family entertainment.

Not fucking long enough, anyway.
posted by Astro Zombie at 1:02 PM on April 17, 2010


Afroblanco: One mom does call him a "Dirty Old Man" -- understatement of the year. Had I been on their with my daughter, I would have kicked him in the nuts.
posted by Saxon Kane at 1:03 PM on April 17, 2010


there. duh.
posted by Saxon Kane at 1:04 PM on April 17, 2010


Man, did they have to use Tell Me Something Good as the pseudo-pron music? I loved that song, 'til now. I used to watch the hell out of this show and dreamed of someday being on it, mainly for the Cook-Off segment. Complete blanked on Mr. Creepo-Kissy. Brrr.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 1:17 PM on April 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


> Seriously? Nobody thought that was weird at the time?

Regardless of decade, I've got a feeling that many putting their children on game shows or trying to get their children some national TV time will allow plenty to happen without speaking up.
posted by Doug Stewart at 1:19 PM on April 17, 2010


The game board at 0:47 is apt:

mom & dad
goose bumps
hugs & kisses
eat more
monkey business
posted by UbuRoivas at 1:20 PM on April 17, 2010 [7 favorites]


The Vatican has issued a statement denying any wrongdoing in this matter, strictly due to conditioned response.
posted by fleetmouse at 1:23 PM on April 17, 2010 [20 favorites]


No, all Canadians are like that. Send your daughters here for a visit.
posted by clvrmnky at 1:28 PM on April 17, 2010


For Fergie Olver's sake, I kind of hope he's dead now.
posted by stinkycheese at 1:32 PM on April 17, 2010


Ugh. Pedo Bear approves, unfortunately. Me, I had to shut the thing off.
posted by Justinian at 1:37 PM on April 17, 2010


man, there are some moments in that where he comes like nothing if not a pedophile version of Michael Scott.
posted by shmegegge at 1:39 PM on April 17, 2010 [7 favorites]


comes OFF.

comes OFF.

jesus christ.
posted by shmegegge at 1:40 PM on April 17, 2010 [52 favorites]


The Church needs more men like Olver.

gah! beaten by fleetmouse!
posted by davemee at 1:42 PM on April 17, 2010


Holy SHIT. I thought I was well-acquainted with cheesy Canadian game shows, but other than a vague memory of the show's name, I had never seen it before today.

As far as I know, Fergie Oliver is still around. I wonder if any media will get him to comment on this.
posted by maudlin at 1:54 PM on April 17, 2010


That is super fucking creepy. I felt so uncomfortable just watching that, I can't imagine how those girls must have felt.
posted by Shesthefastest at 2:01 PM on April 17, 2010


It seems to be making the rounds all of a sudden. Even Maclean's covered it.

Those slo-mo reruns really drive the coffin nails in, don't they?
posted by stinkycheese at 2:03 PM on April 17, 2010


Oh you americans are so uptight. *Law* this, *law* that. In Canada we tolerate many forms of sexuality, and don't feel the need to so tightly control it.

*watches video*

Oh dear. That's not going to work here.

p.s. I watched 22 seconds of the video before I had to close it. WTF
posted by Alex404 at 2:04 PM on April 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


CHRIST FERGIE LET IT GO THE LITTLE GIRL DOES NOT WANT TO KISS YOU
posted by Spatch at 2:12 PM on April 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


to be fair, he did tell Allison she'd win the show.
posted by gman at 2:15 PM on April 17, 2010 [2 favorites]


If they didn't want to be kissed they shouldn't have brought their lips to the show.
posted by mr_crash_davis mark II: Jazz Odyssey at 2:16 PM on April 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


The Newlywed Game meets Family Feud meets To Catch a Predator.
posted by sallybrown at 2:17 PM on April 17, 2010 [2 favorites]


I gotta wonder what his wife was thinking. I wouldn't be at all surprised to find out that she divorced him shortly after the show was canceled.
posted by Saxon Kane at 2:19 PM on April 17, 2010


wow. i made it like 19 seconds in. tried again....couldn't do it. It's not just the kissing, he's literally chatting her up. My eyes need a shower now.
posted by billyfleetwood at 2:22 PM on April 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


Meh. It was CLOSED LIPS, people. That doesn't count, does it?

Does it...?
posted by PeterMcDermott at 2:23 PM on April 17, 2010


Now everyone's trained to be on round-the-clock pervert alert and to report the slightest pinch of a cheek. Back then, no.

Googlegooglegoogle... Their mothers were on the set (part of the game, right?), as was his wife (co-host) and daughters (also made part of the show), and a couple million fine, upstanding Canadians were watching at home from 1980 to 1987. Lots of eyes were on him.

