|The TARDIS from Doctor Who - an icon of British television|
I tend to be a bit of an Anglophile and television is no exception to my love for all things British. Here are my recommendations for all of you newbies. But beware! It's hard going back to American programs after watching these shows.
1. Doctor Who (Amazon Prime)
This is my favorite show for many reasons, but at the end of the day, I think I love Doctor Who so much because of the excellent storytelling. Doctor Who started in the 1960s as a family program; today, it continues to appeal to a broad audience, charting the adventures of a time-traveling alien called The Doctor and his human companions as they save planets and fight monsters. The stories range from silly to serious, heart-warming to heart-wrenching.
2. Sherlock (Netflix)
It's brilliant, biting, and features Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman. Need I say more? Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss are wonderful show-runners and screen-writers, bringing Sherlock Holmes into the modern day with pizazz and edge.
3. Vicious (PBS)
Perhaps the sassiest show I've ever seen, Vicious follows the life of the couple Freddie and Stuart, played by Ian McKellan (Lord of the Rings, X-Men) and Derek Jacobi (Last Tango in Halifax, Cinderella). The humor is sharp and savage, but there is still a grounding warmth and intimacy between the characters that makes this show memorable and heart-warming.
4. Endeavor (PBS)
Endeavor is a crime-show set in the 1960s that centers on the career of the young Inspector Morse, when he was still Constable Endeavor Morse. I love period pieces and the detailed sets, props, and costumes do not disappoint. The cinematography and stories are also very enjoyable.
5. Downton Abbey (PBS)
Writer and creator Julian Fellows sure knows how to tell a good story; but in Downton Abbey, he crafts the craziest, most convoluted and dramatic stories there are! Personally, I found the show to drag on a bit in the later seasons, but still enjoyed the romance, historical elements, and sharp dialogue.
6. Broadchurch (Netflix)
Don't bother watching the American version of this show, Gracepoint - it's complete rubbish and a waste of your time. Instead, watch the original series, written by Chris Chibnall (he will be taking over as showrunner for Doctor Who in 2017). The first season charts the investigation of the murder of a young boy set against the backdrop of a gorgeous, sleepy English town.
7. Graham Norton Show (BBC America)
I love Graham Norton's biting humor and his interviews with celebrities. Graham is fantastic at building rapport and bringing up hilarious topics of conversation with his guests. It's the perfect talk show in my opinion because he fills his couch with groups of people who are very talented and mix together in interesting ways. Watch a few clips on YouTube and give it a go.
My Personal Favorites: