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.

Ben Mulroney to make way for new, diverse voices by stepping aside from anchor role on Etalk

From a media release:

Ben Mulroney announced on today’s broadcast of CTV’S YOUR MORNING that he has decided to pass the mic and make way for new, diverse voices by stepping down from his role as anchor on CTV’s ETALK.

In his return as co-host of YOUR MORNING following a scheduled vacation last week, Mulroney addressed the issues surrounding his family in an emotional address at the top of the show.

“Last Saturday, I watched on CTV as my colleagues led a national conversation about how we can take action against systemic racism. That conversation showed me, more than ever, we need more Black voices, more Indigenous voices, and more People of Colour in the media… And that is why I have decided to immediately step away from my role as an anchor at ETALK to create a space for a new perspective and a new voice,” he said.

“It is my hope that the new anchor is Black, Indigenous, or a Person of Colour who can use this important platform to inspire, lead, and make change.”

In addition to his on-going role as co-host of YOUR MORNING, Mulroney will continue to contribute to ETALK on special assignments, including the red carpet events like the Oscars that have helped make ETALK the leader in Canadian entertainment news. He will also develop and produce projects for Bell Media Studios.

Mulroney has been with ETALK since its inception in 2002, and has gone on to interview thousands of stars and report from hundreds of red carpets. He got his start as the Québec City Correspondent for talktv’s The Chatroom in 2000, before becoming co-host on the interactive show in July 2001. He then moved to a new role of entertainment reporter for CTV’s CANADA AM in October 2001. Mulroney was also the host of CANADIAN IDOL for six seasons, which at the time was the most-watched English language Canadian television show on record. Along with Anne-Marie Mediwake, Mulroney originated the co-hosting role on YOUR MORNING in 2016.

CTV’s ETALK is hosted by Anchor Danielle Graham, and during her maternity leave by Anchor Lainey Lui. ETALK also features Senior Correspondent Traci Melchor; reporters Chloe Wilde, Tyrone Edwards, and Sonia Beeksma; and L.A. Correspondent Liz Trinnear. From the Oscars® and the Emmy® Awards, to the JUNO Awards and the Canadian Screen Awards, ETALK is front-and-centre, delivering up-to-the-minute news and exclusive insider access to the most talked about entertainment events worldwide.

Hosted by Ben Mulroney and Anne-Marie Mediwake with co-anchors Lindsey Deluce (News) and Kelsey McEwen (Meteorologist), as well as contributing co-host Melissa Grelo, CTV’s YOUR MORNING delivers news, weather, and original perspectives on the headlines of the day, as well as lifestyle topics of interests to Canadians from coast-to-coast-to-coast.

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Links: The Order, Season 2

From Heather M. of TV Goodness:

Link: Previewing The Order Season 2
If you’re ready for a little fun supernatural diversion–and really, who isn’t–Netflix might have the cure for what ails you when the second season of The Order, the very wickedly fun and funny witches and werewolves and college, oh my, drama series drops Thursday. Continue reading.

From Bridget Liszewski of The TV Junkies:

Link: The Order’s Devery Jacobs uses art to fuel her activism
“We are a small-time Canadian show, but the reception we ended up getting, the fandom and going to Comic-Con made us a bit nervous going into Season 2.” Continue reading.

From Heather M. of TV Goodness:

Link: Dennis Heaton talks The Order, Season 2
“What I wanted to do in Season 2 was open up the sense of the world. We got into that in Season 1 when we introduced Renee and the Necromancers, the rejected members of the Order, and so I wanted to see more of that…” Continue reading. 

From Heather M. of TV Goodness:

Link: Louriza Tronco talks The Order Season 2
“Humans are obviously very complex and the fact that we were able to sort of mirror that within a TV show that seems to be hitting home with a lot of people who are watching it is really, really special and great.” Continue reading. 

From Sukriti Wahl of Elle Australia:

Link: This underrated Netflix show Is Like ‘Charmed’ meets ‘Riverdale’
If you’re in dire need of a show to binge and you’ve already worked your way through Netflix’s June lineup, then we have a series to suggest that we’re pretty sure you’ll thank us for later: The Order. Continue reading. 

