Feelgood British Drama
December 29, 2019 9:16 PM   Subscribe

I’m anticipating having a rough night on NYE and the next day so looking to binge on some feelgood British drama. Can you recommend me some favourites? Can be either movies or TV. I’ve got access to Australian Netflix, ABC and SBS catch-up apps and can buy DVDs as well. Some I’ve liked: the Good Liar, Call the Midwife, Love Actually, the King’s Speech, Killing Eve, Scott and Bailey, Apple Tree Yard.

I don’t usually go in for: reality TV or period stuff before about 1900. Thank you!
posted by EatMyHat to Media & Arts (24 answers total) 21 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: You might need to subscribe to Britbox or purchase but sooo worth it — Mum
posted by ClaudiaCenter at 9:30 PM on December 29, 2019 [5 favorites]

Series OK? We love "The Detectorists". Wry, funny and hopeful.
posted by Zumbador at 9:31 PM on December 29, 2019 [14 favorites]

Death in Paradise is a British TV show with lighthearted mysteries set in the Caribbean.

Pride is a British movie about a bunch of gays and lesbians who support striking miners in 1984.
posted by carolr at 9:37 PM on December 29, 2019 [7 favorites]

Best answer: If you can get access to Couplings, I found it a very, very funny comedy about the lives (and love lives) of six friends.
posted by metahawk at 9:40 PM on December 29, 2019

The Full Monty. Feel good, with bonus naked butts! (Ok, only for a few seconds, but still.)
posted by holborne at 9:51 PM on December 29, 2019 [3 favorites]

Nothing picks me up like Red Dwarf.
posted by Calvin and the Duplicators at 9:57 PM on December 29, 2019 [6 favorites]

Hot Fuzz is beautifully silly, light fluff that satirizes almost every British village trope and takes a healthy tilt at murder mysteries along the way.

Sense and Sensibility (on Aussie Netflix) always reminds me of Love Actually - probably because it shares so many actors, but also because of the bittersweet romance. Don't let it's being a Jane Austen story put you off - the screenplay won Emma Thompson an Oscar and for good reason.
posted by ninazer0 at 10:34 PM on December 29, 2019 [7 favorites]

cold comfort farm
posted by brujita at 11:00 PM on December 29, 2019 [7 favorites]

Best answer: Lovesick was a surprisingly sweet, funny and clever series a few years ago, not exactly what I expected from the premise (young protagonist gets diagnosed with an STD and needs to sort through his entire dating history and inform all his former partners, the process of which involves his entire social circle and their intertwining romantic entanglements). It was funny and sometimes a bit raunchy, but also had moments of genuine heartache.

Enthusiastically seconding Mum! It's absolutely lovely.
posted by sively at 1:35 AM on December 30, 2019 [6 favorites]

For some reason, there’s a tradition in German-speaking countries to watch the old TV sketch Dinner for One on New Year’s Eve. Not quite a drama, but definitely British and feelgood.
posted by meijusa at 1:53 AM on December 30, 2019

Best answer: As a grumpy old cynic, I recommend watching yesterday. Last week was probably the shittiest week of my year, but when this showed up, I was sucked right in. Silly doesn't even start to describe the premise, but I enjoyed every second of it.
posted by ouke at 2:33 AM on December 30, 2019 [1 favorite]

Jeeves and Wooster features the comedic misadventures of Bertie Wooster (Hugh Laurie) and the never ending abilities of his valet, Jeeves, (Stephen Fry) to extricate "Bertram" from trouble.

Lots of period accuracy and delightful British humour.
posted by mightshould at 3:44 AM on December 30, 2019 [5 favorites]

Bridget Jones's Diary has cheered me up on many a crummy holiday, but it's perhaps best suited for cheering up crummy Christmases and New Yearses.
posted by apparently at 4:32 AM on December 30, 2019 [1 favorite]

The 1995 Pride and Prejudice mini-series starring Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle. Followed up by the 1995 movie Persuasion starring Amanda Root and Ciarán Hinds.

Austen always makes me feel good.
posted by Julnyes at 6:48 AM on December 30, 2019 [1 favorite]

Opps missed the fact that you probably won't enjoy Austen since it is before 1900.. so how about Derry Girls!
posted by Julnyes at 7:41 AM on December 30, 2019

meijusa - I first heard of Dinner for One on the Germany episode of Neil MacGregor's Radio 4 series As Others See Us. OP you may be interested in the Australia episode. Not feelgood (more feelpoignant), and not drama, but definitely to do with Britain.

ouke - do you mean Yesterday? Not sure if your link is going to the right place.

My suggestion: This Way Up. Better than the trailer suggests.
posted by Kiwi at 7:51 AM on December 30, 2019 [1 favorite]

I quite enjoyed The Winslow Boy. It's based on a true story and is set around 1911.
posted by alex1965 at 8:03 AM on December 30, 2019 [1 favorite]

Doc Martin seems kinda obvious, but if you haven't seen it, you're in for a treat.
posted by ovvl at 8:05 AM on December 30, 2019 [1 favorite]

Seconding Coupling, but only for 3 seasons/series. The 4th season opens with the departure of Jeff, and his replacement by a very similar character Oliver, but that's really just the first of a series of shark-jumps. Still, 3 seasons of gut-busting comedy. That show was inspired by Friends, in fact, but because it has no ad breaks, it can develop a lot of deeper comedy, and it's also meant for an adult audience, rather than a general audience. And it was created by Steven Moffat, whose television bona fides are beyond reproach.
posted by Sunburnt at 11:49 AM on December 30, 2019 [1 favorite]

Seconding The Detectorists.
Also: "Bend it like Beckham" and "Gregory's girl".
posted by bluedora at 5:47 PM on December 30, 2019

Seconding The Winslow Boy. I’ll never understand why Jeremy Northam wasn’t ever shortlisted to play Bond [cries]...

It’s not a drama, but Black Books is a super-fun offbeat comedy about the owner of a small bookstore and his two employees. There were four seasons.

Also recommend the Scottish police drama Taggart. The show had two stars (after the original actor playing Taggart died) and they’re both excellent. The series ran from 1983 to 2010. Each episode is about two hours long. Absorbing and entertaining!
posted by cartoonella at 8:08 PM on December 30, 2019 [1 favorite]

I can't believe The Vicar of Dibley hasn't been mentioned! Written by Richard Curtis and starring the ever wonderful Dawn French as the new vicar in a quaint rural village.

The entire series is lovely, but especially the two-part finale, "A Wholly Holy Happy Ending", which was broadcast during Christmas 2006 and New Year 2007.

Best. Feelgood. TV. Ever.
posted by lioness at 9:05 PM on December 30, 2019 [2 favorites]

Seconding Pride! I love this movie so much, it has wonderful regular people characters, it’s heartwarming and funny while dealing with some serious issues in a loving way. People coming together to make life better for each other, it always makes me cry happy tears.

Also Lovesick, so fun. I highly recommend Sex Education, also on Netflix, which is hilarious and tender. Gillian Anderson is a delight as the teen main character’s boundary challenged sex therapist mother. Neither the title nor the trailer really called to me, but I ended up loving it.
posted by sumiami at 10:26 PM on December 31, 2019 [2 favorites]

Yes, Sex Education and Lovesick are both really good. So is Fresh Meat!
posted by Gadarene at 1:56 PM on January 1, 2020

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