All posts by 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.

Crave packs in the laughs with four new original stand-up specials for 2020

From a media release:

Crave is laughing its way through the coldest months of the year, one hilarious hour at a time! Marking Crave’s largest order ever for stand-up comedy specials in one year, four all-new, one-hour specials are set to join the service beginning Friday, February 14 with AISHA BROWN: THE FIRST BLACK WOMAN EVER.

Additional specials rolling out on Crave over the next three months include: THE EL-SALOMONS: MARRIAGE OF CONVENIENCE (March); GRAHAM KAY: STUPID JOKES (April); and TOM HENRY: 66 JOKES (May).

Filmed in front of a live audience during the 2019 Just for Laughs Festival in Montréal, the new specials expand Crave’s existing collection of Crave Original stand-up specials featuring Canadian comics like Mark Forward, Graham Chittenden, Debra DiGiovanni, and more.

This new batch of specials builds on Crave’s ongoing partnership with Just For Laughs, which also includes the Just for Laughs Collection. With more than 80 titles, the collection features some of the best comics to have graced the JFL stage, and includes specials like Trevor Noah @ JFL, HOWIE MANDEL’S 5TH ANNUAL ALL-STAR COMEDY GALA, JEFF DUNHAM @ JFL, and more.

AISHA BROWN: THE FIRST BLACK WOMAN EVER
No one, and nothing, is off-limits for comedian Aisha Brown, as she takes on her boyfriend’s penis, racism, clinical depression, and Donald Trump, in this hilarious one-hour comedy special.

Aisha Brown is a Toronto-based stand-up comedian, writer, actress, and extremely casual satirical rapper. She recorded her third televised set at the Just For Laughs festival in 2018, and was a featured performer on Kevin Hart’s LOL Network and the ALL ACCESS special, which aired on The Comedy Network (now CTV Comedy) in 2016. Brown has also written for BARONESS VON SKETCH SHOW, THIS HOUR HAS 22 MINUTES, and more. She’s also been a featured performer on THE BEAVERTON and BARONESS VON SKETCH SHOW, as well as a writer-performer for CBC Radio’s The Debaters, Because News, and Day 6. Along with two other comedians, Brown was featured in the 2017 TVO documentary STAND-UP TORONTO, about up and coming POC comics in the GTA. In 2016 she was named one of The Torontoist’s “Local Ladies Who Make Us Laugh,” and won “Female Breakout Comic of the Year” at the I Heart Jokes Awards. Brown has recorded two albums with Toronto based comedy hip-hop collective, Runnin’ at The Mouth for Comedy Records.

THE EL-SALOMONS: MARRIAGE OF CONVENIENCE
Quick-witted comedy duo Jess Salomon and Eman El-Husseini hilariously take on today’s politics from their perspectives as a Jewish and Palestinian same-sex married couple. From peace in the Middle East, Donald Trump, marriage, and Eman’s reckless driving, this one-hour comedy special is sure to leave you in stitches.

The El-Salomons take the motto ‘make love not war’ very personally. Jess Salomon and Eman El-Husseini met and fell in love at a comedy club in Montréal nearly a decade ago when a friend of theirs suggested, “you two broads should kiss.” Jess is Jewish and Eman is Palestinian (basically enemies); one is a Taurus and one is a Leo (ENEMIES!!), but they somehow make it work. It’s probably the hummus. Salomon has appeared on THE TONIGHT SHOW and El-Husseini has opened for Patton Oswalt, and now based in New York, the accomplished comedians have been performing as a duo. From the prestigious Just for Laughs Festival in Montréal, to San Francisco Sketch Fest, to the Boston Women in Comedy Festival, and even to the Arctic, they have been making people laugh, spreading love, and trying not to get a divorce. The El-Salomons have been featured on NowThis and PBS NEWS HOUR, as well as in Curve Magazine, The Huffington Post, and The Washington Post.

