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TV,eh? What's up in Canadian television

Space’s Killjoys and Dark Matter returning for Season 2

There will be more adventures in The Quad. Space announced Tuesday that Season 2 of Killjoys is a go, with production starting in Toronto this winter.

“We are proud that Killjoys has connected so well with viewers to become a ratings and critical success,” David Fortier and Ivan Schneeberg, co-presidents of Temple Street Productions and executive producers said in a press release. “We are thrilled to partner with Space again for a second season and look forward to building on this unique world for our stellar cast to continue the captivating journey.”

We had a feeling this news was coming. After all, how awkward would it be to have Killjoys and Dark Matter panels at Fan Expo if they had been cancelled?

Dark_matter

The news comes just over a week following Killjoys’ cliffhanger Season 1 finale, which left D’Avin (Luke Macfarlane) in the clutches of Khlyen (Rob Stewart) in Red 17 and Dutch (Hannah John-Kamen) and Johnny (Aaron Ashmore) vowing to find him. The trio, ensconced in their faithful ship Lucy (voiced by Tamsen McDonough), have been travelling around The Quad—a planet called Qresh and its three moons, Westerley, Arkyn and Leith—cracking skulls and collecting bounty.

Debuting in June, Killjoys snagged a season finale audience of over 560,000 viewers for Space and is the network’s most-watched original series of all time. Killjoys and fellow Friday night sci-fi series Dark Matter have made Space the No. 1 specialty network for Adults 25-54, Adults 18-49 and Adults 18-34.

Killjoys was created by Michelle Lovretta (Lost Girl) who serves as executive producer and showrunner; Season 1’s writer and consulting producer was Jeremy Boxen with writers Emily Andras, Adam Barken and Aaron Martin on board.

Created by Joseph Mallozzi and Paul Mullie, Dark Matter had a cliffhanger of its own, revealing Five (Jodelle Ferland) had wiped everyone’s memories and that Six (Roger Cross) had betrayed his team. Marc Bendavid, Melissa O’Neil, Anthony Lemke, Alex Mallari Jr. and Zoie Palmer made up the rest of Dark Matter‘s key cast.

Video: Continuum co-star Aleks Paunovic teases Season 4

From Global News Vancouver:

Season four of “Continuum” premieres on Friday and actor Aleks Paunovic plays one of the new characters. He discusses his role on the show, and gives us a preview of what’s to come this season.

Preview: First Dates gets messy for Slice

There’s a wall-sized sign on the wall in the restaurant where First Dates is filmed. The sign says: Things Can Get Messy, and it’s a pretty apt discription of Slice’s latest original series.

Filmed in one of Earls’ Vancouver locations, First Dates uses Big Brothers setup of filming with a multitude of cameras and microphones that capture every step—and misstep—single Canadians make on the dating scene.

Tuesday’s debut, with two back-to-back episodes at 10 and 10:30 p.m. ET/PT, focuses on a trio of blind dates that run the gamut from success to bona fide train wreck. This being a nice Canadian production, however, there are no tears and screaming when a match isn’t made, though you can tell from Billi-Ann’s body language she just isn’t feeling it with Charles. Perhaps it’s his penchant for speaking in the third person, or his intimate knowledge of drinks with college-level amounts of booze in them. Regardless, it doesn’t take long for viewers to realize this HR dude by day, party guy by night, is no match for Billi-Ann.

Shaw Media

Much more successful are Denai and Edward, who flirt their way through dinner, aided by her numerous comments about his cuteness, his endless muscle flexing and a shocking moment where he undoes his pants during the appetizer course. Is this the way the kids act during dates nowadays? Are they at the point where twenty somethings throw caution to the wind and flash some skivvy to attract attention? Apparently.

That’s not to say First Dates isn’t highly enjoyable. It is, if you’re looking for pure guilty pleasure entertainment. First Dates the perfect show to sit and watch with friends so that you can laugh, poke fun at—and perhaps commiserate—along with for an hour.

First Dates airs Tuesdays at 10 and 10:30 p.m. ET/PT on Slice.

He Said/She Said: Top Moments for TV, Eh?

Join Greg and Diane every Monday as we debate what’s on our minds. This week, a look back at some Top Moments for TV, Eh?

She Said:

When Greg suggested we take a look back at this past year of TV, eh? 2.0 (it was one year ago this month that the site came back from the dead), I wasn’t sure what to say.  And then I remembered what an amazing year we’ve had.

