Coroner “The Suburbs” Preview + Tamara Podemski Interview

Coroner switches things up for its penultimate first season episode with an hour that’s part bottle show and part cat-and-mouse.

[Warning: General spoilers ahead.]


Jenny finds herself on lockdown after a new arrival in the morgue sparks a federal escalation. That it coincides with the return to the building of her predecessor (Michael Healey) is bad luck for her but good for us as they spar over what to do.

Upstairs, Alison’s panic is assuaged by the arrival of a new friend. Out in the field, Mac is following up on a newly released convict with the help of Greer. At Jenny’s house, Liam plays host to a pair of visitors.


Seneca Aaron and Noelle Carbone wrote the episode directed by Paul Fox. Genelle Williams, who we just saw on Cardinal, guest stars alongside Slasher‘s Chris Jacot, and Designated Survivor‘s Rick Roberts.

With just one episode left after this one, some of it is a decidedly lighter tone, despite the apparent impending doom of the situation in which Jenny finds herself. There are also trickles of reveals about her past. And Mac and Greer come to an understanding.

We also spend more time with Alison. When we chatted last week. Tamara Podemski talked about her joy of coming into such an inclusive environment on the show.

“Every time a process is inclusive of as many voices as possible, I think you just get better results. We’re at a time in TV where people want to see themselves reflected on the screen. The demand is there now and the networks are understanding and implementing,” she says.

“From the first table read of walking into a room where all the people in charge are women, that changes the quality of the room. That was an immediate realization. It actually made me feel very safe and supported. I remember telling them [at our 1:1 meeting afterward], ‘What a strange feeling that was to walk into a room like that.'”

Tamara Podemski Coroner

“It reminded me of theater. Even though we still have gender disparity and hierarchy and so many complex dynamics, there is something in a theater space where you feel like you’re a team, you’re working together to create something. Everybody has their part and you can’t do this without the other. Over the years, in TV, the actors are still the puppets. You come in and do what you’re told.”

“[Here], it felt like they were inviting us into their world so we could all create something. And that’s the first time I’ve felt that in television.”

Podemski loves that Alison’s personality has been allowed to emerge this season, too. “We first meet her in this major dynamic shift and I think that’s why it took four episodes for the walls to come down a bit,” she explains.

“We learn so much more about her the second she steps into Jenny’s personal world. The shock of being invited to a party. I remember talking to the costume designer that [Alison would be] a little too overdressed. It’s the over-enthusiasm at opportunities for things that aren’t normally part of her social calendar.”

Coroner CBC Tamara Podemski

“The Thanksgiving episode was very fun. I often say I don’t have any control over Alison]. It’s the least vain I’ve ever been on TV. She makes some crazy faces. Those expressions she has … those aren’t [native to] me. I think of her in the third person because she’s so far away from who I am.”

“She’s so quirky sometimes that I don’t feel like I’m making choices. I’m just letting her do her thing, I think in that episode her oddness and weirdness got to shine and I love that. That’s the beauty when writing and direction and safety as an actor can create some really special things. I feel like episode 5 gave her that time to sparkle.”

Podemski says she knew some things about where her arc would go this season, and others were a wonderful surprise. “I was told that she was pregnant. I did know that it was a choice to have a sperm donor. That has so much character in that life choice,” she says.

“I love that larger life lesson, that we all know, that sometimes you have to step out of your safety zone to really [be open to] the next chapter of your life. I think Alison has largely existed in her safety zone, and so, great things happen, exciting, surprising things happen, when she steps out of that.”

Coroner airs Monday night at 9pm ET/9:30 NT on CBC and streams online on CBC Gem, so you can catch up anytime You can see all of our coverage, including the first part of our interview with Podemski, here.  [Updated 8/4/20: Beginning 8/5/20, Coroner will air Wednesdays at 9 pm ET on The CW in the U.S.]

Here’s a sneak peek of “The Suburbs.”


Photos and Video Courtesy of CBC

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