Listings for Nov. 27–Dec. 3, 2023; Black Friday streaming deals, "The Daily Show" has a new Canadian home, and more.
Welcome to the October 23, 2023, edition of Watching This Week, the weekly newsletter from Where Can I Watch – covering the latest news on where TV shows and movies will be available in Canada.
After this week's listings, read on for what's going on with The Daily Show in Canada, plus the launch of Yes TV's streaming apps, and the likely home of the upcoming Peacock movie from Please Don't Destroy.
What's new this week – October 23–31
Compiled from our monthly listings and/or any subsequent updates we've come across. We strive for accuracy but schedules may change without notice. Some series/seasons may have weekly rollouts; we won't list new episodes every week (though we may note significant episodes such as series finales). *An asterisk denotes programming added in past weeks that we've learned about (or has been rescheduled) since our last newsletter.
We're including listings through next Tuesday, October 31, in anticipation of sending out our November listings roundup early next week.
- Netflix: Get Gotti (crime docuseries – Tuesday); Pete Holmes: I Am Not for Everyone (stand-up special – Tuesday); Life on Our Planet (nature docuseries – Wednesday); Pluto (anime series – Thursday); Pain Hustlers (drama film – Friday); Ralph Barbosa: Cowabunga (stand-up special – Tuesday, Oct. 31)
- Disney+: The Lions of Sicily (Italian drama series – Wednesdays); Love in Fairhope (unscripted romance series – Wednesday); Lego Marvel Avengers: Code Red (animated special – Friday); Trap Jazz (Hulu music doc – Friday);
- Crave: Breathe In, Breathe Out [Inspirez expirez] (original Quebec drama series – Wednesday); Hooking Up (2020 comedy-drama film – Friday); The Nun Ⅱ (2023 horror film – Friday); Bakugan: Battle Planet (season 1 – Saturday); The Gilded Age (season 2 of the HBO series – Sundays)
- Prime Video: Hot Potato: The Story of the Wiggles (doc – Tuesday); Zainab Johnson: Hijabs Off (stand-up special – Tuesday); Every Body (2023 doc – Saturday); Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken (2023 animated film – Saturday); Eu Amo o Benfica (Portuguese docuseries – Tuesday, Oct. 31)
- CBC Gem: Cynara (true crime doc – Tuesday); Bloodthirsty (2020 horror film – Friday); Jamie's Easy Meals for Everyday (cooking series – Friday)
- Paramount+ (also available as a channel on Prime Video and Apple TV): Milli Vanilli (music doc – Tuesday); Le Stade (season 2 – Friday); Never Seen Again (season 5 – Friday); Fellow Travelers (Showtime miniseries – Fridays); The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial (Showtime film – Sunday); Vindicta (2023 horror film – Monday, Oct. 30)
- Apple TV+: Curses! (animated series – Friday); The Enfield Poltergeist (docuseries – Friday)
- BritBox (also available as a channel on Prime Video and Apple TV): Flowers (2016–18 series – Tuesday); Rebus (S2-4 of the 2000–07 series – Friday); Being Human (2008–13 series – Monday, Oct. 30)
- BBC Earth (also on Prime Video Channels): Spy in the Ocean (nature docuseries – Sundays; also on Nature on PBS starting this Wednesday, Oct. 25)
- Starz (also available as an add-on/channel on Crave, Prime Video, and Apple TV): Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret. (2023 film – Friday); Godfather of Harlem (seasons 1-2 – Friday)
The case of the missing Daily Show
We got a couple of emails this week – and seen complaints elsewhere – enquiring about The Daily Show, the long-running Comedy Central series, currently without a permanent host since the departure of Trevor Noah late last year, that had been a late-night fixture on both CTV Comedy (formerly The Comedy Network) and the CTV broadcast network.
Until this past week, the absence of TDS from both schedules was not obviously unexpected. The writers' strike meant the series had been out of production since May 1, and even before the strike it was typical – both for CTV Comedy and for Comedy Central itself – to fill the time slot with other programming rather than airing repeats.
But when the show resumed this past Monday with Michael Kosta as the week's guest host, it wasn't on CTV, CTV Comedy, or – so far as we can tell – any other linear or subscription streaming platform in Canada.
Some new episodes are available, however, for digital purchase on platforms like the Apple TV / iTunes Store (though some of the dates shown seem to be slightly off as of this writing).
So what happened? As we've been documenting over the past few months, other Comedy Central programming like South Park has been pulled off Bell Media's subscription streaming platform Crave, and migrating onto Paramount+.
When we saw this accelerate in August, we initially thought this would be handled similarly to other Paramount properties like Star Trek or MTV, for which Bell Media continues to have some linear and free-streaming rights for the time being.
