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TV,eh? What's up in Canadian television

Will Avengers be Eidos Montreal’s finest work to date?

Crystal Dynamics and Eidos Montreal have teamed up to create Marvel’s Avengers, an action-adventure game which is due to be released in May 2020. The game is inspired by the popular, long-running comic books, and has no relation to the 2012 movie directed by Joss Whedon. However, it is likely to attract players who enjoyed the MCU offerings as well as the graphic novels. This is a bold and exciting project and has the potential to be the best game that the Canadian studio has ever created.

Eidos Montreal has already been responsible for some hugely successful games. Most recently, it has worked on the rebooted Tomb Raider franchise which has spanned three games so far in 2013, 2015, and 2018. These Lara Croft offerings have been so popular that they have helped influence offshoots for other platforms. For instance, there is the brand new Lara Croft: Temples and Tombs slot from Microgaming. Canadian players who are interested in this and other titles from the well-known developer can bounce here for fun. If slots aren’t your kind of thing, there is also the Lara Croft Go game for mobile. It will be interesting to see if the Avengers release will lead to companion games like this.

Crystal Dynamics is working on its first game outside of the Tomb Raider franchise for the first time since 2005 when it was responsible for the first-person shooter, Project Snowblind. The coming together of these two esteemed developers to create Avengers is a tantalizing prospect, and if the quality of the game is to the same standard as the Tomb Raider titles then players are in for an astonishing game.

At E3 2019, players were treated to some awesome footage from the upcoming game from Square Enix. It revealed some plot details and also displayed some gameplay and characters. The main premise of the game is that the Avengers have disbanded, and five years later Khamala Khan embarks on a quest to assemble them again. There will be an offline story mode as well as an online multiplayer option. This suggests that players will be able to take control of a number of different characters from the Marvel universe, including fan favourites such as the Hulk and Iron Man. They will also have the option to upgrade the characters’ abilities through a skills tree.

Avengers is certainly an ambitious project, with past superhero games usually choosing to focus on one or two main characters. It will be contending with the like of Spider-Man PS4 and Batman: Arkham Knight for a place in the list of the greatest superhero games of all time. Both of these titles had intriguing storylines and gameplay but were criticized for being slightly repetitive. Perhaps with Avengers’ varied characters, this won’t be a problem.

With the Avengers being such a well-known and beloved set of superheroes, an open-world offering with them all in could be amazing. Players will be able to control the likes of Thor and Captain America for the first time, and this may end up being Eidos Montreal’s finest work to date.


Link: Anne with an E to end with season three

From Kelly Townsend of Playback:

Link: Anne with an E to end with season three
Northwood Entertainment’s drama Anne with an E is coming to a close with its third season.

CBC and Netflix confirmed the cancellation in a joint statement, saying “we’ve been thrilled to bring the quintessentially Canadian story of Anne with an E to viewers around the world… We hope fans of the show love this final season as much as we do, and that it brings a satisfying conclusion to Anne’s journey.” Continue reading. 



Channel Zero launches Studio Division to be led by Jennifer Chen

From a media release:

Canadian media company Channel Zero Inc. today announced the launch of Channel Zero Studios which will develop and produce original scripted content for all platforms. Jennifer Chen, formerly the company’s VP of Programming, will lead the division as Head of Studios and VP of Content. Building on the company’s partnership with Motion Content Group, Group M’s content division, Channel Zero Studios will collaborate with both domestic and international partners to create compelling global content. Channel Zero Studios expects to be in production on its first series in Q1 2020.

In the newly created role, effective immediately, Chen assumes leadership of the division and will focus on building out the development slate, overseeing innovative financing of all projects, and fostering stronger relationships with global industry partners.

Chen joined Channel Zero in 2006 and has played a key role in the company’s expansion. As Channel Zero’s VP of Programming, Chen has been instrumental in securing notable acquisitions and commissioning original programming including Wynonna Earp, The Pinkertons, and Inside the Story. Previously, as General Manager of Ouat Media, Chen oversaw the sales and distribution of over a dozen Oscar-nominated and award-winning titles. Prior to joining Channel Zero, Chen held roles at the Canadian Film Centre, TIFF, Cannes Film Festival, and Hewlett Packard.

