The best detective dramas of all time

A list of British TV's finest crime drama.
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Agatha Christie's Poirot (1989 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  
From England to Egypt, accompanied by his elegant and trustworthy sidekicks, the intelligent yet eccentrically-refined Belgian detective Hercule Poirot pits his wits against a collection of first class deceptions. (100 mins.)
“ Wonderfully lavish period drama, based on Agatha Christie's bestselling books. David Suchet simply *is* Poirot. ” - rhysmann2008
Mystery!: Cadfael (1994 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
A Crusader-turned-Monk uses his botanical knowledge to solve mysteries in the old Norman England town of Shrewsbury. (75 mins.)
“ Derek Jacobi is marvellous in this series of medieval murder mysteries. ” - rhysmann2008
Mystery!: Campion (1989 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
In 1930s England, a man from an aristocratic family takes up the pseudonym Albert Campion and, with the help of his ex-burglar manservant, solves mysteries. (50 mins.)
“ These charming adaptations of Margery Allingham's wonderful novels are brought to life by the excellent Peter Davison as eccentric sleuth Albert Campion. ” - rhysmann2008
Inspector Morse (1987 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
Inspector Morse has an ear for music, a taste for beer and a nose for crime. He sets out with Sergeant Lewis to solve each intriguing case. (100 mins.)
“ This is the greatest of them all: clever plots, wonderful scenery, and an amazing performance by John Thaw as the protagonist. This series has never lost its power and ability to wow. ” - rhysmann2008
Jonathan Creek (1997 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
Working from his home in a converted windmill, Jonathan Creek is a magician with a natural ability for solving puzzles. He soon puts this ability to the use of solving impossible crimes and mysterious murders. (120 mins.)
“ Brilliant, funny, clever series of 'locked-room' mysteries. Although some of the acting leaves a lot to be desired, the stories are so good that one forgets this! ” - rhysmann2008
Inspector Lewis (2006 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
Inspector Robert Lewis and Sergeant James Hathaway solve the tough cases that the learned inhabitants of Oxford throw at them. (90 mins.)
“ Spin-off from Inspector Morse, this series is just as brilliant as the original. ” - rhysmann2008
Maigret (1992 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
From Montmartre to the remote French countryside, Maigret encounters the dark side of the human psyche. Yet, he manages to maintain both compassion and a sense of humor as he explores the complex motives that lie behind every crime. (60 mins.)
“ Michael Gambon excels as the patient, calm, but intelligent French policeman. The stories are very real, and stay close to the tone of Georges Simenon's novels. ” - rhysmann2008
Midsomer Murders (1997 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
A veteran DCI and his young sergeant investigate murders around the regional community of Midsomer County. (90 mins.)
“ Agatha Christie-esque plots in a modern-day setting! This impeccable series, now boasting over 80 two-hour episodes, is often humorous, and the quirky inhabitants of the world's most dangerous county never fail to delight. ” - rhysmann2008
Miss Marple: A Murder Is Announced (1985 Mini-Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
An unusual announcement in the newspaper leads the curious villagers to Miss Blacklock's home, where they become witnesses to a murder. (153 mins.)
Director: David Giles
“ Joan Hickson is perfect for the role of Miss Marple in the third, and best, of the BBC's Marple series. This plot is ingenious, and is one of Agatha Christie's best. On script duty is the late, great Alan Plater, who injects some of his characteristic dry humour in as well. ” - rhysmann2008
The Mrs Bradley Mysteries (1998 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
Paired with her reliable and devoted chauffeur, Mrs Bradley's finely honed skills of investigation seek out the truth behind the mysteries surrounding a death at the opera, crimes of passion at a circus, poisoning and family secrets. (90 mins.)
“ A fantastic period drama, with Diana Rigg stealing the show as Mrs Adela Bradley, an elegant psychoanalyst who investigates the various crimes that she comes across. Very funny - with Mrs B breaking the fourth wall, a nice little touch - and with excellent plots, somewhat altered, however, from Gladys Mitchell's original books... ” - rhysmann2008
The Nine Tailors (1974 Mini-Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
The title refers to the nine strokes of a church bell to announce the death of a man. In this adaptation of Dorothy L...
“ The 1970s adaptations of Dorothy L. Sayers's Lord Peter Wimsey mysteries are all excellent (though quite slow, but they benefit from this, as it allows them to be incredibly faithful to the novels), and Ian Carmichael is a wonderful Wimsey. This is the best of the five, but they are all marvellous in their own ways. ” - rhysmann2008
Prime Suspect (1991 Mini-Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  
A female police detective investigates a series of serial murders while dealing with sexist hostility from her male comrades. (207 mins.)
“ The best, most powerful, most realistic police drama ever to have been made. This is a long drama - almost three and a half hours - but goodness it's brilliant. The acting, led by the superb Helen Mirren and supported by the excellent Tom Bell, John Bowe and Zoe Wanamaker, is top-notch, and the plot full of twists and incredibly tense. No drama has ever surpassed it. ” - rhysmann2008
A Touch of Frost (1992 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
DI Jack Frost is an unconventional policeman with sympathy for the underdog and an instinct for moral justice. Sloppy, disorganized and disrespectful, he attracts trouble like a magnet. (105 mins.)
“ David Jason is excellent as the curmudgeonly yet comic Inspector Jack Frost, based on the brilliant books by the late R.D.Wingfield. There are some excellent episodes, particularly from the superlative fifth series. ” - rhysmann2008
Wallander (2008 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
A TV program centered on a soul-searching Swedish cop. (90 mins.)
“ One of the highest-budgeted British TV programmes ever, this beautifully filmed and directed Swedish-set series is masterly. Kenneth Branagh delivers an astonishing performance as Kurt Wallander, a detective teetering on the edge of a nervous breakdown. The stories are clever and intricate. ” - rhysmann2008
Waking the Dead (2000 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
Detective Superintendent Peter Boyd is the leader of a police team which investigates unsolved murders using modern technology. (100 mins.)
“ And now for my personal favourite. Since Inspector Morse ITV has always done crime drama better than the BBC, but here the BBC bite back with an incredibly good cold-case series. Each episode runs over two hours, allowing complex plots to be woven. Some are too ambitious for their own good, but most episodes are clever and well-scripted. Acting is always of the very best quality, though kudos goes to the magnificent Trevor Eve as DSI Boyd. Not to be missed. ” - rhysmann2008