Fresh blood
I can’t say enough about how grateful I am to Greg for suggesting we partner to bring the site back after I had retired it six months previously. I was burned out, wanted more of my life back, and felt the Canadian TV world was well served by TV Guide Canada among other publications and websites. And then, so much for that. When TV Guide Canada went under and Greg joined TV, eh?, I was able to take a step back and do more behind the scenes activity while popping up now and then to vent my Canadian spleen or analyse the shows I wanted to watch.

Beyond the cop show
A few years ago a running joke here was that Canada’s GDP relied on the export of cop shows. Even many of our non-cop shows used some sort of investigation as the story engine. This year we’ve had Strange Empire, Book of Negroes, the announcement of other shows with creative premises, and the average Canadian series is more likely to be science fiction or fantasy than a procedural. OK we also have our requisite cop shows and hospital dramas, but even our main networks are branching out.

Proof is in the pudding
And that pudding is our Indiegogo campaign to revive the site (to the tune of more than $20,000), and the auction of Canadian TV memorabilia and experiences (more than $8400), plus our dedicated readers, commenters, and engaged social media followers.  Canadians watch Canadian TV, they love Canadian TV, and they put their money toward Canadian TV. Dismissing an entire industry because 100% of the shows aren’t winners is the argument of an idiot.

He Said:

I admit this list may get a little schmaltzy—and less than a list of moments and more of just thoughts—but to heck with it.

Love for Canadian TV
I knew, when I was writing for TV Guide Canada, there was support out there for homegrown television, but it was tempered somewhat because of our need to cover U.S. shows as well. Now that I’m fully immersed in CanCon, I’m able to see first-hand the passion and love viewers—and those working in the industry—have for this product. From sold-out screenings of Heartland‘s wedding episode to packed theatres for Murdoch Mysteries and X Company Q&As, people are proud of these homegrown projects and aren’t afraid to show it.

Creativity Rules
I’m fiercely proud of the unique ideas that are being committed to the small screen in this country. Networks are taking gambles, and while they don’t always pay off—sorry, Strange Empire—I think there is more creativity being shown here than in that big country south of the border. Lost Girl, 19-2, Still Standing, Sunnyside and Young Drunk Punk are current examples of unique ideas getting on-air, with fall series like The Romeo Section, Letterkenny, What Would Sal Do?, Slasher and This Life representing the new guard.

Support for TV, Eh?
Diane laid the groundwork for the support of this site, and I’ve been lucky enough to witness it first-hand over the past year. It’s humbling to have showrunners, writers, crew and talent shake my hand and thank me for devoting my days to writing about and championing Canadian television, and it’s overwhelming to have fans support the industry and Kids Help Phone with our charity auction. So, thanks!

 

 

Food’s Chef In Your Ear the ultimate in culinary improv

Simply put, Chef In Your Ear is unlike any culinary competition on television today. In it, unskilled cooks prepare a restaurant-quality dish in one hour with help from a professional Canadian chef. The hook? The chefs are ensconced in remote booths, directing competitors orally through earpieces while observing them via a bank of monitors.

“It’s like an improv performance,” says series executive producer Daniel Gelfant. Developed from an idea by Justin Scroggie and Ricardo Larrivée, Gelfant’s final product—debuting on Food Network on Monday at 10 p.m. ET/PT—Chef In Your Ear (hosted by Second City’s Greg Komorowski) is a wild mix of laughs, excitement, a little embarrassment … and a huge learning experience for chef Cory Vitiello.

“We lose three of our most important senses in taste, smell and touch,” Vitiello says on the phone from his latest Toronto restaurant, Flock. “But because we lose that, I found I paid attention to so many other little details than I would if I was actually down there. Watching through five monitors, I’m able to see a pot boiling on the back, or bones being left in meat.” Vitiello and fellow Canadian chefs Jordan Andino (Harlow Sag Harbor), Devin Connell (Delica Kitchen), Craig Harding (Campagnolo) and Rob Rossi (Bestellen), have to call on their skills as coaches, mentors and psychiatrists to guide their charges through to success with recipes for pork schnitzel, eggs Benedict, spaghetti and meat balls and eggplant Parmigiana.

Vitiello and Rossi are in tough in tonight’s first episode of 26, “The Big Bang”; the former is paired with violin superstar Rosemary while the latter teams with toymaker Nick. At first, it seems like a recipe for disaster, especially since Rosemary screams when she’s under pressure. Suffice it to say, there is a lot of screaming from her side of the kitchen and Vitiello struggled early on to keep her focused.

“I think every one of us started each episode saying, ‘There is no way this is going to work,'” he says. “But then you build some trust and some confidence and there is a point where it just clicks and you work together. You can see the transition on the floor, where they realize, ‘Oh my God, I can do this!'”

Chef In Your Ear airs Mondays at 10 p.m. ET/PT on Food Network.