And yet he was not dragged from CFTO studios and tarred and feathered. I think it's safe to assume that people back then didn't think the way you're thinking right now. Some of the girls might have thought, "Christ! What an annoying man! Yuck! How embarrassing!" -- like getting horrible Christmas kisses from old aunts and uncles, but, even worse, on television, where all of your friends can see -- but I'd bet it didn't cross many minds that he was doing anything but playing around.
posted by pracowity at 2:26 PM on April 17, 2010 [6 favorites]


Thanks for ruining my fun, pracowity :(
posted by Saxon Kane at 2:29 PM on April 17, 2010


new profile picture.
posted by gman at 2:32 PM on April 17, 2010


I think it's safe to assume that people back then didn't think the way you're thinking right now.

Look, I definitely agree with you that we often take these reactions way to far, and e.g. try to imagine that children are totally asexual. And hell, I'd like to believe that he's being totally harmless.

But let's ask Pulp Fiction for advice. "You'd give anyone a foot massage? Would you give me a foot massage?" "Fuck you."

Would it have been okay if he was doing this to young boys? Hahaha no. So? It seems there is indeed something implicitly sexual about what this older man is doing with 12 year old girls.

Again, in many ways, we shelter kids way too much, and end up rendering frightening what should be entirely normal contact. But, if Gigi tells me anything, it's that treating pre teens and pre sexual objects is a creepy. More generally, it's an extremely bad message and will only excacerbate problems that exist for women in our current society.

Thank heavens for little girls
posted by Alex404 at 2:48 PM on April 17, 2010


My inner monologue while watching this:

Lol 70s. Host man has bad hair. Woah dude is really staring her down...dude...dude! Come on dude! AARRGGGHHHH gross.....why why why....wtf wth wtf wth....
posted by aerotive at 2:57 PM on April 17, 2010


Would it have been okay if he was doing this to young boys? Hahaha no. So? It seems there is indeed something implicitly sexual about what this older man is doing with 12 year old girls.

I agree with what you're saying overall here, but really, any contact between the sexes is (or at least was) going to be proscribed by sex roles. He wouldn't dance with a boy either or pull a chair out for a boy and I think we can agree those would be fairly innocuous things.

I find this creepy in part because he's so leering, invasive of personal space (that's a pretty tight two-shot there), and because he's tricking or manipulating children. Those aspects could just as easily be going on in male-male situations.
posted by stinkycheese at 3:04 PM on April 17, 2010


A new challenger appears...
posted by stifford at 3:07 PM on April 17, 2010


stifford: A new challenger appears...

Now I wish I hadn't used up my "Yikes" already. This is...

Yikes.
posted by him at 3:22 PM on April 17, 2010


Like many others here, I couldn't watch more than a few seconds of this. Worryingly, I don't remember finding him creepy when the show was on the air - and I (a child at the time) watched the show regularly and was even in the studio audience one day, when a friend was a contestant - even though I had encountered similarly creepy real-life behaviour by then and was definitely prone to objecting to it.

Since I won't watch it, I guess I won't know if my childhood friend is in this montage.
posted by sueinnyc at 3:25 PM on April 17, 2010


The one girl who said no over and over again, and he kept begging, that crossed a line.
posted by PinkMoose at 3:30 PM on April 17, 2010


him: No need for "Yikes". I remember that clip for a while back; if memory serves it was a comedy sketch or something.
posted by Justinian at 3:33 PM on April 17, 2010


Ugh. I couldn't make it through that video either. So cringeworthy and inappropriate--totally over the line. As a female child of the 1980s, I can report that there was no shortage of grown men with bizarre ideas of appropriate behaviour around young girls. This dude wasn't alone; he just happened to be doing it on national TV. I'm bloody well GLAD it's considered unacceptable now.

I do vaguely remember Just Like Mom, but thankfully, my children's game show of choice was Reach For The Top. No kissing there--that show was srs bzns.

OT: Little did I know years later I would end up with a former Reach for the Top contestant! Nerds of a feather and all that, I suppose.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 3:36 PM on April 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


I'm just going to copy my comment from the Maclean's post over here...

STOP IT! STOP IT STOP IT STOP IT THIS SHOW IS A CHERISHED CHILDHOOD MEMORY KIDS DUMPED RANDOM CRAP INTO MIXING BOWLS AND THEIR MOTHERS HAD TO EAT IT AND THERE WAS DISNEY WORLD AT THE END AND YOU RUINED IT

Seriously, though, there's a cumulative effect in editing together a bunch of clips this way. As a kid I did watch this show and didn't recall being this creeped out. I really think it was Ferg's misguided attempt to put the kids at ease and make them forget about the cameras. And I do mean, misguided.

