Watch William Shatner Sing “O Canada” |
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Watch William Shatner Sing “O Canada” May 14, 2011

by Staff , Filed under: Celebrity,Humor,Shatner,Viral Video/Mashup/Images , trackback

Tonight in William Shatner is in Ottawa to receive the Canadian Governor General’s Performing Arts Award for Lifetime Artistic Achievement.  TrekMovie has been provided with a (funny) video that is being shown as part of the event, which features William Shatner singing "O Canada." Watch that below.


Shatner’s new "O Canada"

Watch Bill bring honor to his native land (video courtesy of the National Film Board of Canada).

The Shatner Project has a behind the scenes video as well:

For more about the Canada Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards visit


1. Trek Or Treat - May 14, 2011

ahhh the Shat Schtick. Never gets old!

2. Red Dead Ryan - May 14, 2011

WilliamShatner’s…….version….ofthe..Canadian national anthem……………..washilarious!

3. Hat Rick - May 14, 2011

Somewhere, a picture of Dorian Gray — or a certain Canadian actor — must be getting older and older and older.

Because the Shat is eternally youthful. He is amazing.

4. Steven - May 14, 2011

I like his hairstyle – very Vulcanesque…

5. Anne - May 14, 2011

I love Shatner!!!!

6. Daoud - May 14, 2011

Oh Bill, from McGill….
You’re just so fantabulous,
Like Cantab., no less!

7. Amy - May 14, 2011

Ah Bill, I’ve missed your shenanigans.

8. Harry Ballz - May 14, 2011

Now look, I’m being dead serious here… kidding. I’ve lived in Canada my whole life and having just watched the clip of Shatner “poking fun” at our national anthem…..I am deeply insulted. My sense of humour is as good as the next guy’s, but, hey, the one thing you don’t screw around with is a country’s anthem.

I have been in the U.S. many times on business where I have attended conventions. I’ve stood in huge ballrooms where it’s mostly an American crowd. The first thing they do to start off the day is play the American National Anthem. The sense of pride and pure joy that emanates from the collective audience is palpable. It is sincere and deep-rooted. It is sacred. I have great admiration and respect for that patriotic belief in country.

What would be the reaction here if they showed a clip of an American celebrity taking their own anthem and tearing it apart and spoofing it? I remember clearly what happened to Roseanne Barr when she once tried to put a spin on it. She’s lucky they didn’t tar and feather her.

I think Bill has been living in California a little too long and has forgotten what true national pride should mean to him. If he had ever fought in a real war I’m sure he wouldn’t have done this bit in a million years. He should be ashamed of himself.

9. Harry Ballz - May 14, 2011

Another thing….James Doohan, as a young man, fought in World War II as a member of the Royal Canadian Artillery. Mr. Doohan took part in the Invasion of Normandy and was at Juno Beach on D-Day. He was a very brave Canadian soldier. One can only guess the level of disgust he would feel over Shatner’s stupid antics in this clip. I know Chris Doohan visits these boards. Maybe he would be kind enough to share what his father might have thought about such callous behaviour. I would certainly be interested in his valuable feedback.

10. MJ - May 14, 2011

@8. Harry, are you really surprised that Shat would stoop to this level? I’m not. This is what he is reduced to — a very well paid carnival act.

11. MJ - May 14, 2011

@9 Harry, comparing the Shat to Doohan is like comparing Beavis and Buthhead to Albert Einstein.

12. Harry Ballz - May 14, 2011

This is a new low, even for the Shat.

13. Let Them Eat Plomeek Soup - May 14, 2011

“Free…Free of smog.”

Oh Bill Shatner, you awesome, tone-deaf man.

14. ACpilot - May 14, 2011

Yes, as a Canadian I would have to say you don’t mess with the National Anthem. Poor taste to say the least.

15. MJ - May 14, 2011

Before others from my country (USA) keep providing congrats to the Shat for how clever and entertaining he is here, please keep in mind how a lot of us felt when Rosanne Barr did this many years ago in our country:

This wasn’t so funny to me and most US citizens.

Harry, I know that a lot of us will be standing by you and Canada on this. The Shat has carried things way to far this time around.

16. Jordan - May 14, 2011

@8 @14 I am Canadian and I think it was great. Have a sense of humor. One of the reason we have pride for this country is we can laugh at ourselves.

17. Harry Ballz - May 14, 2011

Thanks, MJ! I appreciate the support.

18. naseweis - May 14, 2011

Eh guys, you know the NFB produced this, right? So Canadians made it and Canadian Shatner agreed. I say get a life.
It’s very funny. :D Thank you Mr. Shatner.

19. MJ - May 14, 2011

@16. Jordan, the problem is, that while some people will write this off as humor, a lot of people will NEVER consider national anthem spoofs funny. There are certain things that most people don’t find funny, and making fun of national anthems, people’s funerals, and mentally retarded people all fall into this category.

20. MJ - May 14, 2011

@18. U.S. Major League Baseball sponsored Rosanne Barr’s performance…so that means I should accept it and laugh?

21. Phil2 - May 14, 2011

He didn’t “sing” the french part!!!

22. Jordan - May 14, 2011

@19 Laughter at funerals is a good thing, so long as you honor the person and remember good memories. The same can be true for a national anthem. For me, this reminded me of what a good free country this is and some of the great people I know and love here. Canadians are fun, not insulting. And I don’t think that’s what this is.

23. Harry Ballz - May 14, 2011


It’s not funny, it’s deeply offensive. What, during Remembrance Day (Canada’s version of Veteran’s Day), when they play the National Anthem on behalf of our honoured dead, should we, the Canadian people, chuckle at the memory of Shatner ridiculing it?

Some things are sacred and off limits. This is one of them. I would guess that anyone here who disagrees with that is under 30 years of age. Grow up.

24. Buzz Cagney - May 14, 2011

Its the Harry and MJ Show!
This weeks Special Guest Star ( in fact every weeks special guest star) WILLIAM SHATNER!

