Happy 4th of July everyone. The day that American’s join together and share their joint sadness in their decision to break away from the mighty British Empire! (or something like that).
I know almost all American’s look northwards to Canada and go ‘damn if only we had stayed, look where we’d be now’, and I am sure that if Obama asked nicely then the Queen would quite happily allow you back into the fold (Britain’s doing well right? Well David Cameron says so….).
Seeing as I know how American’s just sit inside looking all depressed and what not on the 4th of July (no parades, no fireworks and no fun) I have decided to write up a list of TV shows that you could potentially watch as you wallow in the pity of leaving the United Kingdom!
The list will contain shows that have been made within the last 10 years (in no particular order) and are all still relevant TV shows if were to be watched today (this is not a list for your granny, it is a list for you).
Geeks be praised Doctor Who! I’m not talking old Doctor Who (where losers sit up to all times of night watching bad acting and worse set design) but new Doctor Who. Where young occasionally good looking (I’m looking at you David Tennant) Doctor’s save the world with their better looking assistants.
Yes it is that great formula of boy meets girl, boy takes girl in a blue box, girl disappears for about 2 years and reappears or dies and nobody really notices. Yes that age old tale that we are all familiar with. Anyway if you like men (and sometimes women) dressed up as aliens or robots or if you just like reasonably well produced TV shows then give Doctor Who a shout.
A show about students first year at university where their life isn’t just about going to parties and getting mortal. Yes Fresh Meat the TV show about the grubby and very unglamorous life of being at a British university.
Gone is the belief that university (or college for the silly Americans) is where really attractive cool people go, and instead it is replaced with the idea that people that go to university are usually weird, not that smart and lazy…oh and useless and smelly and…. you get the point.
Do you enjoy watching television shows where you struggle to understand what people are saying? Then look no further as Still Game is the prefect show for you! A show which goes into the inner depths of the city of Glasgow, as we follow about a bunch of pensioners who have delightful moustaches.
Yes these pensioners get up to all sorts of shenanigans, well you know what they’re like with all their free time. If you thought old people weren’t funny, then think again as these old buddies are hilarious. Turn the subtitles up and learn a new language whilst you’re at it, cose this sho is pure richt bangin ya dirti wee whalluper!
Two sort of middle aged ugly people chilling together in a flat, living life to the fullest or working and going home for those who don’t know how to do it. Get ready for some weird camera angles and some even weirder teeth, cause you’re about to see a lot of them.
Trust me when I say that this show is very funny (it has tailed off in the last couple of years) and like nothing that you will have ever seen before. If you are a neurotic person (and let’s be honest who isn’t) then you will easily relate to the characters and no they aren’t medicated (herbal medication does not count).
This is ground breaking TV at its best (I’m talking about the first 4 maybe 5 seasons after that it is stupid, barely any original characters left). Many of you may have seen the shitty American re make where they manage to make it as American as they can (God damn it not everyone is good looking!), the British version however is nothing like the American version.
Do you think the American Shameless is gritty, greasy and scumtastic? Well imagine that but with a much better benefit system and a much more dirty and scummy family. Exactly, that is ground breaking TV and it makes you feel better, that your life isn’t quite as shit as theirs (two bonuses from watching it!).
Another Sherlock Holmes remake? How many times can it be done? Well apparently as many as they feel like can make them money. This is the best Sherlock Holmes adaptation that I have ever seen (sorry Junior). It has more grown up themes, and then throws in the mix Benedict Cumberbatch (a man with a name that screams aristocracy) and Martin Freeman (a man with a name that screams regularness).
This is what a good adaptation of a British classic looks like not that mess that CBS produced with Lucy Liu and Angelina Jolie’s discarded ex-husband. I mean as if Watson could ever be a woman! Silly Americans.
The Thick of It
Have you seen the show Veep? If the answer is yes and you like it then I am glad to say that you may like the Thick of It (the show Veep is based upon), however don’t expect Veep, expect Veep’s far superior and more flamboyant (language wise [that means swearing]) cousin. The Thick of It is everything Veep is not, it is cutting edge, it is edgy, it is current and you get the feeling that unlike Veep that the events of the Thick of It could actually happen in real life.
If you haven’t been paying attention and you don’t understand the premise of the Thick of It, it is about the inner dealings of British politics. however instead of making the politician the star of the show (let’s be honest they aren’t in real life so why would they be on TV) the star of the show is Malcolm Tucker (moan the Scoats!) a civil servant. The Thick of It is how you make a relevant satire based comedy show, watch and learn Veep.