(Fun fact: Fergie Olver once worked at a TV station in Moose Jaw)
posted by evilcolonel at 3:38 PM on April 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


CRAZY!!! I couldn't make it through 15 seconds. He was loving every second of it.
posted by Flex1970 at 3:40 PM on April 17, 2010


good god. i made it to the end. he rolls his eyes after the mom kiss him and says "the mothers are always so easy to kiss - it's the kids!"

i literally just shuddered.
posted by molecicco at 3:42 PM on April 17, 2010


Holy crap. The Richard Dawson footage has nothing on this.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 4:02 PM on April 17, 2010


I hope someone does a little investigation into this guys past. Gag.
posted by five fresh fish at 4:18 PM on April 17, 2010


This hour has 22 seconds.
posted by mannequito at 4:29 PM on April 17, 2010


Fergie must've been the inspiration for this.
posted by Ouisch at 4:40 PM on April 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


Oh, SURE. It's okay to kiss BABIES, and it's okay to kiss GROWN WOMEN, but little girls? NOOOOOO. It's all so arbitrary. Sincerely, Not Fergie Olver.
posted by mreleganza at 4:42 PM on April 17, 2010


I dunno...maybe because I'm Canadian. Other than the purposely-done slow-motion bits to make him look creepier, this didn't seem all that bad to me. Yes, I would be irked if some some strange 70s guy was kissing my daughter like that, but if it was a fairly standard part of the game show, with other parents and his wife and all that watching...I doubt I'd do much. It's not like he was copping a feel at the same time or anything.

Now, saying that...my 4-year-old daughter gives me kisses a lot. She's a very affectionate kid. I'm going to be paranoid about what other people think when she does that in public in future, based on the responses you folks have given in this thread.
posted by swimming naked when the tide goes out at 4:47 PM on April 17, 2010


Parents kissing their own receptive and cuddly kids on the lips = cute and affectionate and OK and non-squicky.

A non-relative badgering a kid to kiss him on the lips even after they repeatedly say no = SO not OK.

Yes, those were different time [/lou reed], and the video has been edited to full creepy effect, but this was still displayed pretty damn bad judgment at best.
posted by maudlin at 5:01 PM on April 17, 2010 [2 favorites]


Just because something was socially acceptable decades ago does not make it right or no big deal. He's doing something that the girl doesn't consent to, therefore it's wrong, it doesn't matter if it's 1940 or 1980 or 2010, the end.
posted by desjardins at 5:10 PM on April 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


After that ickiness, here's an interesting, non-creepy Canadian game show clip as a palate cleanser: Front Page Challenge was hip enough in 1965 to have Malcolm X as a featured guest.
posted by gimonca at 5:30 PM on April 17, 2010


The CBC has also put up the Malcolm X clip on YouTube.
posted by maudlin at 5:43 PM on April 17, 2010


Throwing Richard Dawson in as an example makes me feel bad that his name has to come up anywhere near Oliver's name.

Dawson was flirty and at least had some class, and you knew he'd at least turn up the charm at the ladies, and be harmless about it, but holy shit, I don't know how any female, of any age, would not feel creeped out by this guy within seconds.
posted by chambers at 5:51 PM on April 17, 2010




I'd leave my own 14 year old daughter alone in a room for 15 minutes with a 1971-era Serge Gainsboug before I'd let her be in the same building with this guy.

(if I had a daughter, that is)
posted by chambers at 5:55 PM on April 17, 2010 [1 favorite]


"Come give your Aunt Bunny a kiss, baby."
posted by bwg at 6:14 PM on April 17, 2010


I remember watching this show with my grandmother, and how disgusted she was when one of the questions was about "the birds and the bees". I don't remember Fergie harassing the little girls though.

And there's no way I'm watching that video.
posted by orange swan at 7:03 PM on April 17, 2010


P E R V
posted by electricsandwich138 at 7:39 PM on April 17, 2010


I don't know which urge is greater: (especially after that Dutch TV host) the urge to cry or the urge to purge.

That was horrible.
posted by leftcoastbob at 8:32 PM on April 17, 2010


Never could stand to watch the show for more than a minute, but that was because of it's 'tied-to-the-apronstrings' vibe. So I guess I missed the kissing parts. Till now.

