Preview: CBC’s Cavendish brings the weird and wonderful

“That’s a weird show, man.” Mark Little says that during an ad for Cavendish on CBC. And though it’s not clear which show he’s talking about as he looks at a television set, the inference is he’s talking about Cavendish. And he’s not wrong.

Premiering Tuesday at 9:30 p.m. on CBC, Cavendish is weird and wonderful, second only to Crawford in its strangeness, creativity and difference from the rest of the network’s winter lineup.

Created, executive produced, showrun and starring Little and Andrew Bush (Carter‘s Garry Campbell is credited as a creator too), the pair play Mark and Andy, brothers who have spent the decades following their parent’s divorce living with their mother in Toronto. Now the pair has returned to Cavendish, PEI, to care for their ailing dad, Rollie (Kevin Eldon), and reacquaint themselves with the community they left behind. (Look for Kathryn Greenwood, Kevin Hanchard, Joe Cobden, Teresa Pavlinek and Carolyn Taylor in Season 1.)

Little is probably best-known for playing Simon Hunt on Mr. D, but he and Bush have extensive backgrounds in writing and performing sketch. These skills are the bread and butter of Cavendish, which begins in Tuesday’s debut with Andy and Mark driving to the red-soiled province. It’s obvious within seconds the personalities at play here; Mark is innocent and looks on the bright side of things while Andy is quiet, morose and to many townsfolk, forgettable. This Ying and Yang results in plenty of funny moments, from Mark wondering if they’ll be able to converse with their Dad or if he’ll be “a husk,” and arguing over Andy’s high forehead.

Oddities rule the day in Cavendish, from the stuffed baby deer, fetus in a jar and sarcophagus—all pieces in their father’s home—to the beast living in the forest that emerges once a year to consume someone and an Anne of Green Gables cult. Yes, Cavendish isn’t like other towns. And Cavendish isn’t like other series.

Cavendish airs Tuesdays at 9:30 p.m. on CBC and CBC Gem.

Image courtesy of CBC.

Greg David
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Greg David

Prior to becoming a television critic and owner of TV, Eh?, Greg David was a critic for TV Guide Canada, the country's most trusted source for TV news. He has interviewed television actors, actresses and behind-the-scenes folks from hundreds of television series from Canada, the U.S. and internationally. He is a podcaster, public speaker, weekly radio guest and educator, and past member of the Television Critics Association.
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