TV – “Twitch City” (1998 – 2000)

A TV series? Don’t worry, we won’t do it very often (or ever again, I suppose). Still, we can now have an extra section for TV reviews and get all those sweet page hits that come from this pop culture business.

And to show how finger-on-the-pulse I am, it’s a Canadian show from the late 90s that looks like it was filmed with the world’s worst colour filter!

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“Twitch City” is a show about being young-ish, and living in scummy rented accommodation with people who you wouldn’t give the time of day to in your 30s. It manages this job better than just about any other show on the subject you could care to name – the recent UK series “Fresh Meat”, while admittedly about university, not the young unemployed/unemployable, can’t come close to this. And it was created by one of the Kids In The Hall, one of my favourite sketch comedy troupes ever!

Curtis is a bit of a shut-in, and spends most of his time watching TV, specifically the Rex Reilly Show, a Jerry Springer-like show presented by Bruce McDonald and Mark McKinney, both former Kids In The Hall, playing the same character (the difference being explained by a cranial transplant, brilliantly). Hope moves in, complete with a distant sort-of boyfriend, and the show becomes the two of them living their lives, trying to get people to move into the spare room, attending Nazi rallies (well, one Nazi rally) and so on.

Callum Keith Rennie, one of my favourite actors, brilliant in Due South, Californication and Battlestar Galactica, makes regular appearances as Newbie, who is that guy you all know, who knows a bit about everything and is just…around. He makes a lot out of a little too.

TV can be a bit ephemeral, and unless it gets established in the pantheon of great shows quickly it can sink out of the public eye completely. That goes double for shows like Twitch City, which probably belongs in the same group as that weirdass “sitcom” David Lynch made at one end, and “Peep Show” at the other.

Series 1 was broadcast in 1998, and series 2 in 2000. I’m a big fan of Kids in the Hall, but I’d never heard of it until recently (and am not sure of how I first heard about it, either). It’s available on DVD, and there’s probably a load of it on Youtube too. Move in with Curtis and Hope, why don’t you? Actually, don’t, their spare room is tiny and you’d probably catch something.
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Twitch City on IMDB
Buy Twitch City: Complete Series [DVD] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]

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