But in fact, all Comedy Central series have now disappeared from all Bell Media platforms (unless you count the two Canadian licensed versions of Roast Battle).
The immediate implication of that change is Paramount's Pluto TV launching several new channels in Canada featuring Comedy Central (as well as MTV) programming – but none yet with TDS, so far as we can tell.
Going forward, is there any other TV channel or streaming service TDS could end up on in Canada? Paramount+ would seem to be the most obvious choice, but the parent company isn't saying anything yet. We emailed Paramount's Canadian representatives for comment this past week and had not received a response as of this writing.
Of course, if Paramount does want to return Comedy Central programming to a linear channel in Canada, they might have other options, including through their other longtime Canadian partner Corus Entertainment. This is purely speculation on our part here, but the Corus-managed Canadian version of CMT – which several years ago dropped any pretence of being about country music anymore, no longer even carrying the American version's award shows – is now almost wall-to-wall comedy programming like The Office and Schitt's Creek, so it would seem to us to be a good candidate, if Paramount wants one.
- W Network launched its annual Hallmark Channel "Countdown to Christmas" event this past Friday night, with new, mostly filmed-in-Canada telefilms premiering Wednesdays through Sundays between now and December 23. There are too many to list here, but per Corus, the offerings include "titles from Hallmark Channel, Hallmark Movies & Mysteries, Lifetime and UP TV".
- The Blue Ant-owned Canadian version of BBC First will be premiering Northern Ireland crime drama series Blue Lights, Thursdays starting November 9, as well as comedy series Black Ops, Fridays starting November 10. Both six-episode seasons should air in full during the channel's free preview event on most TV providers which runs from October 30 to December 31.
- Yes TV's streaming platform finally launched last week. As expected, it includes live-stream access to the broadcaster's Ontario and Alberta feeds, which includes the channel's syndicated fare like Wheel of Fortune, Jeopardy!, and various off-network reruns. There is also on-demand programming, but at the moment it's limited to original programming like Living Local, and various faith-based programs. The platform, which includes a web interface as well as mobile / streaming device apps, requires registration but it appears it should work nationwide.
- Both Bell Media and Corus Entertainment are seeking more urgent adjustments to regulatory conditions from the CRTC, which has put much of its other activities on hold as it proceeds with work implementing the new Online Streaming Act. Bell filed an appeal with the Federal Court of Appeal over an administrative renewal that extended its licences under terms it no longer wants, on the grounds that it did not have advance notice nor the opportunity to provide comments.
Meanwhile, Corus, whose shares are currently trading for under one dollar per share, asked for amendments to certain conditions of licence to reduce some of its Canadian content spending on a short-term basis. The CRTC said it was inclined to approve those amendments, subject to a shortened public notice period.
- We inadvertently forgot two recent launches of existing channels on new platforms: Super Channel launched a direct subscription on Roku devices by way of its own app called "Super Channel+". And in addition to its own direct-to-consumer platform Sportsnet+ (formerly Sportsnet Now), Sportsnet is now available as a channel on Prime Video, for $19.99 per month (the same price as SN+'s standard monthly plan).
Here's some of the reader questions we've received recently by email (email@example.com). We welcome questions of general interest, and publish a few of them (and our answers) from time to time; messages may be edited for brevity and clarity.
Shane: I would guess that the upcoming [SNL digital short troupe] Please Don't Destroy movie The Treasure of Foggy
Bottom Mountain, which will be streaming on Peacock, will not be available in Canada – Corus hasn't picked up many of Peacock's one-off specials like Would It Kill You to Laugh? and various stand-up specials. What do you think?
WCIW: It looks like The Treasure of Foggy Mountain will technically be a Universal Pictures direct-to-video release which will happen to premiere on Peacock in the U.S. – as opposed to a Peacock-commissioned original film or special like the other programs mentioned.
The distinction here is that in Canada, it would then likely land on Prime Video under its new output deal with Universal that came into effect earlier this year. There have in fact been a few other Universal films released already this year, including Praise This and Shooting Stars, that worked out similarly. So we think there's a strong chance this will work out the same way for Foggy Mountain.
[Note: title corrected Nov. 3, title was correct in original email]
Carol: I've found references to [the 2016 British miniseries] Victorian Bakers being available on Apple TV+ or BritBox but I can't find it on either of these platforms. I know it's aired on TVO in the past but I missed the first two episodes and it's not there now.
WCIW: Unfortunately we couldn’t find anything beyond the sorts of things you referenced, which seemed to be for other countries, not Canada. The page we found for Apple seemed to be for digital purchases through the Apple TV app, and not part of the Apple TV+ streaming subscription, but again it was for outside Canada.
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