It's been a crazy year for Canadian TV, with new shows springing up almost every month from different networks across the country. Be it a foodie show, a reality competition or an investigative drama, it's apparent that Canadian producers and creators are starting to amp up their offerings for the small screen.
Original programming has also increased (in many cases, co-productions), with hit shows like "Orphan Black" and "Vikings" making waves both here and around the world. Are you aware that "The Real Housewives Of Vancouver" is a smash across the pond in the U.K.? Now you know.
Here's the best of Canadian TV from 2013. It's been a banner year, and we absolutely cannot wait for 2014.
Now that every single media outlet has gushed with praise for this outstanding show, we thought now would be the right time to say: <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/chris-jancelewicz/orphan-black-review_b_2965251.html" target="_blank">WE SAW IT FIRST</a>. No, but seriously, we've been monitoring this Tatiana Maslany masterpiece since it was first buzzed about at TCA in 2012. So there. And really, it's not a stretch to say that "Orphan Black" is easily the best Canadian-made show on TV right now.
'The Amazing Race Canada'
None of us were really sure what to expect from the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/news/amazing-race-canada" target="_blank">Canadian version of "The Amazing Race."</a> Would it have the same quality? Would the teams be entertaining? Would they visit beautiful locales across this great nation? Thank goodness the answer to those resounding questions is unanimously "yes." Prep for Season 2 in the fall summer of 2014.
'Big Brother Canada'
For a reality show that's had umpteen seasons south of the border, it was tough to imagine a bunch of average Canadians making something out of this franchise. They shot way past the target, and "<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/news/big-brother-canada" target="_blank">Big Brother Canada</a>" supplied some of the biggest shocker moments of the TV season. Who could ever forget <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2013/05/02/big-brother-canada-winner-jillian-topaz-season-1_n_3202417.html" target="_blank">that ridiculous finale</a>?
Man, this show. While it definitely doesn't appeal to everyone, you can't deny that <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/news/lost-girl" target="_blank">"Lost Girl" has some of the most devoted fans</a> of any TV show in existence. The succubus drama/comedy always manages to hit the right notes, and continues to grow and mature as it <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/melissa-girimonte/lost-girl-season-4-episode-8-recap-groundhog-fae_b_4516666.html" target="_blank">makes its way through its fourth season</a>. Fully homegrown and an international hit, "Lost Girl" is something for Canadians to brag about.
Speaking of loyal fans, "Continuum" fans are running a close second to the "Lost Girl" fae-natics. About to enter its third season, <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/05/25/continuum-tv-show-showcase-review_n_1545978.html" target="_blank">"Continuum" has received praise</a> both here and abroad for its clever storylines and interesting premise. Leading lady Rachel Nichols never fails to bring the kick-ass, either. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/25/continuum-renewed-for-sec_n_1830325.html" target="_blank">Season 2 starts up soon</a>.
This Irish-Canadian co-production has been turning heads since it premiered in March. While semi-similar to HBO's "Game Of Thrones," "Vikings" has a flavour all its own. It's sexy, fast-paced, and can be a bloody mess, but ultimately it's a story of a man's quest to secure a future for his family and bloodline.
Some of you may collectively moan and say, "Not another detective show!" We were in that same camp, but "Motive" has proven to be a <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2013/02/01/kristin-lehman-motive-interview_n_2593460.html" target="_blank">different, innovative cop show</a>. The cases on the show work backwards, so you start off with the perp and try to figure out his or her motivations. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2013/05/10/motive-season-2-ctv-renewed_n_3254588.html" target="_blank">Season 2 is set to premiere in 2014</a>.
It's no joke when people say that Canada has the TV market cornered on sci-fi. Not only do we shoot numerous sci-fi shows in this country, but we make some damn good ones. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/maureen-ryan/defiance-review_b_3082390.html" target="_blank">"Defiance" was a critical surprise</a> and was renewed for a second season almost immediately after Season 1 started. Shot in Toronto, "Defiance" is a perfect illustration of what can be done with the right budget and creativity.
'The Real Housewives Of Vancouver'
This picture says it all, doesn't it? Season 2 of "<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/news/real-housewives-of-vancouver" target="_blank">The Real Housewives Of Vancouver</a>" pulled out all the stops and, frankly, got really, really ugly. It all came to a head in the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/jesse-ferreras/real-housewives-of-vancouver-season-2-finale-recap_b_3041919.html" target="_blank">vicious finale</a>, enough to the point that we didn't even get a reunion special. OUCH. Currently, there are no plans for a Season 3 of "RHOV." (Though a little bird told us a "Real Housewives Of Toronto" may be in the works.)
'Top Chef Canada,' 'Chopped Canada,' 'MasterChef Canada'
So ... many ... cooking competition shows. In 2013, Canada produced so many cooking shows we can't even keep them straight. "Chopped Canada" is set to start in the first week of 2014, and <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2013/09/19/masterchef-canada_n_3952909.html" target="_blank">"MasterChef Canada" is following suit</a>. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2013/02/22/top-chef-canada_n_2742988.html" target="_blank">"Top Chef Canada" finished up its third season</a> this year. Let's hope our nation doesn't take these shows <em>too</em> seriously -- we don't want an obesity epidemic on our hands!
Canada's first big foray into the world of daytime talk show panels has been a pretty big success. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2013/09/01/the-social-tv-talk-show_n_3844827.html" target="_blank">"The Social"</a> is talked about, debated and watched by people across the country.
'The Bachelor Canada'
Awwwww, look at the lovely couple! Brad and Bianca, the first-ever "<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/news/bachelor-canada/" target="_blank">Bachelor Canada</a>" pairing, are apparently still going strong. City recently announced that a second season is in the works, and they're <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2013/11/21/bachelor-canada-season-2-contestant-call_n_4317222.html" target="_blank">casting men <em>and</em> women</a>. This should be interesting.