I’ve had some time while I was recovering from my thyroid cancer treatment to watch some television. I know many of you, like me, have trouble finding shows to watch.
For the most part, I love period dramas and enjoy cop shows. If I can get these in a British format, even better.
One of my favorite cop shows ever is Shetland. There are 6 in the series and in January, I started back at season one and watched all the way through. Oh my…I just love this show.
From the beginning to now the characters have evolved so much. If you’re not someone who typically watches British television, you’re in for a treat. There aren’t the big magical screens in the police rooms like in NCSI that magically make the information appear. So much of this is more real-life with real-life characters that have personal lives AND solve crimes.
Characters aren’t perfect but they do their best in the situation…even the characters that make poor choices, have redeeming qualities.
The seasons are short. Sometimes only three episodes long which makes me so sad…I just love the show so much!!
The show is based on Ann Cleeves’ books. That reminds me, I want to go back and read the books.
I will tell you to go back and start with season one as a few of the seasons build on each other. I watched it on Britbox. It’s WELL worth paying for a month’s subscription and binge-watching.
The next I highly recommend is…All Creatures Great and Small. I watched it on PBS.
I loved this show as well. I hadn’t watched all of season one so I found that on the PBS channel then went on and watched season two as that came out.
This show can be a little cheesy but I still loved it as it’s so cute and reminds me of television from my childhood. I finished up and watched the last episode which was the Christmas episode. I was sad to see the season come to an end but I am happy another season is planned.
Mare of Easttown was a show that I had heard of for a while but it was on HBO Max and I didn’t have a subscription. I waited for my month of Britbox to end and then canceled Britbox and got HBO Max.
I only subscribe to one channel at a time each month to save on cable costs.
I’ve had a great time with HBO Max first watching Mare of Easttown. The show is pretty raw. People aren’t all admirable and often don’t make good choices but still, I loved it.
If you aren’t familiar with the show, Kate Winslett is the lead actress…remember her from Titanic fame? Jean Smart plays her mother and together they are quite a team.
I loved the show and after about the third episode I was on the computer hunting to see how many seasons there are. Sadly, only one season at this point but it sounds hopeful that there will be a season two.
If another season comes out, you can bet I will be right in line to watch the next season.
The next show I watched on HBO Max was The Gilded Age. Jullian Fellows for Downton Abbey fame has a part in writing this show. So far, I love it.
Like many shows that first come out, this one is being dished out one episode at a time so there is a new one each week.
If you love costuming, you’ll love this show as there is dress after dress after dress that has me admiring the people in charge of costume design.
I am so glad that there are 10 episodes in the season. So often shows like this have fewer than that.
The other show I’ve been watching is an old television series, Cold Case.
It’s a cop show with Lilly Rush as the lead detective. There is a great cast of supporting actors that I have grown to love. I watched this back in the day from 2003-2010. I liked it then and still like it now.
Each episode has the characters solving a cold case. So part of the show is current day but there are flashbacks to when the murder originally happened. That means that for each person involved in the crime, two people are cast to play them. One is the current-day character and one from back then. I love the format.
The show does a good job providing music from the time and clothes from the time the crime happened. I often watch an episode when I’m between shows or too lazy to find something else to watch.
As I was writing this post, I discovered that this can also be found on The Roku Channel which is a free channel for Roku users.
All in all, I’ve found some shows I’ve been super happy with. My only wish is that they were all longer and had more episodes. If you’ve been watching something good, please leave a comment and let me know a show you would suggest.
33 thoughts on “What I’m Watching…”
I am very disappointed when they use God’s name and then I turn it off. So sad that people have to use God’s name in a flippant manner whether on tv or in real life!
I’m w/you–British shows are the best!! My husband & I are hooked on “Foyle’s War” w/Michael Kitchen (Out of Africa), “Father Brown” w/Mark Williams (Harry Potter) (ongoing series; just finished it’s 9th season), “MI-5” w/Peter Firth (10 seasons; really intense but oh so good), “Murdoch Mysteries” (ongoing series from Canada; think it’s in its 13th or 14th season), “Lark Rise to Candleford” (4 seasons, wonderful stories), “Inspector Lewis”. These are just a few of the ones we like. My sister had these on DVD so we borrowed them & liked them so much, we bought our own sets. Has made the pandemic easier to deal with. If you haven’t seen any of these, try them out; think you’ll like them.
Lark Rise to Candleford was a series we enjoyed — I think it was on Britbox.
Vera — Midsumer Murders — Inspector Morse — Waking The Dead —
I love your blog — glad you are starting to feel better.
Definitely add Vera to the mix – very similar to Shetland with wonderful depths of characters.
Thanks so much for the Shetland recommendation!
If you have Amazon , one of the best series is Bosch based on the books written by Michael Connelly. Harry Bosch is an LA detective trying to solve his mother’s murder. Finds out that he has a half brother known as the Lincoln lawyer. White collar is another good series. Enjoy
If you have Acorn, please check out the Australian/New Zealand series “My Life Is Murder.” It is about a woman police detective, played by Lucy Lawless of “Zena The Warrior Princess” fame, who retires when her husband (also a policeman) dies and takes on special murder cases while making artisan breads for local coffee shops. We also loved “Brokenwood” and “Harrow.”
Love Shetland, even better than the books IMO. When you get Britbox again, watch the original All Creatures Great and Small which I think is way better—more humor, more animals, less soap opera, and more of the gorgeous Yorkshire Dales scenery. If you’re in the mood for more lighthearted mysteries, try New Tricks or Rosemary and Thyme. The Miss Marple series starring Joan Hickson also can’t be beat, even if you’re not a Christie fan you may like these. I watched the first season of Traces and found it just so-so, but it has an actor you like—Martin Compston. Didn’t care for The Gilded Age, which surprised me since it’s Julian Fellowes. I’ll have to look for Cold Case as I’ve never watched that. Tried Bridgerton on Netflix and though the leads have good chemistry, the story is too absurd to me. I think I must be watching too much TV, lol.
