I'm as sceptical as the next man when it comes to American TV, but there does appear to be a glut of great shows that have come out in the past year. Some of them haven't made it big here in the UK yet. But thanks to the wonders of the internets, these shows can be watched in the UK the day after they air in the States. So, in my view, here are the shows that are going to make it big pretty soon (links are all to the relevant pages on Wikipedia, you can link off to official sites from there if you want).
- Dexter - Serial killer who only kills serial killers. Genius. HBO production. Stars the guy off Six Feet Under.
- Heroes - Cartoon-like action adventure featuring a dozen or so people who discover that they've got supernatural powers and have to save the world. Like X-Men but with more character development and distinctly different production values (slick but different)
- Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip - Great new show from Aaron Sorkin (who wrote the first four seasons of The West Wing) which follows the production of a show similar to Saturday Night Live. The writing is simply awesome, but it's well acted too. Stars Matthew Perry and Bradley Whitford.
- Big Love - Polygamous family living in modern day Salt Lake City, starring Bill Paxton of Weird Science and Apollo 13 fame. Season 1 finished a wee while ago (indeed I think they showed it on Channel 5 over here), but the next season is due to start soon and I'm looking forward to it.
Oh, and some of the perennial favorites are still hitting the mark. Especially South Park - If you haven't seen Season 10, and in particular the Make Love, Not Warcraft episode, then you are missing out. Seriously! You can watch it lo-fi here on Youtube if you like. Lost and Battlestar Galactica seem to be waning in their third seasons, but they're still worth a watch. And Family Guy, Scrubs and The Office (US version) are still LOL funny.
I really don't get out much.
Oh, and if you're wondering how I get to watch this stuff...well....lets just say that I have a friend who tells me all about them. I wouldn't dare use BitTorrent to download everything for free the day after it airs in the States. That wouldn't be legal. Oh no sir. And I wouldn't get all my torrent files from Torrent Spy or Mininova either.
Now, I want to know why it is that we can't produce great TV over here. Even something as 'innovative' as Doctor Who looks amateurish next to the American shows, in terms of production values, quality of acting and quality of writing especially. I haven't bothered watching Doctor Who since they ripped off The Matrix and about three other films in the first episode of the latest series.
Answers on a postcard, please.