Best of British TV - Personal favourites

by chrisabone1 | created - 08 Jun 2012 | updated - 08 Jun 2012 | Public
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1. Doctor Who (2005– )

TV-PG | 45 min | Adventure, Drama, Family

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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.7/10 X  

The further adventures in time and space of the alien adventurer known as the Doctor, a Time Lord/Lady who can change appearance and gender, and his/her companions.

Stars: Peter Capaldi, Pearl Mackie, Jenna Coleman, Matt Smith

Votes: 169,386

In 1963, mysterious alien the Doctor began travelling in his time/space ship, the TARDIS. Fifty years on, he's still going. The hugely-loved sci-fi series was revived in 2005 with sharper writing, acting and production. Simply a television tour de force!

2. Sherlock (2010– )

TV-14 | 88 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 9.2/10 X  

A modern update finds the famous sleuth and his doctor partner solving crime in 21st century London.

Stars: Benedict Cumberbatch, Martin Freeman, Una Stubbs, Rupert Graves

Votes: 628,867

Ingeniously clever modern reworking of the Sherlock Holmes stories by Victorian/Edwardian author Arthur Conan Doyle. All involved shine on-screen, particularly Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman in an inspired pairing as Holmes and Watson.

3. Being Human (2008–2013)

60 min | Comedy, Drama, Fantasy

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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A werewolf, a vampire, and a ghost try to live together and get along.

Stars: Lenora Crichlow, Russell Tovey, Aidan Turner, Sinead Keenan

Votes: 21,952

BBC3's best output by far. The evolving story of a vampire, a werewolf and a ghost as they try (and mostly fail) to live normal lives. A show that's still going strong even after a cast overhaul.

4. Life on Mars (2006–2007)

TV-14 | 60 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

After being involved in a car accident in 2006, DCI Sam Tyler wakes up to find himself in 1973, the era of 'Sweeney' type policing, Mark III Cortinas, and flared trousers.

Stars: John Simm, Philip Glenister, Liz White, Dean Andrews

Votes: 25,879

In 2006, DCI Sam Tyler is hit by a car and wakes up in 1973. Is he in a coma, mad or actually travelled in time? Brilliant combination of cop drama, time travel and 'Lost' style mystery. Created a TV icon in Phillip Glenister's politically-incorrect cop Gene Hunt.

5. Blackadder Goes Forth (1989)

TV-PG | 175 min | Comedy, War

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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  

Stuck in the middle of World War I, Captain Edmund Blackadder does his best to escape the banality of the war.

Stars: Rowan Atkinson, Tony Robinson, Stephen Fry, Hugh Laurie

Votes: 39,105

This counts for all the whole Blackadder saga. All four series and a couple of specials follow the exploits of the fiendish Blackadder clam throughout history. Superb sitcom that has never been bettered. Clever, silly and slaptstick in turn. But always witty.

6. Only Fools and Horses.... (1981–2003)

TV-PG | 95 min | Comedy

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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.9/10 X  

Comedy that follows two brothers from London's rough Peckham estate as they wheel and deal through a number of dodgy deals as they search for the big score that'll make them millionaires.

Stars: David Jason, Nicholas Lyndhurst, Roger Lloyd Pack, Buster Merryfield

Votes: 36,562

Everyone loves a bit of 'Only Fools'! Telling the lives of 'ducking and diving' Peckham-based brothers Del and Rodney Trotter as they try to make it rich, it's consistently funny and there's a heart to the characters.

7. Torchwood (2006–2011)

TV-MA | 50 min | Action, Drama, Sci-Fi

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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

The members of the Torchwood Institute, a secret organization founded by the British Crown, fight to protect the Earth from extraterrestrial and supernatural threats.

Stars: John Barrowman, Eve Myles, Kai Owen, Gareth David-Lloyd

Votes: 35,336

More cult-y than its parent show Doctor Who, but still hugely enjoyable. Secret organisation Torchwood, led by immortal hero Captain Jack Harkness, investigate and combat alien threat to Wales (S1 + 2), London (S3) and LA (S4).

8. The Sarah Jane Adventures (2007–2011)

TV-PG | 60 min | Drama, Family, Sci-Fi

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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Investigative journalist Sarah Jane Smith, with the help of her adopted son, his friends, and an intelligent supercomputer, combats evil alien forces here on Earth.

Stars: Elisabeth Sladen, Daniel Anthony, Alexander Armstrong, Tommy Knight

Votes: 4,080

Yes, I know it's for kids but I love it! Touching, Entertaining and deftly-written, it follows the adventures of former Dr Who companion Sarah Jane Smith with her son and his friends as they save the world from their attic in Ealing.

9. Hustle (2004–2012)

60 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

A motley group of London con artists pull off a series of daring and intricate stings.

Stars: Robert Glenister, Robert Vaughn, Rob Jarvis, Adrian Lester

Votes: 20,045

It's show about a group of grifters who con greedy businessmen out of their cash. Not, perhaps, the most moralistic of programmes but you're always guaranteed an hour of light-hearted, twisty-turny fun with Hustle.

10. Jonathan Creek (1997–2016)

120 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

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    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.

Stars: Alan Davies, Caroline Quentin, Stuart Milligan, Julia Sawalha

Votes: 5,393

Macabre detective series featuring Alan Davies as consulting magician-turned crime solver. Filled with impossible, seemingly-supernatural mysteries and also lots of humour.