My shows—TiVo and Netflix

I’m not a huge fan of TV because there isn’t much on that I consider good. So the shows that I like have to be very good. I just don’t have time for fluff. Here are a few that I like. (Steve probably likes them too since he ends up watching them with me.)

There is no word to explain how this off the wall drama makes me laugh so hard. Hugh Laurie, who happens to be a British actor, is one of the best “American” actors. The best way to describe this show is Sherlock Holmes in the 21st century. Dr. House is addicted to drugs, but is a brilliant detective; only he is solving medical problems not crimes. Dr. House is irreverent, rude, perverted and some times just down right mean, but I love him! Since I haven’t seen very many shows in order I’m not quite sure of the complete back story, but I am beginning to piece things together. I’m not sure it is exactly necessary to watch in order. I just love finding a House on our TiVo.

In Britain this show is called “Spooks”. You have to watch this show in order. If you don’t you sort of lose the back story which is pivotal to understanding the characters and why they do what they do. The only thing I really hate about this show is that they have no problem killing off some of the main characters. In fact I just watched the end of season four when the main character’s wife, a spy herself, was killed. Then in the next few episodes he gets shot! I tell you it was one long weekend while we waited for the next set of discs to show up. I won’t tell you what happens, because I want you to watch it! Just make sure you do it in order—it makes sense if you do.

Law & Order:
I love Sam Waterson “Jack McCoy” and Jerry Orbach “Lennie Briscoe”—oh, I love the “Lennie lines”. He is my favorite on this show. I love that it is filmed in New York City. I love that you really don’t have to watch them in order to understand 95% of the show. You can just jump in and start where you want. Yes, there is a bit of back story in this drama, but you really don’t need to know it to understand or watch this show. I will love that you see both sides of the justice system: the law (police) and the order (the courts). As much as I hate it when the bad guys go free we do have great system.

Law & Order SVU:
This is a spin off of the original only they deal with the most ugly of criminals those who deal with—well I can’t tell you because this is a clean blog. I love the acting of Mariska Hargaitay “Olivia Benson” and Christopher Meloni “Elliot Stabler”. And who doesn’t love Richard Belzer as “Munch” and Ice-T as “Fin”. Just a great cast dealing with the pond scum of pond scum. The only thing I hate is often time we never enter the court room so we miss the “order” part. I would love to hear the sentences handed out to the creeps on this show.

Law & Order CI:
Another spin off of the original that I just can’t seem to get enough of. Vincent D’Onofrio is an actor that at first I couldn’t just get, but now I just love the episode with him in it. Robert Goren is one great detective and I just love the shows and his partner, Alexandra Eames, get to solve the crime. I didn’t like Kathryn Erbe’s acting when I first saw it, but she has grown on me and now I don’t mind her at all. Again, the “order” part is missing.
The Inspector Lynley Mysteries: I love this BBC drama. In BBC fashion they ended the series before they “jumped the shark”. I don’t know how to describe this series except to say, I have yet to be disappointed. The actors are superb! Nathaniel Parker is not only good looking but a great actor. Sharon Small adds just that bit of tension that the rich and privileged Lynley needs. It was truly a sad day when they announced that they were done filming.

Inspector Morse:
One of the better of the BBC dramas every produced and acted. John Thaw, as Inspector Morse (you will have to figure out his first name, just like we did) is a spectacular actor. We loved how he portrayed this uptight, pretentious and cynical detective. His partner, Sergeant Lewis, is a great anti Morse. As Morse has no family, Lewis does. We Netflix’ed all 33 episodes of this series and loved every one of them. Set in and around Oxford, England, the countryside is just as beautiful as the show. If you love a good mystery/detective show this is the series for you. BBC does it again!

Midsomer Murders:
As you can see, we love mystery/detective shows and no one does it better than the BBC! This is another one that is just great. John Nettles is inspector Tom Barnaby who can never catch the murder until after at least three corpse show up. What is even more interesting is that this takes place in a very small, backwards and beautiful county of Midsomer. Of course don’t go looking for it on an English map because you won’t find it. The people of the county are usually very amoral and snobbish and we love every one of them—especially when they are the murders.

Prime Suspect:
Helen Mirren is the second best British actress on the planet. This show isn’t a regular show, but a show that was shown on PBS’s Masterpiece Theater. This show is a “masterpiece”. There are only 7 episodes, but each one is so well done. The show has won a total of 23 internation awards and rightly so. I will warn you that it is a griping crime drama and they don’t hold anything back. If you are one that faints or gets sick at the sight of blood, make sure you have a pillow handy to hide your face. They show crime in its gripping reality. Helen Mirren as DCI Jane Tennison is spatacular! The acting is outstanding. A must if you truly love good stories, good acting, good photography and want to watch a griping who-done-it!

As Time Goes By:
This is my favorite British sitcom. It stars Judi Dench and Geoffrey Palmer. It aired in Britain from 1992 to 2005 so there are plenty of discs to rent. Beware; you will fall in love with Jean, Lionel and Judith. Alistair will grow on you. You will have to rent them all! I hate to give the plot away but Jean and Lionel get a second chance at love and because of that you need to watch them from episode one to the end. You will cry and laugh and you will wait by the mail box for the next disc.

Only Fools and Horses:
This British comedy stars David Jason and Nicholas Lyndhurst. They portray brothers who will “next year we’ll be millionaire.” Rightly so it was awarded Britain’s Best Sitcom in 2004. If you understand British cockney humor this is a must to rent! At first I didn’t like the show, but it grew on me. I really hated the fact that the show never ended the way I wanted it to, but life doesn’t always end with the guy in the white hat winning. I really hated “Del Boy” ruining everything for Rodney (or Dave). The comedy timing and acting is great in this show. Lovely-jubbly.

The Piglet Files:
Starring our friend Nicholas Lyndhurst from Only Fools and Horse. It is a comedy about secret service guy and his buddies who bumble themselves through cases. It is very, very funny. It only ran a few years, but it is a great show; worth the rental from Netflix.

Now I'm sure that I will find more and more to add to this list as I finish each of these shows. My Netflix queue is full of other potential list makers. I'll keep you updated but in the mean time, check out these shows and see if you don't agree with me.