January 2010

Sunday, January 24 at 8:00pm ET/PT (7:00pm CT, 9:00pm MT) ***Special 2 Hour Episode*** on Citytv

Extreme Makeover: Home Edition traveled to Buffalo, New York – with music star and celebrity volunteer, Ashanti — to meet Delores Powell, a Jamaican immigrant and community activist whose home is barely livable. Moving here 22 years ago, Delores worked hard to support herself and her growing family, but the accomplishment was overshadowed by the abusive nature of her relationship with her ex-husband. In 2002, after reaching her limit, Delores picked up her children and moved to Buffalo, NY, in search of affordable housing. They rented an apartment for a year before finding a six bedroom “fixer upper.” Delores struck a deal with the seller personally, but unfortunately the seller failed to disclose that the house was on the city’s demolition list. Delores, 49, and her children Joel, 18, Gabrielle, 16, Deborah, 15, and Anschel, 10, began building scaffolding, hanging drywall, installing windows, and countless other repairs. But even after five and a half years of work, the family’s home is unlivable. Now it’s up to Ty and the design team to build Delores and her family the strong, safe home that will support this family and their dreams.

Sunday, January 24 – 8pm ET/PT on Global

A murder inside the Louvre and clues in Da Vinci paintings lead to the discovery of a religious mystery protected by a secret society for two thousand years — which could shake the foundations of Christianity. Starring Tom Hanks and Audrey Tautou. Directed by Ron Howard.

Sunday, Jan. 24 at 8 p.m. on CBC TV

What do a politician, a Stanley Cup-winning goalie, the first Canadian in space and a roller derby star have in common? Find out Sunday, Jan. 24 as Justin Trudeau, Glenn Healy, Marc Garneau and Candy Crossbones go head-to-head on CBC’s TEST THE NATION: IQ.

Hosted by George Stroumboulopoulos (The Hour, The Strombo Show) and Carole MacNeil (CBC News Network) this coast-to-coast IQ challenge tests the star-studded smarts of 180 in-studio team members, including Kelly Hrudey, Dragons’ Den’s W. Brett Wilson and Little Mosque on the Prairie’s Brandon Firla. This Canada-wide battle of the brains gets underway at 8 p.m. on CBC-TV.

Six dynamic teams featuring twins, politicians, atheists, believers, athletes and nerds are set to compete live in studio. At the same time, Canadians can take the test by printing a scorecard or by participating online at cbc.ca/testthenation.

“We are taking the idea of a general IQ test and essentially putting it into a Roman Coliseum. I can’t wait to find out who survives,” says Stroumboulopoulos.

In a new twist, Toronto hypnotherapist Donald Currie will put selected team members under hypnosis. Tune in to find out if this technique actually increases participants’ IQ scores. Canadians will also have a chance to see how their intelligence stacks up against members of Canada’s Mensa Society.

This year’s test was created by two of Canada’s leading intelligence-testing experts, Dr. James Parker of Trent University and Dr. Don Saklofske of the University of Calgary. The 50 multiple choice questions are closely modeled after those found in standardized IQ tests and aim to evaluate performance in key areas of intelligence, including language comprehension, visual perception, memory, math and logical reasoning.

The debut of TEST THE NATION: IQ on CBC-TV in 2007 was a tremendous success, with more than 1.5 million viewers and 200,000 people taking the test online.

“I think every Canadian deep down is curious about where they would rank on an IQ test. Because CBC knows that Canadians are smart and inquisitive, we’re putting them to the test in the comfort of their own living rooms as we test the nation,” says Kirstine Stewart, general manager, CBC-TV.

Sunday, January 24 at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT on Book Television

Television personality and journalist Valerie Pringle reads from the beautiful classic story Who Has Seen The Wind by W.O. Mitchell.

Sunday, January 24 at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT (60 mins) on Bravo!

