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TV,eh? What's up in Canadian television

The Scott Brothers help create forever homes in new HGTV Canada series

From a media release:

Drew and Jonathan Scott are on a mission to turn families’ ordinary houses into their lifelong dream homes in the new series Property Brothers: Forever Home (7×60) premiering Monday, June 3 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on HGTV Canada. In their latest series, the brothers help families whose current property needs a complete makeover in order to make it their forever home. To unlock a home’s full potential, Drew and Jonathan will focus on overhauling several key spaces to suit the families’ needs and wishes.

In each episode, Drew will take the homeowners on a tour of nearby renovated homes to learn about the features they love and which ones they can live without. With this information and the homeowner’s budget in mind, Jonathan will bring the family’s design dreams to life using detailed 3D graphics. He will present the homeowners with two options that showcase different ways their house can be reimagined for different budgets. The stakes are high for everyone – for the couples, who must decide how their ideal home should look, and for Drew and Jonathan, who must deliver renovations that surpass the homeowners’ expectations.

Property Brothers: Forever Home is produced by Scott Brothers Entertainment in association with Corus Entertainment Inc., with Drew and Jonathan as executive producers.

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MasterChef Canada: Jenny and Alyssa (and two others) fight to stay in the competition

Last week on MasterChef Canada, Chef Alvin Leung lived up his “Demon Chef” nickname by throwing a devilish Elimination Challenge at the remaining home cooks. By the time the flour had settled, Jenny and Alyssa were asked to remove their aprons.

But rather than just being shown the door, MasterChef Canada‘s producers threw them (and us) yet another twist: the two would battle it out to see who got to stay in the competition. This test isn’t new for MasterChef Canada, but it’s been done as a digital extra and the winner has just shown up on the television show. Having the test occur as an episode was much more effective, especially with Jenny and Alyssa.

Three men stand on a stage.And true to a season of great drama, Jenny and Alyssa weren’t competing alone: Rozin and Tony walked into the kitchen to fight for the lone apron too. I was of two minds about this. While I appreciate giving someone that has been cut a shot at returning, where do you draw the line at who is given it? Alyssa and Jenny had just been eliminated but having Tony and Rozin, dropped in past weeks, fight for a spot didn’t seem fair.

Regardless of my thoughts, “Knife Fight” was underway in a trio of Pressure Tests. After each, one home cook would be leaving. For good, I assumed. In Round 1, the chef’s knife was the star of the show and used to recreate a rice noodle salad with intricately cut matchstick vegetables. With just 15 minutes on the clock, Tony was convinced he had no chance. And though Chefs Michael, Claudio and Alvin agreed that julienning the veggies should come first, Alyssa opted to make her Asian dressing. Nicking herself was another step in the wrong direction for Alyssa and with five minutes left it didn’t look good, especially since she missed elements and her vegetables were tossed into the bowl. Sadly, MasterChef Canada said a final goodbye to Alyssa.

In Round 2, the filleting knife took centre stage, to be used to create Sole meunière, a French recipe using Dover sole, flour, brown butter, parsley and lemon. And, with just eight minutes to prepare it, it seemed impossible. Even with his impeccable knife skills, Rozin was having trouble with the sole. As for Jenny … the poor fish was being mangled. But Jenny nailed the sauce by allowing the butter to brown first; that gave the sauce a nutty flavour. Rozin neglected to do that, and Tony’s gaffe came when he added lemon juice to the pan instead of the plate. With no perfect results, Claudio, Alvin and Michael said so long to Jenny.

Five people stand in a line.For Round 3, Rozin and Tony put the boning knife to use to recreate a Frenched rack of lamb in 22 minutes. Tony cut himself early on, putting pressure on his already tight schedule. Rozin, meanwhile, sped through cutting the rib bones free of fat and membrane and it looked like he’d be getting that apron. When Tony cut himself a second time, he seemed destined to depart. But timing is the great equalizer, and Rozin neglected to pre-heat his pan; waiting for it to come to temperature allowed Tony to catch up. It was anyone’s game.

During the tasting, Chef Claudio pointed out that Tony’s lamb was underseasoned and Michael noted it was slightly underdone. As for Rozin’s, his meat was dead-on cook-wise, but an errant bone and under seasoning was noted by Claudio. In the end, it was Rozin who grabbed the apron and is back in the competition. Do I wish Jenny or Alyssa was in his place? Yes. But having Rozin in the mix again means some serious competition for the remaining home cooks.

Who do you think will win this season of MasterChef Canada? Let me know in the comments below.

MasterChef Canada airs Mondays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on CTV.

Images courtesy of Bell Media.

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Preview: Makeful’s Handmade Hotels explores luxury boarding houses

Unless I’m travelling for work, I refuse to stay in a hotel. I much prefer Airbnb for the convenience, homeyness and prices to what hotel chains offer. And, after watching Handmade Hotels, Katie Herbert has opened my eyes when it comes to booking a hotel for a group.