25. Jordan - May 14, 2011

@ 23 The only thing offensive in this thread is you saying I should grow up because I’m under 30 and don’t respect the flag/anthem and my country. I can tell you’re a person who is quick to over-react, especially when you think I would be one to laugh durring a Remembrance Day ceremony.

26. MJ - May 14, 2011

@25. Jordan, do you see now how a lot of people will react to this? That is why it is not funny to a lot of people, dude. The back and forth and escalation of the argument between you and Harry here have pretty much proven my point here that the Shat should not have gone down this patch. It just creates a lot of negativity, son.

27. Harry Ballz - May 14, 2011

I don’t “over-react”. Never have. I simply know the difference between right and wrong.

28. Jordan - May 14, 2011

@26 Nothing is off limits to comedy/farce/commentary in a free country. Not even the anthem. It’s a shame some people can’t have fun. A lot of what was said in the anthem William Shatner was saying was a commentary on some of the debate about our anthem that has been going on in the news. People have been talking about removing the word “sons” because it is sexist or “god” because we are a multicultural country. I see nothing wrong with talking about it and having fun with it.

29. Jordan - May 14, 2011

@27 This is a matter of opinion, not fact.

30. Vultan - May 14, 2011

As Canadian Donald Sutherland might say, “MJ and Harry, always with the negative waves, man, always with the negative waves…”

Seriously, you guys need to be a little less… uh, serious. I’ve heard plenty of spoofs of American anthems and patriotic songs on things like JibJab over the years, and I can’t say I’ve ever been offended by them—especially when it’s done in a clever, satiric way.

Roseanne forgot the lyrics at a major league baseball game on national television. That was disrespectful and lazy, but in hindsight it’s pretty damn silly the country got so upset over this one dumb comedian. (She is a comedian, right? It’s so hard to tell…)

31. Buzz Cagney - May 14, 2011

I can’t say as that was offensive. I can say it wasn’t funny though.
Luckily Harry and MJ are making up for the lack of laughs. :-D

32. SlugBug - May 14, 2011

How can anyone take ANYTHING posted by a guy calling himself Harry Ballz seriously. National anhems are not ‘sacred’ HB, maybe your grumpy old man routine needs a rest.

33. Vultan - May 14, 2011


Buzz, heard any spoofs of “God Save the Queen” over there in merry old England?

34. Buzz Cagney - May 14, 2011

No Vults, we all are very respectful of our Anthem over here!
In fact we so cherish it the only time we even bother with it is when the Queen is in da room! lol
I will take a look at Youtube to see what i can find though! :-D

35. Buzz Cagney - May 14, 2011

This was pretty cool. I suppose. Or was it disrespectful?

‘oi, young man, yes you, the young man making all the noise on my roof.
Clear orf, young man. You are upsetting the corgi’s’…..

36. Vultan - May 14, 2011

Well, I can’t really get that upset if anyone butchers “The Star Spangled Banner,” since it’s notoriously difficult to sing (even for professional singers)… and… well… it was set to a British drinking song.

One more for the road.


37. Vultan - May 14, 2011


I don’t know if that qualifies, Buzz, but it’s still an awesome video. Great axe work by Mr. May there!

38. Buzz Cagney - May 14, 2011

oh i’ve found a ton of mangled Star Spangled Banners on Youtube, Vults.
It appears to be a national passtime over there matey! lol

39. Vultan - May 14, 2011

In my extraordinarily awesome opinion, the American anthem should be changed to this:


40. MJ - May 14, 2011

@27 / Harry Ballz: “I don’t “over-react”. Never have. I simply know the difference between right and wrong.”

@29 / Jordan: “@27 This is a matter of opinion, not fact.”

That is a slippery slope, son.

41. Buzz Cagney - May 14, 2011

#39 How about this Vults. As a Brit looking on I think this would make a great US Anthem…..

A beautiful song too.

42. Vultan - May 14, 2011


Great choice, Buzz! Rio Bravo is my favorite John Wayne movie.

And hey, Americans get accused of being gun-toting cowboys all the time. It’s about time we embraced it… again, and say it with POWER CHORDS!!!

43. Vultan - May 15, 2011

And of course, this is what those Al Queda stooges should be hearing:

44. SarahJM (Canadian over 30) - May 15, 2011


“I don’t “over-react”. Never have. I simply know the difference between right and wrong.”

Today’s comments indicate that you do not.

45. Buzz Cagney - May 15, 2011

#42 I’m glad you approve. I do realise My Rifle, my Pony and Me evokes a certain old stereotype of America. But its a good stereotype. The whole taming of the frontier is a particularly inspiring part of your history.

I also enjoy Rio Bravo, Vults. And Duke was always well worth watching, as is Deano. Ricky Nelson, on the other hand, was a better singer than actor!

46. Alex - May 15, 2011

This is just great. I unsuspectingly enter this website and there are three news headlines: “JJ Abrams’ shows get a pickup from networks” – 4 comments. “Science news” – 7 comments. “The Shat sings ‘O Canada'” – 40+ comments.

Nothing beats the Shat… :)

47. Vultan - May 15, 2011


Yeah, Deano was probably the coolest guy who ever lived. Funny too. Here’s a video from his TV show. One of the most hilarious bits I’ve ever seen. Hope this plays for you:

48. Buzz Cagney - May 15, 2011

PMSL that was great Vults. They found someone even more smashed than Deano! That must have took some hunting!
Oh yeh, Deano defined cool didn’t he. Magnificent!

Fantastic how these threads wander at times isn’t it. lol

You are up awfully late, Vults! Can’t sleep?

49. Vultan - May 15, 2011

Insomniac. I’m also in my twenties, so you know, sleep is kind of an afterthought. ;)

50. Buzz Cagney - May 15, 2011

Enjoy it my friend. Get to your 40’s and it pretty much become’s your first thought!

Right o’ mate, Sunday beckons. I’m off to take the dog for a walk. Heard the first cuckoo of the spring yesterday. wahoo, summer is on the way!

Sleep well, speak later.