GRAHAM KAY: STUPID JOKES
Graham Kay brings his observational humour and sarcastic charm to Just For Laughs, where he takes on everyday topics from surviving a breakup in NYC to tracing-paper pornography in this hilarious one-hour stand-up comedy special.

Graham Kay won the coveted Just for Laughs 2015 Homegrown Comic Competition and was runner-up at the 2016 Seattle International Comedy Competition. He was also nominated for Best Male Stand Up at the 2016 Canadian Comedy Awards. Kay has hosted the popular Sirius satellite radio show and podcast, The Sport Brahs, featured on CBC-TV’s Halifax Comedy Festival special, and the iChannel’s No Kidding. He was a regular on Much’s VIDEO ON TRIAL and wrote for the popular CTV sitcom SPUN OUT, starring comedy legend Dave Foley. Kay’s performances at the 2014 and 2015 Just For Laughs Festival were featured on The Comedy Network. In 2018 Kay made his film debut in Broken Lizard’s Super Troopers 2 and most recently performed on THE LATE SHOW WITH STEPHEN COLBERT.

TOM HENRY: 66 JOKES
From vegan cupcakes to tap dancing, comedian Tom Henry brings his hysterical brand of understated observational humour to Just For Laughs in this one-hour, 66 joke-filled stand-up special.

Toronto-based comedian Tom Henry has appeared on The Comedy Network and at festivals such as Just For Laughs, San Francisco Sketchfest, and Bridgetown Comedy Festival. He has opened for comics such as Tim Meadows, Nikki Glaser, and Todd Barry, and has been a regular on Andy Kindler’s Alternative Show. Kindler also chose him as “The Next Big Thing in 2017” stating “Tom Henry is a comic who you could say he’s a little bit like Mitch Hedberg, a little bit Steven Wright, but he’s in a category by himself.” He was also named one of LA Riot Fest’s “Comics to Watch” in 2017 and was nominated for a Canadian Comedy Award for “Best Stand-Up Newcomer” in 2012. Last year his debut album, Tom Henry Kills reached number one on the iTunes comedy charts.

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Link: Coroner’s Nicholas Campbell on Gordon’s upcoming struggles

From Bridget Liszewski of The TV Junkies:

Link: Coroner’s Nicholas Campbell on Gordon’s upcoming struggles
“This one has been really something special. When I had my meeting for it, Serinda was there and I thought she was one of the producers. I was being extra solicitous, and had I known she was just the actor, I would’ve been more rude and probably wouldn’t have gotten it.” Continue reading.

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All-new supersized season of Big Brother Canada premieres March 4

From a media release:

Canada’s most iconic social TV experiment is upping the ante as Global announces a supersized eighth season of Big Brother Canada kicking off with an epic two-night premiere Wednesday, March 4 at 7 p.m. ET/PT and Thursday, March 5 at 8 p.m. ET/PT, followed by the dramatic fallout on Sunday, March 8 at 8 p.m. ET/PT. With series host Arisa Cox and a new cast of unsuspecting houseguests, the series returns three nights a week with all-new episodes Wednesdays (7 p.m. ET/PT), Thursdays (8 p.m. ET/PT), and Sundays (8 p.m. ET/PT), in addition to free live feeds from inside the house at BigBrotherCanada.ca. Last season, Big Brother Canada averaged 1.2 million viewers (Ind. 2+) per episode, making it the highest-rated season to date. So just how supersized is this season? Fans will find out during the season premiere on March 4!

Building on the deluxe season ahead, and for the first-time ever, ET Canada is producing a jam-packed, one-hour Big Brother Canada Season 8 special premiering Sunday, March 1 at 8 p.m. ET/PT. Big Brother Canada’s Supersized Season 8 Preview with ET Canada will feature sit-down interviews with this season’s cast, an exclusive tour of the new BBCAN house with host Arisa Cox, retrospectives on past seasons, and the biggest look-ahead with the official reveal of the show’s Season 8 theme.

