I had the honour of moderating the panel for a very cool new series that’s debuted on CBC Gem. On Friday, May 3, cast, crew, friends and family of Detention AdventureÂ packed Toronto’s vintage theatre, The Royal, to watch the first five episodes of the digital series on the big screen.
Co-created by Joe Kicak and Carmen Albano, written by Kicak, Albano and Karen Moore, executive-produced by Moore, Lauren Corber and produced by Ryan West,Â Detention AdventureÂ summonsÂ Goonies, Stand By MeÂ and theÂ Harry PotterÂ franchise in its tone. Legend says inventor Alexander Graham Bell built a secret lab under a school attended by three nerds. Raign (Simone Miller), Joy (Alina Prijono) and Hulk (Jack Fulton) are determined to find the entrance, which is supposed to be located somewhere in the old library that now serves as a detention room. The trioâ€™s plan? Get into trouble, go to detention and find that entrance. The problem? Raign, Joy and Hulk have to include the school bully, Brett (Tomaso Sanelli), in their plans.
I’ve been a fan of Detention Adventure since last spring when Kicak, Albano and Moore were seeking Independent Production Fund money to help get it made. Now, one hot summer later, and the 10-episode spectacle is available for all to see
And truly enjoy.
Detention Adventures is touted as CBCâ€™s first original kids scripted series for CBC Gem and is aimed at the tween crowd. That makes sense; after all, a quartet of kids putting teachers and a principal in their place and solving cool puzzles rates with that crowd. But there is a lot for adults to like as well. The writing is razor-sharp, the performances spot-on and the production values are stellar. Detention Adventure is chock-full of Easter eggs adults will revel in, including a nod to The Shining.
The science used in the series is sound (Hulk’s science class antics are what land him in detention) and the sets are incredible (the show’s tunnel sets were built in a high school gymnasium), but it’s the message that most impressed me. Everyone is different, everyone comes from a different background, but we can all work together to solve problems.
Detention Adventure is available for streaming on CBC Gem.
Images courtesy of CBC and Joe Kicak.