Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Why Isn't Continuum on Television in the U.S.?

I've often wondered why Canadian television series aren't as enthusiastically embraced in the U.S. as our counterparts are in Canada. So many of our programs are filmed in Canada, you'd think it would be an easy choice.

For the past four weeks Canada's ShowCase has been airing Continuum starring the ever lovely Rachel Nichols, Victor Webster, not a household name but you'd recognize his handsome face from shows such as Castle, and Erik Knudson, who recently guest-starred in the pilot of the Canadian imported Saving Hope and no stranger to what-may-be fiction as he was featured in fan (and my) favorite Jericho.

The story is that Nichols' Kiera gets thrown back in time from 2077 to 2012 when a band of rebel rousers responsible for the death of thousands are themselves sentenced to death. Using the technology of the day they go back to a time when they can make a difference before the drastic measures they took become necessary. Or something like that. What the hell do I know about the mind of a criminal?

Kiera is an extremely likable character from the start, a mother and wife who chose to be a protector, or officer of the law in her day. They had all kinds of nifty gadgets to aid them in their pursuit of the bad guys like computerized leather suits and computer chip contact lenses. Thankfully, they continue to work when she goes back in time, but how isn't clear. Either it's because they are all tied into the functioning of the body of the host or because she has met Alec (Knudson) who is the future creator of all of these items.

It has attractive leads, interesting story, cool gizmos, good guys and bad, a female lead (yay), the endless possibilities of how going to the past might change the future and the story of a mother who longs to get back to her son and husband. Not bad.

Apparently the show has an 8 country international deal so far, but no bites in the U.S. By contrast, I've watched the first two episodes of Saving Hope and never duller has the possibility of a ghostly creature been on television. Did the popularity of Smallville and The Vampire Diaries talent on the cast of Hope give it life that might not be found for Continuum? Side by side, one will put you to sleep and the other will keep you entertained. Both could be considered genre television. In the glut of programming in the Summer months, why did Continuum lose out?

I have no answers. I just enjoy the show, the characters and the story. If I want to know what happens next, I'd like to assume others may as well. Here's hoping a U.S. network jumps on the bandwagon!

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