York alumni, Fab Filippo, has much to celebrate as the second season of his and Bilal Baig’s original CBC sitcom, Sort Of, receives even more praise and critical acclaim than the first. The series follows ultra-fahionable Sabi, a non-binary millennial and the youngest in a large Pakistani family, as they search for that “uncomplicated, Rachel McAdams love.”
Co-created by Filippo and Baig, who also plays Sabi, the series has been met with almost immediate enthusiasm since it first premiered in 2021, but Filippo acknowledges that it wouldn’t be possible without the support from family and peers, especially when it comes to pursuing a career in a creative field.
“Even though I didn’t come from an affluent family, as I got older and started taking courses, some more established people in the industry made me think it was doable — to do something creative for a living,” says Filippo. “Everybody has a start, and you need that first moment where you go, ‘Oh shit! I could do this!’ I think a lot of people don’t have those circumstances to even consider doing something so, in some cases, ridiculous for a living.”
While Filippo wasn’t able to stay to complete his film production program with York, he enjoyed his time, and clearly refused to let any obstacles keep him from achieving his goals in the industry. “My year at York was seminal for me — I learned so much,” says Filippo. “Theory class blew my mind, and I learned how to shoot on film and cut on film. I made two shorts while I was there, and I cut on Super 8. The only reason I didn’t continue was because I was already working as an actor and putting myself through school. It got to the point where I had to make a decision whether I should do it through being on-set or through the school channel.”
It should be no wonder that Sort Of champions the courage to follow your dreams as Filippo and Baig create a space within television that champions courage — the courage to love and the courage to laugh, even at the dark things. Especially the dark things.
“Bilal and I have a very similar comedic sensibility, that I would characterize as equal parts good and evil. We laugh at dark stuff as well as good. Even though we’re careful that the comedy doesn’t come from a place of ridicule, we also feel like we’re honest about the characters and their, if you want to call them, flaws or foibles.
“We don’t look at it like poking fun at them, we look at it as exposing our flaws as funny. We don’t look at them and go, ‘look how dumb this person is,’ but instead like, ‘isn’t it so true, we’re like this.”
And it’s exactly this tone and approach that makes Sort Of an immediate and bingeable favourite as it follows each character’s journey and reminds us that we are all “always in transition.”