Everything about Continuum, eh?

Poll: What are your favourite Canadian TV shows of 2015?

As the year winds down, it’s time to reflect back on 2015. What a year it was for Canadian TV. Yes, there was some sad news—the cancellation of Strange Empire, Remedy and Rookie Blue come immediately to mind—but there was plenty to celebrate as well.

Sci-fi in Canada is stronger than ever thanks to Orphan Black and newbies Killjoys and Dark Matter, we’re getting laughs from series like Still Standing, Sunnyside and Young Drunk Punk and dramas like This Life, The Romeo Section and Motive continue to entertain.

As we get ready to say hello to 2016, help us celebrate 2015 by voting for your favourite five (5) Canadian television shows of the year. (Vote by clicking the boxes to the left of your favourite shows, then click the shaded “Vote” button located just below and right of Young Drunk Punk.)

What are your five favourite Canadian TV shows of 2015?

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Comments and queries for the week of October 23

Is House of Bryan: The Last Straw for Bryan and Sarah Baeumler?

I need an address to mail Bryan Baeumler a letter (more of an impassioned plea) for his construction expertise. —Rebecca

Check out the contact information on Bryan’s website.

Rookie Blue cancelled by Global

I can’t believe they cancelled Rookie Blue, it was my favorite show. Why do all the good Canadian shows get cancelled, like Arctic Air and Flashpoint? Next you’re going to tell me Saving Hope, Remedy and Heartland are gone too. What is wrong with Canadian TV? —Donna

Unfortunately, Global pulled the plug on Remedy after two seasons.

Continuum‘s end … and new beginnings

I understand Kiera ‘s choice. Being a mom myself, I know for a fact that I would take the chance to return to my son. The sad part is that she was so focused on returning that she didn’t take into account that if changes that she helped Alec to make would also change her timeline. It was a bittersweet ending where she changed the future for the better but lost her son. I hope that she’s able to make life for herself or I’d like to think that Alec sends her back to 2015 where she can be amongst friends knowing her son is OK. —Fahima


Got a comment or question about Canadian TV? greg@tv-eh.com or @tv_eh.

Comments and queries for the week of October 16

Continuum’s end … and new beginnings

A bittersweet ending for sure. Kiera and Liber8 accomplished what they set out to do, but Kiera has lost everything. She should have stayed in 2015. I’m glad Alec and Emily got back together. I am curious as to what happened to Brad and Garza. I thought after Kellog realized he had killed his daughter he was going to sacrifice himself to stop his people from invading but nope, he was his old, selfish self. I hated that he killed Dillon. He got what he deserved in the end. —Sarah

Kiera is a mom—no way she’d just sit tight in 2015 if she had half a chance to know if her son was OK, lost or even never born in the new timeline. She’d be tortured in 2015 to always wonder—feeling she abandoned him and maybe played a role to prevent him ever existing except in her memory. She had to know. Tough but simple choice consistent to with her character to step into the unknown for her son. —B K

Kellog didn’t want to go back to 2077, he wanted to go back to 2012 and kill everybody when they arrived, to make a new future with poor, kid Alec. —JC

That was my understanding of Kellog’s plan too, but it left me with heaps of new unanswered questions. Like how did Kellog expect to take on Kiera, Garza and Travis in 2012 (even assuming he’d have other Kellog’s help and that Curtis would be neutral)? He’s not such a great combatant. Why didn’t 2030s Kellog send Brad to do that in the first place? —Emily

Comparing the major party platforms on culture

You need only look at PBS within the last 15 or so years as a prime example of what happens when a public broadcaster is cut financially and having to be creative to survive. They got lucky with Downton Abbey. But the kind of programming PBS once relied on, such as cooking shows, are entire networks in Food Network and Cooking Channel, plus online media sources in YouTube, Netflix, Hulu, Amazon and so on. It’s why strong public media is a must, not a luxury. —Allan

I don’t think people realize how important exposure to Canadian storytelling is to their worldview and in turn the perceived value of anything coming out of this culture, whether it be the arts or goods and services. We have become quite apathetic and have massive inferiority complexes about our own country because we would rather evaluate ourselves through the eyes of American media. It might be conducive to business people who sell out our opportunities for the sake of an easier dollar, but it has been very culturally degrading.

Almost none of our broadcasters have any reason to exist so long as they don’t own their own content. We essentially have forfeit our ability to build a profitable industry. If you only spend a dollar on a show, you better expect a dollar for it. We need to get past the precipice into an atmosphere where investment is seen as worthwhile and then build on that momentum. The CBC doesn’t have to be a drain on our tax dollars if we give them the means to make a worthy product and build a name for itself worldwide like the BBC. Those are my thoughts on the matter, anyway. Cheers. —Andrew


Got a comment or question about Canadian TV? Sound off a greg@tv-eh.com or @tv_eh.

