Best TV series of the 21st century

With the amount of TV series on offer, it can be pretty overwhelming to choose the right one for you on the off chance that it is actually worth it. 

So whether you’re into crime dramas, comedy, sci-fi or you love nothing more than a historical drama, why not watch the best there is? Keep reading for the best TV series of the 21st century!

In this blog:

Mad Men

With an 8.7 rating on IMDb, Mad Men has won five Golden Globes and 16 Emmys. The American TV series is set at an advertising agency and follows the lives of the main staff, including advertising exec Don Draper, his secretary Peggy and many more. If you’re looking for a TV series to sink your teeth into, seven seasons of Mad Men won’t let you down… it’s named one of the best TV series of all time for a reason.

The Office UK

The Office is one of the most successful British comedy TV shows and back in 2004, it won a Golden Globe for Best Television Series. Created by comedian Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant, The Office ironically follows the daily lives of office workers for a paper company in Slough, managed by Gervais’s character David Brent. If you’re looking for a laugh-out-loud TV series, you’ll find yourself binge-watching The Office in no time.

Breaking Bad

Bryan Cranston and Aaron Paul star as the lead characters in the American crime drama Breaking Bad. A chemistry teacher who finds out he has an inoperable lung cancer ends up teaming up with a former student to make and sell drugs. Spanning from 2008 to 2013, Breaking Bad has been showered with countless awards, from Golden Globes to Primetime Emmy awards and it even features in the Guinness Book of World Records!

Black Mirror

If you like sci-fi and TV shows that make you think, then you’re guaranteed to love the anthology series, Black Mirror. It is one of the best TV series from the 21st century and explores different genres such as crime fiction, romance and more. It has an 8.7 rating on IMDb and Variety ranked it in their list of the 100 greatest TV shows of all time.

The Crown

For all the royalists out there or maybe you want to spruce up your knowledge of the royal family, make sure to put the Netflix phenomenon The Crown on your watchlist. It follows the reign of Queen Elizabeth II, from her childhood, all the way to her 80s. We’d like to emphasise it is a drama and not exactly factual! There are six seasons and the TV series has won its fair share of Golden Globes and Primetime Emmy Awards, making The Crown one of the best Netflix TV show series.

Line of Duty

One of the best TV shows to come out of the UK, Line of Duty is a gripping police series with numerous twists and turns, making it a truly gripping watch. The first episode was in June 2012 and after a total of six series, Line of Duty ended in 2021. It’s won countless awards, including an NTA for Special Recognition and the Telegraph even named it one of the top BBC Two shows of all time.

Game of Thrones

Game of Thrones pretty much took over the 2010s and it’s no surprise why – even if you didn’t watch it, you’ve definitely heard of Jon Snow, Daenerys or any characters with the last name Stark! Nothing like Game of Thrones had ever been televised before and people just couldn’t get enough of the fantasy series, set in the fictional lands of Westeros and Essos. It has a 9.2 rating on IMDb and has won over 50 Primetime Emmy Awards.

The Wire

The HBO series The Wire ran from 2002 – 2008 and focuses on the Baltimore drug scene and the different institutions in the city. Even though it was extremely popular, the crime drama never won a Primetime Emmy Award, but it has won the Directors Guild of America award, the Crime Thriller Award and the Irish Film Television Academy Award.

Happy Valley

Another British crime drama with incredible success is Happy Valley. Without throwing out any spoilers, it follows the professional and personal life of police sergeant Catherine Cawood, played by Sarah Lancaster (you’ll just have to watch it!). It has gripped audiences since it aired in 2014 and the last series was released in 2023, after waiting seven years since the last series. It’s needless to say Happy Valley is one of the best TV series in the UK, winning a BAFTA or two for Best Drama Series.

Downton Abbey

From 2010-2015 Downton Abbey was a fan favourite, following the aristocratic Crawley family and their staff between 1912 and 1926. The historical drama has even been turned into a film in 2019 and is been loved by many. The TV series has won a Golden Globe, and a Primetime Emmy Award and even landed itself a place in the Guinness Book of World Records in 2011.

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