The unmissable TV of the past 12 months

Steven
7 Jun • 4 min read

If you're anything like us you've always got the TV guide out - planning your week's viewing and counting down the days to your favourite shows.  But while it's easy to always look to the future, we think it's important to take a pause every now and then and reflect. 

So that's exactly what we're doing this week - in honour of this year's BAFTA awards we wanted to share our own favourite shows of the last 12 months. These are the ones we can't stop thinking about - and best of all you can find them all on your favourite catch-up services.

Small Axe

What more can we say about this Steve McQueen masterpiece anthology series that is still available to watch on BBC iPlayer. Even in its dark moments, it remains a joy from beginning to end, offering a powerful insight into black Britishness from the viewpoint of West Indian immigrants. The 5-part piece consisted of the stories of these immigrants and the challenges of living in England between the 1960s-80s, an England we’d like to think is very different from the one we’re living in now.

The cast has a real ‘best of British’ feel to it too, with the likes of Letitia Wright and John Boyega, who is up for the Bafta for Best Leading Actor. With a staggering 15 nominations in total, Small Axe is sure to be one of the big winners on the night.

Killing Eve

From the offset, this has been utterly gripping, and Series 3 was no different! Few shows remain consistently captivating whilst maintaining such an air of mystery, Killing Eve is certainly one of those. The twists and turns in the relationship between Villanelle and Eve herself have kept us hooked. We just cannot wait for the fourth and final instalment.

You certainly wouldn’t bet against Jodie Comer walking away with the award for Best Leading Actress either. Her menacing portrayal of the assassin Villanelle is certainly worthy of the accolade and would be the perfect way to recognise such a fantastic performance throughout.

If you’ve somehow managed to miss out on the action, T3-R customers can relive all the tension over on BBC iPlayer.

Gogglebox

If ever there was a show to encapsulate the lockdown feel, it was Gogglebox. Who thought a TV show all about people watching TV shows would be so good? In a year that was tough on us all, the show captured the essence of what us Brits were doing almost every night.

We just can’t believe Gogglebox is already on its 17th series when every week still feels completely new! For many, our Friday nights are completely shaped around the programme. But for T3-R customers, missing it live is not a problem as you can always catch up with it on All 4. The Friday night hit is up for “must-see moment of the year”, with some stiff competition in the way of Nigella Lawson.

I May Destroy You

Michaela Coel’s powerful and nuanced depiction of how trauma can affect victims of sexual assault is a modern day masterpiece. She wrote and starred in the 12-part drama which is still available on BBC iPlayer. For a period last year, Coel’s show completely took the world by storm. It’s brave, sad, chilling and insightful in equal measure. But above all, it’s a body of work that transcends race, gender or generation.

The Leading Actress category is stacked with breathtaking talent. However, Michaela Coel’s moving piece is bursting with grit and painfully, resonates with far too many women. A pure piece of genius.

Putin: A Russian Spy Story

Yet another fascinating watch, albeit a slightly left-field one. Channel 4's insight into the peculiar presidency of Vladimir Putin is as compelling as it is uncomfortable at times. The Russian president may portray himself as a Bond-esque character, but the pride and anger conveyed in the documentary feel very real indeed. The 3-parter, edited by the talented Adam Finch, gives a comprehensive view of Putin’s reign and how it has changed the modern world.

Finch finds himself up for the Best Fictional Editor award. Whilst it’s a category that isn’t short of historical figures, few have had the seismic influence of Vladimir Putin.

Which of these was your favourite? Let us know on Facebook or Twitter, or if you have a show you really loved which we've completely missed, email us - we'd love to hear from you!