Debuting Tuesday with back-to-back episodes at 10 and 10:30 p.m. ET/PT on Makeful, Herbert takes viewers on a journey to see a trio of short-term rentals designed for larger groups. A renovation specialist who isn’t afraid to think outside the box in her day-to-day gig, Herbert knows a unique design when she sees it. And Handmade Hotels has plenty to offer when it comes both whimsy and wow factor.

After a bit of a history lesson—short-term rentals date back to boarding houses of the 19th century when workers and their families came to the city and needed somewhere to stay when they weren’t on the job—Herbert visits the first location, a home dating from 1880. After renovating it for her family, homeowner Abigale now offers it as a short-term property for up to nine guests. One of the unique and eye-catching items in the property is a clawfoot tub in the kitchen with a very cute story behind it. As Herbert says, that tub is just the type of item to garner attention when folks search online for somewhere to stay and makes for a great conversation piece.

Herbert’s next stop is a 6,000-foot place, The Darling Mansion, that can easily host 10. Among the highlights in Tanya’s former doctor’s home turned art spaces are antiques and visual curiosities, a room called “The Opium Den” with open shower, and “The Magic Carpet Ride,” boasting a bed suspended from the ceiling.

Upcoming instalments spotlight hidden rooms, eco-friendly homes, tiny homes and historic properties, all part of the short-term rental market.

Handmade Hotels is the latest original production from Blue Ant Media and it’s the perfect fit to a brand offering great homegrown shows like Blown Away, Great Canadian Cottages and Brojects. I’m looking forward to seeing more.

Handmade Hotels airs Tuesdays at 10 and 10:30 p.m. ET/PT on Makeful.

Images courtesy of Blue Ant Media.

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Links: Mary Kills People, Season 3

From Bridget Liszewski of The TV Junkies:

Link: Mary Kills People’s final chapter allows for a fitting goodbye says Caroline Dhavernas
“This gave us the opportunity to write the story we wanted to write. We also got the chance to say goodbye to one another in the proper way.” Continue reading. 

From Victoria Ahearn of the Canadian Press:

Link: Mary Kills People star on the tearful ending to the end of life drama
“So it was very, very moving. I’m not just saying this — it was a really amazing cast and I feel very close to many of my castmates.” Continue reading.

From Marc-André Lemieux the Montreal Journal:

Link: Farewell, Dr. Mary
Caroline Dhavernas will miss Mary Kills People. And for good reason. With this series, which begins its third and final season Sunday on Global, the career of the actress has reached an important milestone. Continue reading.

From Peter White of Deadline:

Link: Channel 4 Picks Up Canadian Medical Thriller ‘Mary Kills People’ from eOne
Canadian drama Mary Kills People is heading to the UK after British broadcaster Channel 4acquired the thriller from eOne. The deal is a life of series agreement for the show, which originally launched on Global in Canada in 2017. Continue reading.

From Raju Mudhar of the Toronto Star:

Link: Caroline Dhavernas talks about the end of Mary Kills People
With the third season kicking off of Mary Kills People, a show about endings meets its ending.

Similar to many stories on the show, having control and knowing the end was coming let the cast and crew send off the series in the way that they wanted, says star Caroline Dhavernas. Continue reading.

From Melissa Girimonte of The Televixen:

Link: The Mary Kills People EPs discuss creating a satisfying final season
“It’s a real privilege to get to write a season knowing that it’s the final season. It’s really a lovely thing. You make a list of things you want to explore, that you owe to these characters and your audience. Then you try to figure out the most elegant way to approach them.” Continue reading. 

From Charles Trapunski of Brief Take:

Link: Interview: Mary Kills People’s Caroline Dhavernas
“We’re helping people die with dignity in a death retreat this time, so it’s quite different. Dez and Mary will butt heads again this time, because this was his dream, not really Mary’s dream. I think that she is doing it because she needs to thank him for sticking around through everything that’s happened that’s so complicated and difficult, and he’s been very loyal to her.” Continue reading.

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Comments and queries for the week of May 10

I’m a 64-year-old male who is a fan but who finds Bryan in [Island of Bryan] as a male chauvinist pig who doesn’t listen, is a self-centred jerk, and gives a bad reputation to guys. —Don


Once again [Big Food Bucket List is a] great idea but the wrong host. Catucci knows absolutely zero about food. I wonder if he has found other words besides “that’s fantastic” or that’s so yummy” to describe food. —Bill

I was watching You Gotta Eat Here on Saturday and thinking, “I wonder where he is and what he is doing?” I love that show. Then that night I saw a commercial for the new show. I am so happy that he is coming back to TV. I have marked it on my calendar. —Brenda

Got a question or comment about Canadian TV? Email greg.david@tv-eh.com or via Twitter @tv_eh.

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