From Julian Cannon of The Knockturnal:

Link: Netflix’s The Order star Louriza Tronco
I can’t believe that they’re letting me do all this stuff. So it’s really props to all the writers for such a multi-dimensional character for myself.” Continue reading. 

From Dan Gentile of the San Francisco Gate:

Link: This chart-topping Netflix show is like an R-rated Harry Potter
My favorite thing about “The Order,” and a stark contrast to everything in the news, is the idea of consequences. In the world of the show, magic has a price. The bigger the spell, the higher the cost. Continue reading. 

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Best Canadian TV shows of the past and present for hockey fans

You might have heard that hockey is pretty popular in Canada; it’s the only sport that will make any Canadian sit up and take notice no matter what’s going on.

With this in mind, it is hardly a surprise that there have been plenty of TV shows based solely on the sport itself or at least featuring some element of the game.

Here are some shows of past and present which are sure to either put a smile on your face or, at the very least, make you think more deeply about the game.

Rent-a-Goalie
This show has to have one of the strangest premises ever conceived, as the protagonist dubiously named “Cake” runs a business that centres around providing local hockey teams with much-needed goalies.

We’re not sure if this was someone’s idea of what sports agenting could have been, but no matter, it managed to run for 26 episodes and is something of a cult classic, revered for how bad it was more than anything else.

The show did inspire an app, which still runs to this day, allowing amateur teams to find the goalie of their dreams, or nightmares.

Hockey is a way of life in many parts of Canada.

Letterkenny
While Rent-a-Goalie is funny because of how bad it is, Letterkenny is just hilarious, full stop.

The connection to hockey is that the show’s protagonists have something of a love-hate relationship with the hockey players in their local area.

This is about as far away from high-stakes NHL odds and picks as you can possibly get, as life unfolds in the barren winter wasteland.

Hockey Wives
The world has moved on somewhat from a time when reality shows about sportsmen’s wives were fashionable.

That said, Hockey Wives was pretty entertaining throughout its three-season spree. The show’s mainstay was Maripier Morin who only needed three seasons to decide that the life of a hockey player’s wife wasn’t for her, divorcing Brandon Prust soon after the show ended.

The particularly interesting thing about this show was that it followed the lives of hockey players’ wives not just in Canada but around the world, giving some fascinating cultural context to the on-screen shenanigans and dramas.

If you love hockey, then you should enjoy some aspect of all of these shows.

Hockey: A People’s History
If you are the sort of viewer who prefers a factual documentary over a comedy, or far-fetched reality show, then Hockey: A People’s History is perfect for you.

The show chronicles just why hockey is so important to the nation of Canada and will have you harking back to some of its episodes the next time you get in a heartfelt hockey conversion with fellow NHL fans at the local sports bar.

South Park
This long running animated series was more famous for ripping on Canada than saying anything meaningful about the country’s beloved sport.

However, all that changed in episode 153, when Stan was forced to become the coach of a hockey team in order to get his stolen bicycle back. The premise is almost as bad as Rent-a-Goalie’s, but the difference here is that South Park is genuinely amusing.

Power Play
Often the best stories in sport have nothing to with athletic competition and everything to do with the boardroom politics and backstabbing that goes on behind closed doors.

Power Play delved straight into that shady world, as a sports agent is thrust into becoming the general manager of an NHL franchise, battling to keep it afloat as he comes under attack from all sides. If you thought managing a team in the big leagues was easy, this show that aired for just two seasons will make you think again.

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Family Channel enrols at Malory Towers

From a media release:

This summer, WildBrain Television’s Family Channel will be brimming with midnight feasts, oceanside swims, lacrosse, pranks, sweets, and lasting friendships as the charming new Malory Towers series launches with a two-episode premiere event on Wednesday, July 1 at 11 am ET/PT. Set in post-war Britain on the sun-drenched cliffs of the Cornish coast, Malory Towers is based on Enid Blyton’s hugely popular novel series and follows the adventures of 12-year-old Darrell Rivers, played by newcomer Ella Bright, as she leaves home to attend an all-girls’ boarding school.

