TV for those long, hot days of summer

Do you love watching mysteries on TV as much as I do? How about gripping political dramas (the fictional kind for me)? Here are four shows that I highly recommend to get you through the long, hot days of summer (or any climate):

The Dr. Blake Mysteries This Australian production is set in 1950s Victoria. Dr. Blake operates a general medical practice in Ballarat, but it’s his role as police surgeon that gives him opportunities to investigate the many murders that befall the community. Dr. Blake is a troubled soul, bound and determined to right the world’s wrongs.

I’ve seen Series 1 and 2 so far. As of this writing, series 4 hasn’t been released in the US. Dr. Blake spurred me to write this post in April: “The Land Down Under: Books, Film, and a Geography Lesson.”

Borgen is a Danish political drama that focuses on Birgitte Nyborg Christensen, first female Prime Minister of Denmark. Danish politics are as cutthroat as they are in any country (perhaps not as much as here in the good old USA). Follow Birgitte through the vicissitudes of politics and her challenges as a wife and mother. Journalists and news anchors provide intriguing subplots.

Brunetti is based on Donna Leon’s Commissario Brunetti series. The actors in the German TV adaptation speak—no surprise—German, which can be startling until you get accustomed to it. The moody and at times haunting Venice setting is the same as in the novels.

Watch a trailer for Brunetti and listen to the beautiful soundtrack.

The West Wing is quite a departure from the above—although it is along the lines of Borgen. I must say I had to get used to the American accents! I didn’t watch this political drama during its prime time run from 1999-2006, but once I started renting the DVDs in 2016 I didn’t stop until President Josiah Bartlett (played to perfection by Martin Sheen) finished his eight years in office and handed the reins to his successor. This almost coincided with the 2017 Inauguration. I’ll cut off any political commentary and comparisons at this point.

A few more for your consideration:
Agatha Raisin

Grantchester  Season 3 is currently running on PBS

Fog and Crimes

Murdoch Mysteries


For more suggestions, see this recent post from Lethal Lady Mollie Cox Bryan (she includes books).

What shows do you enjoy? Recommendations are welcome.







TV for those long, hot days of summer — 10 Comments

  1. Great suggestions, Maggie! I think I’m going to ask for Acorn tv for my birthday so I can start watching some of the great British tv shows.

    • Good idea, Amy. I’m very old-fashioned and watch these shows on DVDs! I rent them from the library. We got a roku a while back but haven’t figured out how to use it.

  2. Maggie,
    I LOVE Grantchester and the Dr. Blake series. Watched most of the Vera series. But many of the others are new to me. Thanks for the great suggestions!