In the US, the Syfy channel has so far shown the first three episodes of the first season of Lost Girl. I've watched them all, but perhaps not attentively enough: I don't recall if any of the characters mention where they're located. Is the show set in any particular real-world city? I'm assuming the country is Canada, as that's where the series is made, but again, I don't recall this fact being mentioned in-show at all (so far).

I ask because it seems that a lot of the Fae bigwigs just so happen to live near this city, and I'm wondering if there is (or will be) any explanation for this fact, ala the hellmouth in Buffy.

10 Answers 10


I live in Toronto, where some of the show is filmed, and have paid close attention to this question myself (since I'm always curious about what big American city we are standing in for today). I think I have seen all the episodes except the last three, and have not found any indication of the setting.

It is often useful for producers of Canadian shows to keep the setting completely generic, and in this case, that is probably the right call; even given that it's a fantasy show, having actually set in a Canadian city would be pretty unbelievable, but stating unequivocally that it was set in the US would alienate the home audience.

My bet is that it is set in NYC, but they haven't the budget to avail themselves of niceties like NYC cabs and police cars - it would make more sense to have the leaders of the Light and Dark for the region to live there than anywhere else in the north-east.

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    NYC cab - take a car, paint yellow, have it run red lights and mow down pedestrians. Should be cheap to film. NYC police car - film an empty spot where a normal cop would be where he should be while NYC cab drives like a maniac. – DVK-on-Ahch-To Feb 18 '12 at 12:41
  • I think there was an on-screen image of a drivers license from Ontario; that doesn't mean the show is "set" there but must be set somewhere that an Ontario resident is likely to be found (which still fits NYC, but also e.g. Toronto where it's filmed.) – KutuluMike Jun 1 '12 at 16:47
  • @MichaelEdenfield Hehe. I have my ontario license here in NYC still. You are allowed to keep it, when you get your US license as a transfer. – geoffc Jul 30 '12 at 16:37
  • @geoffc but if someone in NYPD traffic, for example, asked for your license you would produce the New York state one, correct? – KutuluMike Jul 30 '12 at 17:41
  • @MichaelEdenfield I theoretically could use either. Trouble is, if he asks how long I have been in NYC (actually NJ, but close enough) and he figures out I have been here longer than 6 months then I would get a different ticket for using a non-local license. Alas. – geoffc Jul 31 '12 at 2:43

Lost Girl has never explicitly identified the city or country it's located in, but various in-show references and conversations have made it clear that it is in Canada, and most likely Toronto. They make no attempt to Americanise number plates, local signage or public transport for a start, but all of the police terminology and what have you is really, really specifically Canadian - Hale and Dyson work out of "39th Division", for instance, rather than a "precinct". Some of the street names and locations they mention do have real counterparts.

But, nuts and bolts examples - one episode requires the heroine to cross the border to visit a death row inmate in the States, and another has the cast hoofing it to the falls area - ie. Niagara.


I don't think they have overtly mentioned the name of the city, even in places where you would normally see it. (For example, if they wanted it known that the city was NYC, I'm sure Dyson would have announced himself as NYPD at least once.) However, they are also not trying very hard to hide the fact that the action is occurring in Canada:

  • As mentioned in a previous answer, they have used distinctly Canadian terms like "statutory holiday", where an American English speaker would have said "federal holiday".
  • At one point, they show an Ontario driver's license on-screen.
  • In S01E02, Bo visits this pawn broker which is an actual pawn shop in Hamilton, just south of Toronto.
    • This may be more localized, but I rarely see American pawn business call themselves "pawnbrokers"; its usually "pawn shop" or just "pawn", while "pawnbroker" seems to be more prominent in UK/Canada.

On the other hand, there are times when you can clearly see Hale's police badge hanging around his neck, and it doesn't look like any specific badges I could find for big Ontario cities like Toronto.

