I’ll admit, the main reason I got pulled into this series about Queen Victoria’s early years on the throne was because Jenna Coleman was playing the young monarch. Little did I realize I would emerge with a measurable thirst for Rufus Sewell who plays her Prime Minister, Lord Melbourne. Hot damn. The show turned out to be even more fabulous than I’d hoped, with Coleman absolutely smashing it as the Queen. Season 1 airs in the US on PBS starting January 15, 2017 and Series 2 comes to ITV in Fall 2017.
Call the Midwife
Here’s the thing about this show: I just love every character. It’s impossible to hate anyone when they’re all so real in their triumphs and brokenness. No one is Hollywood pretty, even the actors who are downright gorgeous. Instead, everyone looks like someone who could’ve actually existed in the London East End in the 1950s and 60s. This show has addressed homosexuality, religion, medicine, medical advances and mistakes, abuse, parenting, and a litany of other contemporary issues all in through the proper historical lens. I’ve also laughed and cried and gotten almost as invested in the character’s lives as I did while watching Downton Abbey. Yeah, it’s Downton-level good. The first five seasons are all on Netflix and season six starts with a Christmas Special on BBC One.
What’s that? There haven’t been any new episodes of Doctor Who in almost a year? I know and it’s been torturous! Doesn’t mean I’m not still thankful for this dorky, amazing British sci-fi institution with its adorable nerd and all around wonderful human being of a leading man – Peter Capaldi. It’s true that Series 9 broke my heart for all eternity and I will continue missing Clara Oswald (Jenna Coleman) for pretty much the rest of the Twelfth Doctor’s run. However, the anticipation for the Christmas Special, The Return of Doctor Mysterio, and Series 10, with new companion Bill (Pearl Mackie) is very, very high.
The Great British Bake Off
There is nothing more wholesome than a reality show about bakers, that is also crammed to the brim with innuendos and puns. Everything about GBBO is so pitch perfect. Real, everyday people as the contestants. Two hilarious hosts, Mel Giedroyc and Sue Perkins, who go out of their way to inject humor, humanity, and joy into every possible second of their screen time. Two delightfully contrasting judges. Mary Berry is sweet and grandmotherly but also will tell you flat out if your bake is crap. Paul Hollywood is acerbic and loves to play mind games with the contestants which makes it all the more satisfying when one of them really impresses him. Also, we’re all a little in love with him for some reason. And to top it all off there are delicious baked goods on the screen all the time. God bless.
Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries
Does Australia count as across the pond? Well, it’s across quite a lot of water for me here in the US so we’ll just say yes. A little over a year ago I discovered this fantastic Australian show, thanks to tumblr, and my life changed for the better. Let me break it down for you. In the 1920s, a wealthy, clever, bored aristocrat decides to become a private detective. She has an ever-widening circle of friends from all backgrounds, ethnicities, and professions and a swoon-worthy slow burn romance with the local Detective Inspector, Jack Robinson. Their chemistry alone is worth watching all three seasons, which are available on Netflix just fyi. The cases are fun and interesting, the music and costumes are divine, and the leads are stunningly beautiful. Recent reports are saying the series is poised to become a film trilogy. Please and thank you!
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