This is the best school based comedy, like ever ever and shit! Another high quality British show that got a shitey American remake (feel like I say that a lot) that got cancelled after one season because American’s can’t take the idea of seeing a 17 year old boy have a loose testicle now and again or get caught jacking off by his mum (we’ve all had those days). I digress and further point out that this show is really good and should be watched by all.
The IT Crowd
If you watch the Big Bang Theory and are not brain dead you are probably thinking ‘why can’t people make a good TV show about some geeks?’ well look no further because that is essentially what the IT Crowd is (what potentially the Big Bang Theory could’ve been if it were well written and well-acted and actually a good show).
It also launched the careers of Chris O’Dowd (that Irishy guy) and Richard Ayoade (that guy with the crazy hair) so there is that as well.
The IT Crowd is that quirky comedy that you look at from across the room but are afraid to go and talk to because it might be totally weird and once you’ve started you’ll regret it straight away and have to talk to it until it goes to the toilet and you can run away, but take that risk because there is a good chance you will like it and if you don’t just run away to the toilet and hope it won’t be on your TV when you get back (that’s what I’d do).
Life on Mars
Another great British show that received a god awful American remake (I was right it is a theme of the post). What can you say about Life on Mars? It’s a great show, with great acting which didn’t overstay its welcome, a perfect TV show.
A lot of the time you don’t necessarily know what’s going on but damn does it look fun to be a policeman in 70’s Britain. Driving about in fancy cars beating people up with their 1970’s one liners and 1970’s know it all. Those were the days…I mean I wouldn’t know because I wasn’t alive in the 70’s but I can imagine…
Yes Life on Mars is one of those rare pieces of TV genius that come around every so often and should be viewed by everyone and their grannies as well.
Irish, British, it’s all the same shit at the end of the day. Imagine making a show about a three priests living on an island, doing priesty things…I know it does sound incredible! Well thanks to the geniuses who belong to these British isles that is exactly what happened.
A show about priests doing priesty things, showing that they’re probably regular folks, and sometimes their priesty pals come in and say hi, and then there’s the locals who aren’t priests but sometimes come in and say hi and there’s a tea lady who makes lots of tea, because who doesn’t love a good cup of tea, proper stuff, not any of that hippy camomile shit.
Do you like history? Do you like comedy? Do you like Mr. Bean? If the answer to two out of three are yes, then you will love Blackadder, a show which takes us through history and makes us laugh at the little things…and big stuff too.
Blackadder and his poisonous wit tackle shit like the Middle Ages, the Elizabethan era , the Regency Era and World War One, yes these areas are hilarious, I agree! Look out for favourite faces like that Dr. House guy, that posh fellow from the telly and that goofy gentleman, yes stars are a plenty in this raucous look back at the lighter moments in British history.
Have you ever wondered what it would be like if your policemen weren’t going about trying to murder minorities? Well don’t worry because the good people of Scotland have produced Scot Squad, a show which allows people to observe the police in their natural habitat, as they do their jobs and have a couple of chuckles too.
Yes policing is a difficult job, and the jaikies of Glasgow are some of the biggest jaikballs in the world, however without the use of guns or excessive force (watch and learn American police departments) they handle situations in what can only be called a professional and courteous manner, yes police can actually do that.
Only Fools and Horses
Everyone likes a bit of a lad, especially if that lad is middle aged and is selling a lot of shit on a market stall in the East End of London. That’s where British hero Del Boy Trotter sets the example which all young British people are trying to live to.
Del Boy and his brother Dave get up to all sorts of laddish adventures with their old man companion, as they show what it’s really like to be a working class lad living in Britian today…if today was in the eighties…
So there you go! To my American friends try and avoid becoming too depressed on this 4th of July because things can only get better (Donald Trump 2016, make it happen America!). Let me know what other British TV shows you just love to watch or maybe you think British TV is stupid and that we should all get dental work (or whatever other stereotype American’s like about British people). All comments are welcomed as I know what a hard day it is for all of you and I’m really just here to make it that bit better!
Let me finish this article with a few bars of the national anthem: God save our gracious Queen! Long live our noble Queen! God save our Queen! That’s all I know, it isn’t personally my national anthem….and I’m a republican…and I don’t like the Queen or the Royal family…nor do I wish my country was part of the UK…but I digress…