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First look at 'Bomb Girls,' a new miniseries following women who built bombs during World War II

If you like the look of Mad Men and Pan Am, you’re going to love Bomb Girls. Set at a munitions factory in 1940s Toronto, this new six-part miniseries airing on Canada’s Global TV network follows several women who went to work while the nation’s men were fighting in Europe and the Pacific. I went into the first episode not really knowing anything about who was involved and was taken for a pleasant ride. It has its awkward moments, but I I’ve been impressed with the overall quality of the show—especially its music.

So, it’s World War II and Kate Andrews (Charlotte Hegele) is an innocent young woman running from an abusive past. It’s a big world out there for her and she’s getting by working at a factory making bombs for the war. Gladys Witham (Jodi Balfour) has recently become engaged to hotshot James Dunn (Sebastian Pigott) who’s working with her father obtain a big military contract for their business. annoyed that she can’t do more for the war, Gladys snags a job as a secretary at the office of the munitions factory. Rounding out a trio of main characters, Lorna Corbett (Meg Tilly) is the shift matron of the blue shift, and takes a lot of pride in her job. She has two sons fighting in the war overseas. She cares about the ladies on her shift, but things aren’t going well at home.

Kate quickly makes friends with Betty McRae (Ali Liebert), one of the work women who’s part of the in-crowd of the blue shift while Gladys has to fight for her place in every aspect of her life. Lorna struggles to keep everything together, despite how much stress her work and home life have on her, and she’s constantly suspicious of her Italian co-worker Marco Moretti (Antonio Cupo).

After watching the first couple of episodes, I was left wondering how the show was going to wrap up the story in only six-episodes. It was easy to watch as the plot isn’t demanding or convoluted, but the show isn’t pulling punches either. There were a couple of events that I definitely didn’t see coming, and that’s always a pleasant surprise. Still, a couple of scenes felt a little off, either in the writing or a bit of overacting, but it felt like the show was posturing too much for a 1940s effect. However, the music was solid, filled with classics 1940s tunes from artists ike Billie Holiday, and fun background music that gave the show some urgency that its pacing never quite delivered. Since it’s still early in the show, I expect the plot to pick up quickly in the next couple of episodes.

The creators of the mini-series are Michael MacLennan (Being Erica, Queer As Folk) and Adrienne Mitchell (Durham County, Drop the Beat). 

Bomb Girls airs on GlobalTV on Wednesdays at 8:00ET/PT.

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