Make Canoe my Homepage

Shouldn’t the alternate name for CBC’s Murdoch Mysteries really be Love Interrupted?

- October 9th, 2013

620x296-Murdoch_S7_fullcast-prem-date-thumb-620xauto-324643

Are the doctor and the detective ever going to get together on Murdoch Mysteries?

The series, which has begun its seventh season, airing Mondays on CBC, has thrown no shortage of roadblocks between Det. William Murdoch, played by Yannick Bisson (pictured above, centre), and Dr. Julia Ogden, played by Helene Joy (pictured above, second from right). So much so, some viewers could be excused for screaming at their televisions, “For God’s sake you two, it’s the early 1900s, just get on a train and go off together, no one ever will bother you.”

“But isn’t that wonderful angst?” Joy asks rhetorically. “Isn’t that lovely angst to be having?”

Both Joy and Bisson point out that one of the things they love about the doctor-detective relationship is that it feels very real, in terms of both the professions of their characters and the times in which they’re living.

“Because it’s the Victorian era, we’re able to manufacture more and more reasons, plausible reasons, why they would be apart,” Bisson says. “Whereas if it were happening on CSI, it would be like, ‘Oh, come on.’ But all of these issues are very real.

“And they respect each other professionally, too. Part of the kick they get from each other is working together. They don’t want to jeopardize that. So that has to be layered in, too.”

Luckily, Murdoch Mysteries has been such a homegrown ratings juggernaut since shifting to CBC last season (from its original home on City), Det. Murdoch and Dr. Ogden have time on their side. And the series has been picked up by the Ovation network in the U.S., airing under the name The Artful Detective (say what? How is the name Murdoch Mysteries too Canadian?).

“Both these people (Dr. Ogden and Det. Murdoch) are very passionate about their work and they still have to get on,” Joy says. “They stand alone, they have power separately, and they’re trying to navigate something. I think that’s really refreshing and I’ve had fans tell me that, too.

“Love will overcome, ultimately. But it might take a while. It might take a few more seasons.”

bill.harris@sunmedia.ca

Yannick Bisson and Murdoch Mysteries “take flight” at their new CBC home

- November 21st, 2012

Yannick Bisson

New century. New network.

New Murdoch Mysteries?

Yes and no, according to lead actor Yannick Bisson (pictured above).

A sixth season of Murdoch Mysteries makes its debut early in the new year, on Jan. 7, on its new network, CBC. The Canadian series previously existed for five seasons on Citytv.

As it turned out, the previous season ended as the clock struck midnight and a new century – the 1900s – was born.

“It’s almost like it was pre-ordained somehow,” said Bisson, who plays William Murdoch, an innovative police detective with an eye toward the future.

“New century, new broadcaster, it really did fall that way. Man, nobody is happier than me.”

Bisson was asked if fans of Murdoch Mysteries are going to notice a difference from broadcaster to broadcaster, other than merely having to click to a different channel. Is the transition intended to be seamless, or do the creators want viewers to perceive that something has changed?

“It’s actually not really either in terminology for me,” Bisson said. “Really what we’re doing is continuing to give the audience what has been working. They love the show the way it is. We’ve given them new, more, extra of what they’ve liked so far. And to be honest it has been business as usual. It hasn’t been different in content or approach at all.

“But having a home (on CBC), having more people talking about the show, having a consistent time slot, having publicity, getting ancillary publicity on different platforms, knowing that we’re wanted, maybe that has changed us a fair bit.

“Confidence is such a big part of this. So definitely, I would say that aspect has changed.”

As far as story lines go, Murdoch Mysteries always has existed in a fortuitous time period, because so much of what we take for granted today was invented or conceived in the late 1800s and early 1900s.

“Now with the new century we’re able to talk about things like flight,” Bisson said. “So there is an aspect of that coming up in season six. If you can picture the Murdoch character experiencing flight, that gives you an idea. It’s going to be great.

“We also have people who come into historical prominence later on, and we always take a bit of creative licence with stuff like this. But we’re bringing Winston Churchill to the show, with all of his young man’s sort of foibles (Churchill is portrayed by Thomas Howes, who played William on Downton Abbey).

“Some of it is really trivial, little things like sticky tape. Stupid little things like that, but it puts a smile on your face. And at the end of the day, we’re entertained just as much as the viewer by this stuff. I absolutely love doing the show for those little moments. ‘Canned meat? Who are you trying to kid? That will never take off!’ ”

As long as Murdoch Mysteries continues to take off – literally and figuratively – Yannick Bisson will have his head in the clouds.

bill.harris@sunmedia.ca

@billharris_tv