Everything about Flashpoint, eh?

TV Eh B Cs podcast 23: Adam Barken’s Romper Room Revenge

BarkenHaving spent the last many years as a writer and producer on Rookie Blue, Remedy, and Flashpoint, Adam Barken’s name will once more be splashed across the screen this summer in the new Space series Killjoys.

Killjoys follows a trio of reclamation agents as they chase deadly warrants throughout the Quad, a distant planetary system on the brink of a bloody class war. The three Killjoys form a highly accomplished team of bounty hunters, each with distinct and valuable specialties to offer as they navigate the culturally rich, politically complex, and economically polarized worlds of The Quad.

You’ll hear all about Killjoys, plus some stories from previous shows he’s worked on, and an impending revenge plot against Romper Room.

Listen or download below, or subscribe via iTunes or any other podcast catcher with the TV, eh? podcast feed.

Want to become a Patron of the Podcast? We’ve got a Patreon page where you can donate a small amount per podcast and get a sneak peek of each release.

Flashpoint’s Ed Lane is Canada’s favourite TV cop

Flashpoint may have gone off the air in 2012, but the cops of Toronto’s Emergency Task Force are still in our hearts. Ed Lane, specifically, who won our latest poll asking who their Favourite Canadian TV Cops were. Lane, played by Hugh Dillon, took the top spot with 5,737 votes.

In second place came Rookie Blue‘s Sam Swarek (Ben Bass) with 3,636 votes, Corner Gas‘ Davis Quentin (Lorne Cardinal) with 1,542 votes, Durham County‘s Mike Sweeney (Dillon again!) with 1,465 votes and Davis’ Corner Gas partner Karen Pelly (Tara Spencer-Nairn) with 995 votes.

Rounding out the Top 10 were Swarek’s primetime partners Gail Peck, Andy McNally and Oliver Shaw, Murdoch Mysteries‘ Det. William Murdoch and Haven‘s Nathan Wuornos. Several readers commented that Wuornos’ lady love, Audrey Parker, should have been an option but since she’s an FBI agent rather than a police officer, she wasn’t included as a choice.

Who are your favourite Canadian TV cops?