51. The Unknown Poster - May 15, 2011

Offensive???? Are you kidding? No, that’s the problem. WOW!! Get over yourselves.

If it bugs you…dont watch, dont comment. Man…I am stunned. Grow up.

And let me tell you, those people who fought in wars, fought for freedom. Besides which, this was clearly not malicious. It was funny. Not your style of humour? Fack off then.

That was tremendous! Shat’s the man.

52. Kweeg - May 15, 2011

As I am a Canuck (gooo Cunucks, go!) Shatner puts the “U’ in honour to his native land” (unlike the USA that dosn’t… ‘u’ that is) … god (or gods or no god) love the Shat!


53. Al - May 15, 2011

Get a life Harry

54. captain_neill - May 15, 2011

Oh please. Now we have petty bickering over a a fun little video in honour of the Shat’s achievement?

I found it really funny.

55. lostrod - May 15, 2011

MJ and HB are two of the biggest bashers of Mr. Shatner on this list. Having them both bonding over this is a bit much.

I’m afraid they would be criticizing the actor no matter how he performed the anthem. MJ would drop in with his usual “he looks old”, “he looks fat”, etc comments.

Now, this is only my opinion. Unlike MJ and HB, I don’t share their ability to know exactly how Mr. Shatner thinks, how he feels or what he would do.


56. Buzz Cagney - May 15, 2011

How about this for the USA Vults….

and of course this is a kind of unofficial UK anthem already…..

57. Jonboc - May 15, 2011

#55. “I’m afraid they would be criticizing the actor no matter how he performed the anthem. MJ would drop in with his usual “he looks old”, “he looks fat”, etc comments.”

Yep…it’s just more of the same from those two, no surprise there!

58. Vultan - May 15, 2011


Another good choice, Buzz. You really can’t go wrong with a classic western.

Land of Hope and Glory—I don’t know how many times I’ve heard that without actually knowing the name of it. But yeah, that is somewhat a stereotypical British tune.

Oh, and here’s something to tie all of us together—trying to sneak a Brit back from Canada into the US:

59. Daoud - May 15, 2011

The ultimate spoof of “God Save The Queen” is the American version:
“My Country ‘Tis of Thee”!
Americans, we sing it as kids before we even realize it is the anthem of the UK!
And we learn versions like…
“My country’s sick of me, I went to Germany, to see the king….
His name was Donald Duck, he drives a garbage truck…
From ev’ry mountainside, he don’t give a F.
second verse:
“My country’s sick of me, I went to London, E., to see the queen
Her name was Lizzie-Bit, her hubby’s quite a git…
Owns half the land in Angle-land, she don’t give a SH.
Just consider what the National Film Board did with Shatner as “art”. It’s not worse than a jar of piss with a cross inserted, which I’m told is a highlight of modern American art.

60. Buzz Cagney - May 15, 2011

#58 lol I just knew as I clicked on your link that it was going to be that Frasier episode! lol Brilliant. Best show ever. And I mean THE BEST SHOW EVER.

I don’t much care for Land of Hope and Glory myself. Bit too much Last Night of the Proms for me. Oh i’m as patriotic as the next man, but that just doesn’t do it for me.

This is more to my liking. Just like you guys over there we are very proud of our Services and this song sums it up perfectly.

Of course we don’t have any planes for our carriers now. Not that it matters as we don’t have any carriers either! Rather glum times.
Still, we have two new carriers being built and i can’ wait to see ’em.

61. Hat Rick - May 15, 2011

Canadians, of all people, are absolutely wonderful about their own national identity: They don’t always take themselves too seriously, but where it counts, Canadians are as patriotic as the next guy. Who can question that?

Shall I mention The Great White North spoofs of SCTV, for example?

No one is disparaging Canada — least of all, Mr. Shatner, who was a sensation at the last Winter Olympics with his rendition of Canadianism.

It’s all meant in great fun, and The Shat is nothing if not that!

62. Vultan - May 15, 2011


Yeah, I know how you feel. I’ve always preferred “Stars and Stripes Forever” over “The Star Spangled Banner.” It even managed to find its way into an episode of TNG (thanks to some patriotic nannites).

63. trekker 5 - May 15, 2011

Harry,I understand what your saying,I’ll back you up dude!

64. Dee - lvs moon' surface - May 15, 2011

OMG! … Mr. Shatner causing controversy, again … he’s alive and having fun … at least this is good, right? … I mean he to be alive! … LOL

:-) :-)

65. Buzz Cagney - May 15, 2011

#62 very rousing Vults! Good stuff.

66. Danpaine - May 15, 2011

I think Canada will survive the “scandal.”

You guys (#8 & #10) need to step away from the monitor and get some fresh air.

You’re “offended.” Grow a pair.

67. Let Them Eat Plomeek Soup - May 15, 2011

Wow, I can’t belive the comments haven’t been closed on this.

All people like to do nowadays is create some huge heated argument over one humorous, five-minute video. Okay, Harry, I’m under thirty and maybe I don’t know what I’m about, but the only thing this conversation is doing is making this message board longer. Canada was responsible for this whole thing, and like Danpaine said, I think they’ll live through it.

68. Thorbury - May 15, 2011

Often I’m unable to explain to people why Chris Pine doesn’t work as Kirk, whatever his abilities at pulling off the “Tom Cruise de Caprio” schtick are.

This video sort of encapsulates it; it’s the sort of stuff that he couldn’t pull off. Not at the moment, anyway – maybe after he’s been around a while, who knows.

69. Thorbury - May 15, 2011

great satire.

70. Buzz Cagney - May 15, 2011

I’m glad they haven’t closed this down. I’ve enjoyed this thread. So Harry is down on Bill. Nothing new there- no need to close a story off for the rest of us.

71. Red Dead Ryan - May 15, 2011

Oh for F*CK SAKES!!!

This was a FUN video made by William Shatner to be shown at a F*CKIN’ AWARDS CEREMONY!!

If this was for a Rememberance Day ceremony, then it WOULD be inappropriate. Because that day is always a SOLEMN event to remember millions of Canadians who have fought and died in various wars, including Afghanistan.

