Friday, 27 May 2016


Starring Jason Priestley (Call Me Fitz, Beverly Hills, 90210) and Cindy Sampson (Rogue, Supernatural), Private Eyes is a 10 X 60-minute Canadian light-hearted detective series which premiered this week on Global.
Created by Tim Kilby (M.V.P.) & Shelley Eriksen (Continuum, Flashpoint), Private Eyes is loosely based on The Code, a 2012 novel of the Brad Shade mystery series written by sports journalist and author Gare Joyce. Jason Priestley plays Matt "The Shadow" Shade, an ex-pro hockey player who doesn't shine as a freelance scout. But when the young Cory Sinclair, his top pick, collapses on the ice, Shade wants to know the truth. He teams up with tenacious private investigator Angie Everett, played by Cindy Sampson, the daughter of a friend of his father.

Private Eyes is a decent PI procedural show which doesn't pretend to be original or "edgy" and turns out to be very enjoyable. Its appeal lies in the banter between this unlikely sleuth partnership (Priestley and Sampson are excellent), and the Toronto backdrop. Not Toronto as "a big unnamed American city" but as the Canadian city of Toronto, Ontario. Matt's father Don Shade is performed by the talented veteran Canadian actor Barry Flatman (Fargo). Jordyn Negri plays Jules Shade the legally blind (because of macular dystrophy) teenage daughter of Matt. Also starring Ennis Esmer (The Listener) as Detective Curtis Mazrahi.

The Code, the pleasant premiere episode, is written by Tim Kilby & Shelley Eriksen and directed by Kelly Makin. Comedian and actor Kenny Robinson appears as a politician and hockey legend Doug Gilmour has a cameo. The trailer of the second episode promises even more fun. Private Eyes looks like a worthy successor to Republic of Doyle (2010-2014). Produced by Entertainment One Television with Piller/Segan, and the assistance of the Canadian Film or Video Production Tax Credit, the Ontario Film and Television Tax Credit and Canada Media Fund/Fond des médias du Canada. Produced with the participation of the Cogeco Program Development Fund.

Exec produced by Tecca Crosby & Rachel Fulford (for eOne), Shawn Piller & Lloyd Segan (for Piller/Segan) with Tassie Cameron, Kelly Makin, and Jason Priestley. Co-executive producer Derek Schreyer. Produced by Manny Danelon. Music by Shawn Pierce. The theme song is a cool cover of Daryl Hall and John Oates's classic song Private Eyes by rock band Dear Rouge. Private Eyes is distributed by Entertainment One.

[Update - May 18, 2017]  

Private Eyes premiered yesterday in France on TF1, with three episodes aired... on late night (sigh). You can find a June 2016 review of the second episode here:

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