Everything about Degrassi, eh?

Link: The world of Degrassi according to Snake

From Tony Wong of the Toronto Star:

Link: The world of Degrassi according to Snake
It’s been three decades since Stefan Brogren played Archie “Snake” Simpson on CBC’s Degrassi Junior High. But he will forever be known as the guy who was the first to use the F-bomb on Canadian television.

“I was actually so excited to say it,” says Brogren. “We had two versions. One where I say ‘Screw it.’ The other was when I used the F-word. I didn’t know which one CBC went with until they broadcast the show. There was a huge uproar.” Continue reading.


Degrassi: Next Class season 3 available on Family Channel app

From a media release:

School is back in session! Degrassi: Next Class returns for its third season, January 9 on Family Channel’s F2N

  • Full season available on The Family Channel app January 6

It may be the longest running dramatic series in Canadian history, but, much like high school, fans of Degrassi: Next Class can look forward to an unpredictable roller coaster ride of emotions when the critically acclaimed teen drama returns for its third season on Monday, January 9 at 10 p.m. ET/PT. Airing weeknights at 10 p.m. ET/PT, on Family Channel’s teen programming block F2N, the new season picks up immediately following season two’s cliffhanger finale – after the tragic bus crash which left many fans wondering whether or not their favourite characters survived. Those who can’t wait to find out what happens next, can watch all 10 episodes from season three ahead of the broadcast premiere when they are released exclusively on The Family Channel App tomorrow.

From unconventional love triangles to tackling serious subjects like abortion, to dealing with mental health issues and the introduction of Syrian refugees, season three of Degrassi: Next Class looks at many of the realities facing Canadian teens today. The season begins revealing the outcome of the devastating bus crash – many are injured and one student is left in critical condition. Degrassi opens its doors to an influx of Syrian refugees, but when some unexpected tensions arise, so do the student politics. Meanwhile, a post on Hastygram sparks a debate about social media etiquette and what is, or isn’t, appropriate to share publically.

Degrassi fans who can’t wait to binge-watch the entire season, can do so tomorrow when it is released in full on The Family Channel App. New users can find it in the F2N section and will need to unlock the F2N portal by clicking on the “Settings” menu and clicking on the check mark to make the content visible. For viewers who want to catch up on all the Next Class drama, both season one and two are currently available on The Family Channel App and Family OnDemand.

Those looking for the inside scoop can head to F2N.ca for a behind-the-scenes look at the series. The dedicated showpage features exclusive video content, information about the characters and the show’s complete schedule. Plus, fans can prove how well they know the show by testing their Degrassi knowledge with challenging episode quizzes.

The third season of Degrassi: Next Class introduces two new cast members, Dalia Yegavian and Parham Rownaghi as Syrian refugees Rasha Zuabi and Saad Al’Maliki, respectively. Also starring are: Amanda Arcuri as Lola Pacini; Amir Bageria as Baaz Nahir; Soma Bhatia as Goldi Nahir; Jamie Bloch as Yael Baron; Chelsea Clark as Esme Song; Reiya Downs as Shay Powers; Ana Golja as Zoe Rivas; Nikki Gould as Grace Cardinal; Ricardo Hoyos as Zig Novak; Ehren Kassam as Jonah Haak; Andre Kim as Winston Chu; Lyle Lettau as Tristan Milligan; Spencer Macpherson as Hunter Hollingsworth; Eric Osborne as Miles Hollingsworth III; Olivia Scriven as Maya Matlin; Dante Scott as Vijay Miraj; Sara Waisglass as Frankie Hollingsworth; Richard Walters as Deon “Tiny” Bell; and Stefan Brogren as Principal Simpson.

Degrassi: Next Class is produced by DHX Media, in association with Family Channel and Netflix. The series was co-created by Linda Schuyler who is also Executive Producer with Stephen Stohn, Sarah Glinski and Matt Huether.


Degrassi: Next Class returns for “darker” Season 3

Degrassi: Next Class executive producer Sarah Glinski has a warning for fans: things get dark in Season 3. The teen drama returns with new episodes on Monday, Jan. 9, at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Family Channel (and Netflix around the world) in dramatic fashion, as we find out who survived the Season 2 bus crash and how the experience affected them.

Add to the mix storylines involving Syrian refugees, abortion and mental health, and high school has never been more challenging. We spoke to Glinski ahead of Monday’s return about where the show is headed in the next 10 episodes.

How long have you been with the Degrassi franchise?
Sarah Glinski: I started on Season 8 of The Next Generation.

How do you feel this upcoming season of Next Class stacks up against the Degrassi seasons you’ve worked on?
Oh, they’re all so different. I would have trouble picking my favourite. There are some seasons when we did 45 episodes and there are some seasons when we did 28, some when we did movies of the week; they all have different personalities. But Season 3 of Next Class is a little bit darker than we have done for awhile. We have the combination of great stories and incredible actors performing in those stories that makes this season pretty special.

You’re right. Things start out very dark. What’s been the support like from your Canadian broadcaster, Family Channel? 
The have been wonderful and have encouraged us to tell the stories we want to tell the way we want to tell them. They trust us to talk to teens about the things teens are talking about.

I thought going to high school when I was a kid was tough, but nowadays because of social media, it’s even more difficult due to online bullying and instant messaging. In Episode 1 you have the issue between Lola and Shay; it’s a real problem.
There used to be a separation between home and school and now there isn’t. Everyone has their phones and they’re the first thing you grab when you wake up. You don’t really get a break from it, and your entire history is online, so it’s hard to move on and reinvent yourself.

You start Season 3 with the repercussions of the bus crash from the Season 2 finale, Syrian refugees, abortion and mental health. Anything else you want to let fans know about?
Another thing we look at is gender. We’ve gone into it a little bit before, but we look at gender fluidity and what’s a girl or a boy and when you don’t feel like what society defines them as. We look at that from a couple of different perspectives. What if you don’t want to wear a dress and makeup? What does that mean to you as a girl? Also, one of our characters is a lesbian and more feminine. What does that mean? Is it harder to come out when you wear lipstick, have long hair and wear dresses?

Degrassi has always covered today’s topics. When something like Syrian refugees pops up, does the writers’ room get excited?
Season 3 explores different ways of dealing, post-trauma. For a number of characters, that’s the opportunity to see something really positive. Having Syrian refugees come into the school seemed very natural.

Let’s talk about Tristan and how the bus crash affected he and Miles. Can you discuss anything to do with that storyline?
There won’t be closure on that storyline until Episode 10. There are a lot of twists and turns along the way. We explored the physical trauma of the bus crash [with our characters] and the mental trauma.

Can you talk about the new characters that are joining Degrassi this season?
We have two new characters and they’re Syrian refugees in Rasha and Saad. Rasha is very cosmopolitan, from the big city, speaks English and is very well-educated. She missed out on high school because of the war and wants to grab high school by the reins and is excited to be here, wants to be part of every club and make new friends. She lives her life vicariously through movies and TV.

Saad is from a smaller town and his English isn’t as good. Life is a little bit harder for him and we take a look at his experience as well.

When Zoe and Rasha are introduced, Rasha gives her a little look. Can you comment on that?
They are going to become very, very close friends.

In the beginning of our chat you said this was a darker season. What can fans expect when they tune in?
Even though it’s a bit of a darker season, there is hope and optimism. If you have friends and family, you can make it through. Making it through is the theme of the season.

Degrassi: Next Class airs Monday to Friday at 10 p.m. ET/PT on Family Channel until Jan. 20.

Images courtesy of DHX Studios.