OTTAWA–The Canadian Radio-television Telecommunications Commission ruled Tuesday that the popular series Murdoch Mysteries must cease airing on CBC and return “where it belongs” to City TV stations across Canada.
The Shaftesbury production was canceled three years ago on Rogers-owned City but then CBC swooped in and rescued the series. Ever since transitioning to CBC, Murdoch Mysteries has become one of the most popular dramas in Canada, soaring upwards of 1.5 million viewers per week domestically and exporting to over 120 territories worldwide.
CRTC chairman Jean-Pierre Blais denied the ruling was the result of political pressure from the Harper government. Prime Minister Stephen Harper has publicly declared Murdoch Mysteries his favourite Canadian TV show and even appeared on the historical drama once as a police officer. Harper, however, is no fan of the CBC, muttering “I’ll watch it anyway” upon learning of Murdoch‘s move to the public broadcaster three years ago.
Suspicions were also raised last week in the middle of the CRTC deliberations when the government tweeted “CBC can suck eggs if they think they’re gonna keep Murdoch Mysteries #bendtoourimperialrule.”
The CRTC made other recommendations Tuesday:
- The Murdoch episode featuring the electric car must be pulled from future rotation and replaced with an episode about a fabulous new automobile that burns tons of fossil fuel made out of tar sands.
- Rogers must keep showing Murdoch Mysteries at least 10 hours a day across all brands, including FX Canada, until the broadcaster more or less meets Canadian content requirements.
- American Super Bowl ads must be shown throughout all Murdoch Mysteries broadcasts.
- Inspector Brackenreid (Thomas Craig) must be transferred to the newly-formed anti-terrorism/domestic spying division where he suddenly becomes a genius.
- When Murdoch and Dr. Ogden (Helene Joy) have a baby it must be called either “Stephen” or “Stephanie.” Twins would work, too.
- Crabtree (Jonny Harris) should spend all his time cracking down on anti-government protests.
- Way more citizens have to be thrown into big new prisons. (This last ruling has nothing to do with Murdoch Mysteries.)