While Mondays I’ll continue with the regular review posts during Canvember, I want to step a bit away from the books to look at other Canadian content, things that people might not realize is Canadian . So I thought I would take some time talking about 4 Canadian TV shows! This post, I want to talk about Due South and Flashpoint.
This Canadian crime drama series lasted 4 seasons, from 1994 to 1999. It started strong in both Canada and the US, making it the first Canadian-made series to have a prime time slot on a major US network, however it was dropped by the CBS after the first season and continued airing in Canada and the UK.
Set in Chicago (but filmed in Toronto), the show followed the adventures of Constable Benton Fraser (Paul Gross), an officer of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), who is attached to the Canadian consulate but works with Detective Raymond Vecchio of the Chicago Police Department to solve crimes, assisted by Fraser’s companion Diefenbaker, a deaf white wolfdog. He originally goes to Chicago after tracking down his father’s killer. Throughout the series, it plays on the stereotypical differences between Canadian and American culture, and in particular, Fraser’s extremely polite persona. The series see a long-line of guest stars: Liam Nielson, Mark Ruffalo, Amanda Tapping, Carrie-Anne Moss, Gordon Pinsent, and Michael Hogan, to name a few.
Clip 1 : Quick scene that highlights the differences between Canadian and American culture & explains how Canada is use to dealing with confusion
Clip 2 : Fraser is recovering in hospital from being shot and gets a visit from his dead father. The visits from his dead father is a common thing that happens during the show. It is a bit longer but we get to see a young Laurie Holden here! Good mixture of seriousness and comedy.
Well its another police procedural to add to the mix.
Show description: The show focuses on a fictional elite tactical unit, the Strategic Response Unit (SRU), within a Canadian metropolitan police force (based on the Toronto Police Emergency Task Force). The SRU are tasked to resolve extreme situations that regular officers are not trained to handle, including hostage-taking, bomb threats, and heavily armed criminals.
It lasted for 5 seasons (2008 to 2012) and was filmed in Toronto. It was quickly picked up by CBS to have the rights to air the series in the United States, making it the first Canadian TV series aired in prime-time on a US broadcast network since Due South. In addition, Flashpoint is the first Canadian series aired by a major US broadcast network that is set entirely in Canada (as Due South was primarily set in Chicago but filmed in Toronto).
Let’s look at some notable actors from the series:
Enrico Colatoni: This Canadian actor has been on the big and small screen since 1987 on both sides of the fence. He’s Keith Mars in the Veronica Mars TV series, played Elliot DiMauro in Just Shoot Me!, and Mathesar in Galaxy Quest.
Hugh Dillon: He entered the scene not as an actor but as the lead singer for the hard rock band The Headstones from 1987 to 2003. Part singer, part actor! He’s stared in a couple of episodes of Degrassi: The Next Generation and has a recurring character as Mr Escher in the recent Canadian SF series Continuum.
Amy Jo Johnson: another Mighty Morphin Power Rangers actor! Amy played the original Pink Power Ranger. She also had the leading role in the TV series Felicity.
Jessica Steen: this Canadian actress has a long list of TV shows she’s appeared in since the 1980s. She had a role on Captain Power and Soldiers of the Future, Street Legal, Homefront, Due South, NCIS , and Supernatural, just to name a few.