Frankie Drake Mysteries Rewrites The Feminine Mystique
Interview with Lauren Lee Smith
Frankie Drake is a female crime-solver working in 1920s Toronto, but for Vancouver actor Lauren Lee Smith, the new CBC heroine played a pivotal role as personal emancipator
By Katherine Monk
She never thought she’d be a dick. Little girls aren’t conditioned to be assertive, let alone take control — which is exactly why Lauren Lee Smith had to say yes to Frankie Drake. A female detective working in 1920s Toronto, Frankie Drake makes her debut on the national broadcaster tonight, but Smith says the journey to bring the character of Frankie to televised fruition is a feminist odyssey.
“The whole idea of a female detective working in 1921 is pretty rad,” says Smith over the phone from Toronto. “But she’s part of a larger history. She worked as a messenger during the First World War, was recruited to be a part of British Intelligence, but when someone blew her cover, she went back to Canada… and opened the first female detective ...