With the epidemic of hyperbole filling every last gap of the internet it would be easy to blow off that statement. Content is being created on so many platforms I feel like every other day someone is telling me about the “best show ever”. Binge-watching has become an accepted term and celebrated practice. Emotions and descriptors have gone off the rails.
This isn’t that.
Remedy is halfway through it’s second 10-episode season. It premiered in February of 2014 on the Canadian network Global. I started watching it when I was feeling pretty jaded about television and frustrated with storytelling in general while trying to finish writing a novel. Then I met the Conners. Immediately I knew I was in good hands. By the end of the first season I was so reluctant for it to end that I saved the finale on my PVR and didn’t watch it until the week before the second season started.
In the age of instant gratification I waited nearly a year for something I could have right away.
Of course, you don’t have to wait, you can watch it right now on Shomi or Global (where you’ll also find webisodes). And while it might be tempting to gobble it up do yourself a favour and take your time. Put down your phone, and actually pay attention. Because above all else Remedy employs a great cast that can deliver as much with a side glance as they do with snappy dialogue.
Wherever Enrico goes I will go with him. Keith Mars is my favourite television father of all time. I will never forgive whoever it was that decided to cancel Veronica Mars. Thankfully a year later Mr. Colantoni came back to my screen in the form of Flashpoint, a Canadian show that ran 5 seasons that could go head-to-head with any police show our neighbours to the south have on the air. So when I heard that he would be sticking around to do another Toronto show my hopes were very high.
Then there was Dillon. If you watched Nikita you’ll understand. If you didn’t watch Nikita go do that immediately. Sean Pierce made laugh out loud, yell at the screen and cry. Things that don’t happen easily. The same can now be said of Griffin Conner. I say Sean & Griffin not because of that old cliche of it being hard to tell where the characters stop and Casey begins; follow him on twitter, Vine or Youtube and you’ll quickly be introduced to a hysterical goofball. It’s more that it’s hard to remember that the characters he plays aren’t real people. You half expect to run into Griffin the next time you’re in a Toronto area hospital. His isn’t of the in your face kind of acting, but more the subtle under your skin kind. And sure, sometimes that happens while showing said skin in a steamed up room in order to kill bedbugs. That’s just good science. But other times it’s the difficult quiet moments like that of episode three when Griffin is caring for a man with Alzheimer’s. And your heart breaks at how real it is.
The other reason I knew I would see what Remedy was all about was because it’s a Canadian show. It’s hard for us to self-promote in Canada. We aren’t the types to boast about the things we make. But we need to get over that. Fast. Canada is home to fantastic talent, and is starting to prove it can make great original content. There is no reason to feel like we can’t compete with American shows. Orphan Black, Schitt’s Creek, Bitten, Flashpoint, Remedy… we have everything that it takes. They should be so lucky to have us.
If it were only these three things, it would be enough to keep me coming back. But it’s everything else that makes me love it.
Remedy isn’t just a medical drama (though I have stopped watching others in favour of it). It isn’t just Canadian television (but it does have a floor hockey team). And it’s not just a family show (even if you want Mel & Sandy to be your sisters).
There are no dragons, vampires, clones or kingpins. It’s not in an alternate decade, timeline or universe. There is no great government conspiracy at play. No vigilantes or super heroes.
Remedy is life. The messy parts you don’t want to talk about. And the sensitive ones you can’t. It’s the familiarity of routine and the shock of the unexpected.
It’s also not just Enrico & Dillon, it’s a cast that shows up right down to the socks. Genelle Williams plays Zoe and all her moods, hard and soft and everything in between, and when she’s not doing that she’s also knocked up with a werewolf fetus on Bitten. In keeping with my last week’s opinion that everything is better with a Newfie we have Sara Canning (the Vampire Diaries) as Dr. Mel Conner. A strong feminist character that’s not only Type A but B and C as well, who manages to screw up enough to keep her human. The most pleasant surprise has been Sarah Allen as Sandy, who I haven’t seen in anything else but hope to see much more.
Here’s hoping more starts with a third season.
And a fourth.
And as many more as it takes until Bruno (Diego Fuentes) gets his Canadian medical license.
Watch Remedy, Monday nights on Global.