Tag Archives: Lucas Bryant

Preview: Frankie Drake Mysteries flies high with Lucas Bryant and Laurence Fox

This week on Frankie Drake Mysteries are two truly high-profile guest stars. I’ve been excited for this episode ever since I saw a short video of Lucas Bryant and Laurence Fox fooling around in the Drake makeup trailer where they were on location.

“The Pilot,” written by co-creators Michelle Ricci and Carol Hay and directed by Leslie Hope, finds Bryant playing Phillip Anderson, an aviator whose son is kidnapped. I’ve been a fan of Bryant since Season 1 of Haven (serious Stephen King fan over here) and was furthered in CBC’s excellent miniseries Shoot the Messenger, which bows on WGN in the U.S. on Feb. 26. As for Fox, he’s been on my radar for over 40 episodes of the PBS series Inspector Lewis, where he played DS James Hathaway. Anyway, enough of me being a fanboy; here’s what the CBC has revealed as the synopsis for Monday’s episode:

A day off turns into a day at the office for Frankie and Trudy when the son of an aviator is kidnapped.

And here is more information I gleaned from watching a screener.

Airplanes aplenty
I love airplanes. I love history. I was, therefore, giddy to see “The Pilot” involved both as stunning old aircraft zipped around the sky in Guelph, Ont. for the episode. (Read Bill Brioux’s set visit piece for more details.) Interestingly, this was the first episode of Frankie Drake Mysteries to be filmed but airs as Episode 7. Ah, the magic of television. And meetings.

Charlotte Sullivan guest-stars
Hold onto your hats Rookie Blue and Mary Kills People fans! Charlotte Sullivan, who also appears in CBC’s Caught next month, is Meara, wife of Phillip Anderson and mother to Charlie, the missing child.

Cheeky Fox
When we first meet Laurence Fox, he’s an unnamed gent who sidles up to Frankie and begins some major flirting. Who is he, and why does he seem to have bad will towards Phillip Anderson? They have a history, but what is it? Like I’ve already said, this was the first episode of Frankie to be filmed, but it doesn’t feel like it. Frankie’s sass, strong character and love of motorcycles and planes are firmly in place, as well as her relationship with Trudy. As a matter of fact, we learn some key backstory about Frankie thanks to her motorcycle and the conversation she has about it.

A storyline never revisited
Kris Holden-Ried appears at the end of Monday’s episode as a someone Frankie turns to for support. What’s interesting is that it’s tied to the backstory we’ve already mentioned but is never referred to, so far at least, in Season 1. Again, this was the first episode of Frankie Drake Mysteries so things change, but it would have been interesting to see this storyline fleshed out more.

A very special guest star
On top of the folks we’ve already mentioned, a certain someone drops by to escort Frankie into a building where women aren’t allowed. I kind of wish their name had been left out of the credits because it’s a major spoiler. I’ve already said too much.

Frankie Drake Mysteries airs Mondays at 9 p.m. on CBC.

Images courtesy of CBC.

 

 

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditlinkedinmail

Jennifer Holness and Sudz Sutherland return to TV with Shoot the Messenger

Jennifer Holness and Sudz Sutherland have been creating gritty, thought-provoking projects for television for years. There was 2009’s Guns, a two-part miniseries for CBC about Toronto detectives following a 23-year-old gun trafficker. Before that was 2006’s Doomstown, a TV-movie documenting the violence in a housing project. Now the writers and executive producers (and real-life couple) are back with Shoot the Messenger.

Debuting Monday, Oct. 10, at 9 p.m. on CBC, the eight-part series stars Elyse Levesque as Daisy Channing, an entertainment reporter at Toronto’s fictional newspaper The Gazette, who’s finally got her big scoop since transferring to the news department: the death of a young Somali man. Eager to impress her editor Mary Foster (Alex Kingston), Daisy makes a rookie mistake, throwing her into a foreign world she’s unprepared for, and turning to co-worker Simon Olenski (Lucas Bryant) for guidance.

