Tag Archives: CTV

CTV, what’s your age again?


Courtesy of Dan Kowal, CTV Montreal Engineering Supervisor

Why there’s a lot of contradictory information on the web regarding the exact age of the network and how a lot of it is the fault of their own PR.

Those who’ve been following up on the 50th anniversary of the CTV stations in Montreal, Ottawa and Toronto, among other places may have accidentally stumbled upon this awkwardly worded CTV national PR campaign stating that they are celebrating 50 years of providing local news. You’ll notice on the web page that, strangely enough, there’s no mention of when the CTV network itself actually went on the air or what or exactly happen 50 years ago that led to the creation CTV’s local news.


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50 Years of CJOH-TV Ottawa in a nutshell

CJOH's Eye On Ottawa promo 1989

CJOH's Eye On Ottawa promo 1989

Following in the footsteps of CFTO and CFCF, now CJOH-TV is also celebrating 50 years of local TV. As a result, I thought it would be a good idea if I, once again, gave myself permission to republish an edited and updated version of the trivial facts of Channel 13 from my old TV Hat website (now defunct). The Ottawa television station began broadcasting, for the very first time, on March 12, 1961, at noon. The CTV Ottawa website has a special section dedicated to its 50-year history.


Before they became stars

A number of well-known people got their start at CJOH-TV including Peter Jennings and Alanis Morissette. Jennings was a local news anchor, although he actually made his TV debut as the host of the station’s teen show called Saturday Date in 1962. Alanis Morrisette’s first TV appearance was on a kids show called You Can’t Do That On Television where she was a regular. YCDTOT was syndicated to other Canadian channels, such as CFCF, and to the Nickelodeon cable channel in the States. YTV also picked up the show later on in reruns.

CJOH was also the former flagship centre for CTV’s national newscasts, the very first of which originated from the Ottawa studio in November 1962. Sunday Edition with Mike Duffy also originated from the Ottawa station where it was distributed to other Canadian channels (mostly Baton but CFCF as well). Later it became an official CTV show.

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50 years of CFCF-12 Montreal in a nutshell


Magic Tom - CFCF-TV 12

CFCF is celebrating 50 years of local TV on January 20th. As a result, I thought it would be a good idea if I gave myself permission to republish an edited and updated version of the history of Channel 12 from my old TV Hat website (now defunct).

On a side note, if you’re looking for images and video of CFCF’s past, the CTV Montreal website has pretty much opened up the floodgates and put up a whole bunch of memories. Plus, a special 50th retrospective will air during the second half of the news on Jan. 20 at 6 and again the next day on the noon broadcast.

Also, Fagstein offers a few thoughts on CFCF and why local shows aren’t being produced anymore. And finally, a reminder, you can also find images, like the one above, on my TV Montreal Media Fun Facebook page, including those of Johnny Jellybean, Magic Tom, other vintage CFCF-12 pics and some provided by Producer and Director Sidney M. Cohen.



This station began operation on January 20th, 1961, in a small temporary studio below a dance hall. The exact location was the old Avon Theatre at 215 Laurier Street. The early broadcasts of Pulse News were a sound engineers’ nightmare on Friday nights as music from upstairs crept down into the newsroom during the show. Fortunately, it wasn’t too long before the station moved into its permanent home at 405 Oglivy Avenue in Montreal’s north end Park Extension neighbourhood, where it remained for forty years. In 2003, they moved to 1205 Papineau Avenue.
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E! Channel comes to Canada… Again!

CanWest Global gave it try from 2007 to 2009, now it’s CTV’s turn. On November 29, CTV will convert its Star! specialty cable service into E! Canada.

Many E! favourites, from south of the border, will now be easier to find on the new network, compared to the Global version which really only carried a minimal amount of content on what used to be CH. Even after its rebranding, CH’s focus was mainly that of local programming and American simulcasts with the other major networks. Now, E! simulcasts will actually be with E!, for the most part.

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The new and improved $h*! My Dad Says… Still so-so

Those of you who read my recent advanced review of $h*! My Dad Says and watched the pilot may have noticed something a little odd. My description of the episode didn’t quite entirely match what was aired on TV. I should explain that the copy that was sent to me by CTV, did include a warning which read “casting not final.”

While I was not surprised to see a few last minute changes, I wasn’t expecting to see so many modifications to the script as well. As bad luck would have it, just about everything I chose to mention in my preview happens to be items that were changed. But I digress. I just wanted to point this out so that you would know that my review wasn’t something that I just pulled out of my butt.

At any rate, the so-called improved version of $h*! My Dad Says didn’t really change my opinion. Yes, they got rid of a few things that didn’t work, like that god-awful fake heart attack scene. At the same time, they also got rid of many of the things that actually did work. Continue reading

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The return of Tom Selleck in CBS’s Blue Bloods (Fall TV preview)

Note: This review was written by Steve Hatton for Channel Canada’s Fall TV Preview section and reprinted here with permission. This review may contain some spoilers.

Blue Bloods

Blue Bloods

From the people who brought us The Sopranos comes this clever, well-written drama about a multigenerational family of cops, with Tom Selleck as the father figure. Blue Bloods looks at the complexities of law enforcement and morality in a world where nobody is perfect. To best describe this show, I would argue that The Sopranos looks at a family of criminals who aren’t always bad people, while Blue Bloods looks at a family of cops who aren’t always good.

The pilot begins with a graduation ceremony for new police officers. The Reagan family attends the ceremony as not only is Selleck’s character, Frank, the Chief of Police for New York City but one of the graduates is his son. While Frank is addressing the crowd with his moving speech, a little girl is seen being kidnapped in another part of town.

We then see that another one of Frank’s sons, Danny, also a cop and an Iraq war vet, is doing everything he possibly can in his power to try to find the missing child. Without giving too much away, it could be said that he even goes a little too far.

Regardless as to how viewers may feel about enhanced interrogation techniques or even torture, for that matter, Blue Bloods is an interesting show to watch. Not only is it a gripping drama, but it is topical. Continue reading


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William Shatner and $h*! My Dad Says on CBS (Sneak Peek)

Note: This review was written by Steve Hatton for Channel Canada’s Fall TV Preview section and reprinted here with permission. This review may contain some spoilers.

Shit My Dad SaysAn advanced viewing of this new CBS fall pilot reveals a sitcom-like plot which still succeeds in being funny as a whole. William Shatner plays a grumpy conservative 72-year-old guy who fought in three wars and has had a strained relationship with his children. Right off the bat, the tone and the premise is set for the type of character Ed is suppose to be.

He is seen grabbing his shotgun and threatening to shoot just because he heard a suspicious noise. But the scene is actually kind of funny because we just saw his son, Henry (Jonathan Sadowski), trying to explain to his roommate Sam (Stephanie Lemelin) why he is afraid to ask his dad for rent money. Now, his father is pointing a shotgun at them and unintentionally proving his son’s point.

$h*! My Dad Says, or Bleep My Dads Says as it may also be called, could already have a strike against it for some viewers just because it is a sitcom. Having said that, it does stand out as a pretty decent argument against the theory that sitcoms are dead.

The Montreal-born Shatner does have many funny one-liners in the pilot, like when he says, “Why do you keep giving me gifts? If I wanted piles of crap around the house I would have bought a bird!”

Or like this other funny moment where Henry tries to explain to his father why he isn’t dating Sam. Continue reading


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