REVIEW: Frankie Drake Mysteries

Wendy Crewson chews the scenery to bits in Monday night’s opening episode of Frankie Drake Mysteries. Trust a TV veteran to get the tone just right. Crewson guests as a gold digger with a secret that links her to the main character, flirty, flapper-era detective Frankie Drake (played by Lauren Lee Smith). The series premieres… Read on


Cinesphere is back and still north of superior

Back when the earth was still cooling and I was a young lad of 15 I got a job as a bus boy at Ontario Place. It was at a place called The Blockhouse restaurant. It served chopped beef, stew and giant glass pitchers of beer I’d have to fish later out of the West… Read on


Next time Corus: give us more of Moore

Last June, at the Corus upfront in Toronto, myself and several other TV beat writers were in a room awaiting Shamar Moore to come in and tell us all about  S.W.A.T. The remake of the mid-’70s cop show, premiering Thursday night, was one of Global’s major prime time acquisitions this season. Just before Moore walked into the room, we… Read on



Frank Barron 1919 – 2017

One of the last great “characters” of the Television Critics Association has gone to the big cathode ray tube in the sky: Frank Barron. The TCA’s oldest living member passed away Monday according to his widow and constant companion, Margie Barron.  He was 98. Put in TV terms, Frank aged beyond the all important 18-49-year-old… Read on


BOOK REVIEW: 25 Years of 22 Minutes

This season marks 25 years since the launch of This Hour Has 22 Minutes. Conceived by Mary Walsh as the follow up to her earlier CBC comedy series CODCO, the weekly news satire has lampooned politicians and Canada in general since Jean Chretien was strangling citizens on Parliament Hill. Halifax-based author Angela Mombourquette – who worked… Read on


Canada needs to steal Lenny Henry’s big diversity idea

CANNES — British comedian Sir Lenny Henry brought his “one big idea” to MIPCOM Wednesday. The 59-year-old actor, singer and Comic Relief co-founder was asked to give a keynote on diversity and he pushed a very intriguing notion: provide tax breaks tied to diversity. Henry told how, when he first arrived at BBC, the network… Read on



Not a peak year for silly shows at MIPCOM 2017

CANNES — Forget all that stuff about Peak TV and the new “Golden Age.” Every year at MIPCOM, the heap of content on display during the international TV market is staggering. As it says on an enormous poster on the side of one of the 200-foot yachts out in the harbor, “Content is king. Distribution is… Read on


Facebook’s getting into the content biz. Like?

CANNES — Want to get your series streamed before two billion subscribers? Now you can, thanks to Facebook. The social media giant was represented earlier this week at MIPCOM by two dudes without socks: Ricky Van Veen, head of Global Creative Strategy, and Daniel Danker, Director of Video Product. Six weeks ago, they helped launch Facebook’s… Read on