“She wants to be in investigative journalism and prove herself,” Levesque says alongside Bryant during a break in filming. “She is massively ambitious to a fault, and receives a phone call about a huge tip that will blow the lid off this town.” Levesque and Bryant just finished filming a scene outside, where Daisy and Simon met to discuss the latest regarding the story. Standing on the top of a high-rise (in real life the TIFF Bell Lightbox complex) with Toronto below them, the danger of what Daisy uncovered hit home. Why was this young man killed? Who is involved in the conspiracies? The only thing she knows for sure is she’s in way over her head.

shoot_messenger2
Lyriq Bent and Elyse Levesque

Complicating things for Elyse even more? She’s romantically involved with the detective on the case, Kevin Lutz (Lyriq Bent). That causes problems during the investigation and could jeopardize his career.

“Kevin wants to be an ordinary dude,” Bent says. “He wants to have a normal life away from work. He’s caring, considerate and thoughtful. And I think his relationship with Daisy is refreshing for Canadian TV and definitely for CBC.”

Shoot the Messenger‘s supporting cast is a whos who of the Canadian television world, including Nicholas Campbell, Ron Lea, Kim’s Convenience leads Paul Sun-Hyung Lee and Jean Yoon, as well as appearances by The Barenaked Ladies’ Ed Robertson, the Toronto Raptor’s Jamaal Magloire and ex-NBAer turned television star Rick Fox.

“He is my dickhead cousin,” Bryant says of Robertson’s role. “He’s a sports agent and he’s really good. I was a huge Barenaked Ladies fan and was looking forward to meeting him and he was humble, funny and fantastic. He told me that all he ever wanted to do when he was growing up was be a rock star and star in one of Sudz’ movies.”

Shoot the Messenger airs Mondays at 9 p.m. ET on CBC.

Images courtesy of CBC.

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditlinkedinmail

Links: Shoot the Messenger

From Heather M. of The Televixen:

“[Creators Sudz Sutherland and Jennifer Holness]created all these different characters that force [Daisy] to have to behave differently [with each of them]. She has some deep-seated issues. She’s a survivor. She knows how to play people, especially in the work environment.” Continue reading.

From John Doyle of The Globe and Mail:

CBC’s Shoot the Messenger is not grubby enough

It starts with sexy stuff. Young woman on top of a guy in bed. “You know we gotta stop this,” he says. “That’s what you said the last time,” she says with a smile, which is all she’s wearing.

Next thing, a phone call compels her to leave. She’s a reporter and it’s a source calling. On TV, this is always when sources call newspaper journalists. People who write TV shows have very vivid imaginations about the personal lives of newspaper writers. Anyway, off the young woman journalist goes, pronto. After all, the source says, “This is going to put you on the front page of the world, Miss Daisy.” Continue reading.

From Ellen Brait of The Globe and Mail:

Link: CBC’s Shoot the Messenger pulls drama straight from the headlines
A fast-moving, sexy, timely, action-packed thriller … set in a newsroom? It sounds a bit far-fetched, but Lucas Bryant, a star of the new CBC drama Shoot the Messenger, says that’s just what the series delivers. “It’s just good TV,” he says, “Period.” Continue reading. 

From Bill Harris of Postmedia Network:

Shoot the Messenger uses Rob Ford story as inspiration for CBC thriller
Just to be clear, Shoot the Messenger is not about the Rob Ford crack-video scandal.

However, if you even are vaguely familiar with that scandal, some of this is going to ring a bell. At least in terms of the complex relationships between reporters and their sources and the police and politicians. And how that all gets even muddier when blackmailers are involved. Continue reading.

From Victoria Ahearn of The Canadian Press:

Shoot the Messenger is not about Rob Ford, say creators of the CBC series
A co-creator of the new CBC-TV crime drama “Shoot the Messenger” insists it’s not a story about Rob Ford.

But Sudz Sutherland does admit he was inspired by the saga of the late former Toronto mayor as he helped craft the series, which stars Elyse Levesque as a newspaper reporter caught up in a web of gangs, murder, sex, drugs and politics in Toronto. Continue reading.

From Sheri Shefa of The Canadian Jewish News:

Canadian actor happy to star in new CBC series
“Sam Charles is the attorney general of Ontario who is being groomed to be the next prime minister,” said Cohen, who is part of the cast of CBC’s eight-part series, Shoot the Messenger, which will begin airing on Oct. 10.