Most likely, they are doing what many other series do when they lack the prop/location budget to "fake" a real city, and it's set in some undefined, fictional town that is "somewhere near" Toronto. (Similarly, Eureka is set in a fictional town "somewhere in" Oregon, and Sanctuary was set in a fictional town "somewhere near" Vancouver.)

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    Hamilton is technically West'ish (and a smidge south. South of Toronto is a lake, a big lake.). Hamilton is kind of diaganol from Toronto, mostly west with a little south. – geoffc Jul 30 '12 at 16:38

Just started watching this show, and something caught my ear which brought me here. Never in my life have I heard of a "Federal Holiday" refered to as a "Statutory Holiday" which they did in S1E05. So I wikied the term and it looks like it is used in 4 different places: New Zealand, Australia, United Kingdom, and Canada. Unless this was just a simple writing oversight; from the lack of a vastly descernable difference in accent from American, I'm guessing they are some where in Canada.


Also in s01e02 that pawnbroker is listed in the Yellow Pages with a phone number of (416) 555-....; 416 is the primary downtown Toronto area code so they are not really trying to hide the fact there.

In the first episode, there's the tell tale red, black and white TTC (Toronto Transit Commission) streetcar whizzing by; if they hadn't wanted us to see it they would have done another take. In the same shot you can see a shop with a poster with a drawing of the CN Tower on it.

They want us to know it's Toronto, but still have it accessible to American (money) audiences. Plus they allow the thick Canadian accents to run rampant taking for example Trick who sounds very distinctly Canuck.


In the second season Bo had a vision of/from the Nain Rouge. The Nain Rouge haunts Detroit, Michigan, and it is feared by its residents as "the harbinger of doom". The "ethnic composition", the large number of abandoned buildings and industrial wastelands, combined with with historic buildings and a vivid irish culture, like in Corktown, Detroit, makes it possible that the authors at least had Detroit in mind, when they wrote the story.

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    These aren't the Detroids you're looking for. – Keith Thompson Jan 13 '13 at 19:45

I agree that there are signs the setting is in Canada, but the producers do not want to hit the audience over the head with overtly Canadian locales and culture so as not to alienate not just the US audience, but other international audiences as well. For example, lost girl is a very popular show in Austrailia. S1E08, Vexed, Bo visits a dark fae, Lou Ann, who is on death row. Kenzi, speaking to Bo, explain Lou Ann is "on the other side of the border". Since the US has the death penalty and Canada does not, it can be inferred that the Lost Girl setting is in Canada and that Lou Ann was imprisoned awaiting execution in the US.


Lost Girl is Filmed in and around the GTA (Greater Toronto Area) There is lots of evidence of this in season 1, from restaurants,, store fronts and allies along Queen street.. and ssshh dont tell fans., but in Vexed the Toronto Street Car (TTC) passes right behind Bo and Kenzi in the alley.. Hamilton and Toronto area mostly used., In season 3 it looks like some northern areas...in the scene where Dyson is on the roof top epi 3.4 with Tamsin before Bo arrives there is the CNTower for a quick moment..way to hide ur true country.. black and white cruisers., funny money in epi 1.. oh well..I love the show for its content too, I know its Canadian and Toronto.. Love LostGirl!! (read not proofed)


I noticed a few episodes ago, that the former "Royal Connaught Hotel" (now shuttered) in Hamilton, has been a location. As a former employee of "The Connaught", it is a shame to see this, formerly, grand hotel being used this way.


In season 2, a backpacker mentions being able to backpack to Amsterdam. Yet, it is also mentioned in the same episode that the girl Bo was trying to track down would possibly take a bus to San Fransisco. This was then followed by the girl mentioning that she and the victim of the fae Bo was tracking down wanted to backpack to Berlin for a concert. An obvious (but irritating) ploy by the writers intended to create a better ambiguity of the city's location. ---In the same backpacker says he's from London, Amsterdam being the next destination.

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