  • Ed Lane, Flashpoint (43%, 5,737 Votes)
  • Sam Swarek, Rookie Blue (27%, 3,636 Votes)
  • Davis Quinton, Corner Gas (11%, 1,542 Votes)
  • Mike Sweeney, Durham County (11%, 1,465 Votes)
  • Karen Pelly, Corner Gas (7%, 995 Votes)
  • Gail Peck, Rookie Blue (7%, 898 Votes)
  • Andy McNally, Rookie Blue (6%, 757 Votes)
  • William Murdoch, Murdoch Mysteries (3%, 375 Votes)
  • Nathan Wuornos, Haven (2%, 334 Votes)
  • Oliver Shaw, Rookie Blue (2%, 333 Votes)
  • Benton Fraser, Due South (2%, 332 Votes)
  • George Crabtree, Murdoch Mysteries (2%, 216 Votes)
  • Jules Callaghan, Flashpoint (1%, 175 Votes)
  • Tamsin, Lost Girl (1%, 161 Votes)
  • Dyson, Lost Girl (1%, 153 Votes)
  • Traci Nash, Rookie Blue (1%, 127 Votes)
  • Nick Collins, Rookie Blue (1%, 126 Votes)
  • Greg Parker, Flashpoint (1%, 119 Votes)
  • John Constable, The Beachcombers (1%, 117 Votes)
  • Thomas Brackenreid, Murdoch Mysteries (1%, 95 Votes)
  • Ray Kowalski, Due South (1%, 91 Votes)
  • Mike Scarlatti, Flashpoint (1%, 89 Votes)
  • Sam Braddock, Flashpoint (1%, 82 Votes)
  • Michelle Kenidi, North of 60 (1%, 77 Votes)
  • Ray Vecchio, Due South (1%, 73 Votes)
  • Kevin Wordsworth, Flashpoint (1%, 71 Votes)
  • Chloe Price, Rookie Blue (0%, 66 Votes)
  • Kiera Cameron, Continuum (0%, 60 Votes)
  • Dwight Hendrickson, Haven (0%, 60 Votes)
  • Angie Flynn, Motive (0%, 54 Votes)
  • Leslie Bennett, Republic of Doyle (0%, 51 Votes)
  • Kerri, Sunnyside (0%, 50 Votes)
  • Dov Epstein, Rookie Blue (0%, 48 Votes)
  • Donna, Sunnyside (0%, 47 Votes)
  • Art, Orphan Black (0%, 39 Votes)
  • Ben Chartier, 19-2 (0%, 36 Votes)
  • Ben Sullivan, Shattered (0%, 29 Votes)
  • Oscar Vega, Motive (0%, 27 Votes)
  • Chris Diaz, Rookie Blue (0%, 26 Votes)
  • Eric Olsen, North of 60 (0%, 25 Votes)
  • Tinny Doyle, Republic of Doyle (0%, 22 Votes)
  • Carlos Fonnegra, Continuum (0%, 22 Votes)
  • Henry Higgins, Murdoch Mysteries (0%, 21 Votes)
  • Mick Leary, Da Vinci's Inquest (0%, 20 Votes)
  • Slugger Jackson, Murdoch Mysteries (0%, 18 Votes)
  • Aidan Black, Cracked (0%, 17 Votes)
  • Nick Barron, 19-2 (0%, 15 Votes)
  • Harding Welsh, Due South (0%, 14 Votes)
  • Ali McCormick, Cold Squad (0%, 14 Votes)
  • Joshua Nolan, Defiance (0%, 12 Votes)
  • Leo Shannon, Da Vinci's Inquest (0%, 12 Votes)
  • Brian Fletcher, North of 60 (0%, 11 Votes)
  • James Harper, North of 60 (0%, 8 Votes)
  • Jessica King, King (0%, 7 Votes)
  • Kat Loving, Strange Empire (0%, 7 Votes)
  • Angela Kosmo, Da Vinci's Inquest (0%, 7 Votes)
  • Mary Spalding, Intelligence (0%, 7 Votes)
  • J.M. Brouillard, 19-2 (0%, 6 Votes)
  • Mark Cross, Motive (0%, 6 Votes)
  • Brian Lucas, Motive (0%, 5 Votes)
  • Inspector Dillon, Continuum (0%, 5 Votes)
  • Liz Carver, The Border (0%, 5 Votes)
  • Audrey Pouliot, 19-2 (0%, 5 Votes)
  • Diane Caligra, Cracked (0%, 4 Votes)
  • Ted Altman, Intelligence (0%, 4 Votes)
  • Gray Jackson, The Border (0%, 4 Votes)
  • Poppy Wisnefski, Cracked (0%, 4 Votes)
  • Tyler Joseph, 19-2 (0%, 3 Votes)
  • Ed Oosterhuis, Blue Murder (0%, 2 Votes)
  • Isabelle Latendresse, 19-2 (0%, 2 Votes)
  • Mickey Kollander, Cold Squad (0%, 1 Votes)
  • Frank Leo, The Bridge (0%, 1 Votes)
  • Jack Pogue, Blue Murder (0%, 1 Votes)
  • Amy Lynch, Shattered (0%, 1 Votes)
  • Beatrice Hamelin, 19-2 (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 13,495

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Thanks for all of those who participated in voting!

Poll: Who are your favourite Canadian TV cops?

Have you heard the news, Rookie Blue fans? Season 6 of Global’s homegrown cop drama returns on Thursday, May 21, at 9 p.m. ET/PT.

Andy, Swarek, Oliver, Dov and the rest make up the latest crop of cops created for Canadian TV shows. How do the Rookie Blue folks stack up against Det. Murdoch and the Toronto Constabulary? Where do Haven‘s east coast coppers rate against B.C. boys and girls in blue?

We’ve put together an exhaustive list of current and past Canadian TV cops for you to choose your three favourites from. If we missed any, type them up in the comments section. Let the voting begin!

Who are your favourite Canadian TV cops?

