Canadian TV links -

Canadian TV links


– Bill Brioux talks to producer Brian K. Roberts about the cancellation of the TV version of The Debaters, and the CBC’s issues facing television in general. Roberts (who, in addition to his other credits, was editor of The Simpsons in its early years and wrote the “Mt. Splashmore” episode) argues that the show was designed to work with a low budget, a nonexistent promotion budget, and the vertically-integrated model of taping a show that can be used both on TV and radio.

– A list of winners from last night’s Writer’s Guild of Canada screenwriting awards, Bruce Smith for John A.: Birth of a Country and Mark McKinney receiving the “WGC Showrunner Award,” celebrating his work on shows like Less Than Kind (Part of the point of this award is not just to recognize the work of a first-rate showrunner like McKinney, but encouraging more recognition of the idea of a showrunner – a writer who is the one in charge of the show rather than a non-writing producer – in Canada. It’s an idea that does seem to have gained more acceptance at English-Canadian TV networks than it had a decade ago.) On the not-so-bright side, the creator/showrunner of one of the winning shows, Todd and the Book of Pure Evil, announced the show’s cancellation at the awards ceremony.

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Canadian TV links

  1. While I sympathize with Brioux about the cancellation of the TV version of the debators, I wonder why they felt the need to produce the show for TV.  It’s a great radio show, one of few that I try to catch each week.  But it’s not a visual product…it’s basically three people on stage improving jokes about specific subjects.  It’s great live, too, as improv comedy can be.  Does the in-the-moment comedy translate well from stage/radio to TV?

  2. Sorry, but when Radio drops Dispatches and keeps Debaters ( in my view a bunch
    of people yelling at each other) I’m outa here.

    • I like The Debaters but I agree that a show like Dispatches should have been continued.

  3. The Debaters on radio is hilarious but it was absolutely horrible on television.

    I’m also sorry to hear the Todd and the Book of Pure Evil has been cancelled.  I had only seen it a couple of times but I enjoyed it quite a bit.  I thought it resembled some of Kids in the Hall’s most surreal sketches.

    Jaime, I wish you would write more often on Canadian television.  I know your lack of French precludes you from watching and commenting on the many highly-rated shows from Québec and I do appreciate your insights on American televisoin, old and new, but I do wish you could add your insight and knowledge to the subject of Canadian television.

  4. Yeah Jaime, you should write more about Canadian TV so I can link to you more :)