It's interesting, given the fact that the Genies and the Geminis have just merged into one giant awards show, that all of a sudden there seems to be so much Canadian tv actually a) getting notice outside of Canada and b) being allowed to be - well, not always open, but a little less apologetic, about being Canadian. And I am watching, and loving, a lot of it!
Currently on my to-watch list: Continuum
and Primeval: New World
, both of which are sci-fi shows set unabashedly in Vancouver (P:NW is on the verge of cancellation after its first series).
On the other side of the country (because even if things are improving, we've still got the Vancouver-Toronto hubs), I've been watching a couple of shows that pass the Bechdel test every.single.episode - and should, given their titles: Bomb Girls
and Lost Girl
A few people have been bugging me to watch Lost Girl
for months: it came up in class during our week on vampires and sexuality, which I took as a sign, and then when news of the season four renewal came out the other day I put it up the list. I'm a few episodes in now and highly entertained.
It's a sci-fi/crime/dramedy (...yeah, we need to have discussions about genre) set in nominally-Toronto (I understand it gets Toronto-y-er later on) about a succubus named Bo who solves supernatural crimes, and also sleeps with a lot of people (isn't Dyson the name of a vacuum cleaner?). sophia_gratia
and I may be watching it wrong, as our primary takeaway thus far is that Kenzi (the Robin to Bo's Batman) needs to team up with Claudia (from Warehouse 13
) and Kate (from Sanctuary
) and Take Over The World. I would so far recommend it as light and fluffy and the kind of urban fantasy that I really enjoy: not afraid to fuck around with mythology, with a relatively well-developed narrative structure and some interesting world-building.
It also, as I said, regularly passes the Bechdel test, featuring two kickass women who team up to fight crime. Plus it has some interesting queer cred: not only is Bo bisexual, the fae world seems to be remarkably sexually nonjudgemental, save for when it comes to sleeping with humans. The show regularly makes me laugh out loud, and I adore the super-cute friendhsip between Bo and Kenzi. It's a pretty standard supernatural twist on a reluctant-brooding-hero narrative, but it's nice to see that play out with a reluctant heroine
for a change.
Waaaay on the other end of the spectrum is Bomb Girls
which is a historical drama about the women who worked in a munitions factory in Toronto during World War II. This is also one that had vaguely been on my radar, but then... well, a couple of weeks ago I was told that killer_quean
was working on a Bomb Girls/Warehouse 13 crossover that would "make Karen's head explode with Canadian gay." I quote. So I watched the show. What, I'm weak.Bomb Girls
is incredible. It's the kind of historical fiction that we rarely seem to get outside of serious CBC biopics or near-NFB docudramas; it takes a period of Canadian history and does
something with it rather than trying to faithfully represent it. It is brilliantly written, beautifully cast, incredibly well acted, and completely all about the ladies. It also doesn't shy away from representing a fairly full picture of Canada at the time: the same episode that gives us the Leafs' 1942 Stanley Cup run similarly gives us the harsh realities of the Italian (and Ukrainian, and Japanese...) wartime internment camps.
Aside from being deliciously Canadian, it is a wonderful look at representations of female strength and community. It deals with queerness, racism, religion, cheating, abortion, PTSD, sexual mores in general, and does so in a relatively nuanced way. The characters keep unfolding new comlpexities and new relationships. All the leads are amazing and I am a little bit in love with Meg Tilly, who is just ridiculous (I mean, ridiculously good, but also just ridiculous as a person). Oh and also it has Peter Outerbridge, who is AMAZING in everything he does. Highly recommended: if you're in Canada, it streams on Global, I think. The second half of the second season comes back on the 25th, I think: there are only 12 episodes so far, so plenty of time to catch up! :P
ALSO, promo photos for Warehouse 13's return next month
. Myka I have missed your face and your hair and your everything, mostly your face. Plus, Myka punching people
, in the trailer, makes my heart swell. Come back show come back and be awesome. (Please be awesome.)