But since it was for a FUN and LIGHT event, it is appropriate. Plus it shows that we have a sense of humor about ourselves!

Plus I find it odd that Harry Ballz, of all people, would be offended. He has no problem making fun of William Shatner’s weight.

72. snoopytrek - May 15, 2011

the best part of the closing ceremonies for the Olympics in Canada was when Bill rose up from the floor without intro and brought the freakin’ house down. He could run for prime minister..I think that’s what u guys call them there…and win hands down!

On the video..i love his side-bar comments…’same sex marriage’…!!!

Not sure if Canadians hold to as cherished as we do..with the post above, im not sure..the same type of right as with our Freedom of Speech and Expression Amendment..but, recently a guy burned an American Flag in his way to protest that the US is changing into a fascist state under our current administration (just repeating the news, no opinion here). People say it was wrong for him to burn the flag, but he has the right to do so under our constitution as a form of free speech and expression. he didnt harm a soul doing it.

So, as much to The Shat’s rendition of the CNA..i believe it fell under that same kinda privilege.

73. MJ - May 15, 2011

@51 “And let me tell you, those people who fought in wars, fought for freedom. Besides which, this was clearly not malicious. It was funny. Not your style of humour? Fack off then.”

I always thought that the “lowest common denominator” was just an expression, but now I see that it is an actual person!

74. MJ - May 15, 2011

Guys, I am willing to back off here and try to see the humor in it as you suggest…fine, OK. But I will not be a party to people telling war veterans to F**K OFF.

75. Red Dead Ryan - May 15, 2011


Who the hell is telling war veterans to “F**K OFF”?

76. MJ - May 15, 2011

See post 51. People who “fought in wars, fought for freedom” should not be told to FO.

77. Keachick (rose pinenut) - May 15, 2011

MJ –

“#51 – And let me tell you, those people who fought in wars, fought for freedom. Besides which, this was clearly not malicious. It was funny. Not your style of humour? Fack off then.”

Poster #51 appears not to have finished the first sentence, however I did not interpret it as saying “Fack off” to the fallen in wars, but to people on this board who took Shatner’s version of the Canadian National Anthem (what he did of it) too seriously.

I did not find Shatner malicious at all. He was actually making one or two good points. Most words of national anthems are a little outdated and anachronistic. He was just lightheartedly pointing some idiosyncrasies like the words “and native land”. Well, Canadians are standing ON native land, as he said. Using the word “and” makes this native land, presumably referring to the land of the indigenous (now Canadian) people, as something out there, an add-on as it were. Well, it’s NOT, never has been. Indigenous people around the world have paid quite a price for (mostly) European colonisation that has occurred in the last 200 years or so, some way too higher a price.

The other factor he mentioned is the Judeo-Christian aspect of the anthem (or is it actually a hymn, like ours?). Well, when it was written, the vast majority of the (colonising) people would have been white and Christian, so to them, it would have made sense and been legitimate. However, today it is different. If the statistics of NZ is anything to go by in terms of indicating where most of the English speaking nations of the Western world are at, ie Canada, UK, USA, and Australia, approximately 35% of the population now label themselves Christian, with just as large a proportion stating no religion and the rest made up of Buddhist, Hindu and Moslem, along with some much smaller sects which don’t align themselves with any of the other major religions. Hence Shatner’s comments about “god, no god, gods…”

Many people here refused to sing the NZ National Anthem while our Government had our troops in Vietnam. It seemed inappropriate when our Government was involved in something that many people believed was wrong. Frankly, it was quite sickening to watch Americans at home proudly singing their anthem while their armed forces were either napalming or spraying with long acting defoliants whole tracts of North and South Vietnam virgin rainforest, along with many villages with men, women and children in them. Much of that land is a wasteland now. Many of those men doing that were there by force because of conscription.

Before people starting singing their anthem, they should have a good reason for doing so and actually know what they are singing in terms of some of its relevancy today.

78. Vultan - May 15, 2011


Yeah, Americans were all singing while ‘Nam was going on. Just one big happy family here. No protests. No riots. No controversy. All for one, one for… [sigh]…

Get a clue, lady.

79. Keachick (rose pinenut) - May 15, 2011

Oh, I have a clue. I remember seeing all the riots on the news on TV in glorious b/w. I grew up with it because my crazy father rammed all the news about the riots, both in the US and here, the war itself down our necks. He was very anti-Vietnam war. I also remember seeing many Americans singing their anthem while all that crap went on in a far off Asian country. Controversy was everywhere, even when it didn’t have to be.

Anyway, I wonder what UFP anthem might be like…

80. Harry Ballz - May 15, 2011

I refuse to argue with morons.

81. Vultan - May 15, 2011

I doubt you could get a federation of different worlds to agree on one song, one style of music to represent them, let alone all the nations of Earth—well, to agree on anything!

Here’s hoping though….

82. Vultan - May 15, 2011

Is the War on Canada over yet?

“O Canada,” as in O My God, this is a silly topic.

83. MJ (petunia almond) - May 15, 2011

@77. In looking at the bright side of this argument, I get to hear another in the long series of lectures from Keachick inferring the superiority of NZ over America.

Scotty: There’s an old, old saying on earth, Mr. Sulu: “Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me.”

Chekov: I know this saying, it was invented in Russia.

84. Vultan - May 15, 2011


“You have not experienced Shakespeare, until you have read him in the original Klingon.”


85. Andy Patterson - May 15, 2011

Rmmm.. Be he look so old and foolish to your eyes? When 80 yrs old you be, see you look so good. ( or whatever the line is )

I care not what others say…..I love Shatner.

86. MJ (merrigold walnut) - May 15, 2011

Anyone else noticing how long it takes now to load the website….I am seeing multiple ad monitoring addresses show up in my Firefox bar at the bottom, and sometimes it is taking 10 seconds for a page on this site to load. And this it not occurring on other pages that I load.

Anyone else experiencing this lately?

