TV Shows that define Excellence in Drama

by purseofglitters | created - 26 Mar 2017 | updated - 04 Feb 2018 | Public

These are the shows that I have never grown tired of binging again and again over the years. List is compiled relative to personal rating of excellence.

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1. Borgia (2011–2014)

52 min | Biography, Drama, History

Story of the rise and the fall of the Renaissance dynasty.

Stars: Mark Ryder, Isolda Dychauk, Diarmuid Noyes, John Doman

Votes: 5,428

2. Peaky Blinders (2013– )

TV-MA | 60 min | Crime, Drama

A gangster family epic set in 1919 Birmingham, England; centered on a gang who sew razor blades in the peaks of their caps, and their fierce boss Tommy Shelby.

Stars: Cillian Murphy, Helen McCrory, Paul Anderson, Sophie Rundle

Votes: 215,023

3. Bron/Broen (2011–2018)

TV-MA | 60 min | Crime, Mystery, Thriller

When a body is found on the bridge between Denmark and Sweden, right on the border, Danish inspector Martin Rohde and Swedish Saga Norén have to share jurisdiction and work together to find the killer.

Stars: Sofia Helin, Rafael Pettersson, Sarah Boberg, Dag Malmberg

Votes: 50,367

4. Vikings (2013– )

TV-MA | 44 min | Action, Adventure, Drama

Vikings transports us to the brutal and mysterious world of Ragnar Lothbrok, a Viking warrior and farmer who yearns to explore - and raid - the distant shores across the ocean.

Stars: Gustaf Skarsgård, Katheryn Winnick, Alexander Ludwig, Travis Fimmel

Votes: 350,299

5. Banshee (2013–2016)

TV-MA | 60 min | Action, Crime, Drama

An ex-con assumes the identity of a murdered sheriff in the small town of Banshee, Pennsylvania, where he has some unfinished business.

Stars: Antony Starr, Ivana Milicevic, Ulrich Thomsen, Frankie Faison

Votes: 77,268

6. Salamander (2012–2018)

40 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

A police inspector investigates the robbery of 66 safe deposit boxes at a private bank in Brussels.

Stars: Filip Peeters, Violet Braeckman, Tine Reymer, Koen van Impe

Votes: 1,795

7. Ófærð (2015– )

60 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

In a remote town in Iceland, Police desperately try to solve a crime as a powerful storm descends upon the town.

Stars: Ólafur Darri Ólafsson, Ilmur Kristjánsdóttir, Ingvar Sigurdsson, Elva María Birgisdóttir

Votes: 11,905

8. Thicker Than Water (2014– )

TV-14 | 58 min | Drama

A mother sends postcards to her estranged son and daughter inviting them back to the guest house they grew up in. She gives each of her children one piece of advice and leaves them to ponder the meaning.

Stars: Björn Bengtsson, Aliette Opheim, Joel Spira, Jessica Grabowsky

Votes: 1,051

9. London Spy (2015)

60 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

A chance romance between two men from very different worlds, one from the headquarters of the Secret Intelligence Service, the other from a world of clubbing and youthful excess, leads into mystery after one of them is found murdered.

Stars: Ben Whishaw, Edward Holcroft, Jim Broadbent, Zrinka Cvitesic

Votes: 7,982

10. Versailles (2015–2018)

TV-MA | 52 min | Biography, Drama, History

In 1667, 28-year-old all-powerful king of France, Louis XIV, decides to build the greatest palace in the world - Versailles. But drained budget, affairs and political intrigues complicate things.

Stars: George Blagden, Alexander Vlahos, Tygh Runyan, Stuart Bowman

Votes: 11,270

11. Game of Thrones (2011–2019)

TV-MA | 57 min | Action, Adventure, Drama

Nine noble families fight for control over the mythical lands of Westeros, while an ancient enemy returns after being dormant for thousands of years.

