TV, eh? podcast episode 39 – A Ubiquitous Hat

Episode 39: Listen or download here or subscribe via iTunes or with any other program via the TV, Eh? feed

Diane chats with the star of Mr. Young, our guest this week Brendan Meyer, about his YTV show, its renewal for season two, and the parallels between his life and the 14-year-old teacher he plays.

But first, Anthony and Diane puzzle over why the CRTC would consider regulating Netflix as a broadcaster, the painful lessons American broadcasters learned from Hulu, which has helped train their audience to abandon them, and CTV’s foray into a mobile app for news.

We’re agreed that we have no interest in the Titanic co-production, and that John Brunton and his ubiquitous hat have led to a glut of pseudo-Canadian reality TV.

Then we attempt to alienate all sides in the CRTC hearing, blasting broadcasters and writers for making industry issues worse through finger pointing and whining.

Somewhere in there we manage to insult our own listeners (ANTHONY!) and each other.

Your hosts


2 thoughts on “TV, eh? podcast episode 39 – A Ubiquitous Hat”

  1. Diane & Anthony,

    Thanks for the links and the commentary and mostly for expanding awareness of what goes on behind closed doors at the CRTC.

    And I appreciate your assertion that everyone on all sides of the issues needs to stop “whining”. If Charlie Sheen had come from the Canadian TV industry I’m sure that would have been his altered catch-phrase.

    But I think you miss a couple of important points when calling out creative members of the industry.

    As important as they are to the creation of good TV and despite how much more they might contribute, the creative community is continuously marginalized by the bureaucracies that fund and regulate Canadian drama.

    All developmental funding is now virtually controlled by broadcasters with little proven desire to create either challenging or popular drama and comedy — let alone creating original content that might help them survive the influx of new media options.

    And as the CRTC transcripts make clear our regulators serve the immediate needs of the broadcast community over the value of Cancon and their parliamentary mandate to protect the public interest.

    Moreover, “leaving” is not as quick and easy for artists as you make it sound.

    Canadian writers moving to LA need to be granted a Green Card by US Immigration before they can live and more importantly work there. Sometimes that process can take years with no guarantee of a successful outcome.

    Therefore, a lot of what may sound like whining is actually a howl of frustration and rage from those trapped in a place that doesn’t seem to want them yet who are unable to go elsewhere.

    You’re absolutely correct that there are all kinds of new ways to realize your creations and get them out to an audience. And some of us are finding them.

    But that’s still a small world here and one which the funders and regulators appear intent on either constraining or getting under their control.

    So cut Canadian creatives a little slack. Trust me, they’d be giving you the kind of exciting and original Canadian TV you’d like to be talking about — if they only had the chance.

    Thanks again for all you do.

    Jim Henshaw

  2. Good points all but I think I cut creatives way more slack than most. I still think there’s a level of unprofessionalism and disregard for the audience in this industry on ALL sides that hurts it.

    And I didn’t suggest that leaving is easy – I suggested that I regularly hear creatives threaten to leave and it’s pathetic and part of that unprofessionalism. For one thing, as you point out, it’s not that easy so for the most part it’s an empty threat that isn’t very threatening to begin with. For another, it feeds into the constant refrain that if only one person had his way the system would be fixed. No. You’re all part of the problem. Some more than others, but …

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