“He’s kind of a playboy, very smart. He’s a Rhodes scholar. I don’t want to say he was modelled on Justin Trudeau, but certainly he was one of the inspirations… He’s kind of, in some ways, a composite of Justin, [but] there are elements of Bill Clinton in there,” he said, adding that the show’s creators, Sudz Sutherland and Jennifer Holness, were also inspired by U.S. President Barack Obama. Continue reading. 

From Stew Slater of St. Mary’s Journal Argus:

New TV drama judged worthy of praise by St. Marys actor
With a cast filled with people of various ethnic backgrounds as well as several strong female characters — including a potential candidate for the Supreme Court of Canada played by St. Marys-based actor Brenda Bazinet — a new hour-long drama series is set to premiere on CBC Television on Monday, Oct. 10.

Shoot the Messenger, with an eight-episode main story arc exploring the aftermath when a young female journalist following a news tip happens upon a murder, was filmed in Toronto and Hamilton between August and November of 2015. Bazinet, who moved to St. Marys eight years ago after three decades living in Toronto, says she was proud to be involved in a production that consciously aimed to mirror the diverse ethnic kaleidoscope that the city has become. Continue reading.

From Ramin Ostad of the Edmonton Examiner:

Raising the Barr of Canadian TV
Ian Barr never used to want to write for television.

The Edmonton-based screenwriter has worked on multiple TV shows in his nearly 16-year career, including the widely acclaimed Tiny Plastic Men, and is a writer/producer of an upcoming 10-episode serial crime drama, Shoot the Messenger. Continue reading.
From Bridget Liszewski of The TV Junkies:
Link: Shoot the Messenger: Not Your Standard Crime Drama
“We are partners, but I am a gal and I’ve been watching TV just like everybody else with male protagonists at the center of things. I’ve always been in favor of supporting women, women’s stories and to put women at the center of things. I have an awesome partner that actually believes that.” Continue reading. 
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditlinkedinmail

Haven limps across the finish line

After five seasons, Haven finally came to an end. I’ve made no bones about either my love and support of this series in its first two seasons, or my derision for it over the last three, when story arcs went from head-scratching to downright ludicrous.

A science-fiction/fantasy series is always hard to keep on track, and the introduction of the barn went from being what I hoped was a minor wobble into a full-on shimmy with the addition of The Guard and a complete coming off the rails when the legend of Croatoan—itself an interesting real-life mystery—was turned into a being in human form in the shape of William Shatner. Listen, I love Shatner, but introducing him as Audrey’s father and an all-powerful being in control of the aether caused me to flap my hand at Haven in disgust more than once.

So while much of Sunday’s finale, “Forever,” cleaned up the messy tale that was Croatoan, it also offered a sweet goodbye to the key characters I’ve always liked. That meant giving Audrey, Nathan and Duke some major screen time. The seemingly endless back and forth between Audrey and Croatoan over whether she would join him and rule together forever was finally decided; she did team with him but not to cause pain, but rather to absorb all Troubles and then lock them and the pair (along with Vince) away forever in another barn. I must admit I expected Duke to return from the dead—via a Trouble—but that never happened. And perhaps that was for the best, story-wise. Always just outside of Audrey and Nathan’s relationship, having Duke sacrifice himself last week was a heroes’ way to go out and keep him looking good in everyone’s memory.

Most touching scene of the night goes to Lucas Bryant, who narrated Nathan’s final thoughts about Audrey in an articulate and loving way that was more expressive than any of the dialogue the writers gave him to utter on-screen. Juxtaposing Nathan’s speech over Audrey’s glowing exit and the dissipation of the Troubles (I giggled like crazy when Jason Priestley reprised his role of Chris Brody) was effective and I admit to welling up a couple of times. It was the perfect ending to their relationship—Audrey sacrificing herself for the Haven’s citizens (something I suspected would occur anyway)—and a natural jumping-off point for what happened next.

Audrey may be gone, but Croatoan and Vince wiping her memory and sending her back to Haven as Paige gave Nathan the happy ending (and sorta son in James) he deserved.

What did you think of Haven‘s series finale?

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditlinkedinmail