Must Watch UK Shows

A list of British (mostly) comedy shows that you cannot miss.

Between Netflix, BBC America, and more ‘illicit’ means, I am proud to admit that I am more than ‘well-versed’ when it comes to British TV. I’m quite familiar with American TV as well but let’s be honest, when it comes to comedy no one does it as well as the British. This list is by no means complete or in any order, but should serve as a great starting out point. So bid adieu to your dime a dozen crime shows and reality TV, and welcome to your life filled with sharp dialogue and men’s behinds.

The Inbetweeners

Four of the crudest, vilest, and funniest fuckers you'll ever meet.

# of Episodes: 18 (3 seasons of 6 episodes each), and a theatrical movie

Available on: Youtube or the DVDs at Amazon

Plot in one sentence: A group of three boys welcome a rich kid unlike them into their group as they try to survive school and most importantly, get laid.

Why you should watch it:  Because The Inbetweeners had me laughing out loud more than any show I can recall in recent memory. The groups roles of idiot, liar, naïve lover, and rich kid mesh so well that by the time it’s over you’ll be wishing for more. I know I was, when the show was finished I started re-watching it again immediately, I was hooked.

"Alan Moore? More like More Doritos!" - That unfunny guy from Big Bang Theory

The IT Crowd

# of Episodes: 24 (4 seasons of 6 episodes each)

Available on: Netflix

Plot in one (run on) sentence: A show about two nerds who work in the IT department of their company have to educate their new female coworker who knows nothing about computers their way of life.

Why you should watch it:  Many popular shows fake its nerdology and throws around words that a real person would never use in an effort to win a cheap laugh (cough…Big Bang Theory). The IT Crowd not only strays away from this, but manages to use clever and realistic dialogue that will have you guffawing constantly.

Take a wild guess who's the well-mannered one of the group.

Peep Show

# of Episodes: 42 (7 series of 6 episodes each)

Available on: Netflix

Plot in one sentence: Two roommates who are the complete opposite of each other struggle to function within society, making a mess out of anything they do from going to the gym to spending the night in.

Why you should watch it:  Peep Show was one of the shows that got me hooked on UK television. With relatable material that’s partnered up with a first person camera perspective the show was an addicting watch that made me crave similar material. Peep Show is on Netflix and is extremely accessible, making it a great show for anyone to watch.

The Dad. Like any family he makes the show.

The Royle Family

# of Episodes: 24 (3 series of 6 episodes each and 6 specials)

Available on: Youtube Amazon

Plot in one sentence: A family of four (five if you count the daughter’s always present boyfriend) sit around and watch TV. Seriously, that’s it.

Why you should watch it:  Even if you never sat around the couch and watched TV with your family before, I’m willing to bet there will be a moment in Royle Family that will have you think to yourself “Hah, that’s happened to me before.” The writers have somehow managed to make an interesting show that is about doing nothing but sitting around. Proving that shows do not always need a zany concept to be entertaining.



# of Episodes: 36 (6 series, series 7starts the 23rd)

Available on: Netflix

Plot in one sentence: A group of students party hard, do a lot of drugs, and have a lot of romance issues.

Why you should watch it:  Okay so out of the list this show is the odd man out. The reason I’ve included Skins is because seasons 1 and 2 are considered my favorite television show of all time. Not that the other seasons are bad, but every two years the students “graduate” and they completely replace the cast. The first cast was unlike any other, providing both comedic and memorable moments on a constant basis. You may be skeptical of the premise and the first couple episodes, but give it until episode 3. That’s when it’ll click, trust me.

Well hopefully that got you started on your descent into vastly superior British TV. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go watch season 27 episode 2432 of the Office.

But before I go, here’s an amazing song:

~ by spruchy on January 12, 2012.

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