APTN Pilot Burn-Off Time | Health Nutz, Bionic Bannock Boys

Health Nutz | This show surprises me.  The premise – alcoholic inherits juice bar, but only on condition – sounds like it shouldn’t work.  Somehow, it does.

No, I didn’t learn from my experience with Life’s a Zoo.tv.  Shut up.

Kevin Loring is Buzz Riel Jr., a former hockey player and current heavy drinker.  He inherits part-ownership of the Health Nutz juice bar after Buzz Sr. (Paul Stanley) is run over by an SUV.  Buzz Jr. can only claim full ownership of said bar if he cleans up and goes sober, a habit Buzz Jr. is not willing to give up.  Smug entrepreneur Keith Harris (David Hamilton-Lyle) waits in the wings, hoping to obtain the Health Nutz property for condo development.

Loring doesn’t overplay Buzz Jr., although the script’s choice of profanity is odd (uh, “screwy Louie” and “rat turd?”)  The man is effective in portraying a couldn’t-give-a-shit attitude towards Health Nutz.  Chief Floyd Two-Rivers (Byron Chief-Moon) is just as good as Buzz Sr.’s right-hand man, trying to keep Riel Jr. from self-destruction.

Health Nutz doesn’t deal in cheap, easy humour, which I would normally expect from a show like this.  It’s a show about a juice bar, for crying out loud.  Writer/producer/executive producer Jason Friesen makes Health Nutz‘s premise believable, going for character-based humour.

This is the first APTN comedy I’ve seen where I’m actually interested in following the show.  Health Nutz isn’t going to be Cheers, but it’s one of the better things APTN has greenlighted.  I hope the actual series can match and/or exceed the pilot’s standards. Surprises like this don’t happen on Canadian television very often.

Bionic Bannock Boys | The Bionic Bannock Boys (Sean Dean, Cory Generoux, Keon Francis) let you know how aboriginal they are.  References to bingo, fried chicken and bannocks are copious.  You know you’re watching APTN when this show’s on the air.

Bionic Bannock Boys‘ pilot is a mix of corny humour and political commentary.  It’s an aboriginal version of CODCO spliced with Air Farce, if one can imagine such a beast.  I can see the show’s potential, but I also see a sketch about sasquatch phone sex.  Gorilla suit comedy does not work unless Benny Hill is involved.

Bionic Bannock Boys‘ pilot is a rough draft which needs refining.  While the show shouldn’t be too polished, Bionic Bannock Boys‘ pilot looks like a cable access show with national funding.  Maybe I’m too white to “get” the show, but Bionic Bannock Boys isn’t nearly as funny as it should have been.

Bionic Bannock Boys is going ahead as a series, so airing the pilot is a foregone conclusion.  I hope the series is better-mounted than the pilot, but I’m not holding my breath.