Stars: Emilia Clarke, Peter Dinklage, Kit Harington, Lena Headey

Votes: 1,578,018

12. Taboo (2017– )

TV-MA | 59 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller

Adventurer James Keziah Delaney returns to London during the War of 1812 to rebuild his late father's shipping empire. However, both the government and his biggest competitor want his inheritance at any cost - even murder.

Stars: Tom Hardy, David Hayman, Jonathan Pryce, Oona Chaplin

Votes: 102,902

13. Follow the Money (2016– )

TV-MA | 60 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

When a body is found in the water near a wind farm, detective Mads is charged with investigating what seems to be an accident. The victim worked at Energreen, one of the most successful ... See full summary »

Stars: Esben Smed, Thomas Hwan, Thomas Bo Larsen, Natalie Madueño

Votes: 2,832

14. The Hour (2011–2012)

60 min | Drama

A behind-the-scenes drama and espionage thriller in Cold War-era England that centers on a journalist, a producer, and an anchorman for an investigative news programme.

Stars: Romola Garai, Ben Whishaw, Dominic West, Anna Chancellor

Votes: 8,955

15. Penny Dreadful (2014–2016)

TV-MA | 60 min | Drama, Fantasy, Horror

Explorer Sir Malcolm Murray, American gunslinger Ethan Chandler, scientist Victor Frankenstein, and medium Vanessa Ives unite to combat supernatural threats in Victorian London.

Stars: Josh Hartnett, Timothy Dalton, Eva Green, Reeve Carney

Votes: 102,131

Only seasons 1 and 2

16. Borgen (2010–2013)

TV-14 | 58 min | Drama

A political drama about a prime minister's rise to power, and how power changes a prime minister.

Stars: Sidse Babett Knudsen, Birgitte Hjort Sørensen, Emil Poulsen, Freja Riemann

Votes: 15,209

17. The Take (2009)

TV-MA | 180 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Based upon the novel by Martina Cole, this TV series is mostly about Freddie Jackson, portrayed by Tom Hardy, who is just out of prison. He has the right connections and now he's ready to use them.

Stars: Shaun Evans, Tom Hardy, Charlotte Riley, Kierston Wareing

Votes: 6,749

18. And Then There Were None (2015)

TV-14 | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

Ten strangers are invited to an island by a mysterious host, and start to get killed one by one. Could one of them be the killer?

Stars: Maeve Dermody, Charles Dance, Toby Stephens, Burn Gorman

Votes: 26,273

19. Waking the Dead (2000–2011)

100 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

Detective Superintendent Peter Boyd is the leader of a police team which investigates unsolved murders using modern technology.

Stars: Trevor Eve, Sue Johnston, Wil Johnson, Tara Fitzgerald

Votes: 4,552

20. Hraunið (2014– )

183 min | Crime

When Reykjavik crime detective Helgi Marvin Runarsson is called in to investigate a suicide case on Snaefellsnes Peninsula, the case turns out to be far from simple. Pulled into a sinister ... See full summary »

Stars: Atli Rafn Sigurðsson, Björn Hlynur Haraldsson, Heida Reed, Joi Johannsson

Votes: 1,004

21. Banished (2015)

60 min | Drama, History

British convicts have been sent to Australia as punishment for their crimes. As they try to live their new lives, they have to live with the new rules. The soldiers also have to adjust.

Stars: Orla Brady, Ewen Bremner, MyAnna Buring, Ryan Corr

Votes: 2,940

22. Occupied (2015– )

45 min | Drama, Thriller

In the near future, Norway is occupied by Russia on behalf of the European Union, due to the fact that the newly elected environmental friendly Norwegian government has stopped the all important oil- and gas-production in the North Sea.

Stars: Henrik Mestad, Eldar Skar, Ane Dahl Torp, Ingeborga Dapkunaite

Votes: 6,483

23. Modus (2015– )

45 min | Crime, Thriller

During a snowy Christmas season in Sweden, psychologist and profiler Inger Johanne Vik finds not only herself but also her autistic daughter drawn into the investigation of a number of disturbing deaths.

