I was intrigued by some new shows that were starting on CBC right when we left for Florida in October, so I have been catching up with them on demand. I’m also including some 10 best lists from the NY Times:
CBC has been running two original series that I have become addicted to. I have now caught up with the first 9 episodes of This Life and The Romeo Connection. This Life is a wonderful English adaptation of a series originally made for the French network. It’s about a woman who is a single mom and a journalist who is diagnosed with a terminal cancer. Although it sounds depressing, the mom is played by Tori Higginson and she is beautiful in the role. Her family (3 kids, mom and dad, brothers and a sister) are front and centre as is her love interest, a school principal played very sensitively by Shawn Doyle. The Romeo Connection couldn’t be more different. It’s about CSIS fighting drug wars in Vancouver. It is kind of a sequel to Intelligence of a few years back, which I thought was the best Canadian series I had ever seen and which starred Eugene Lipinski an instantly recognizable Canadian character actor whom you may recognize as a CSIS officer in this series. Romeo Connection is gritty and complicated and very noir in its sensibilities. It takes some serious attention to keep up with its twists and turns. Many Canadian actors appear in recurring roles.
At the Movies
I saw Suffragette last week. Carey Mulligan plays a young mother who works in a laundry who is introduced to the suffrage movement by a co-worker. She is absolutely marvellous in the role of a neophyte who becomes totally involved. Mulligan’s performance is absolutely wondrous. She has an incredibly expressive face and is very likeable. The movie really inspires admiration for the pioneers of the women’s movement who made tremendous sacrifices for their cause. It was fascinating to see that the women of Saudi Arabia voted in their first election only last week and actually elected four female candidates to office. We take so much for granted in Canada.
My whole family took in a performance of Cinderella last week at the Mirvish Theatre. Great costumes, a couple of beautiful Rogers and Hammerstein tunes, and a love story for the ages. I believe one of my sons snoozed through much of the first act, but it was kind of a nice night out. I only saw one little girl in full princess regalia attending the show but nights at the theatre provide almost as much interesting people watching as the actual production. Recommended for Mirvish subscribers only as individual tickets to this show are ridiculously expensive!
Watched A Very Murray Christmas, the decidedly odd Bill Murray Christmas special. Indescribably weird, but with a few good renditions of Christmas songs. Watch at your own risk!!
My usual favourites
The Affair continues to reveal layers of its story. Noah now has strong suspicions about Alison and her involvement with Cole.
The Leftovers ended on a mystifying note last week as its lead character seemed to survive about his third terminal injury. Miracles abound.
The Middle and Modern Family still manage to make me laugh. They both aired their Christmas episodes last week. Modern Family featured Andrea Martin in a very unlikely role. She looks exactly the same as she ever has!
On a lighter note, Fargo ends its 10 episode second season tonight. Nashville has gone on hiatus. Gotham, Supergirl, The Flash, Arrow and Izombie still entertain me. I have had to make room on my PVR for Chicago Med which is a spin off from Chicago Fire (my hunky firefighter show). It stars Colin Donnell who is the hunky bad guy on The Affair, which I believe is nearing the end of Season 2. Homeland is still keeping me in suspense as I worry about how Carrie will save Berlin. Into the Badlands is a completely cray-cray show that is a mad mashup of Western and Martial Arts genres. I can’t look away!
Many of my usual political satire shows have gone on hiatus (Bill Maher, John Oliver ) leaving me with Stephen Colbert and Trevor Noah, both of whom I quite like. CBS Sunday Morning continues to relax and inspire me and this week I remembered to record Fareed Zakaria who attempted to explain the anti-Muslim Xenophobia that is spreading throughout the West.
I am feeling a little under the gun, as usual at Christmas time. I usually feel like I should be getting ready for Christmas and my stolen hours of TV watching cause me much guilt. Thank goodness the series are all either winding up or going on hiatus. I still haven’t watched the Michael Buble Christmas special I recorded on CBC as the shows are usually a little cheesy. I did enjoy last week’s Sinatra special which I have been watching in small segments. Enjoy the delights of the festive season!! My next blog will probably be written from Florida as we head back on Dec. 26.