Kim’s Convenience is one of the most popular and watched shows out there. The love audiences have for each individual character, whether it’s a main or supporting, keeps the audience coming back and aching for more. The beloved, quirky, sweet Shannon  Ross comes back with CBC for her own series “Strays“.  In Strays we see Shannon as the director of a pet adoption agency and see her manage her life looking for answers about her past, and managing the loving, hilarious, cooky co workers and family she has surrounding her now. HOLR sat down with lead actress and show producer Nicole Power to talk about Shannon in “Strays“.

Where did the show come from? 

 Shannon Ross is a character I played her on Kim’s convenience for for five seasons. I remember getting the audition sides and just kind of immediately knowing who this person was, and kind of knowing where her heart was, it really connected with me right off the get go. And then at the end of season three at Kim’s,  an opportunity was brought to me to start developing a series that would be a companion piece about Shannon starting fresh.  I was honoured to lend the role of Shannon, in the beginning and then even more honoured and humbled to get this new opportunity to work with this ensemble that we have on Strays. People will come, because they’ll follow Shannon on this new crazy adventure but the real treat for them will be for people to get to meet this ensemble and this crew of actors that I was so lucky to be able to work with. They bring so much to the table and are so talented and just comedic powerhouses,  just been a blast.


They really are a lot of them are doing great! Shannons cousin Nikki is hilarious.

Oh my gosh,  there  are just takes of me laughing. Whenever she spoke, and she would be like “I’m not even doing anything,” it’s just like Nikki is Nikki. As soon as we did our chemistry read I was like “oh no that’s my cousin”. That’s my cousin and that’s going to give, Shannon a really really hard time and test her in every possible direction.

Is this the first thing that you produced?

So, I think it’s a consult like I’m a creative producer so because I feel like I am Shannon, so the creation of the character is kind of a portion that belongs to me, because the role is a role that I originated. So I got to kind of consult with story, and then ultimately I was involved in all of the chemistry reads for the for the cast and of rounding out that side. It’s more just kind of me being able to give feedback about Shannon’s journey and and work with this, this cast when we were kind of getting the crew together.


What’s it like finally having more of a say and a lot to do on the back end of a project while you’re also working on the front end?

It’s been really cool like this series was created for television by Kevin White Claire ultimates and Anita Capella, and they just have such a handle on, on voicing, All of these characters so often it was just kind of me getting to see the early drafts of episodes and giving a little bit of feedback here and there, but when I know a character so intimately. It was really cool to just be able to. It’s fun to be able to throw her into a bunch of different scenarios. I think it’s really exciting to see this group of misfits you know strays all the characters are kind of looking for the place that they fit in. When you first meet them you might be like “oh wow these are these are wacky group” but because of all the hearts that these actors bring to their work. There’s so much more to be seen in their stories so I just think people will fall in love with them. In the same way that Shannon’s kind of searching for her family and searching for a lot more meaning in this next phase of her life, I think that people will immediately connect with all of the other characters too and be interested in seeing, you know what goes on with them outside of work like it’s not just going to be Shannon’s, you know, love life or the milk family life and Hamilton, you’ll get to see different sides to all that which is really cool.


Can we expect to see Mr and Mrs. Kim come in at any point?

The original intent of of Strays was to run in between Season Five and six of Kim’s So the intent was to never take them out of that world. But if we should be so lucky to move on to Season Two, never say never. We always said that, Hamilton is only a short drive away. 


What was an obstacle that you overcame that you had with filming because of COVID?

I think especially for a season one,  which is so important to get everybody splitting and for everybody to get their chemistry and figure out what this world is the biggest, the biggest obstacle was that we like couldn’t, you know, all break bread or like go for drinks after shooting, Monday to Friday, and we had all this PP Aeon and we somehow still managed to create this really great onset chemistry. And it’s kind of weird to get used to this but, we would be in the shelter filming and a lot of people might not know this but, we would all be in there was a camera crew, and then video village and our directors and our continuity would be in like completely different part of the soundstage, and they would have like all their monitors so they were like kind of big brother watching us and our director, I remember, our director Alicia young, like she’s so  funny she’s amazing. She would just have this microphone and she would be, giving us all four lines or giving our notes over the thing so we all kind of get used to this really weird way of working, but it’s still felt like a family, really amazing at the end,


What are you most excited for the viewers or audience to walk away with after seeing the show?

I think, you know over the years I’ve been able to connect with a lot of people who connect with Shin, because of her big heart and how she wears her heart on the outside of her body and she enters every situation and relationship with so much hope and positivity and. And I think that’s a little bit, it can feel a little bit rare in a lot of the comedy that we consume today like a lot of comedy can sometimes come from a place of, you know, sarcasm or playful hay or like a lot of, and like of course those characters have a lot under it and there’s a huge heart and there’s a reason why they are the way they are, but what I love about Shannon is, is that she’s always operating from a place of like how do I find the best in this in this situation, always looking for the best in people. And this world that we’ve created with strays. I just think it’s going to bring people a lot of joy and love and you’ll, you’ll love watching all these characters trip and fall and put their foot in their mouth, but they’re all kind of trying to fit in together and they ultimately become a family, people will feel that. 


Check out Strays season 1 on CBC!


Published on Holr Magazine