Best Toronto TV show
DEGRASSI : THE NEXT GENERATION
Yeah, we all know Kevin Smith likes Degrassi, but we liked Degrassi first. The show in all its incarnations has always dealt with issues facing kids head-on, and not in a hokey 'very special Blossom' way. TNG continues the tradition, with episodes tackling rape, suicide, cutting, eating disorders, drugs and violence. The word 'Degrassi' is even being used as an adjective to describe something that pushes boundaries or defies stereotypes. Degrassi is so Degrassi.
Best current affairs show
with steve paikin Rising from the ashes of Studio 2 and on the air only a month, TVOntario's new flagship current affairs program is already showing the big boys at the CBC how it's done. Tackling just one or two topics each night, Paikin deftly challenges and engages his guests on issues ranging from national unity to provincial politics to the new NHL, presenting arguments that are intelligent and thought-provoking. Let's see Stroumbo try that.
Best media personality
Sassy, opinionated, even-handed, Lewis has rehabilitated the meaning of dialogue. Once moderator of the now-retired Counterspin, this son of social dem nobility returned recently to CBC with his signature room-pacing to referee debate in The Big Picture. We're in on the secret, of course: he's our anti-corporate, pro-social-movement bud, but watch him tease out from his right-wing guests their most articulate selves.