The North Pole cast

Global warming is no laughing matter. But the creator of a new online sitcom called “The North Pole” hopes humor will engage a broader audience. Josh Healey is writer and producer.

Healey: “If you want to reach young people, and people who aren’t already invested in the conversation, what better way to do that than make them laugh?”

Each short episode follows three friends born and raised in North Oakland, California, an area known by locals as The North Pole. The show uses humor to highlight issues such as drought.

Episode 3: “With these water restrictions, they won’t even let me use the sprinkler! How am I supposed to use the slip and slide with no sprinkler!? It’s all slip, no slide.”

But at times, the show does get serious, especially when addressing social justice and gentrification, issues Healey says are intertwined with climate.

Episode 5: “Our eco-trees will provide Oakland with cleaner air, cleaner streets, and yes, rising property values for a struggling urban core …”

Episode 5: “Oh hell, no! They’re using fake trees to gentrify my neighborhood?”

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Healey hopes the show will inspire people to protect the earth and its communities.

Healey: “We’re trying to hit you in your heart, mind, and funny bone, ultimately to lead to a raised fist.”

Reporting credit: Rosie Simon/ChavoBart Digital Media.
Photo credit: The North Pole website.

Daisy Simmons

Daisy Simmons is a freelance writer and editor with more than 15 years of experience in research-driven storytelling. In addition to contributing to Yale Climate Connections since early 2016, she also...