19 Fantastic British Sci-Fi Series You Can Binge Right Now

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Peter Capaldi as the Twelfth Doctor in “Doctor Who”. (Photo: BBC)

Doctor Who

Doctor Who is a British institution. If you’ve never seen it, I’m sorry, and you should correct this egregious absence in your life as soon as possible. The show originally premiered in 1963 and has been running off-and-on ever since. It was officially relaunched as a weekly series in 2005 after a multi-decade hiatus, and has since achieved heretofore unseen levels of global success and popularity. No, really. People actually know what it is when they see my TARDIS phone case now. That never used to happen until about four or five years ago.

Doctor Who follows the story of an alien Time Lord named The Doctor. He has an assortment of human Companions accompany him on his various adventures through time and space in his blue police box. Adventure, laughter and heartbreak ensue.

Yes, on one level this is a show about an alien, fantastical monsters, time travel, and distant planets. But what Doctor Who is really about is hope. And friendship, and bravery, and love. It’s about the all the best things that make humanity great, with a dollop of aliens and apocalyptic, end-of-the-universe style threats thrown on top. And it is wonderful.

Thanks to an early casting issue in the 1960s, Doctor Who has a built-in story mechanism used to switch its cast around fairly regularly. The Doctor doesn’t die; he just regenerates into a new body. Peter Capaldi currently plays the Twelfth Doctor and Pearl Mackie is about to take over as his newest companion. Previous notable cast members include Christopher Eccleston, David Tennant, Matt Smith, Billie Piper, John Barrowman, Karen Gillian, Arthur Darvill, Jenna Coleman and more.

Number of Seasons: 9 (of the “New Who” reboot anyway.)

Where to Watch: Amazon Prime