RICHARD MARGISON: THE FOLK SINGING OPERA STAR profiles the accomplished life of one of opera’s leading tenors as he returns to his folk signing roots. Margison began as an aspiring folk singer in the coffee houses of Victoria, British Columbia. By 1985, he debuted in Madame Butterfly at New York Metropolitan Opera. The biography features interviews with Margison and Gordon Lightfoot, and a musical collaboration with Bruce Cockburn. It is produced by Harbinger Films Inc. in association with Bravo! and directed by Michael Maitland.

Sunday, January 24 at 7:30 p.m. ET / 4:30 p.m. PT on Bravo!

This week’s episode of BRAVO!FACT PRESENTS gears up for Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games with a selection of shorts focusing on a few of Canada’s ‘ice capades’. Astra Burka’s Innocence on Ice pays tribute to figure skater Petra Burka, who won the bronze medal for Canada in 1964; Olympian Kurt Browning laces up in Clarence Ford’s In the Groove; Shakespeare takes to the rink in Carolyn White & Hope Thompson’s Grace; Eric Warin tells the story of a boy’s love for hockey and the spirit of NHL past in Alexander Awakens the Ghosts; and a hockey legend drives all night through a snowstorm to get to the game in Shannon Farr’s The Boston Bruins’ Eddie Shore. (Encore Presentation: January 29 at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT)

Sunday, January 24 at 7:00pm ET/PT (9:00pm CT/ 8:00pm MT) **Note Special Time** on Citytv

CIA agent Daniel Shaw ( Brandon Routh, Superman Returns) assigns Chuck (Zachary Levi) to his first solo mission in Paris, ignoring Sarah (Yvonne Strahovski) and Casey’s (Adam Baldwin) wishes. During the flight to France, Chuck befriends Hannah (Kristin Kreuk, Smallville) and flashes on another passenger – the imposing Hugo Panzer (Stone Cold Steve Austin, WWE Smackdown!). Meanwhile, Casey helps Morgan (Joshua Gomez) battle Jeff and Lester (Vik Sahay) for control of the Buy More.

Sunday, January 24 – 6:30pm ET/PT on Global

AWOL soldiers taking cover in Canada. 16×9 takes you in to the secret world of war resisters. See where one American deserter is hiding. Plus- the political battle brewing: should war dodgers be allowed to stay, or forced to face their country?

On Derek and Meredith and their personal and professional trials

Derek is now Chief!  Actually he’s just the interim Chief but the way he went about getting there is what I’d like to start with.  Richard is drinking again.  Richard is a recovering alcoholic who’s been sober a long time and the fact that he’s drinking again … Derek feels torn, between supporting his old friend and wanting to protect the hospital from a man who’s fallen off the wagon. At the beginning of the episode we see that Derek has realized that in order to be a friend to Richard, he has to go to the Board.   Because along with the drinking comes the lies and the poor judgment.  This is about more that just a friend who is struggling with sobriety, it’s about the hospital, people’s lives …  Meredith sees it differently.  She says the Chief was drinking but promised Meredith he would stop.  And she trusts him, he wouldn’t lie to her.  And, more importantly, she didn’t confide to Derek the surgeon about Richard’s drinking, she confided to Derek her husband.  There have to be lines drawn, boundaries … and when Meredith screams, “Post it!”  Derek backs down.  The post it wins, so Derek her husband urges her to at least think about what’s best for the hospital.

What I love about this scene, besides the fact that the actors played it brilliantly, is that it shows how they’ve matured.  This is a real grown-up argument.  Meredith isn’t running away, getting all dark and going to Cristina for help getting out of her marriage.  She’s staying and fighting.  Professional/personal boundaries are tricky to negotiate for couples who work together (I should know since my writing partner is also my husband, hi Tony) and Shonda really wanted to see our couples be couples this year.  Grow, mature, try to be happy.  We really want to show that struggle, that in the midst of the ugly argument, you can still love the person and find them sexy, which is why I loved it that Derek got all turned on by Meredith in the course of the argument.