Continuum’s end … and new beginnings

Well, that’s it then. Continuum‘s series finale on Friday night was a mixture of emotion, action and … hope. Creator Simon Barry and cast members Rachel Nichols, Victor Webster and Stephen Lobo did tell me the show’s final stanza would incite discussion, and they were certainly right.

Since Season 1, future cop Kiera Cameron has been trying to get back to 2077 Vancouver to be with her son. And she got that, though not exactly the way she wanted it to be. The Kiera Cameron we’ve followed for the past four seasons did step from 2015 Vancouver back to her home time, but had to settle for seeing a version of herself happily playing with Sam next to a idyllic fountain. Turns out the sacrifice she made to make Sam’s world a better place meant our Kiera couldn’t be with him, a bitter pill to swallow but at least she got back home, right? And what a home. Thanks to the actions of everyone in 2015, Vancouver 2077 is now a place devoid of violence, war and corrupt companies, a city where the police wear form-fitting t-shirts rather than armour. A place of light rather than dark. Reunited 60 years after she left Vancouver, the aging Alec hugged The Protector and explained how he, Julian and Edouard had worked together to make the world better for all.

“Final Hour” was full of memorable moments, cameos and Easter eggs that made the Continuum fan in me giddy. Kiera and Carlos’ goodbye was heartfelt and tearstained (Thank goodness Barry never got those two together romantically; it would have ruined their relationship.), producer Jonathan Walker played the lead cop that got his head blown off by a rampaging Weaver, and Carlos’ dedication to the Vancouver Police Force was recognized by a sweet memorial.


Not so sweet? Kellog’s fate. Well, at least not for him. The man who always made sure he covered his butt first did exactly that on Friday night, pitting his own Piron security force against the VPD so that he could escape 2015 and back to his future. Trouble was, Alec had futzed with Kellogg’s time ball and he didn’t go back to 2077. Who else cackled out loud when Kellog said, “Oh, that little shit,” when he spotted B.C.’s First Nations people peeking out from behind trees at the weirdly-dressed stranger? Kellog won’t be making any adjustments to the time ball from there, will he?

With only six episodes in the season, not every storyline was tied up neatly. The revelation Vasquez was Kellogg’s daughter was too easy to spot, the Time Traveller angle felt rushed (I’m sure it was) and I’d loved to have found out how Garza’s life turned out. Still, those are minor quibbles for a series that was given six episodes to finish up rather than ending abruptly with Season 3’s cliffhanger. I’ll take what I can get and be thankful for it.

What did you think of “Final Hour”? Let me know below or via Twitter at @tv_eh.

Comments and queries for the week of October 9

Academy announces host for Canadian Screen Awards

It’s interesting that many think that Andrea Martin is Canadian and Norm Macdonald is not. The reason: she works in Canada and can be seen doing Canadian talk shows, etc. Norm certainly doesn’t celebrate his nationality and only came back to work in Canada (a voice that could have been recorded from his sofa in L.A.) when his career dried up in the U.S. It seems all these Canadian-born people only come back to their home and native land when they can’t get work in their adopted country. Andrea Martin is more “Canadian” than many of these Canadian-born people. —Denis C.

Murdoch Mysteries frees Crabtree

The premiere episode was skillfully written with all the attention to detail that we have come to expect from this amazing show. The writers continue to keep us guessing as the plot unwinds. The characters continue to enthrall us and keep us so involved in their lives both on and off screen. Tonight’s episode kept us on the edge of our seats, smiling at the witty remarks and outright laughing at the “stupidity” as Giles put it of some of the criminals and sighing with contentment with Jilliam’s loving relationship. All in all, it was wonderful!! —Karen

Stellar Keeping Canada Alive brings depth and breadth to medical reality genre

In addition to a close-up look at our health care system, I thought it was a great show with a beautiful snapshot of humanity dealing with adversity. That being said, I found it almost too much at times and if that baby had died, I would have been out of there, fast!

I expected, but did not see, any analysis of what things cost or if we were meeting goals of wait times, etc. Did all that therapy, surgery and out patient stuff shown on the program cost the users anything? I’d like to know. I know there are big issues about the cost of medicine. For some people, drug costs can be a choice between life with poverty, or death.

Technical note: the “slide show” device, clicking between locations with the picture sliding out was annoying and over done. Whenever they did it, I heard myself say to the TV, “please stop that.”

Overall, though, it was an excellent program and I’ll tune in again. —Gary

Continuum blasts into its final season

I have always loved sci-fi movies and series, and Continuum is one of those TV shows or might as well be on the big screen that when you first see it your jaw drops! The sets in the future were so well done, the future cities, the traveling on air vehicles, every single detail has been given proper attention. I just picked up the series on Netflix, not sure why I never heard of it until now, on the shows’ final season year but I am glad I did. I think the show should have been more promoted; after all it’s rated five stars on Netflix. —Yodi


Got a question or comment about Canadian TV? Sound off greg@tv-eh.com or @tv_eh.