Tag Archives: Degrassi

Television Shows That Impacted Canadian Culture

Canadian television is an interesting blend of homegrown material and foreign shows. Like anywhere else, some of these shows have managed to have a profound effect on pop culture here, and have proven to stand the test of time. These are some shows and series that have had a lasting effect in Canada.

Degrassi: The Next Generation
The Degrassi series was a smash hit in Canada and was picked up by Teen Nick in the states. Even after 20 years, the legacy and impact of Degrassi is still felt. Degrassi Junior High was one of the first drama series in Canada that was directed with the teenage market in mind, and Degrassi: The Next Generation expanded on the concept in the early 2000s. This was the groundwork for many different shows that came later, and it is credited with launching the careers of many actors and performers, notably the incredibly successful musician Drake.

Degrassi didn’t shy away from controversial topics, and in fact it was one of the first televised series to shine a light on these issues that would later become widely discussed. It has a way of teaching empathy, and helping people understand different walks of life. In another light, this series has also become a blueprint for other drama series as it illustrates how to grow and build characters, and keep a series going through cast changes over years while fighting to stay relevant. Degrassi has proven to be an impactful and important series in Canada that is likely to live on for generations.

Ed, Edd n Eddy
Ed, Edd n Eddy is the brainchild of Canadian cartoonist Danny Antonucci who is responsible for numerous animated series. The show was a massive success in Canada and globally, and became one of Cartoon Network’s most successful properties. Over a 10-year span, it had 70 episodes and won several awards like a Reuben Award, Leo Awards and a SOCAN Award.

If you ask people who grew up during the early 2000s, many remember this show fondly. It had a certain charm and an endearing structure that revolved around the main character’s whacky schemes to fund their love of Jawbreaker candies. There is something about this show that resonates deeply in Canada and if it were not for the success of Ed, Edd n Eddy, many later Canadian cartoons like Total Drama Island would never have had their chance to shine.

World Poker Tour
While it may not be specifically Canadian, the live World Poker Tour series certainly was a massive inspiration for people across the country. Canada is known globally as a massive hotbed for poker talent, and the boom can be traced back to this live series that brought the game into the households of millions of Canadians.

The World Poker Tour was very enthralling and found a way to keep the audience engaged, even during the tedious segments. One of the big reasons for this has been contributed to the entertaining chemistry between co-hosts Mike Sexton and Vince Van Patten who kept things lively throughout the program. This series really managed to capture the intensity and suspense of high-stakes poker games and the long term effects of the WPT cannot be ignored.

Trailer Park Boys
Whether you love it or hate it, you cannot deny that TPB has had a lasting effect in Canadian culture. The long-running series has become a phenomenon at home and abroad, and there are legions of fans around the world supporting the many reboots, specials and spinoffs the comedy trio have produced. Somehow, even amongst claims of being stale and past its prime, TPB lives on.

Trailer Park Boys certainly does not represent all of the country, but it does have a specific Canadian charm that comes across in many of the jokes and dialogue that the series has become known for. Pop culture is rife with running jokes and references to characters that have appeared on the show and many millennials of today can say they grew up watching the TPB hijinks. The chemistry between the main trio of Ricky, Julian, and Bubbles and the oftentimes improvised script that plays out between the characters can only have proven to be a formula for comedy excellence that has managed to preserve over 20 years.

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Preview: Private Eyes eyes big names for Season 4

Like with everything else, there’s been a lot of uncertainty surrounding network television, from when a series is premiering or returning, if at all.

Well, Private Eyes fans, fear not. Matt (Jason Priestley) and Angie (Cindy Sampson) are back and in fine form—Monday at 8 p.m. ET/PT on Global—so much so that if you close your eyes, things almost seem normal again.

Fresh off its Golden Screen Award win for Canada’s most-watched comedy or drama, your favourite detective duo is on the case for a fourth season. Also fresh? Angie’s new haircut. Just saying.

Monday’s premiere picks up pretty much where it left off, with Shade grappling with that paternity bombshell. A half-sister for Jules, played by the always awesome Jordyn Negri, not to mention being a grandfather for the second time for Barry Flatman’s wary Don? Sure! Angie, of course, wants to help (a.k.a. stick her nose in where it doesn’t really belong) but it’s what she does best. Thankfully, for everyone, a case becomes the distraction Matt and Angie need. This time, it’s a murder mystery, complete with the paranoid claims of a wealthy, ailing patriarch, a power struggle over business and inheritance, a Great Gatsby-themed soirée, and a handful of suspects that will keep you guessing.