On the situation with the chief

Now … the scene where Derek pours Richard a drink.  We talked about that scene a lot.  Derek doesn’t trust Richard and now Richard is going into a very difficult surgery and he’s bringing Meredith with him.  And promising her a procedure that Bailey says she’s not ready to do.  Derek can’t let that happen.  So he goes and confronts Richard.  Tempts him.  He pours the drink and dares Richard not to drink it.  It’s a little bit cruel, but Derek feels that it’s justified, in the scene where he asks Owen what he should do.  Owen gives him the go ahead, if someone’s fighting dirty, it’s okay to fight back dirty as long as you’re doing it for the greater good.  And when Derek leaves Richard’s office it’s like both he and Richard know Richard is powerless over the alcohol.  Derek is saying he sees Richard.  Richard may be able to fool Meredith, but Derek sees him.  And Derek now knows what he has to do.  He has to convince Meredith to go to the Board.  And so he tells her that if he becomes Chief he’ll hire back Izzie.  He makes her choose between Izzie and the Chief.

About the episode theme of ambition

The theme of this episode was exposure but when I watched it being shot I realized it was really about ambition. Derek wants to be Chief; Meredith wants to do a procedure that she knows she isn’t ready for; Cristina wants Teddy to stay.  Years ago I was trying to be an actor and I remember one day in acting class we were talking about a character’s motivation and my acting teacher said there are really only two things that motivate people:  sex and ambition.   Every choice can be boiled down to one or the other. I remember being really struck by that and I’ve thought about it over the years, and in a way I believe it. I mean, of course we do things for other reasons — we do things for our kids because we love them, and if you’re like me you do things out of guilt.  And for donuts.   But when Derek and Meredith lay in bed at the end of the episode and she says she understands why Derek did what he did, she doesn’t like it but she gets it.  She’s ambitious too.  It’s bittersweet and true.  I like that.  It was a crappy day.  She didn’t like what Derek did.  But she’s here, in bed, telling him.  She’s a grown up.

About Cristina and Owen and Izzie and Alex

What else … oh yeah, Cristina.  Cristina blurts out that she’d choose surgery over Owen.  Which, let’s face it, is very Cristina.  When we were first discussing this story we had a knock down drag out fight in the writers’ room – if you had to choose your love or your art, which would you choose?  And some of us came down on the Cristina side, and some of us came down on the Izzie side – that in the end love is all that matters.  Cristina felt in that moment, faced with Teddy leaving, that she couldn’t have both, she had to choose.  And she chose surgery.  Because it’s who she is.  And without surgery, without becoming the absolute best surgeon she can be, Cristina feels that she would cease to be herself.  It’s only in that moment in the surgery on the opera singer when Teddy chooses to risk his life in order to save his art that Cristina realizes that for all of her shock and judgment, Teddy gets her.  And Cristina is unwilling to keep apologizing for who she is.

And speaking of struggle … Alex and Izzie.  He tells her he’s done.  Izzie getting the clean scan back gives Alex the freedom to leave.  Because he never would have left her when she was sick, he’s a good guy.  And I’m not saying that Alex ever consciously thought, I can’t leave her while she’ s sick, but now that she’s not, now that she seems like she’s going to get better, it just comes to him.  He deserves more.  He’s a good guy and he deserves more.  We talked about the fact that Alex grew up in a pretty dysfunctional family and he was probably in a lot of bad relationships where he wasn’t a good guy, so he had come to believe it.  But loving Izzie showed him that he can be good, is good.  So it was a little gift.  And when he tells Izzie he’s done, he’s not bitter or angry, he’s just done.  Justin Chambers plays Alex and there’s not a sweeter guy on the planet so it’s always been funny to me how well he plays an asshole.  But I like that we get to see more depth in Alex.

Read more about the writer’s take on this episode on the Grey’s Anatomy writer’s blog, including the situation wiith Mark and Lexi, Callie and Arizona and more.

Saturday, January 23 at 9 pm ET/PT

A team of U.S. government agents are sent to investigate the bombing of an American facility in the Middle East. Stars Jamie Foxx, Jennifer Garner and Jason Bateman.