Will Portland’s TV Scene Keep Growing?

There’s a New Detective in Town

Broadcast TV has us watching so many crime dramas, that most people feel qualified to investigate their neighbors or dust the fridge for prints.  “Who ate the last slice of cake? We all have motive, but you’re the only one without an alibi, Steve!”.

Whether you enjoy being an amateur detective or not, Portland was happy about the success and longevity of NBC’s “Grimm”.  Over half a decade of steady production work came to an end in 2017 when the show called it quits. Later this month on ABC, we’ll find out if their new detective procedural, “Stumptown”, will be strong enough to run for more than just one season.

Based on the series of graphic novels with the same name, “Stumptown” stars Cobie Smulders, who plays a former army veteran turned PI with a gambling debt and a brother to take care of.  Only time will tell if the show can differentiate itself from an already saturated market. “Grimm” was able to stand out with it’s fantasy twist, averaging about 6.4 million U.S. viewers during its first season. It even got a couple of Emmy nominations for outstanding stunt coordination.  We’ll find out soon enough if Portland’s new detective can go the distance.

A Post-Portlandia Portland

A year after “Grimm” wrapped, “Portlandia” threw in the towel and aired it's final season.  However, the production team at Lorne Micheals’ Broadway Video knew they found something special with their seasoned crew in Portland. So, within the year, the studio moved forward on producing Hulu’s TV Comedy “Shrill”, set right here in Portland, OR.

Staring SNL’s Aidy Bryant, the show takes a laugh out loud look at a struggling journalist with bad boyfriends, sick parents and a perfectionist boss.  Meanwhile, the world around her deems her not good enough because of her weight. With a plethora of positive reviews, the show has been approved for a second season, which is set to air in 2020. 

Although TNT’s “The Librarians” also cancelled in 2018, Netflix has helped keep Portland’s production industry busy with the teen TV drama “Trinkets”.  The show follows a group of friends that form a deep bond after finding out that they all have a shoplifting habit. Based on the novel of the same name, it’s also been approved for a second season with plenty of material to draw from.

It could be safe to say that the TV production scene in Portland will continue to grow.  Perhaps at the same rate as the traffic and new construction. Travel Oregon now has a list of their favorite “Filmed in Oregon” locations, check it out right here: https://traveloregon.com/things-to-do/culture-history/filmed-in-oregon/