87. Keachick (rose pinenut) - May 15, 2011

I was not inferring the superiority of NZ over America. Obviously you are not aware that NZ sent troops to Vietnam, along with Australia, as part of the ANZUS Alliance, hence the riots here in the streets of Auckland in the late sixties and early seventies. I think similar went on in Australia as well.
Sorry, if presenting a little history comes off as lecturing…

Anyway Chekov said: “I know this saying, it was inwented in Russia”.

Vultan – there is no war on Canada, only controversy over Shatner’s attempted rendition of the Canadian National Anthem and the routine singing of national anthems…

88. Vultan - May 15, 2011


It seems sarcasm has yet to reach your shores. Sorry for the confusion.

89. snoopytrek - May 15, 2011

@86 nope..never have a problem with tm loading..have to plug here cause can’t help it. i have TRUE broadband with Xfinity..i clock 12 to 30MB per sec on that’s ANY time of the day or night doesn’t matter how many people are on and share the bandwidth when i am (God, i hate it when people use that excuse when it isn’t true). no lag, ever!

@85…Andy, i concur, sir!

90. pluffmud90 - May 15, 2011

I thought this was going to be like watching a train wreck happen, but I was in stitches the whole time. Thanks, Shat!

91. The Unreal McCoy - May 15, 2011


Harry, your comment is uncalled for. To dismiss those who disagree with you as “morons” is both juvenile and the height of disrespect. It’s evident that many here do not share your opinion. If anyone should “be ashamed of himself” (as you suggest Shatner ought to be in post #8) it should be you for your misplaced outrage that has derailed what would have otherwise been some interesting commentary on an amusing video clip of The Shat doing what The Shat does so well.

Being Canadian myself, I instinctively cringed when I saw that Shatner had “sung” O Canada and nearly opted against watching the clip. Then I remembered that he can’t sing, meaning that there would surely be a comedic (and possible insightful) slant to his interpretation. And, I was pleasantly surprised. There is absolutely nothing even remotely offensive or disrepectful to his reading of O Canada. On the contrary, it is a charming, light-hearted, thoughtful, modern-day and affectionate reading that in no way denigrates Canada, our values and our pride as a people and as a nation. William Shatner is Canadian – the very fact this clip works is because he is a proud Canadian, who knows what it means to be Canadian.

That is all.

92. MJ (merrigold walnut) - May 15, 2011

Everyone, stop picking on Harry. He and a lot of people include myself do not approve of humor regarding national anthems. I’m sure when Harry was talking about morons, he was referring to a few of the bad apples who posted here and made remarks such as telling war vets to f**k off.

Not everyone is going to go along with the mockery of national anthems.

93. Harry Ballz - May 15, 2011


TUM, I wasn’t calling everyone here a moron, just the select few who were insulting me. See MJ’s post #92 for corroboration.

My main argument was that if an American celebrity (say Leonard Nimoy) had a clip posted here where we see him making fun of the lyrics to the American National Anthem, I think it’s fair to say that a lot of Yanks would want to rip him a new one. Why, therefore, is it ok for the Shat to mock the Canadian National Anthem?

Both countries deserve the same respect, don’t you think?

94. MJ (merrigold walnut) - May 15, 2011

“My main argument was that if an American celebrity (say Leonard Nimoy) had a clip posted here where we see him making fun of the lyrics to the American National Anthem, I think it’s fair to say that a lot of Yanks would want to rip him a new one.”

Yes, that is fair to say. There would be an uproar. While I would say some of the U.S. posters here would like it (based on some of these posts), I would bet my life savings that Nimoy would be treated very poorly for this in public and by the media…I have no doubt on that. Trek fans posting on this board withstanding, most people out there in the real world don’t like this crap and find it elitist.

95. Harry Ballz - May 15, 2011

MJ, I appreciate your support during these trying times.

Hey, maybe we should run together for political office!

First dibs on the top of the ticket! :>)

96. MJ (merrigold walnut) - May 15, 2011

No problem Harry. You and I are like Surok, trying to educate the primitive Vulcans on a way to better control their base instincts.

97. Daoud - May 15, 2011

Great bumper sticker! “Canada needs Ballz!”

98. John - May 15, 2011

Shatner: I don’t want this to see the light of day!

Interviewer: What if we show it at night?

Shatner: Perfect.


99. The Unreal McCoy - May 15, 2011

#92 Wow, MJ. Get a grip. I don’t think Harry needs you to defend him. No one has even come close to telling war vets to f-off. This was not a mockery of a national anthem by any stretch of the imagination. It was, at best, an annotated interpretation, infused with some social commentary, all the while remaining true to the original text. If we can’t look reflectively and with humour at who we are and how we define ourselves, then we may as well turn out the lights, pulls the curtains and never leave home. Not everything is as black and white as you and Harry seem to believe – there are shades of grey. The clip walks a fine line, but in the final analysis, it’s good fun – let’s leave it at that. I am sure it was not done with any intent to offend. Mockery necessitates an element of scorn, ridicule or derision, none of which can be found in Shatner’s reading of O Canada.

100. Harry Ballz - May 15, 2011

97. Daoud, that could work! :>)

101. The Unreal McCoy - May 15, 2011

Harry – I see your point and maybe Americans would bristle at Nimoy poking fun at the US anthem, but you’re comparing apples and oranges. Canadians and Americans express their patriotism very differently. Shatner’s rendition – notwithstanding its humour – was done with the utmost respect for the original source material. Could such a reading be pulled off with the Star Spangled Banner? Maybe yes, maybe no, but that’s besides the point. The fact is, it works for Shatner with O Canada and and has not (as far as I’m aware) torn our country apart.

MJ – you say “most people out there in the real world don’t like this crap and find it elitist.” So, does this mean that those who found humour in the clip live in a “fake world”? I guess I won’t bother going to work tomorrow! I could use a day off.

102. MJ (merrigold walnut) - May 15, 2011

@100. Yea, I do meant that. I don’t think the posting population of represents John Q. Public out there. I think a lot of things on these boards would come across as elitist to the average Joe out there, including many things said by me. :-)

(as I told some jerk a long time ago that I was having a vehement disagreement with: “You and I are both elitists. The only difference between us is that I know I am one and you don’t!”)

