|Launched||October 17, 1997|
|Picture format||480i (SDTV)|
|Slogan||"Hit TV lives here" (2006-2013)|
"New Channel. New perspective." (2013-2014)
"See Where it Takes You" (2014-present)
|Formerly called||Prime (1997-2006)|
Nat Geo Wild
|Bell TV||Channel 618 (SD)|
Channel 1728 (HD)
|Shaw Direct||Channel 524 (SD)|
Channel 171 (HD)
|Available on most Canadian cable systems||Check local listings, channels may vary|
|Bell Aliant Fibe TV||Channel 210 (SD)|
Channel 462 (HD)
|Bell Fibe TV||Channel 618 (SD)|
Channel 1618 (HD)
|Bell MTS||Channel 106 (SD)|
Channel 1106 (HD)
|SaskTel||Channel 135 (SD)|
|Telus Optik TV||Channel 504 (HD)|
Channel 9504 (SD)
|VMedia||Channel 54 (HD)|
|Zazeen||Channel 125 (SD)|
The channel was originally established by Canwest in 1997 as Prime, a cable companion to Global with a general entertainment format focusing on classic series and programming acquired from Global and CH. In 2006, the channel was re-branded as TVTropolis, carrying a similar format but with a focus on contemporary sitcoms and dramas from the 1980s and 90's, as well as pop culture-themed programs. In 2013, the channel was re-launched as DTour, which largely draws from the U.S. cable network Travel Channel, as well as other co-owned sister networks.
The channel was launched as Prime on October 17, 1997 under the ownership of Canwest. The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) licensed Prime in 1996 as a specialty television service directed towards men and women 50 years of age and older. However, the channel did not explicitly market itself as a channel for the "baby boomer" generation, preferring instead to position itself as a general entertainment channel. Prime's slogan, on-air and in advertising, was "Canada's Entertainment Network".
Prime's schedule featured a mix of general interest television programs, including home improvement and design series, along with classic television series such as The Golden Girls, M*A*S*H, All in the Family, The Cosby Show and Newhart. It also hosted repeat showings of several series from sister broadcast networks Global and CH, including The Apprentice, The Restaurant, Bob and Margaret, The Price Is Right, Entertainment Tonight Canada and Extreme Makeover: Home Edition.
With the launch of the cable channel DejaView (also owned by Canwest) in 2001, showing similar programming to Prime (classic television programs from the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s), the channel's focus shifted to shows from the late 1980s and beyond.
On June 1, 2006, Most of the shows on "F-Night" were removed to the lineup to make room for "F'N Good VIdeo" (later DTour Movie), and Prime was renamed TVTropolis, which initially primarily focused on sitcoms and dramas from the 1980s and 1990s (such as Seinfeld and Beverly Hills 90210, branded under the slogan Hit TV Lives Here), with additional television series focused on television pop culture (such as Inside the Box and FANatical). Over time, the channel lessened its emphasis on sitcoms and dramas, focusing on other programs such as reality series, game shows and lifestyle series, with little emphasis on theme of television pop culture, rather focusing on general entertainment.
On October 27, 2010, Shaw Communications purchased Canwest after it had entered into creditor bankruptcy protection in late 2009. As a result, Shaw acquired control of Canwest's stake in TVtropolis and rebranded Canwest as Shaw Media. On January 14, 2013, Shaw announced that it would purchase the remaining interest in TVtropolis from Rogers Communications for $59 million, bringing its total to 100%.
In 2013, it was announced that the channel would end its operations on August 26, 2013. On June 5, 2013, at its annual upfront, Shaw conspicuously omitted any reference to TVtropolis in announcing its fall programming plans, while announcing a "new" lifestyle channel named DTour (stylized as DTOUR). It was later confirmed through a Telus update to subscribers that DTour would be launched as a rebranded TVtropolis. The relaunch of the channel as DTour occurred on August 26, 2013 at 6:00 a.m. Eastern Time; a high definition feed of DTour was introduced on Shaw Cable on September 5, 2013. Following the rebrand, sister channel DejaView added some of the 1990s vintage series that had aired in repeats on TVtropolis, including Everybody Loves Raymond.
DTour largely features programming from Travel Channel in the U.S. (including Adam Richman's Fandemonium, Hotel Impossible and Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern). Incidentally, Travel Channel is controlled by Scripps Networks Interactive, which currently partners with Shaw on Canadian versions of Food Network, HGTV and DIY Network. However, DTour is not being explicitly marketed as a "travel" service, as Travel + Escape (which is also a genre-protected Category A channel) currently has sole use of the travel niche.
DTour's lineup consists primarily of travel-oriented shows, many of which are sourced from Travel Channel. As TVTropolis, it aired programming ranging from 1980s and 1990s sitcoms, animated series, reality series, game shows, and other general entertainment programming. In marketing material, it was described as a channel focusing on "hit" television series and celebrities that "have defined pop culture".
Prime did not use the crescent device, typical of many Canwest Global channels, until later in 1998. Its first logo was the word PRIME in Microgramma font and instead of "Canada's Entertainment Network" used the slogan "Canada's Superstation" (later used by CJON-DT as its slogan).
On Aug. 26, TVtropolis will be changing to DTOUR.