About Channel Zero
Channel Zero is an independent Canadian media company that owns over-the-air channel CHCH-TV and a bouquet of specialty channels including Rewind, Silver Screen Classics, and Halla Bol Kids TV, Canada’s first South Asian HD TV channel.


Comments and queries for the week of November 22

I’ve recently started watching Hudson & Rex. I came across it by accident. I love this show and am happy to hear it was renewed. I’m now watching show after show of Season 1. So tired of all the reality shows, this is refreshing and a great find for me. Please keep it going as long as possible. Storylines, characters and being a Canadian show is fantastic. Thank you for renewing it for Season 2. —Wendy

I loved “The Final Curtain.” A great whodunit with lots of drama plus very funny moments! The aging lothario trying to seduce Margaret was hilarious and then her refusal to accept John’s escapades was a total been-there-done-that moment for me. Great to see Julia getting her hands dirty with murder again. All in all a home run for this series!! —David

We loved this episode! “The Final Curtain” was great fun and kept us guessing until the very end. There was plenty of humour throughout. It was fun watching the Murdoch regulars hamming it up as much as the stage actors. —Mary

It is actually not just one set though it feels like it. We shot the actual theatre stage and auditorium in St. Mary’s but most of the backstage rooms were built in-studio. It is, however, the first episode not have a horse according to people standing around on set. —Joanna Syrokomla

Got a question about Canadian TV? Email or via Twitter @tv_eh.


CBC announces winter premiere dates for Coroner, Schitt’s Creek, Workin’ Moms and more

From a media release:

CBC today announced premiere dates for its winter 2020 lineup of new and returning Canadian series, featuring original programming that reflects contemporary Canada. With a new winter schedule launching Sunday, January 5, each series will be available on CBC and the free CBC Gem streaming service.

New original series premiering this winter include:

Hosted by Gerry Dee, FAMILY FEUD CANADA will introduce audiences to Canadian families from across the country four nights a week, beginning Monday, December 16 at a special time of 8PM (8:30 NT), before moving into its regular time slot at 7:30PM (8 NT) on Monday, December 23

New original factual series HIGH ARCTIC HAULERS, a high-stakes journey at sea that offers a look at Canada’s resilient, vibrant northern communities, premieres Sunday, January 5 at 8PM (8:30 NT)

Starring Kari Matchett (Covert Affairs), Darren Mann (Giant Little Ones) and Stephen Moyer (True Blood) and set in the social and political chaos of 1968, new spy drama FORTUNATE SON premieres Wednesday January 8 at 9PM (9:30 NT)

In a new take on the popular factual entertainment format, BACK IN TIME FOR WINTER follows one modern Canadian family on a winter time-travelling adventure beginning Thursday, January 9 at 8PM (8:30NT)

Epic sci-fi adventure series ENDLINGS produced in partnership with Hulu, follows four foster kids who make a startling discovery that affects the entire universe, and premieres Sunday, January 5 at 6PM (6:30 NT) with weekly back-to-back episodes

New culinary competition series and original Canadian format, FRIDGE WARS, premieres Thursday, February 27 at 8PM (8:30 NT)

New CBC Docs original series THE OLAND MURDER premieres Thursday, March 5 at 9PM (9:30 NT)

Returning titles include:

Last season’s most-watched new Canadian series* CORONER, starring Serinda Swan, returns for Season 2 Monday, January 6 at 9PM (9:30 NT)

CBC’s popular Tuesday night comedy lineup returns with the fourth season of KIM’S CONVENIENCE at 8 p.m. (8:30 NT) and the sixth and final season of SCHITT’S CREEK at 9 p.m. (9:30 NT) beginning Tuesday, January 7, with WORKIN’ MOMS returning for a fourth season Tuesday, February 18 at 9:30PM (10 NT)

The Kristin Kreuk-led legal drama BURDEN OF TRUTH returns for Season 3 Wednesday, January 8 at 8PM (8:30 NT)

Gripping Canadian true crime series THE DETECTIVES returns for Season 3 Thursday, January 9 at 9PM (9:30 NT)

CBC DOCS POV returns with a new series of documentaries from some of Canada’s most talented documentary filmmakers beginning Sunday, February 9 at 9PM (9:30 NT)

Halifax legal aid drama DIGGSTOWN starring Vinessa Antoine and Natasha Henstridge returns for Season 2 Wednesday, March 4 at 8PM (8:30 NT)