So yes, I give you the day off tomorrow! Try to make it a Ferris Bueller-level day off, would you!

103. Harry Ballz - May 15, 2011


Nobody is talking about “torn our country apart”, just a question of respect, decency and a sense of honour.

104. Red Dead Ryan - May 15, 2011


Making fun of national anthems can be funny if done right. Now, if a Canadian was making fun of the “Star Spangled Banner”, or an American dissing “O Canada”, then that would be disrespectful. Just like how some jerks at sporting events sometimes boo another country’s anthem. I just think there is a right way of doing things and a wrong way. I also believe in humor.

By the way, it may sound strange or ironic, but I’m turned off by the concept of flag-burning. That to me is disrespectful and borders on hate speech, especially burning Israeli flags. That is something that needs to be banned.

105. Buzz Cagney - May 15, 2011

#102 and its you who will decide what is respectful, decent and funny?
I’m just checking. :-P

106. MJ (merrigold walnut) - May 15, 2011

@104. I guess the point is, if you are big shot like Shat or Rosanne, why do this and effectively insult a pretty large section of people who, like Harry and I, do take these anthems pretty seriously…even if that seems silly to you and others. It is pretty damn high profile if you are a big star to take on a national anthem mockery…it is much more than doing a typical skit on SNL for example.

107. Buzz Cagney - May 15, 2011

I think the real point is you guys are taking it just too seriously. As a wise man once said… ‘its only words’

I accept you appear to be *genuinely* annoyed, unfortunately your history of Bill Bashing does somewhat devalue it though. The man seems unable to do anything right in your eyes.

You’ve said your piece now, quite clearly, nobody is going to have their minds changed one way or t’other.

108. Jack - May 15, 2011

93. Certain Americans (rhymes with Fox News, er) would go apeshit. Maybe Sun TV will pick up the story.

Neill, I don’t think it’s a petty gripe — some Canadians (Harry) ARE offended and are saying so. Fair enough.

I too (me = Canadian) didn’t watch the thing at first because I didn’t want to get mad at Shatner (who hasn’t lived here in nearly 60 years) and assumed I’d be offended (even though Shat usually does readings of songs, I was fearing Roseanne-style butchering… I don’t know why). And then I read the posts on here and was probably expecting the worst. So yeah, watched it, cringed a few times,and I thought it was mostly pretty funny — it was Shatner, possibly with the help of a writer or two, doing his pompous ass,
er, character. A couple of decent points/jabs were made. It was oddly patriotic. And the intended audience, and that it was by The NFB matters a little, I
think. If this had just been Shatner doing this on his own, or on Twitter, I’d
have wondered what the f$&& he was trying to

. But, yeah, some won’t agree with me. And it might be a generational thing. Or a where you’re from in the country thing. Or just a people are different and have different views thing (I’m annoyingly trying to make this all Star Trek messagy).

Ultimately, it’s just a song. But, yeah, if this had been done in the States with their anthem, there would
be at least a couple of death threats. I hope that’s not the case here. Maybe we’re more secure? Maybe we’re on our way to a Trekky post-nationalism future? B.C. Pot?

109. JMAN - May 15, 2011

#8 Harry Ballz

As a fellow Canadian, I say only this: calm down.

Part of what makes us Canadian is that we’re comfortable with poking a bit of fun at ourselves. Many of us wouldn’t have it any other way.

Now, you disagree with that stance. Fair enough. But I’m surprised that you, as a Star Trek fan, are being as intolerant as you seem to be on this issue. Don’t like taking the national anthem lightly? Then don’t. But don’t presume that the rest of us are going to agree with you – or even that we should. Last I checked, ours was still a country with freedom of expression.

110. Vultan - May 15, 2011

I took Shatner’s “performance” of the song as more a mockery of political correctness than anything else—adding “daughters” and “same-sex marriage” and so on. If Nimoy was to do this with the Star Spangled Banner, I’d be all for it (perhaps in between his future retirements from acting).

111. MJ (daisy chestnut) - May 15, 2011

@107. “Ultimately, it’s just a song. But, yeah, if this had been done in the States with their anthem, there would be at least a couple of death threats. I hope that’s not the case here. Maybe we’re more secure? Maybe we’re on our way to a Trekky post-nationalism future? B.C. Pot?”

Ah great, another cheap shot at the USA. Keachick welcomes you to her club of U.S.-bashing. :-)

As a firm rule, I never take potshots at anyone’s country, and in particular, I love traveling to NZ South Island and Western Canada for multiple vacations (and business in Vancouver), so am very fond of Canadians and New Zealanders. To me, within the world’s democratic countries, people who take potshots at other countries are simply manifesting their own insecurities about their own country.

112. Thorbury - May 16, 2011

I’ve never read such nonsense. It’s plain for anyone to see that he’s not making fun of an anthem that probably means as much to him as it does to you. There are all kinds of chains being pulled in the video – ridiculous levels of political correctness among them – but there is nothing unkind or disrespectful there. In any case, we don’t live in the 16th century. Nothing should be sacred or above criticism – nothing. George Carlin would have a thing or two to say about this “bend over to your masters” kind of sentiment that’s being expressed here.

113. Q-Who - May 16, 2011

@ 8 “the one thing you don’t screw around with is a country’s anthem. ”

Ohhh grow up man! It’s a little humor – You patriotic types never cease to amaze me. Patriotism in small amounts is all well and good, but those who JUMP to defend their countries so-called ‘honor’ to the extent that even poking fun at an anthem is considered a huge no-no are a dangerous breed in my opinion… Get a perspective!

Many countries national anthems are cringe worthy by today’s standards – I’m from the UK and think ours is such out-dated pomp and circumstance it’s laughable. It’s no hanging offense to poke a little fun at it all – lighten up!!!