Make sure you read Ann cleeves Shetland series. I love the show but I can’t put the books down. She’s a really good writer and also wrote the Vera series.
You should watch The Great Pottery Throwdown on HBOMax. Even though you’re not a potter it is so fun watching the creativity of the group with the challenges. Think Great British Bake-off but pottery. So much fun. Also on Britbox they have the original All Creatures Great and Small. Much closer to the original books and the original actors were so good and well cast.
Ooh and Brokenwood on Acorn is awesome too! I’m glad I am getting it thx to you and I will switch back and forth.
“Anne with an E.” Anne ofGreen Gables is a wonderful wonderful show on Netflix & other.
3 seasons about 30 episodes in all… well worth binge watching!!! Also the Audible book is great!!!
I love all the shows you mentioned. I get Britbox and Acorn. Midsummer Murders is wonderful. It has like 21 seasons. Inspector Lewis is another one. Silent Witness has a lot of seasons too. Hugs,
Broken wood is a great new Zealand series, love the good wife repeats!
1883 on Paramount+ is an excellent series. It is the prequel to Yellowstone. Excellent cast and story.
Cold Case — definitely in my top ten of favorite TV shows.
New Tricks is a great British detective series on Netflix and there are loots of epis! Mary Ann
The Tower (3 episodes I’m sure a sequel will come Britbox)
Inventing Anna (on Netflix now. 9 episodes)
We got a Britbox $39 for a year. Special offer a few months ago.
I like many of the same ones as others, especially Shetland. I’ve watched new tricks too. I watch unforgotten on prime and I haven’t seen it lately but 800 words was on public tv. It’s about a writer who is widowed and moves his family from Australia to New Zealand.
Love Shetland but it does take a little time before you begin to understand the language. Having been to Northern Scotland (but not Shetland) I can tell you the show is very real.
Beverly. I highly recommend listening to any British shows with the closed caption turned on your television.
HAve you seen the three seasons of Broadchurch? Highest recommendations
Some I’ve enjoyed are Endeavour, Whitechapel, DCI Banks, Scott and Bailey and Unforgotten. Another favorite is River which only lasted one season but honestly I don’t know how they would have continued the series. I only have Amazon Prime and I believe all shows are currently included.
Cold Case is a favourite of mine, as well as Endeavor (the prequel to Inspector Morse). Another British show that I watched years ago was Kavanaugh Q.C. starring John Thaw. Not sure if it’s still available though.
My favorite is a British sitcom called Mum. Love those dysfunctional families! On britbox I think. Our pbs station showed it.
I am loving McLeod’s Daughters on Amazon Prime. It’s so good and each season has a minimum of 20 episodes!! There are eight seasons. Highly recommend.
There are so many great shows on Acorn and Britbox, but for sure check out Vera, books also written by Ann Cleve, who wrote the Shetland books. All eleven seasons are on Britbox and one through seven are on Acorn. Also on Britbox, check out Grace, DCI Banks, A Confession, Prime Suspect, Scott and Bailey and Wallander. For a little lighter mystery, Death in Paradise and The Coroner.
On Acorn, There is Deadwater Fell, Manhunt (EXCELLENT), The Silence, Lock Ness, No Offence, Single-Handed and Hinterland. On the lighter side is Finding Alice.
There are more on both channels, but these are definitely great shows. I love British TV and the mysteries are often outstanding. Enjoy!
I love the book series “All Creatures Great and Small” and found the current practice of James Herriot – run by a vet who trained under him then took over the practice when James retired – on YouTube!! I’ve watched quite a few of the episodes of the modern-day vet clinic, where they still make calls out to the farms in the area!!
I am like Jo and turn on the closed captioning for the British shows. Since learning of Britbox from her blog, I have watched Midsomer Murders, The Coroner, Scott and Bailey, Shakespeare and Hathaway and Silent Witness. On the lighter side, The Cafe was good. An Australian show City Homicide was excellent (I think from Amazon Prime). I am currently watching Father Brown and Rosemary and Thyme. I will have to check out Shetland soon.
We, too, often find it hard to find good programs to watch once we’ve finished binge watching a program we’ve loved. I highly, highly recommend Acorn TV to you. I believe its $5.99 per month, but we paid less when we paid for an annual subscription (I’m thinking $60??). What I love most of all is that the shows come from all over the world — Ireland, Scotland, UK, Australia, Sweden, Norway, and on & on — the shows are fascinating as you see how people live in different countries, how their society is set up & how their people live, all while watching fascinating shows. We enjoy Acorn TV more than Roku Tv or Netflix because of all that. I’ll have to check out some of the suggestions and find out if I can find some of those, too — thanks everyone!
My Brilliant Friend, Seasons 1-3 and Wasteland, a joint Czech / HBO Europe production and Gomorrah (joint Italian and UK Sky TV production) are all on HBO Max. The latter is about criminals in Naples, so skip it if you think it might be too violent. I love Shetland also.
I love the BBC shows on PBS too. Now that we have Prime on TV, I found another service that shows a lot of British and Australian shows. I highly reccomend Acorn TV. Don’t push yourself too much. Let your body heal. Take the pain pills when you need them, not when you’re at pain level 10+, take it when you start feeling the pain start! I can’t said the same thing to many patients-everyone learns the hard way. Quilty Hugs. : )