Unspeakable (Canada)

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Premiere January 9, 2019
Finale February 27, 2019
Creator Robert C. Cooper
Based on books
Bad Blood by Vic Parsons &
The Gift of Death by Andre Picard
Provider CBC (Canada)
SundanceTV (USA)
Style 60-minute drama
Company Mezo Entertainment
Distributor AMC Studios (worldwide)
Episodes 8
Origin Canada

Unspeakable chronicles the emergence of HIV and Hepatitis C in Canada in the early '80s and the tragedy that followed when thousands were unnecessarily infected by tainted blood. The scandal is considered one of the largest medical disasters in Canadian history and triggered a federal inquiry as well as a billion-dollar lawsuit.

The miniseries, which hits close to home for creator/showrunner Robert C. Cooper as he himself contracted Hepatitis C from tainted blood, is based on first-hand experiences and two nonfiction books on the subject — Bad Blood by Vic Parsons and The Gift of Death by Andre Picard.



Actor Character
Main Cast
Sarah Wayne Callies Margaret Sanders
Shawn Doyle Ben Landry
Michael Shanks Will Sanders
Camille Sullivan Alice Landry
Levi Meaden Peter Landry
Brian Markinson Roger Perrault
Aaron Douglas Jim Krepke
David Lewis Lawrence Hartley


# Title Written By Directed By Airdate
1 Emergence (1982 - 1983) Robert C. Cooper Robert C. Cooper January 9, 2019
In 1982, two families, the Sanders and the Landrys, are badly shaken when they learn that a mysterious deadly disease called AIDS is threatening the blood system. Each has boys with hemophilia, a genetic condition that means they depend on blood products to live. The medical community struggles to understand the growing epidemic while others deny the urgency.
2 Contraction (1983 - 1984) Robert C. Cooper Gregory Smith January 16, 2019
With his son's life hanging in the balance, Will Sanders desperately fights to get those in charge of blood safety to heed the danger. The Landry's struggle to keep their family together after their son, Peter, distraught that he is likely infected with AIDS, leaves home. Dr. Christos Tsoukas publishes results of a study that suggests fifty percent of all hemophiliacs in Canada are HIV positive.
3 Heat-Treatment (1984 - 1985) Adriana Capozzi Gregory Smith January 23, 2019
In 1985, Will Sanders questions why the Red Cross may still be distributing tainted blood when safe heat-treated product is available. Margaret Sanders battles the prejudice surrounding AIDS. Lawrence Hartley and Paul Kirpatrick, both infected hemophiliacs, lead the charge for victims, while waiting on HIV test results for their wives. Peter Landry spirals out of control to Ben and Alice's dismay.
4 Unsafe (1985 - 1988) Carl Binder Gregory Smith January 30, 2019
In 1987, hemophiliacs untouched by AIDS believe blood products are safe. But one company's heat-treating process proves flawed and seven more people, five of them children, are infected. Brash and outspoken hemophiliac, Jim Krepke joins the fight. Will has a victory while Ben seeks direction. Alice and Peter try to pull themselves together.
5 Compensation (1988 - 1993) Lynn Coady Sarah Wayne Callies February 6, 2019
Over the early 90's, victims of tainted blood begin to come forward and pressure the government with lawsuits. With Margaret's help, the Hemophilia Society works tirelessly behind the scenes for compensation. Lucky to avoid HIV, Ryan Sanders suffers through the side-effects of treatment for Hepatitis C. Peter meets Darby and despite his HIV, they fall in love. Having finished the archival history, Ben starts work on a more personal book but it causes further rift between him and Peter.
6 Krever (1993 - 1996) Robert C. Cooper Andy Mikita February 13, 2019
In 1994, Justice Horace Krever is appointed to lead an inquiry into the tainted blood scandal. Shocking revelations and heart wrenching testimony are laid bare as he digs for the truth. Estranged from his family, Ben's quest for revenge is galvanized, as victims around him continue to die. Krever is halted when those he intends to accuse of misconduct take him to court.
7 Intent (1997 - 2005) Carl Binder Andy Mikita February 20, 2019
The supreme court rules in favor of Krever and his report finally comes out. It names many for wrongdoing and aims to rebuild the flawed blood system in Canada. While victims still suffer and loved ones mourn the dead, at least many feel that their voices were heard and those responsible were held accountable. But Ben is not satisfied and pushes for criminal charges.
8 Apologies (2005 - 2015) Robert C. Cooper Robert C. Cooper February 27, 2019
As the criminal trial falls apart, Ben considers taking matters into his own hands. Peter and Ryan both struggle with illness while forging families of their own. In 2015, both of their lives hang in the balance as the tragedy finally threatens to catch up to them.


DVD Releases

There are no DVD releases for this show.

External Links