Stars: Melinda Kinnaman, Henrik Norlén, Esmeralda Struwe, Simon J. Berger

Votes: 3,124

24. Black Sails (2014–2017)

TV-MA | 56 min | Adventure, Drama

Follows Captain Flint and his pirates twenty years prior to Robert Louis Stevenson's classic novel "Treasure Island."

Stars: Jessica Parker Kennedy, Toby Stephens, Hannah New, Zach McGowan

Votes: 83,280

25. Magic City (2012–2013)

TV-MA | 50 min | Crime, Drama

Centers on Miami mobsters and other characters from Miami Beach in the late 1950s.

Stars: Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Olga Kurylenko, Steven Strait, Jessica Marais

Votes: 11,387

26. Maison close (2010–2013)

52 min | Drama

Paris, 1871. This is a story of the women trapped in a luxury brothel, 'Paradise'. The very young Rose came to Paris in search of her mother, former prostitute. She is trapped and forced to... See full summary »

Stars: Anne Charrier, Jemima West, Valérie Karsenti, Catherine Hosmalin

Votes: 413

27. The Last Kingdom (2015– )

TV-MA | 60 min | Action, Drama, History

As Alfred the Great defends his kingdom from Norse invaders, Uhtred - born a Saxon but raised by Vikings - seeks to claim his ancestral birthright.

Stars: Alexander Dreymon, Ian Hart, David Dawson, Eliza Butterworth

Votes: 55,722

28. Poldark (2015– )

TV-14 | 60 min | Drama, History, Romance

Ross Poldark returns home after American Revolutionary War and rebuilds his life with a new business venture, making new enemies and finding a new love where he least expects it.

Stars: Aidan Turner, Eleanor Tomlinson, Jack Farthing, Beatie Edney

Votes: 21,545

29. Magnífica 70 (2015– )

TV-MA | 60 min | Drama

MAGNÍFICA 70 portrays the underground cinema-making scene of São Paulo in the '70s with stunning visuals and an award-winning cast and crew. The third season wraps up the series with the ... See full summary »

Stars: Marcos Winter, Simone Spoladore, Adriano Garib, Maria Luísa Mendonça

Votes: 348

30. Acquitted (2015– )

TV-14 | 45 min | Crime, Drama

After having success in Asia, businessman Aksel Borgen is asked back to his hometown in Norway to save an important local firm despite it being 20 years since he was sentenced and later acquitted for murdering his high school sweetheart.

Stars: Nicolai Cleve Broch, Lena Endre, Anne Marit Jacobsen, Ellen Dorrit Petersen

Votes: 2,867

31. 3% (2016– )

TV-MA | 49 min | Action, Drama, Sci-Fi

A thriller set in a world sharply divided between progress and devastation, where people are given the chance to make it to the "better side" but only 3% of the candidates succeed.

Stars: Bianca Comparato, Vaneza Oliveira, Rodolfo Valente, Zezé Motta

Votes: 17,855

32. Babylon Berlin (2017– )

TV-MA | 45 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Colognian commissioner Gereon Rath moves to Berlin, the epicenter of political and social changes in the Golden Twenties.

Stars: Volker Bruch, Liv Lisa Fries, Leonie Benesch, Peter Kurth

Votes: 11,973

33. Retribution (2016)

TV-MA | 60 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller

A horrific murder rocks the lives of two families living side-by-side in isolated rural Scotland.

Stars: Owen Whitelaw, Adrian Edmondson, Kate Bracken, Georgina Campbell

Votes: 4,735

34. Black Spot (2017– )

52 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

A police chief and an eccentric new prosecutor investigate a string of grisly crimes and eerie phenomena in an isolated town at the edge of a forest

Stars: Suliane Brahim, Hubert Delattre, Laurent Capelluto, Samuel Jouy

Votes: 3,491



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