In a world where there’s a burden placed on trying to keep up with everything new on television, Burden of Truth is a homegrown series that deserves a second look.

The Wednesday night CBC drama, seen stateside in the summer months on The CW, stars Kristin Kreuk as big city litigator turned crusading small town lawyer Joanna Chang. Peter Mooney stars opposite Kreuk as her partner in law and at home, Billy Crawford. Star Slade (Luna Spence), Nicola Correia-Damude (Diane Evans) and Meegwun Fairbrother (Owen Beckbie) are part of the engaging ensemble.

In addition to starring on the series, Kreuk is also an executive producer — all while working on a History degree

At 37, Kreuk has spent half her life starring on American network dramas Smallville, Beauty and the Beast and Burden of Truth. Even more astounding is that they were all produced in Canada. Burden of Truth is shot in Manitoba, in and around Winnipeg. And why not? When I visited the set last fall, I was told by visiting provincial minister of Sport, Culture and Heritage Cathy Cox that Manitoba boasts one of the most aggressive TV and film production incentive programs in Canada.

Just one of the reasons characters reference Winnipeg and Manitoba all the time (although Millwood, where much of the small town action occurs, is a fictional name for Selkirk, Man.). Add an authentic layer of First Nations storylines — a priority and a point of pride for executive producer Kyle Irving and others at Eagle Vision — and you have a show so Canadian it practically skates.

Peter Mooney feels right at home shooting in Winnipeg — it’s his hometown. Here he’s on location at Legacy Pines School where parts of episode seven was shot

Wednesday night’s second-last episode of the season is an emotional roller coaster tying together many loose ends. Joanna and Billy are all in on a child abduction case their boutique law firm has to win to stay in business. The us-against-them stakes keep getting raised, with potential bad guys seemingly everywhere — Big Pharma (a popular target these days on legal shows), the local police, children’s aide societies seemingly in it for the money and, always, greedy local government officials.

Fairbrother (who plays Millwood police chief Owen Beckbie) and Slade (surprise sis Luna Spence)

Eric Putzer’s script piles on the scenes, showing Joanna and Billy scouring yearbook pages for clues and confronting suspects on campus lawns. Their young associate Luna (Slade) hustles a very pregnant defendant out of a hospital and into a car ride that can only end in a baby on board situation. There’s a lot going on, and if you haven’t been following along by now you may want to start streaming several episodes first on CBC Gem.


At the core of the show is the relationship between the two leads. Will running a law firm and uncovering bribery and corruption from pretty much everybody in authority be too much for Crawford and Chang?

It all comes to an emotional boil by the end of Wednesday’s hour. These two characters realize that they’re not just in this for themselves anymore. Kreuk and Mooney pull of the highway and seize the moment with heartfelt performances, setting up what should be an entertaining season finale on Feb. 26.


  1. Alicia Ottenbreit Reply

    I’ve had this on my list to watch for a while now but just haven’t gotten to it yet. Hearing that this shoots in and around Winnipeg, where I lived for 4 years, really makes me want to watch it now. Hearing about Selkirk, Manitoba, brings back my memories of working in a restaurant there called Barney Gargles, which had incredibly good cheesecake.

    I’ve been enjoying CBC Gem and telling people about it. Most people don’t seem to know of its existence and that’s a shame. Plenty of great shows on there I’ve watched lately. I’m just watching Fortunate Son right now on there (alternating between it and episodes of The Crown on Netflix and Jack Ryan on Amazon). Since getting CBC Gem, I’ve watched Battle of the Blades, Workin’ Moms, Little Dorritt, Vanity Fair, Diggstown, Street Legal, Northern Rescue, and a few others. Next on tap aftter Fortunate Son is the latest seasons of Anne with an E and Heartland then is Burden of Proof.

    • Bill Brioux Reply

      There are also some very interesting CBC Gems made especially and just for digital, Alicia. Check out Hey Lady!, a very edgy comedy starring Jayne Eastwood — just hide the kids first!

  2. How are the ratings for this season? I am liking this season a lot more than the last so I’m hoping it’s doing well to garner a renewal!

    • Bill Brioux Reply

      The ratings are down this season, as they are for most CBC prime time offerings — so spread the word on next Wednesday’s season finale.

Write A Comment