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Flashpoint: When Snipers Meet Shrinks

Written by Tashi from the blog Tashi's TV on 18 Jan 2009
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I've always wondered: if I was attacked and had to do something murderous like stab the attacker in the eye with a stiletto to escape - could I do it? How easy or difficult would it be?

Would it be easier if I had to do it to save someone else? What about if I wasn't sure if it was definitely life and death at stake - do you whack the attacker just in case?

I've concluded that I probably would in both instances - that it would be a natural flight and fight response, - with the resulting crisis of how screwed up you'd feel afterwards.

These are the types of "Analyse This" conflicts - minus the shoes! - posed in the new crime series Flashpoint that's starting on Hallmark this Wednesday (21 January).

Set in Canada, the show's about a Stategic Response Unit who get called in to the Flashpoint of a crisis when the situation's too hectic for the regular police to handle.

The sorts of things they get called to are bomb diffusings, hijackings, gang busts and armies of criminals.

The series premieres with a hostage situation in the busy centre of town that's based on a true life event that happened in Toronto. The main characters are all introduced through the action, lead by head honcho Sergeant Gregory Pepper - played by Veronica Mars's dad Enrico Colantoni.

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As the episode unfolds a newcomer hotshot (who stares at people a lot) arrives in the uniform of Sam Braddock, played by David Paetkau.

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Also key to things are Jules Callaghan (Amy Jo Johnson) and Ed Lane (Hugh Dillon) - the two snipers on the unit who make the final decision when it comes to the crunch.

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In the first episode it's Ed, the senior sniper, who has to carry the decision as to whether or not the situation's kill-or-be-killed. His dilemma's made more frenzied by the fact the hostage-taker's son's on the edge of the crisis, pleading that no-one hurts his dad.

The episode follows Ed's thought-processes through it, his own family's response to him and the consequences for him and his pyschi when he decides what to do ...

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Fast facts:

The show premieres at 21h00 on Wednesday and runs for 13 episodes.

It was first broadcast in Canada on Canadian TV and was bought by CBS. It's been renewed for a second season and will run on both networks again.

Amy Jo Johnson, who plays Jules, is a singer - her song Dancing In-Between is featured on the show, in Episode 6 titled "Attention Shoppers".

Hugh Dillon, who plays Ed, is also a singer with a song on the show - he was the lead singer of a rock outfit called The Headstones that was big in Canada in the '90's. His song "Lost At Sea" is played in Episode 8, titled "Never Kissed A Girl."

In many way the show's the Task Force version of Rescue Me in how it realistically looks at the pyschological scars of the job.

It's filmed in Toronto and some of the props include real weapons that are no longer in use.



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