Patriotism is a DANGEROUS tool when it goes beyond a certain point, and you seem typical of the knee-jerk reactionary type that gets things out of perspective VERY quickly.

114. Q-Who - May 16, 2011

@ 108 – AMEN, Sir!!! Absolutely!

There’s a certain type of patriotic-type that really scares me as no matter WHAT their countries background they’ll defend it no matter what. They won’t even question it. They won’t allow ANY poking of fun at it & consider it a very grave offense. No different to religious zelots who’d do anything to defend their religion’s rules, no matter what they may be…

Humor is part of being human – some people need to grow up and take some chill pills ;)

As an aside, and as an example, American comedy films will poke fun at just about anything, so please get this little skit of Shatner’s in perspective…

115. Q-Who - May 16, 2011

P.S. I think anyone who’d even consider issuing a death threat because someone had taken the piss out of their nation anthem needs serious help. Nothing in this world is perfect, and everything is ripe at some time or another for a little humour being poked at it.

It’s those that take it seriously instead of seeing it for what it is that scare the cr*p out of me.

116. Q-Who - May 16, 2011

Lastly – in this day and age, and in this so-called enlightened age (I wish!) don’t you think patriotism to one’s country is a little old hat? Surely we should be thinking in terms of patriotism (if we have to have it) for Earth, for the whole of humanity combined. I’m sure this is something Mr Roddenberry himself would have agreed with.

Think about it, if everyone is fiercely patriotic to one’s country, it gets to be like people and their football teams. Friction is created because it all boils down to my team is better than yours. Patriotism is a similar thing on a far larger scale when you get RIGHT down to what it actually is.

There are parts of British history (being a Brit) I am proud of, parts I am not proud of. Parts of British culture I am proud of, and not so proud of etc etc. I’m not pro-Royal, but I don’t have anything against people that are. However I equally appreciate much of what comes out of other countries JUST as much. In that sense I am not patriotic to Britain per-se. I see the good and bad in all countries. No country is, ‘The Best’ and to think in terms of that is dangerous. I really think we all need to start coming together as a race now, and not have this stupid, “God Bless America”, or “Royal Britannia” or any other country-centric mind-set. We need to start thinking in terms of Bless the World…

Hope some of that makes sense to someone ;)

117. Buzz Cagney - May 16, 2011

Vults, if you are still reading this thread see if you can find (if you haven’t already seen it) the Jon Stewart show from the day after bin Laden was taken out.
His description of how Abbotobad sounds like the place that New Yorkers would have made up as the fictional town that they would like to go to and take bin Laden out had me LOL’ing!
And he said he would love to have seen bin Laden’s face when he realised the helipcopters overhead weren’t doing traffic reports!

118. Buzz Cagney - May 16, 2011

LOL i found it matey…

119. The Unreal McCoy - May 16, 2011

As it turns out, an esteemed Canadian – Leslie Neilson (aka Lt. Frank Drebin) – did a splendid job with the Star Spangled Banner in Naked Gun.

Classic stuff! ;-)

120. Trek Nerd Central - May 16, 2011

Oh, my word. Shatner isn’t poking fun at his national anthem or his beloved Canada; he’s poking fun at HIMSELF. Key distinction, folks.

We of all people should be able to recognize this. The fact that some of us don’t is yet more proof that parody and irony are woefully misinterpreted in this day and age.

121. Rocket Scientist - May 16, 2011

111-114. Q-Who

I couldn’t have put it better myself. There were times I was tempted to give up on this site because it was becoming a pulpit for a select few. Thanks for the breath of fresh air and common sense! Let the free exchange of ideas and spirit of tolerance & acceptance begin anew!

122. Vultan - May 16, 2011


Yeah, Buzz, I saw that a few days after the raid. Funny stuff! Stewart usually has a special way of looking at things.

123. Vultan - May 16, 2011

I just realized that Shatner was spoofing himself a bit—well, actually quite a lot—in that O Canada video. Anyone else remember this little gem of a recording producer having some “creative differences” with the Shat?

124. Anthony Pascale - May 16, 2011

Harry Ballz

warning for trolling, namecalling everyone who disagrees with you is not the way to go

and perhaps vent your issues at The National Film Board of Canada who made the video

125. MJ (daisy chestnut) - May 16, 2011

@113 @114

Why don’t you grow up! Excuse me if I don’t have the guffaws and giggle fits when the national anthem mockery’s are done.

@121 “Let the free exchange of ideas and spirit of tolerance & acceptance begin anew!”

So the free change of ideas can’t include the idea that some of this think that is wrong? Sounds like your idea of the free change of ideas would involve silencing those whose disagree.

Harry and I don’t like this and we had the gull to speak out about this. BFD, deal with it. We never said Shat should be silenced (we just thought he should not have done that), so stop trying to silence us….it is blatantly hypocritical.

126. MJ (daisy chestnut) - May 16, 2011

@124. Anthony, I am leaving this article here now and moving onto other stuff. Enough said by me.

127. Let Them Eat Plomeek Soup - May 16, 2011


Hey, you started it.


We are not picking on Mr. Ballz. We are pointing out that he is the one who started this pointless thread, and the fact that he’s calling everyone who doesn’t see things the way he does morons, and now he’s the one that’s deciding to ditch his own argument.

128. Rocket Scientist - May 16, 2011

Perhaps a bit more diplomacy is in order here. These same sentiments can be expressed without the condescension or hostility we’ve been seeing from a few parties lately.

Keachick is a prime example of how it’s done. I don’t always agree with her but I’m more inclined to consider her point of view because she’s thoughtful and not easily offended.

129. Trek Nerd Central - May 16, 2011


Amen. I wonder if threads would devolve in this manner if we all signed our real names to our comments. Anonymity leads to a loss of civility online.

130. star trackie - May 16, 2011

#112 “I’ve never read such nonsense. It’s plain for anyone to see that he’s not making fun of an anthem that probably means as much to him as it does to you. ”

Yep. MJ and Harry have had an axe to grind for Shatner since the first day this forum had been created…he kicked their puppy or some such nonsense when they were little, I don’t know. lol But yeah, the old jokes, the fat jokes, the ego jokes…now this nonsense…same song, different verse.

