Trudeaumania is back and the 2012/13 vintage looks to be as potent as the 1968/69 iteration, when all you had to say was "Pierre" and everyone knew who you were talking about.
In this case, it's Justin and not Bieber, either, although the adoration is just as powerful.
But it's not fair to call Justin Trudeau just a pretty face. He's a formidable political force who has quietly and forcefully shown his ability to get dirty in the back alley.
Now that he's declared himself a candidate for the leadership of the federal Liberals, the 40-year-old Trudeau will be in the spotlight and his first order of business will be to get out from under the shadow of the old man.
His father's legacy is both a blessing and a curse right across the country. In parts of Alberta and Quebec, Trudeau is a name that precedes bitter epithets. In the Shuswap, he is still remembered for his Salmon Arm salute, a defiant middle finger from the sitting prime minister given to a group of protesters who met his train passing through in August of 1982.
But among many Canadians of a certain age, Pierre Trudeau is fondly remembered as a leader with intelligence, vision, character and passion, who stood up to Reagan and forged a unique place for Canada on the world stage. Among younger Canadians, he is revered as a transformative figure who understood youth and created programs like Katimavik, Encounters With Canada and Exchanges Canada to bring young people from across the country together and to get them out to different parts of the country on educational exchanges.
For Justin Trudeau, the expectations will be enormous, not just to bring back the federal Liberals from the grave but to bring back some of that pizzazz to federal politics. As we look longingly south of the border at Barack Obama (if Canadians chose the American president, Mitt Romney couldn't even win in Alberta), along comes a new Trudeau with charisma, oratory skills, and all pistons firing between his ears.
The national media have politely called him "telegenic" and other euphemisms, when what they mean is "handsome," a fine combination of his good-looking parents. That will help, not hurt him, as he travels the country, trying to breathe life into a federal Liberal party that has lost its way.
But he's more than just a pretty boy, unlike another prime minister's son whose only talent in life is to grin endlessly on celebrity news shows and report from red carpets at award shows (hello, Ben Mulroney).
Trudeau won a Montreal riding that had been a Bloc Quebecois stronghold in 2008 and he successfully defended that riding in the federal election last year, when so many of his federal Liberal counterparts were kicked out by the voters. For those saying the two-term MP needs more experience, they forget that his dad became Liberal leader in his first term as an MP.
Trudeau's analysis for what went wrong with the federal Liberals is spot-on. He believes the Liberals lost the political centre and the middle class by becoming elitist and out-of-touch with the regions. Getting those voters back won't be as difficult as it seems, especially if NDP leader Tom Mulcair sticks to his standard, rigid left-wing rhetoric.
Trudeau has quietly exceeded expectations by working at the grass roots (hey, didn't that work for some guy named Obama?), working the community associations in his riding and working the national Liberal organizers, building alliances and demonstrating knowledge and insight on the issues.
He has surrounded himself with both new faces, who can energize the party and attract new, broad support, and the best of the old guard, savvy veterans who can help steer him through controversy and adversity.
And he is well-positioned to more gracefully exploit an opportunity that Mulcair and Premier Christy Clark have tried in a clumsy way.
Under Trudeau's leadership, the federal Liberals could go from worst to first by isolating Alberta and the Harper Conservatives as greedy and selfish oil barons who put themselves and their business interests ahead of Canada and other Canadians.
That message, delivered properly, would play well not just east of Manitoba but even in the western provinces that grow tired of Alberta's arrogance and influence.
But first, Trudeau has to convince a cautiously hopeful electorate he's more than his father's son.