Co-produced by WildBrain and the UK’s King Bert Productions, Malory Towers explores universal experiences such as shifting cliques, FOMO, bullying, crushes, peer pressure, and self-doubt. The girls keep an eye on each other and, like a family, are forever connected by their shared experiences. During the double-episode premiere event, Darrell Rivers settles in for her first day at Malory Towers. Always in the thick of it, Darrell has a hairy start at the train station and when odd sounds are heard in the dorm, she learns about the ghost of Lady Jane Malory! However, in awe of her brilliant new surroundings, she keeps her past at her old school, St. Hilda’s, a closely guarded secret.

In the second episode, a jealous Gwen is determined to find out more about Darrell’s past and leaves the school in pursuit of the truth—will Darrell be able to find her before her secret is revealed? Tune in on July 1st to find out! Those who can’t enrol on Canada Day, can enjoy an encore screening of episodes one and two at 6pm ET/PT on July 7th and 8th. From July 9, brand new episodes will run from Tuesday to Friday at 6pm ET/PT, so you won’t have to wait to enjoy all of this wonderful series!

Malory Towers also stars Jennifer Wigmore (Anne with an E) as Headmistress Miss Grayling; Imali Perera (The Handmaid’s Tale) as Miss Potts; and Ashley McGuire as Matron. Rounding out the cast are Zoey Siewert, Twinkle Jaiswal, Danya Griver, and Natasha Raphael alongside newcomers Sienna Arif Knights, Beth Bradfield, Saskia Kemkers, and Imogen Lamb.

An official Canada-UK treaty co-production, Malory Towers is adapted for television by Rachel Flowerday and Sasha Hails. Executive producers for WildBrain are Josh Scherba, Anne Loi, and Michael Goldsmith, with Jo Sargent serving as executive producer for King Bert Productions. The series is produced by King Bert’s Grainne McNamara and WildBrain’s Angela Boudreault, and directed by Rebecca Rycroft (Evermore Chronicles, So Awkward) and Bruce McDonald (Creeped Out, Heartland, Dark Matter).

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CBC sells original culinary competition series Fridge Wars to The CW

From a media release:

CBC & Radio-Canada Distribution, the international content licensing arm of Canada’s public broadcaster, today announced the sale of CBC’s original culinary competition series FRIDGE WARS (6×60) to The CW Network in the U.S. Co-created by CBC and The Gurin Company, the series premiered on CBC in February 2020. The CW is adding the series to its Summer 2020 broadcast schedule, premiering August 2.

An original format, FRIDGE WARS pits two celebrity chefs against one another with a challenge to create extraordinary meals using only the ingredients taken from the ordinary fridges of typical families. The improvised dinners must win over two families who act as judges to determine which chef wins each epic battle.

Each episode begins in the first family’s home where Emma Hunter conducts a surprise fridge raid, taking everything from last week’s leftover lasagna and the condiment collection, to that questionable bag of frozen vegetables circa 2016. With the ingredients in-hand, the competition heats up at the FRIDGE WARS studio where two top chefs are given 45 minutes to create a masterpiece – cooking with the ingredients they’ve never seen for people they’ve never met.

When time’s up, the family takes their place at the dining room table, tasting each meal and scoring them on look, taste and originality. The results go in the FRIDGE WARS vault and the competition takes place again with a second family and another fridge full of challenging ingredients – this time upping the ante with a ‘What The Fridge’ (WTF) challenge that forces both chefs to adapt to a totally unique culinary crisis. With both families’ scores tabulated, the final scene reveals which chef created the most mouth-watering masterpieces and is named this week’s FRIDGE WARS champion.

FRIDGE WARS is a CBC original series, co-produced and co-created by CBC and The Gurin Company. For CBC the executive producer is Tracie Tighe, the showrunner is Barry Davis, and the series producer is Jeff Thrasher.

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