Back to that distraction, though. Sabrina (Katie Boland) simply wants to connect with her newfound dad—until things take a turn when guest star Erica Durance (Saving Hope) turns up. And if her appearance wasn’t enough, it gets even more complicated as Shade and Angie continue to cast not-so-subtle longing glances at one another—especially since Tex (Brett Donahue) is still in the picture.

Private Eyes has once again lined up a slew of Canadian favourites. Keshia Chanté and Supinder Wraich join in recurring roles, as Angie’s pal, Mia, and Danica’s girlfriend, Kate, respectively. And Aaron Ashmore (Killjoys), Stefan Brogen (Degrassi), and Eric Peterson (Corner Gas) guest-star.

But it’s the seventh episode that’ll have you reaching for the popcorn, thanks to appearances from Toronto Raptors head coach Nick Nurse, the prettiest star on HGTV Canada, Scott McGillivray, and golf pro Mike Weir. Priestley directs that star-studded hour, while Episode 3 marks Sampson’s directorial debut. It’s safe to say the rest of the season (and the upcoming fifth instalment) looks bright. Shade(s) optional.

Private Eyes airs Mondays at 8 p.m. ET/PT on Global.

Images courtesy of Corus.Facebooktwitterredditlinkedinmail

Link: ‘Degrassi’ co-creator Kit Hood dead; fans and series stars pay tribute

From Victoria Ahearn of the Canadian Press:

Link: ‘Degrassi’ co-creator Kit Hood dead; fans and series stars pay tribute
For “Degrassi” star Stacie Mistysyn, series co-creator Christopher (Kit) Hood was like another parent in some ways.

When Mistysyn performed in “Cabaret” in high school, Hood was there to support her, along with fellow “Degrassi” co-creator Linda Schuyler. Continue reading.Facebooktwitterredditlinkedinmail

Popular characters who disappeared from Canadian TV shows

Throughout many modern-day television series, some of the characters written into production aren’t always going to make the show’s conclusion. While some actors may simply want to move on in their search for a new challenge, their character’s legacy will live long in the memory. We’ve even seen characters change actors, although that tends to happen to particular types of TV shows almost exclusively.

At the very heart of the success of series such as Degrassi Junior High, Heartland and Murdoch Mysteries are entertaining and relatable characters. As a result of that fact, we’re going to look at some of the most popular characters who have disappeared from Canadian television shows.

Mallory Wells  

Back in October 2007, Heartland, a Canadian family drama series aired for the very first time on CBC. Renewed for its 13th season in May of this year, the show has been the home to several iconic characters that have continued to capture the hearts of viewers. Following the show’s debut, we saw young Mallory Wells’ journey from season one right the way through to season ten.

After being heavily involved in the show for the first six seasons, Mallory eventually disappeared in season seven as she left for Paris with her at-the-fiancé, Jake, who was the young cowboy that she had fallen for. While Mallory would spend a few seasons away from Heartland, she would return as a 21-year-old woman in Season 10 where she and Jake would get married before later disappearing once more for the following two series.

Dr. Emily Grace

Murdoch Mysteries is another immersive television show that peaked the interests of Canadian viewers, as well as many fans abroad. The drama is centred around the character of William Murdoch, who, to this day, still seeks to solve the city’s most gruesome crimes. However, it would be Dr. Emily Grace who would eventually disappear from the show.

After being introduced as the second female lead in 2005, the character of Dr. Emily Grace went through on a roller coaster journey before choosing to leave as the city’s coroner in Season 9. After George Crabtree, Dr. Emily’s love interest, is arrested for the murder of Edna’s husband in season eight, and Emily becomes involved in women’s rights, she opts to disappear to London in the following series and is subject to an emotional good-bye with George before leaving the train station.

Stephanie Kaye

Much like Mallory Wells in Heartland, Stephanie Kaye’s disappearance from Degrassi Junior High occurred for all the right reasons. Stephanie, who was elected as the class president, attended Degrassi Junior High for two years before eventually moving to a private school when her mum won the lottery in Season 3 of the show.

While being fortunate enough to win the jackpot was rare back in 1986 when Stephanie was attending Degrassi Junior High, modern-day services offer a better chance of success. As platforms such as Lottoland offer lottery betting, online games, and scratchcards, private education may be something that can be enjoyed by people other than just Stephanie.

Iconic Characters Have Moved On

Ultimately, although they may be loved by the masses, some of our favorite television characters inevitably must go their own way. Whether it’s as a result of marriage, a politically driven journey, or maybe even because of a big jackpot win on the lottery, many iconic Canadian television characters have moved on.Facebooktwitterredditlinkedinmail