Monday 14 April 2014
There are some things that the Brits do really well, and television shows happen to fall into that category. So, I thought that I’d whip up a quick lil post covering what I think are some of the best shows to come out of Britain.
Agatha Christie’s Poirot and Agatha Christie’s Marple: Brilliantly written, filmed, and acted. For me, these are the epitome of British crime shows, mostly because the episodes are inspired or based on stories and novels of Mrs. Christie. Currently in the process of collecting all of the DVDs of both series, these are shows that I can easily watch over and over again. There’s not much more that I can say about these two shows that isn’t some repetition of: they’re brilliant shows, and you should watch them.
Rosemary & Thyme: Given what I tend to write, it should be no surprise that another British crime show made my list. Rosemary and Thyme are two older women who are landscape gardeners, and who both have a side interest in solving crimes. Of course, the crimes always seem to occur around the location that the women happen to be rescuing someone’s garden. Would I want these women landscaping my gardens knowing that a crime is essentially always committed when they’re around? Hell no. But the show is a good watch, and like Marple and Poirot, it is well written, filmed, and acted.
A Touch Of Frost: Yep, another crime series. There’s a pattern happening here. Good ol’ Jack Frost, played by the versatile David Jason, is a likeable character. He’s tough, wily, but ultimately concerned with making sure that the victims of crime see justice served. He’s an old-school copper who believes that pounding the pavement, conducting interviews, and hard work are what get results.
Midsomer Murders: I promise I’m going to add some shows that aren’t crime related after this. Most Aussies and Brits would be aware of this show, I hope. It’s great viewing. I enjoy the new ‘John Barnaby’ as much as I liked the original, ‘Tom Barnaby’. I am not, however, in a rush to move or travel to any town in Britain that might be associated with the Midsomer area. Way too much crime for my liking. 😉
The Goodies: If there’s a genre that the Brits do equally as well as crime, it’s comedy. And for me, The Goodies was a staple of my TV viewing as a kid. The ‘Ecky Thump’ and ‘Kitten Kong’ are amongst my favourite episodes. Unfairly categorised as a show for children, The Goodies wasn’t intentionally aimed at a junior audience. And I’m pretty sure that these days, most of those who watched the show as kids would still list The Goodies as a memorable part of their childhood.
Little Britain: My love of this show knows no bounds. I’ve got LB talking pens, talking dolls, talking key rings, the live show programme, stickers, magnets, CDs, DVDs, games, coffee mugs, books . . . the list goes on. From the very first episode of Little Britain I was hooked. I understand that it’s not a show that appeals to everyone, and Lord knows, I wasn’t too keen on Matt and David’s ‘other’ show, Come Fly With Me, but Little Britain has a level of grossness that seems to fit with what I consider to be entertaining.
The Catherine Tate Show: Am I bovvered? Does my face look bovvered? Fans of Catherine Tate will instantly recognise Lauren Cooper’s catchphrase lines, and the rest of you will simply think that I’m bonkers. Tate is a highly versatile performer, but for me, this show is the stand out. I love the incredibly inappropriate Gran character, and when I was really into the show, it was entirely possible that you might have heard me doing an impression of Gran . . . or Lauren.
Absolutely Fabulous: Can’t explain enough how brilliant and awesome and fantastic that I think this show is. Ab Fab has characters that will make you laugh, cry, cringe, and feel huge amounts of empathy for. Of course, Edina is why I like the show so much, but Patsy, and long-suffering Saffy, are stand out characters. Jennifer Saunders has recently said that she is in the process of writing the Ab Fab movie, which I am eagerly awaiting.
The Two Ronnies: It’s an oldie but by God, it’s a goodie . . . no, not that kind of Goodie! 😉 For me, this is one of the first introductions to British comedy that I had, and to this day, I still think The Two Ronnies is one of the best examples of Brit comedy that you’ll find. What Barker and Corbett were allowed to get away with in terms of comedic material in those days, would be nigh on impossible to get away with today, simply because political correctness has gone too far.
Doctor Who: Of course, I was always going to have this show on the list of best British shows. I’ve mentioned my love of all things Whovian a number of times, and you all know that I’ve got myself a collection of Sonic Screwdrivers . . . and the eleven Doctors as mini-figurines . . . and books about Doctor Who . . . and an eighteen inch remote controlled Dalek. It is, indubitably, one of the absolute greatest shows to come out of Britain. Ever.
Other notable shows to mention include: All The Small Things, Broadchurch, French and Saunders, The Vicar of Dibley, The Famous Five, Metal Mickey, Educating Marmalade, Death In Paradise, Doc Martin, QI, Kingdom, Grange Hill, Marchlands, Hope Springs, New Tricks, By Any Means, Spooks, The IT Crowd, Sherlock, Press Gang, Father Brown, Jonathan Creek . . . the list, it just keeps going on . . .
Remember any British shows that you’d like to add to the list? Leave ‘em in the comment section below. 😉