  • Ed Lane, Flashpoint (43%, 5,737 Votes)
  • Sam Swarek, Rookie Blue (27%, 3,636 Votes)
  • Davis Quinton, Corner Gas (11%, 1,542 Votes)
  • Mike Sweeney, Durham County (11%, 1,465 Votes)
  • Karen Pelly, Corner Gas (7%, 995 Votes)
  • Gail Peck, Rookie Blue (7%, 898 Votes)
  • Andy McNally, Rookie Blue (6%, 757 Votes)
  • William Murdoch, Murdoch Mysteries (3%, 375 Votes)
  • Nathan Wuornos, Haven (2%, 334 Votes)
  • Oliver Shaw, Rookie Blue (2%, 333 Votes)
  • Benton Fraser, Due South (2%, 332 Votes)
  • George Crabtree, Murdoch Mysteries (2%, 216 Votes)
  • Jules Callaghan, Flashpoint (1%, 175 Votes)
  • Tamsin, Lost Girl (1%, 161 Votes)
  • Dyson, Lost Girl (1%, 153 Votes)
  • Traci Nash, Rookie Blue (1%, 127 Votes)
  • Nick Collins, Rookie Blue (1%, 126 Votes)
  • Greg Parker, Flashpoint (1%, 119 Votes)
  • John Constable, The Beachcombers (1%, 117 Votes)
  • Thomas Brackenreid, Murdoch Mysteries (1%, 95 Votes)
  • Ray Kowalski, Due South (1%, 91 Votes)
  • Mike Scarlatti, Flashpoint (1%, 89 Votes)
  • Sam Braddock, Flashpoint (1%, 82 Votes)
  • Michelle Kenidi, North of 60 (1%, 77 Votes)
  • Ray Vecchio, Due South (1%, 73 Votes)
  • Kevin Wordsworth, Flashpoint (1%, 71 Votes)
  • Chloe Price, Rookie Blue (0%, 66 Votes)
  • Kiera Cameron, Continuum (0%, 60 Votes)
  • Dwight Hendrickson, Haven (0%, 60 Votes)
  • Angie Flynn, Motive (0%, 54 Votes)
  • Leslie Bennett, Republic of Doyle (0%, 51 Votes)
  • Kerri, Sunnyside (0%, 50 Votes)
  • Dov Epstein, Rookie Blue (0%, 48 Votes)
  • Donna, Sunnyside (0%, 47 Votes)
  • Art, Orphan Black (0%, 39 Votes)
  • Ben Chartier, 19-2 (0%, 36 Votes)
  • Ben Sullivan, Shattered (0%, 29 Votes)
  • Oscar Vega, Motive (0%, 27 Votes)
  • Chris Diaz, Rookie Blue (0%, 26 Votes)
  • Eric Olsen, North of 60 (0%, 25 Votes)
  • Tinny Doyle, Republic of Doyle (0%, 22 Votes)
  • Carlos Fonnegra, Continuum (0%, 22 Votes)
  • Henry Higgins, Murdoch Mysteries (0%, 21 Votes)
  • Mick Leary, Da Vinci's Inquest (0%, 20 Votes)
  • Slugger Jackson, Murdoch Mysteries (0%, 18 Votes)
  • Aidan Black, Cracked (0%, 17 Votes)
  • Nick Barron, 19-2 (0%, 15 Votes)
  • Harding Welsh, Due South (0%, 14 Votes)
  • Ali McCormick, Cold Squad (0%, 14 Votes)
  • Joshua Nolan, Defiance (0%, 12 Votes)
  • Leo Shannon, Da Vinci's Inquest (0%, 12 Votes)
  • Brian Fletcher, North of 60 (0%, 11 Votes)
  • James Harper, North of 60 (0%, 8 Votes)
  • Jessica King, King (0%, 7 Votes)
  • Kat Loving, Strange Empire (0%, 7 Votes)
  • Angela Kosmo, Da Vinci's Inquest (0%, 7 Votes)
  • Mary Spalding, Intelligence (0%, 7 Votes)
  • J.M. Brouillard, 19-2 (0%, 6 Votes)
  • Mark Cross, Motive (0%, 6 Votes)
  • Brian Lucas, Motive (0%, 5 Votes)
  • Inspector Dillon, Continuum (0%, 5 Votes)
  • Liz Carver, The Border (0%, 5 Votes)
  • Audrey Pouliot, 19-2 (0%, 5 Votes)
  • Diane Caligra, Cracked (0%, 4 Votes)
  • Ted Altman, Intelligence (0%, 4 Votes)
  • Gray Jackson, The Border (0%, 4 Votes)
  • Poppy Wisnefski, Cracked (0%, 4 Votes)
  • Tyler Joseph, 19-2 (0%, 3 Votes)
  • Ed Oosterhuis, Blue Murder (0%, 2 Votes)
  • Isabelle Latendresse, 19-2 (0%, 2 Votes)
  • Mickey Kollander, Cold Squad (0%, 1 Votes)
  • Frank Leo, The Bridge (0%, 1 Votes)
  • Jack Pogue, Blue Murder (0%, 1 Votes)
  • Amy Lynch, Shattered (0%, 1 Votes)
  • Beatrice Hamelin, 19-2 (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 13,495

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Link: Can’t-miss Canadian cinematic television

From Amanda Clarke of Toronto Film Scene:

Can’t-miss Canadian cinematic television
General wisdom is that films are superior to television, but there’s no denying that television has become really good in the past few years. As the line between film and television has begun to blur, it’s the big American cable networks that have started to gain a lot of critical attention with big budget cinematic series. It could be said that Canadian television gets less attention, but Canadian television is just so good that you can barely tell the Canadian from the Hollywood on the small screen. Here is some Canadian cinematic television you should check out for the big screen experience in the comfort of your own home. Continue reading.

He Said/She Said: How Canadian does Canadian TV have to be?

Join Greg and Diane on Mondays as we debate a TV-related issue that’s on our minds. This week: How Canadian does Canadian TV have to be?

He said:

It’s an argument I have been reading and discussing for years while I was at TV Guide Canada, and has evolved to be weekly (and often daily) for me at TV, Eh? Just how much should a Canadian TV show prove its Canadian-ness on the small screen?

The topic came up again following last Sunday’s Canadian Screen Awards and Orphan Black winning Best Drama. Among the online backslapping were several commenters that didn’t think Space’s drama was in fact Canadian because of the partnership with BBC America. Let’s put that one to rest right now: Orphan Black is Canadian and always will be.

The other discussion surrounded whether or not Toronto was adequately represented in the show, as if the Canadian flag had to be fluttering in the background or a Canada Post mailbox had to be on every corner. It’s a topic that came up during Flashpoint‘s run too. I recall the characters referring to Toronto streets and buildings where standoffs were occurring, and that was just fine with me.

Are we that self-conscious we need to have “this is Canadian!” trumpeted in every scene of a series that is a Canadian production or co-production? I don’t think so. I watch a lot of international dramas and it doesn’t happen there, nor do we see it south of the border. Television is all about the story and characters for me and the setting comes second. I’d never tune into a program solely because it was filmed in a Canadian city. I don’t watch Motive or Continuum because they are filmed in Vancouver. I didn’t watch Corner Gas because it represented the Prairies. I don’t check out Haven because it’s filmed in Halifax. And to argue that that should be part of the show’s selling point cheapens the product.

A great television show is that regardless of where it is being filmed and that’s no different in this country.

If you really want to know if a program is Canadian or not, wait until the end credits roll: a homegrown series will thank all of the funding and grants that ensured it got on the air in the first place.

She said:

The rules for what qualifies as Canadian content are fairly arcane, but to me, if it’s written and directed by and starring Canadians, it’s Canadian. Period.

However, specificity of place is important to great storytelling. And our homegrown industry should — but often doesn’t — aspire to be great in all facets. The number of Canadian shows set in Genericville leads to much grumbling about our generic shows.

That place doesn’t need to be Canada. My wishlist for the next Canadian literature to be adapted is Rohinton Mistry’s A Fine Balance, which is entirely set in India. But it’s very decidedly India, and could only be India.

That place doesn’t even need to be our world. Stargate created its own universe, as does Orphan Black to an extent, despite its real-world grounding.

But the lengths some shows go to never revealing a setting — or only explicitly revealing it after the US broadcaster has pulled out — often add a blandness that should make our industry run screaming. With no detailed sense of setting — even foreign, even fictional — a show loses the ability to use the personality of place as part of the story.

And producers can’t have it both ways or I’m going to call them hypocrites. You can’t market a show as “showing Toronto as Toronto” when onscreen you avoid any mention of setting, avoid shooting licence plates and mail boxes, and only people who live in Toronto would recognize the scenery — if that. Either embrace the setting or don’t pat yourselves on the back for  it.

What riles some of us up is intention. Our Canadian shows are often shorn of any on-screen identity so that they’ll be more appealing to the US market. That inspires neither national pride nor faith in their own storytelling. Tell a great story — and details of setting contribute to great — and international markets will follow.

How many of us are binge-watching British and even Scandinavian shows on Netflix lately? Happy Valley and Broadchurch might not really exist, but they’re set in defined areas of England and now I feel I’ve been there.

The genesis of this website was me sitting in a Banff TV Festival session on how to create Canadian TV that foreign audiences would want to see, and me steaming that they should focus on creating Canadian TV that Canadians want to see. Start there and the rest will be easier.

One of our most popular shows, Murdoch Mysteries, is also popular in the UK and (on a lesser known channel) the US despite being decidedly set in long-ago Toronto. I’d argue “despite” should really say “because of” — it’s a show that embraces and uses its time and place to enhance storytelling.

If the makers of a show seem embarrassed to be too Canadian, it’s no wonder some Canadians are embarrassed of those shows. I can’t deny they’re still Canadian, but I can wish they wouldn’t deny it, either.