Uh... thanks.. for that? *shudders*

But I never knew that this was the same guy who did all those Blue Jays games, so thanks for that bit of info.
posted by Hardcore Poser at 9:06 PM on April 17, 2010


I remember being a child in the 1980's (in Maryland) and thinking two things about kisses.

1) people who didn't kiss on the lips but rather kissed on the cheek were phony.

2) a kiss on the lips was an acceptable greeting for family members and an acceptable reward for a good deed or other situations. (One day an old lady accidentally thresher reading glasses in the dumpster, so I retrieved them for her, and she kissed me.)

My friends laughed at me because I kissed the old lady on the lips, and from then on, I migrated to phony cheek kisses.

I can understand why people might find this creepy today. But in the context of a game show (and keeping in mind the host's role in such shows), I'm not ready to call this guy a perv just yet.
posted by bugmuncher at 10:23 PM on April 17, 2010 [3 favorites]


bugmuncher: "

I can understand why people might find this creepy today. But in the context of a game show (and keeping in mind the host's role in such shows), I'm not ready to call this guy a perv just yet.
"

I forced myself to watch longer than first clip but still could only get halfway through it.

C R E E P Y.
posted by bwg at 10:41 PM on April 17, 2010


Fergie Olver at IMDB.

STARmeter: Down 25% in popularity this week.
posted by bwg at 10:46 PM on April 17, 2010


Times certainly have changed. From what I recall, back in the Sixties, girls were supposed to be flattered if a fully grown man tried to flirt with them, because it showed that they were being considered "mature" and "turning into young ladies". The kissing thing on this show (and I lasted the requisite 22 seconds, watching with contemporary eyes) would have been-- and I'm drawing on all my memories of older mores here-- considered a bit risque, a bit cute, a bit charming, and the girl who hated it, or objected, would keep her feelings to herself, so as not to be rude.

Yeah, pedo bear and all, things are better now.
posted by jokeefe at 10:51 PM on April 17, 2010


Wait, hold it, this show was on in the 80s? Jesus. Cancel my previous comment. That's... well. Okay. I'd never heard of it before today.
posted by jokeefe at 10:54 PM on April 17, 2010


When are those hairstyles coming back?
posted by obiwanwasabi at 12:17 AM on April 18, 2010


bwg: "Fergie Olver at IMDB.

STARmeter: Down 25% in popularity this week.
"

That's based on pageviews, though, isn't it? I'd expect it to go up.
posted by graventy at 6:18 AM on April 18, 2010


The one girl who said no over and over again, and he kept begging, that crossed a line.

That was where I had to go have a drink and calm down a bit. That is grotesquely similar to the sexually coercive behaviour used by a certain type of guy - I think we all know the one. The one who is eventually caught slipping someone a roofie, or fucking some passed-out girl at a frat party. The one who won't take no for an answer. Who tries to make you feel bad, or guilty, or whatever, for saying no, over and over and over.

It would be interesting to track each of these girls down and ask them how, if at all, the experience changed the way they perceived and experienced various (unfortunately commonplace) aspects of high school/college life. However, I'm guessing it would be beyond offensive to ask them "oh hay so have you ever been date raped?"

Plz note: I am not saying that this Fergie Olver is a date rapist, or a rapist of any sort at all, or a pedophile, or a badtoucher, or whatever. I'm just saying that being relentlessly coerced against your will, on national television no less, to engage in sexually-tinged physical contact with an older man, while everyone around you looks on and laughs, might maybe set a bad precedent for your later years and your ability to understand that it is YOUR decision and YOUR right to say no.
posted by elizardbits at 6:22 AM on April 18, 2010 [3 favorites]


graventy: "bwg: "Fergie Olver at IMDB.

STARmeter: Down 25% in popularity this week.
"

That's based on pageviews, though, isn't it? I'd expect it to go up.
"

Yeah I know, it was just meant to be a bad joke.
posted by bwg at 5:31 PM on April 18, 2010


The clip's been removed from YouTube due to a "terms of use" violation. (Translation: Somebody told Fergie that he was becoming an Internet sensation - and not in a good way!)
posted by Jaybo at 7:28 PM on April 18, 2010


I saw it elsewhere this morning, but hosted on eBaums in that instance.

Here's the link, if the mods wanted to amend the post or for anyone who wanted to see for themselves.
posted by pseudonymph at 12:41 AM on April 19, 2010


How can the vid be a "Terms of Use" violation? I assume that'd be a copyright violation — but it's composed of very short bits from multiple shows: I should think Fair Use covers it.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:58 AM on April 19, 2010


YouTube shoots first, then refuses to ask answer questions later.
posted by dantsea at 2:20 PM on April 19, 2010 [1 favorite]


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