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Review: Back to square one on 19-2

Well, I certainly didn’t see that coming. I was pretty sure that things were going to go Nick and Ben’s way with regard to outing the mole in 19. After all, they’d ruled out Nick and had arrested Antony Tremblay, the man they’d seen in the motel with an underage girl. When his phone call was a request for their friend in 19 to get him out of there, I figured it was only a matter of time until the mole was revealed.

Um, no.

By the end of “Property Line,” Nick and Ben were back at the beginning after Kaz killed Tremblay. I’ve been waiting for Kaz to show his violent side ever since he was introduced, but it still surprised me when he shot Tremblay in the head and made it look like a suicide. If Nick had anything to do with the cover-up he should be ashamed; the SQ knew Tremblay had been murdered right away. I’m pretty sure Nick didn’t literally get his hands dirty because that would have made him an accessory or something. Now Nick has a secret from Ben: the real circumstances surrounding Tremblay’s death.

Raise your hand if you thought Tyler was going to end up with a butcher’s knife in his abdomen? Yeah, me too. I was sure the big man was going to be torn open when he tackled that emotionally disturbed woman; he was lucky even though she wasn’t. That sad conclusion served to spotlight some of the more awful jobs cops are ordered to do, like arresting people who have been ordered to vacate their homes because the city is razing old buildings. Rather than ridding the streets of criminals, they were forced to be the bad guys in a no-win situation. Of those evicted, keep your eye on Paul (Michael Therriault) the husband of the woman who suffered a stroke. He’s in next week’s episode so that likely won’t end well.

Meanwhile, Mary-Louise is clearly having an affect on Bear. Though she opted out of another back tattoo in Montreal, her comment to ML about going to Thailand to have it done hints her firm work and life plans are crumbling. I’m hoping she goes for it.

Notes and quotes

  • “You can sleep when you’re in jail.” J.M. is always so caring when handling junkies.
  • “Ma,am, let go of the wall.” I’m not sure I could be as calm as Ben evicting a yelling pregnant woman from her apartment.
  • Laugh out loud scene of the night: J.M. being swarmed by wasps and running right at Audrey so she was stung too.

19-2 airs Mondays at 10 p.m. ET on Bravo.


Interview: 19-2’s Maxim Roy celebrates la belle province

Maxim Roy is fiercely proud of her home province of Quebec. The native of Rigaud is thrilled Montreal and its surrounds serve as another cast member in 19-2 because it allows the series to show off its colour and character.

This second season of Bravo’s Monday night drama has been a tough one for Roy’s character, Isabelle Latendresse. The detective has her sights set on advancing her career in the force, but being married to Nick Barron (Adrian Holmes) seems to have labelled her defective among the higher-ups. Pair that with at-home issues with son Theo (Zackaryer Abdillahi), and things haven’t been easy for Isabelle.

Or, in a way, for Roy. As the veteran actress—and 2015 Canadian Screen Award nominee—tells us, being a French actress who dabbles in roles outside of Quebec has netted her some detractors.

What’s it like having your home province featured in 19-2?
Maxim Roy: It’s so refreshing to finally have our city showcased, and to feel that English Canada has embraced that is really fantastic.

This show is filled with complicated characters. Isabelle is very complicated. There were times in the first season where I shook my fist at the screen. Like when she slept with Nick and then broke things off again the next day.
Yeah … see … [Laughs.] I kind of feel for her, though. She’s in a very difficult position. Nick and Isabelle still love each other and have this amazing chemistry. They have the utmost respect for each other … they just can’t live together and that happens to a lot of couples. It seems so complicated, but the number of couples that I know that are exactly like that? I know a lot. So I thought it was really nice to play somebody that complex for once. She’s not just this superwoman cop who has no emotion. She’s a woman and she has feelings and desires and she is very passionate about her work and her son.

Have you watched the original, French version of 19-2?
I’ve only watched the first season, after we were done with Season 1. I watched it all in two days. I didn’t want to be influenced by performance. I know the girl that plays Isabelle in the French version—we played sisters in a movie—and she’s a fantastic actress. I didn’t want to go there. I wanted to do my own thing and build my own character.

