Saturday, November 5, 2016

Questions, I Get Questions

I was invited to be questioned by a local Grade 6 class near my home in Riverdale, Toronto
My first surprise was to learn these kids watch almost no "regular" TV.
Instead they watch their programs in groups on their cell phones no matter that these screens are terribly small.
Another surpriser unlike their older siblings they are completely uninterested in computers using the cell phone for all means of communication.
When I was growing up we all collected stuff from comics to stamps,These kids don't do anything like that.
One girl down the street told me she graduated from high school without reading a single boo. When her class studied Wuthering Heights she simply
They seem to tweet all day --I heard the story of one 11-year old who had a twitter addiction --she was tweeting 134,000 times a month until her parents intervened and took her to twitter addiction camp.
Here's a sampling of what I was asked:
Q: What Canadian TV series are you watching these days.
ME: Motive, Murdoch Mysteries, Saving Hope are among the new Canadian series I look for. But I'm also watching on cable reruns of Cold Case which is a dandy show. And I'm even revisiting Due South when I can find it.
Q: Why isn't there a Canadian TV section in the DVD stores like HMV?
ME: Most CBC shows are locked up in the archives in Mississauga. CBC says it has no rights to put them out on DVD as opposed to BBC which has a huge inventory out there and making money. I asked the clerk what Canadian show he's most asked for and he said CBC's Beachcombers.
Q: How rich are these archives.
ME: THere are hundreds of great hours locked up. Including the best ever black and white TV dramatic special: a CBC version of Pale Pale Rider starring Joan Hackett and Keir Dullea, directed by Eric Till. Another gem: the only TV version of The Importance Of Being Earnest starring Dame Edith Evans.
Q: Has a Canadian show ever been remade for the U.S. market?
ME: Well, The Plouffe Family was later turned into the series about Latinos titled Viva Valdez. More recently Love It Or LIst It moved south for some episodes and so did Property Virgins. And Love It Or List It spawned a British spinoff which I think is a first.
Q: Is there a big new Canadian TV hit this season?
ME: Yes, Kim's Convenience --it could be the first breakout sitcom smash since Gas Cafe. TV critics used to write all the time how sketch comedy shows were flourishing but right now only This Hour Has 30 Minutes is left of that genre.
Q: What was the biggest Canadian blooper of the new season?
ME: CTV cancelled its flagship series Canada AM and the replacement is a silly compendium of reality shows which has lost half the audience.
Q: When the CRTC allows subscribers to pick and choose cable networks which ones will disappear?
ME: I've never met anyone to watched Outdoor Life Network  But I  like Slice, HGTV.  I watch BBC Canada all the time, Discovery Canada, MLB network, Friends down the street watch baseball and football channels all the time.
Q: Why can't I find on DVD my favorite Canadian series Party Game?
ME: Because tapes no longer exist on that one. Made at CHC with such great funsters as Jack Duffy and Dinah Christie the tapes of the show were bicycled across the country --small stations found it an inexpensive source of Canadian content. At the end of the season producer Randy Dandy Markowitz would recycle them for next year's episodes --he wiped them because he never saw them as potential future revenue. But panelist Billy Van swiped five of those tapes and they exist today on bootleg DVDs which I've seen.

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