131. The Unreal McCoy - May 16, 2011

There’s nothing wrong with a good disagreement. It’s too bad this thread collapsed on itself due to the humourless and disrespectful conduct of two contributors. It spoiled what could have been a very interesting discussion on the underlying symbolism of national anthems.

Oh well.

I, for one, welcome our new Canadian national anthem overlord.

Long live The Shat!

132. Keachick (rose pinenut) - May 16, 2011

#128 Thank you. I do try and hopefully succeed most of the time.

Just because someone may question the use of some words in a national anthem or suggest alternative words does not mean they are necessarily being disrespectful or unpatriotic. Paying due attention to the words and what they mean now as opposed to what they possibly meant when they were first written is actually healthy. It is surely better than people just routinely singing words that they learned from childhood, because they were told to, without giving any thought to their relevance or whether a particular situation even deems the singing of a national anthem a good thing and not a sign of ignorance and hypocrisy.

133. MJ (carnation peanut) - May 16, 2011

Ah, with MJ and Harry gone, the “Agree-Fest” continues unabated.

Festival! Festival!


134. Jack - May 16, 2011

Am I taking potshots at the states? Well, I live here, not in Canada, and have travelled around and talked to a lot of people over the years. Not comparing the two as much as agreeing with whoever — Harry, I think — said there would likely be a media reaction of some sort in the States were this to happen there. I wasn’t intending to claim superiority, just talking about sensitivity…

135. MJ (carnation peanut) - May 16, 2011

@134. No problem Jack. You just caught me in a cranky moment! :-)

136. Jack - May 16, 2011

No worries, Carnation.

From now on, I only take potshots at Monaco (they can take it, it’s pretty there).

137. Faux Fo' Sho' - May 16, 2011

@109 “Part of what makes us Canadian is that we’re comfortable with poking a bit of fun at ourselves. Many of us wouldn’t have it any other way.”

@103: “I, for one, welcome our new Canadian national anthem overlord.
Long live The Shat!”

Agreed! There’s nothing so un-Canadian as being a “patriotic” zealot with no sense of humour.
Now it’s time for some TOS, poutine, some butter tarts, and a Labatts Blue. :)

138. Red Dead Ryan - May 16, 2011


Hate to break it to you, but Labatt’s is owned by a Belgian company……

139. MJ (carnation peanut) - May 16, 2011

@138. And TOS series was made in the U.S.

Guess he’s down to poutine, butter tarts and Mantracker.

140. Red Dead Ryan - May 16, 2011


Well, William Shatner and James Doohan were Canadian. So TOS, while made in the U.S., was influenced by Canadians!

141. MJ (carnation peanut) - May 16, 2011

@140. Plus, there is always Moosehead!

142. Red Dead Ryan - May 16, 2011


Sorry, not interested in giving a moose “head”!

143. MJ (carnation peanut) - May 16, 2011

@142. If that remark doesn’t bring Harry back to this thread, nothing will.

144. Red Dead Ryan - May 16, 2011

I wonder where Harry is anyway……

145. Harry Ballz - May 16, 2011

Oh, I’m here….I just refuse to participate in being ridiculed for having an opinion.

146. Buzz Cagney - May 16, 2011

Its never bothered you before, Harry! :-P

147. MJ (carnation peanut) - May 16, 2011

@145. But Harry, didn’t you hear that there is now a free change of ideas and new tolerance on this topic….well, after we are told to shut up and grow up anyways. LOL

148. Harry Ballz - May 16, 2011

MJ, you ARE funny!

149. Buzz Cagney - May 16, 2011

As perfect an example of virtual ‘sulking in the corner’ as I think i’ve ever seen.
Behave yourselves or its no supper and I will take your computer privileges away :-P

150. Harry Ballz - May 16, 2011

Don’t be a buzzkill, Buzz!

151. Let Them Eat Plomeek Soup - May 17, 2011

And the Shatstorm finally begins to settle…

152. The Unreal McCoy - May 17, 2011

It was Shatacular while it lasted….

153. Let Them Eat Plomeek Soup - May 17, 2011

You never know what will happen when the Shat hits the fan!

(ok, now I’m just being stupid.)

154. Jack - May 17, 2011

“Grow up” is an, arguably, more polite, and, really, a far more insulting way of saying “$&@$ off” and/or “$&$$ me.” Can we say either of those on here, by the way? It would save time.

155. Jack (cliff claven) - May 17, 2011

It’s interesting to note that O’Canada wasn’t officially the national anthem until 1980 (thanks, wikipedia!) even though the tune and various versions of the lyrics, sone completely different from each other, had existed for decades (about 100 years, I guess) before. Shatner would probably have sung God Save the King as a kid in Montreal in the 30s and 40s, if anything (a guess). We didn’t have our current flag until 1965.

Ultimately, it’s a song. And it is a home on native land.

And, MJ, you may have something about insecurity, mine and others generally.

156. Kent - May 20, 2011

Satire does seem to be something that is able to take hold more in Canada than in the US. Perhaps this is the reason that people in Canada might be more likely to enjoy Shatner’s rendition of the O Canada than Americans enjoyed Barr’s Star Spangled Banner. Of course, random comments on blog postings don’t really answer any question of general acceptance or disapproval….they only serve the posters desire to express a personal opinion. That’s allowed, but with that privilege comes a responsibility to respect other’s opinions unless they are clearly hateful. And now it’s time for me to copy out … I don’t want to get into where to draw that line!

157. Harry Ballz - May 28, 2011

I have filed a complaint regarding the Shatner video with the National Film Board of Canada.

Not that I expect much to happen from that.

158. murt - June 4, 2011

As a Canadian, I found this completely awesome!! I will love him forever for singing “home ON native land!”

What a great tribute to our country — I definitely prefer the Shat’s version to the original! is represented by Gorilla Nation. Please contact Gorilla Nation for ad rates, packages and general advertising information.