Did you have questions about Isabelle heading into Season 2?
Yeah. Adrian and I had questions about the relationship between Nick and Isabelle and we thought it was important that it stay in there for Season 2. That whole tension thing is interesting and interesting to play. Isabelle is interested in her career and getting ahead this season.

Are you bummed Isabelle isn’t involved in foot chases and taking bad guys down?
[Laughs.] I’m hoping for more flashbacks! I want to wear blue. I want to wear those comfortable shoes, not those frigging high heels! [Laughs.] I am so envious of the other girls.

Quebec is a fascinating province with its own star system.
It’s crazy. You feel like everyone is there encouraging each other and their projects. But there is a lot of pressure in that if you go outside Quebec, like me—I work in both languages—there is some criticism. I have my Facebook page and if I post a picture of me with this crew, there are comments like, ‘Well, why aren’t you doing the French version?’ It’s like a betrayal, almost.

But at the same time it’s so admirable. We have the ratings. We watch our shows and we go and see our own movies, so it gives us jobs. That’s fantastic, but there is a sense of ‘belonging.’ If you belong to Quebec you should stay in Quebec.

19-2 airs Mondays at 10 p.m. ET on Bravo.


Review: 19-2 heads into a new direction

Quite often it’s the physical action on 19-2 that keeps me riveted to the screen. But there are times when conversations between the characters have me on the edge of my seat. That was certainly the case with Monday’s latest, “Tables,” when Ben finally came clean to Nick that he had been spying on him.

To say this was a relief for me is an understatement. Nick and Ben have developed into a fantastic partnership and having this hanging over them has made me feel very uneasy. To be honest, I was expecting major fireworks between the two once Nick found out—maybe a wrestling match like we saw in the cabin last season—but Nick was surprisingly cool even though Ben pulled his gun at the height of his fright. I’m guessing the fact Ben’s apartment was torn apart and his files stolen caused Nick to realize his partner wasn’t spying on him because he enjoyed it. Still, Ben betrayed Nick’s trust and they won’t simply bounce back from it in a week.

Nick’s own investigation into who the mole in 19 will certainly make strides in the right direction. Arresting the guy Nick saw in the pizza place—the same fellow who had the underage girl in the hotel room—and booking him on drug and weapons charges caused the fellow to request help from their “friend in 19” has gotten the ball rolling. From the way he’s been acting, it looks like Commander Gendron is the mole. He’s been pretty shifty lately and been caught looking out the window a lot, which means he’s reflecting on decisions he’s made in his life.

Past decisions revisited Bear this week. A call to a strip club reunited she and former girlfriend Mary Louise, who planted a big kiss on Bear—much to J.M.’s glee—and demanded a dinner date. Dinner went well, but some after-dinner oral sex seemed to go even better. I’m guessing the reunion, paired with Mary Louise’s desire to turn over a new leaf, means Bear will be questioning that life plan she’s got all figured out.

Notes and quotes

  • Kudos to composer Nicolas Maranda for creating haunting moments with 19-2‘s theme and background music.
  • I never realized the police were given a specific time during their shift to eat. I assumed they just did it whenever they were peckish.
  • I don’t know what “squished chicken” is, but I want some. With rice.
  • “I don’t mind a bit of grime.” Line of the night from J.M.

19-2 airs Mondays at 10 p.m. ET on Bravo.


Review: 19-2’s supporting characters shine

Jared Keeso and Adrian Holmes’ Ben and Nick may be the main focal point of 19-2, but the entire cast deserves major props. That fact is driven home to me every week, but especially with an episode like Monday’s “Rock Garden.”

Let’s start with Laurence Leboeuf’s Audrey, who is suffering the aftereffect of the horrible gang beating from Season 1. Clearly back at work too early, that was obvious when she freaked out on a local folk singer and his buddies two weeks ago, I couldn’t help but ache for her during that random hookup when she began crying in the middle of sex. I was confused at first—was it happiness that she was able to experience it again?—until her trip to the bathroom revealed the truth: that baseball bat damaged her genitals deeply, and perhaps forever. Will she turn to Bear for comfort rather than attempt intercourse with another man? I’m assuming that’s going to be addressed in the coming weeks.