Now entering its eighth season, Big Brother Canada hand-picks a group of strangers from across the country, sequesters them from the outside world, and places them inside a house outfitted wall-to-wall with cameras and microphones to capture their every move. Competing for a grand cash prize, each week the houseguests battle in a series of challenges that give them power or punishment, voting each other out until the fate of the final two is decided by a jury of fellow houseguests.

Big Brother Canada offers one of the most content-driven experiences for TV lovers, and Global has made past seasons available on both GlobalTV.com and the Global TV App. Coinciding with the season premiere, BigBrotherCanada.ca serves fans free live feeds, hit and miss moments from the show, houseguest interviews, live show votes, and more, beginning early March.

Commissioned by Corus Entertainment, Season 8 of Big Brother Canada is produced by Insight Productions Ltd. in association with Corus Entertainment and Endemol Shine. Executive Producers are John Brunton and Erin Brock.

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Preview: Kortney and Dave pay it forward in Making it Home

I can’t help but like Kortney and Dave Wilson. They’re fun, don’t take things too seriously and they know their stuff. It’s served them well through shows like Masters of Flip and Music City Fix.

Now the duo is back with a brand-new program. Debuting Wednesday at 10 p.m. ET on HGTV Canada, the exceptionally long-titled Making it Home with Kortney & Dave finds the pair in the Greater Toronto Area, helping families upgrade while keeping within tight budgets. It’s all about paying it forward and these two are ready to do it.

In the debut, Kortney and Dave are tasked with helping Michael and Elizabeth work on their home, which just happens to be Michael’s childhood house. That means plenty of 80s styles that have to go out the window in favour of an open, bright concept. Add in a mother-in-law, kids and oft-visiting in-laws … the house needs some major space re-jigging. And, with just over $100,000 budget, Kortney and Dave can’t do a full-on makeover.

In no time at all sledgehammers are swinging, dust is puffing about and the seven-week renovations are underway. The results are, as usual, stunning. But they’re also entirely within reach for a typical homeowner. In Making it Home, Dave and Kortney are eschewing the extravagance for the practical, the outlandish for the informative. And it’s just as entertaining as anything other series they’ve done.

Making it Home with Kortney & Dave airs Wednesdays at 10 p.m. ET on HGTV Canada.

Image courtesy of Corus Entertainment.

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Preview: Murdoch Mysteries, “Fox Hunt”

Before I get into this week’s preview of Murdoch Mysteries‘ newest episode, I want to say a couple of quick thank yous.

First, thank you to CBC for inviting me to an incredible fan event celebrating 200 episodes. It’s always fun to be able to catch up with the people involved in making the show and it was an honour to sit with props master Craig Grant, costume designer Joanna Syrokomla and writers Mary Pedersen and Noelle Girard during the cast Q&A and screening.

Secondly, thank you to the Murdoch fans who made me feel like a rock star. Writing about this show we all love is a pleasure, and you telling me in person that you enjoy what I write and appreciate my thoughts on the show is something I don’t take lightly.

Now, on to this week’s episode! Here’s what the CBC has revealed about “Fox Hunt,” written by Simon McNabb and directed by Craig David Wallace:

When a fox hunter is killed, Murdoch suspects a group opposed to the sport.

And here are a few tidbits I gleaned from watching a screener.

The Mimico Newsomes have arrived
You can’t have an uppity social event without Rupert and Ruth! As usual, Cyrus Lane and Siobhan Murphy engage in some major scenery-chewing. I caught myself smiling every time they were on-screen, especially when Rupert revealed his post-Henry-Ruth nuptials adventures. Simon McNabb’s script is pitch-perfect for these two; can Rupert and Ruth please have their own spinoff or at least digital series?

Margaret appears
I was thrilled to see Margaret appear within the first seconds of “Fox Hunt.” And, if you listen closely, you hear Margaret discuss the story behind the dress she’s wearing.

Horses and Huckabees
It’s wonderful to see Thomas, William and others astride their equine co-stars. Meanwhile, Julia has a mystery at home involving the Murdoch’s next-door neighbours.

Murdoch Mysteries airs Mondays at 8 p.m. on CBC.

Images courtesy of CBC.

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