To the 90s and the wonderful Due South, a quirky Canadian drama series starring Paul Gross and David Marciano as the well mannered Mountie Benton Fraser and the street smart Italian American detective Ray Vecchio who assists the polite outsider in the big bad city of Chicago (in reality, Toronto standing in for the American city) From Season 3 onwards, the Vecchio role would be taken by Callum Keith Rennie as Stan Kowalski.
Due South premiered with a TV movie in 1994 and was so well received that a full season was quickly requested. It became a huge hit when it arrived here in the UK on Tuesday evenings in the spring of 1995, becoming one of the few imported shows to gain a primetime foothold on weeknights on BBC1. Indeed it was so well liked by viewers here that the BBC helped save the show from cancellation and co-funded a third season, with much of the episodes from season 2 onwards being broadcast primetime on Saturday nights.
The show was just good, clean, intelligent and, above all, immense fun for all the family, something that's still a real rarity.
The show's theme was provided by Canadian Jay Semko of the band The Northern Pikes. Indeed the show favoured its homegrown talent with artistes such as Sarah McLachlan, The Headstones, Loreena McKennitt and Colin James all adding to the soundtrack, whilst great Canadian actors such as Leslie Nielsen (who was in fact a Mountie before taking up acting) and Gordon Pinsent would regular guest as legendary Mounties Buck Frobisher and Bob Fraser; the latter being Benton's father and a ghostly companion to our hero.