Dan Petronijevic’s J.M., who has a history of assaulting his wife, Justine, took on the role of judge and executioner when he reported solo to a call of domestic abuse. J.M.—who has been the subject of humour the last couple of weeks—got an outside peek on what his assaults look like when he walked in on a man viciously attacking his wife. J.M. literally saw himself in the man and delivered a beating on him. The scene where Audrey arrived at the home to see J.M. cradling the weeping woman and applying ice to her face was tragically touching. Does this mean J.M. finally understands that he has a problem? We’ll see.

Maxime Roy’s Isabelle, meanwhile, was forced to make a horrible decision when it came to Theo. Her rage at discovering he had posted pictures of a passed-out girl on his Facebook page was certainly understandable, and I cheered when she handcuffed him, but I also understood the tortured look on her face as she realized Theo was headed down a dangerous path. Hopefully the scare and six months of probation will right his listing ship.

Finally, Bruce Ramsay deserves credit. He’s not on-camera as much as everyone else in his portrayal of Cdr. Marcel Gendron, but he hit it out of the park on Monday. Whether it was the less-is-more tentative step towards Isabelle before walking away, or discussing his daughter’s drug issues with Nick, Gendron is much less of a bad guy in Season 2 and becoming a character I cheer for.

Notes and quotes

  • Anthony Lemke is great at playing an a-hole.
  • Having sex in your childhood home is NEVER a good idea. Just ask Nick Barron.
  • “I am so hot for your scar.” Me too, Bear, me too.

19-2 airs Mondays at 10 p.m. ET/PT on Bravo.


Review: Brawls, paintball and break-ups on 19-2

I honestly hope that’s not the last we see of Vince. By the end of “Tribes,” 19’s rookie cop was packing up his things, transferred out of the neighbourhood because the gal he’d had sex with in the bathroom filed a complaint when he started ignoring her. I may not have agreed with what he did, but Vince’s fresh-faced approach—and great repartee with J.M.—made for countless memorable moments, whether it be on the beat or during the paintball fight.

Oh, that paintball battle. Seeing all of those A-type personalities running around in the forest was a treat to see and pulled back the curtain on why Tyler’s been in such a good mood lately. After taking a break in an old truck, Tyler swallowed a palm of pills (likely uppers or painkillers) to keep him happy. But even when 19-2 was revealing dark secrets, there were still scenes of laughter on Monday. The ongoing feud between Ben, Nick and a squad of firefighters culminated in an all-out brawl at the paintball complex after drunk Vince set fire to one of the wooden shelters. Punches and paint balls rained down before the firefighters doused everyone with their hoses.

Ben, meanwhile, threw water on his marriage by telling Catherine he’s in love with someone else. The last we saw of Catherine, she was packing her bags. Unfortunately for Ben, he failed to consider the fact Amelie might not want him; a fact she was only too happy to fill him in on when Ben showed up to profess his love.

As for Nick, the mystery as to where his father ended up seems to be solved. After helping Kaz clear Rita of assault charges, Kaz took his cousin to a bridge pillar and explained Nick’s dad was encased in the structure. (I guess I should have seen the foreshadowing when Tyler and Bear made jokes about corruption surrounding Montreal’s construction jobs.)

Notes and quotes

  • “Sarge, it’s two for one!” You can’t pass up two for one paintball!
  • “Everyone loves firemen. We do not punch firemen.” Laughed out loud at Sgt. Houle’s line.
  • “I just shot you in the chest. You’re dead, retard.” Oh J.M. Always classy.
  • I’m glad Tyler is back, but I’ll miss Bear and Audrey as partners.
  • Who else thought Audrey and Nick were going to rekindle an old flame in the back of that school bus?

19-2 airs Mondays at 10 p.m. ET/PT on Bravo.