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Long Live the Newest Flesh

First it was Ivan Reitman and his son Jason, and now Canada may have its second family film dynasty in the works. Canadian horror icon David Cronenberg has hit Cannes with his son Brandon, whose debut film, ANTIVIRAL had its first screening. Here’s a nice little clip of the pair being interviewed at the festival last week:

While it seems that Cronenberg the elder has largely abandoned his exploration of body horror, we’re hoping that Brandon’s ANTIVIRAL, a U.S. co-production about designer “celebrity” diseases, may be poised to pick up where he left off.

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Cathode Ray Mission: THE JELLYBEAN ODYSSEY/THE ODYSSEY (1992-1994)

CanTV expert Cameron Archer navigates the often inhospitable landscape of Canadian television for the CATHODE RAY MISSION, our regular blog column that highlights some of Canadian television’s most offbeat offerings.

CBC fielded a unique children’s television series in 1992. It was an ambitious, intelligently-written series — intellectual enough for adults to enjoy, yet action-oriented enough to keep viewer interest. It stood in diametrical opposition from fare like BABAR (CBC, 1989-91), THE RACCOONS (1985-91) and STREET CENTS (1989-2006.)

Also, it focused around a coma victim’s fantasy life.

That reads like the most obvious candidate for cancellation, doesn’t it? Usually, it would be, but THE ODYSSEY (CBC, 1992-94) is not the average CBC children’s series.

The Basic Formula

In the pilot, initially titled THE JELLYBEAN ODYSSEY, main character Jay Ziegler (Illya Woloshyn) offers his father’s telescope as a membership fee to join a club of kids that meets in a tree fort. The tree fort club’s bullying leader, Keith (Tony Sampson), denies Jay membership but takes the telescope anyways. With the aid of disabled friend Donna (Ashleigh Aston Moore d/b/a Ashley Rogers)–whom he snubbed in order to enter the tree-fort club–Jay attempts to retrieve his father’s telescope but instead falls out of the tree,  hits his head, and lapses into a coma.

… Continue Reading

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Mike MacDonald Needs Your Help

Some sad news this morning–Canadian comedian Mike MacDonald is in need of an immediate liver transplant. MacDonald was diagnosed with Hepatitis C last year and, due to a recent and severe infection, is going through an extremely tough time at the moment.

Though MacDonald is perhaps best known for his work as a standup comic, Canadian sex comedy fans will recognize him from three prominent roles– Captain Magruder in RECRUITS, Mr. Arsenault in LOOSE SCREWS and Laylo Nardeen in ODDBALLS. MacDonaldexcelled at playing vengeful authority figures who get their richly-deserved comeuppance, but it’s his role as the sleazy camp counsellor Nardeen that really stands out amongst his film work, a reprobate who teaches kids pick-up lines, shows them “stag” movies (literally!) and passes out fake IDs to get them into bars–easily one of the film’s most memorable performances.

If you enjoyed MacDonald’s appearance’s in these films or even his stand-up work that was prominently featured at Just for Laughs and other comedy festivals and TV shows, I encourage you to read his story and donate money to help his family out during this time.

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Moms Deserve Breakfast in Bed!

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SEXCULA Lives!

You just can’t keep a good horny vampire down. Motion Picture Purgatory artist Rick Trembles has a comix review up for our recent Canadian classic ’70s porn discovery SEXCULA!

 

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