Monday Loves

Today I'm going to combine two of my greatest loves, those being the British and television. Here are some of my favorite British television shows:

Countdown - This one's a gameshow, one I watched almost every day when I was in London. Two contestants choose eight random letters and then try to make a word from those letters. Whoever can make the longest word wins the round. There's also a round of math, but let's concentrate on the positive here, shall we? Evidently, it's been on for a very long time, maybe like Wheel of Fortune here. I wish there were an American version, though there IS a boardgame version which routinely sells at around $35 on eBay.

Spaced - This is definitely one of my favorites. It's a sitcom about two singles who pretend to be a couple in order to get an apartment. Hijinx ensue, as usual, but it's so much better than what you'd expect. It's hilarious, and I wish they'd put the whole series on (American) dvd so I could have it. Watch the first episode here.

The Office - Obviously. I first heard of the series from Entertainment Weekly, so I Netflixed it and could not make it through two full episodes. I could NOT stand David Brent (Ricky Gervais), who made me cringe no matter what he did. I am talking about Marcia-Brady-thinks-her-dentist-wants-to-date-her levels of embarrassment. I forced myself to watch it again, about a year later, and while I still got almost physically ill every time Brent spoke, I became more involved in the Tim/Dawn storyline, and watched it through to the end. Also, Gareth is ridiculous.

Murder City - My love of CSI has been well-documented in this blog, and Murder City is like CSI, except in London, and without all the CGI that follows a bullet's path through a brain (that's good). There's a straighforward senior investigator and her younger, somewhat unorthodox, younger partner, but it's not played for laughs, and both are competent at their jobs. It was a six episode series, but I wish they'd do another season. Each episode was 90 minutes, but felt shorter because I was so into them.

Changing Rooms - A forerunner to Trading Spaces, only with more Lawrence Llewelyn-Bowen, so it wins. He cracks me up every time, with his lacy cuffs and his overdramatic themes. I wouldn't let him decorate MY house, but I'd want to hang out with him so we could speak cattily about the other homeowners.

Robin Hood - This is on now, on BBCA, and I guess it's sort of like Hercules or Xena (only better, of course), in that it's sort of tongue-in-cheek. Though there are jokes aplenty, it still manages to be full of heart. I first saw it in London, and had to wait six months for it to start here; it was a long wait, I'm telling you. I hope it will run for a while.

Hustle - A group of con artists working together get into and out of scrapes using their (illegal) strengths. It's pretty much like Ocean's Eleven in every episode. But it's funny, and it gives me ideas teaches a lesson about the importance of living within the law. I haven't seen all the episodes; they played on AMC last summer and then quit, all of a sudden. (This might require a nasty letter.)

Are You Being Served? - This has been a favorite from way back. I started watching this one in high school, which was many many many years ago. I adore Mrs. Slocombe and her hair (did you notice that her eyeshadow always matches her hair color?) and her attitude.

Ed vs. Spencer - This is like the UK version of Jackass (a show which I hate and refuse to watch), except SO MUCH BETTER. Two friends have contests to decide who is most popular with children, or who can last in the wilderness the longest, or who can make the most money in two days. Spencer is the one who tries really hard to win the challenge, and Ed puts most of his energy into sabotaging Spencer's efforts. The loser undergoes some humiliating task chosen by the winner. It usually comes on around 2:00a.m. here, but I have it season-passed so I get all the episodes. It cracks me up every time.

Notice I did not mention Footballers' Wives, Bad Girls, or that one about the nurses that I forgot the name of.


Anonymous said...

love the list of tv shows!
the nurses one you are thinking of is probably 'no angels' which is fab.
take care
love popsicle (sp)x

Mei said...

That's probably the one. I watched it once, but I couldn't get into it at all.


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