The Lincoln Public Library has all these great British TV series plus many more! See what we have to offer!
There's a lot of bad TV, but there's also a lot of GREAT TV. You just have to know where to look – and across the pond to England is a good start. Murder, midwives, war and romance ... they've got it all.
1. Call the Midwife
A wonderful series about the lives of midwives in the hard scrabble streets of London's East End in the 1950s. Based on the real-life memoirs of midwife Jennifer Worth, it documents the adventures – sometimes funny, often tragic and always touching - of these young women and the nuns they work alongside.
2. Foyle's War
Set in Hastings, England during the Second World War, this intelligent series follows the career of one Detective Chief Superintendent Inspector Christopher Foyle, played with brilliant understatement by Michael Kitchen. He's aided in his crime-fighting work by his assistant and driver Samantha Stewart played by a delightful actress with the unlikely name Honeysuckle Weeks. From its cars to airplanes to clothes, the series recreates the war years with stunning accuracy.
This brilliant series stars Scottish actor David Tennant – of Dr. Who fame – as the troubled, lead detective Alec Hardy in the fictional small, coastal town of Broadchurch, England. The first year's 10 episodes are absolutely riveting. The body of a 11-year-old boy is found one morning on the beach and his murder turns this town – and all its secrets - inside out. Olivia Colman is excellent as Hardy's partner, detective Ellie Miller. Dark, disturbing, but extremely compelling.
4. Doc Martin
On a much lighter note, meet Dr Martin Ellingham (played Martin Clunes), a gruff, humourless and socially awkward doctor plunked down into the quiet Cornish village of Portwenn. Ellingham is a brilliant London vascular surgeon who is waylaid by a sudden onset of haemophobia - a fear of blood. He has to give up his surgical duties and opt for being a family doctor, a calling to which he is wholly unsuited. The villagers - an eccentric bunch - call him a "wanker." It's laugh-out-loud funny and often touching.
5. Inspector George Gently
Similar to Foyle's War but set in England in the late 1950s and early 60s, We follow inspector George Gently, played by the excellent Martin Shaw accompanied by the younger less experienced John Bacchus (Lee Ingelby). They work against the backdrop of England as it undergoes huge social change in morals, politics, race, and rock and roll. It's smart and moving. And you will love the music, the clothes and the cars.
You might recognize Idris Elba from The Wire (another great series). He's Detective Chief Inspector John Luther, but now we're in present-day London and Luther is nothing like Foyle or Gently. He's obsessive, volatile and sometimes violent. The police procedural is at times almost over the top in its stories and violence, but it's great stuff and Elba is fantastic in the lead role.
7. Inspector Lewis
Okay, the Brits seem to have a magic formula for this stuff. This time it's modern day England and the beautiful university town of Oxford. DCI Robert Lewis (Kevin Whately) and his tall, hyper- intelligent and quirky partner DS James Hathaway (Laurence Fox) find themselves on campus solving the strangest murders. It's Smart, funny and beautifully filmed. You can't help but like these guys.
8. MI-5 (Also known as Spooks)
This is a crime drama on adrenaline. Forget the green fields, quiet towns and seaside resorts. MI-5 is set in urban London where terrorists are around every corner and the agents of Britain's secret service have to disarm bombs and free hostages. It's a changing ensemble cast and the production values are high and the action is fierce. Not for everyone, but a real thrill ride.