Express Yourself

About anything and everything on the planet

January 8, 2009

Review of CBC’s new Drama Wild Roses

Rocky mountains. Horse ranches. Chaps, hats and sexual innuendo. Welcome to Wild Roses, CBC’s new drama. This week was the premiere episode, and though I had anticipated another typical CBC drama (muted, overly censored, missing the mark every time) I found myself completely drawn in. This is not your typical Canadian program – it’s racy, dramatic, complicated, and thoroughly enjoyable.

Wild Roses takes place in Alberta, and tells the story of two warring families: the MacGregors (the haves) and the Henrys (the have-nots), and their battle over land, the cattle business, complicated histories, and just about everything else.

The MacGregor family lives on Montrose,and is helmed by David MacGregor, played by Gary Hudson. There is, presumably, a Mrs. MacGregor, or an ex-Mrs. MacGregor, but she did not make an appearance in this episode. David MacGregor has a spoiled, horrible wretch of a daughter named Rebecca, artfully portrayed by Amy Ciupak Lalonde. Rebecca is engaged to Trevor Faulkner, (Paul Christie), who seems quite aware that his bride-to-be is a grumpy princess, but doesn’t seem to care. There are the MacGregor brothers, Will (Steve Byers) and Peter (Adam MacDonald), who are as different as humanly possible; Will being the more responsible one, Peter being the reckless one. The MacGregors are definitely the “haves” of our story, but are horribly dysfunctional. So far so good!

The Henry family, living on the next ranch over, Rivercross, is led by the widowed Maggie Henry, played by the lovely and fiesty Kim Huffman. Maggie Henry has three daughters, Kate (Michelle Harrison), Ricky (Jeananne Goosen), and Charlotte (Clare Stone). The three daughters are as lovely and fiesty as their mother, and each extremely different from the other. Kate, the eldest, has taken over Rivercross following the death of their father. The middle daughter, Ricky, is a barmaid/musician who doesn’t exactly seem to fit in, especially in the eyes of Kate. The youngest, Charlotte, is an adopted Native child, who so far doesn’t have much of a story, beyond being your typical adolescent girl: high-strung, desperate for a bit of freedom, and butting heads with her equally fiesty mother.

For those who missed this first episode, here’s what happened: David MacGregor threw a lavish, ridiculous engagement party for his daughter Rebecca and her fiance Trevor. Despite being vicious rivals, the Henrys were in course invited (how very Young & The Restless!) which allowed for plenty of drama. Ricky accidentally took some Ecstacy thinking it was Advil, and arrived at the party high as a kite and in fits of giggles. Fortunately boyfriend/band mate Jones was on hand to help keep her under wraps. It is through Ricky, explaining to Jones, that we learn the connection between the MacGregors and the Henrys: A generation before, David MacGregor’s father owned all the land, encompassing both Montrose and Rivercross. On his deathbed, he bequeathed the Rivercross house and its land to his favorite ranchhand, Maggie Henry’s now-deceased husband; the rest of the land Old MacGregor left to his son David.

We discovered, sort of, that there is an “are-they-or-aren’t-they” situation between Kate Henry and Peter MacGregor, which in this episode is never fully explored. We found out that Will is the more responsible of the MacGregor brothers, having some sort of job that involves a suit, a fancy office, and Japanese clients. Peter, on the other hand, seems to have some sort of drinking and/or gambling problem, and managed to lose his brother’s Porsche in a drunken game of poker. The crux of the episode, however, is when it is discovered that Rivercross is in serious financial trouble, and that Kate has borrowed large amounts of money from David MacGregor, against Rivercross itself. It became apparent that Kate has not been able to keep up with the payments, and David announced his intentions to take back Rivercross – hinting that he might reconsider if Maggie will pay him an “after hours” type of visit; an offer to which, thankfully, Maggie says no thank you. Ricky, who has saved $60, 000 to take her band to Europe, decided to give the money to Kate to save Rivercross (temporarily) and said goodbye to Jones. So much drama! I’m definitely looking forward to next week’s episode.

PS – We also discovered that while Rebecca is engaged to the seemingly hapless Trevor, she’s been meeting up with the hunky ranchhand for late-night encounters. Cliché? Of course. Good entertainment? Of course! Giddy up, everyone!

Similar Posts:

Post a Comment