ScreenAnarchy's Best Of 2013: Television From Lands Other Than America

Founder and Editor; Toronto, Canada (@AnarchistTodd)
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At this point it's almost a truism to say that TV is in a new golden age, the twin factors of contraction within the former 'mid-tier' of films geared to adults and the rise of the cable nets embracing those same talents having resulted into a massive boom of long form story telling of exceedingly high quality. And while American shows tend to top many best of lists - Game Of Thrones rests at the top of my own - the fact is that audiences are watching more international television than ever before and while US shows may take up a couple slots in the top three of my personal list it's international shows that dominate the Top Ten. So here are a selection of our favorite international shows.

Please note that for the purposes of this list we've restricted ourselves to content readily - and legally - available in English speaking territories so that our core readership actually has a prayer of going out and finding it. So if your favorite bit of international TV exists only as a fansub on some foreign drama website ... well, it aint here, no matter how awesome it is. But please feel free to tell us what it is and why you like it in the comments section below.

Shows listed in alphabetical order.


Shelagh Rowan-Legg, Hugo Ozman, Jaime Grijalba Gomez, Todd Brown and Ard Vijn contributed to this story.

The Ambassadors (UK) Selected by Todd Brown

Let me be the first to say that I run very hot and cold on UK comedy duo Mitchell & Webb. Best known for their work on the long running Peep Show, when the duo are on top of their game they're very, very good. But when they're not I find them borderline unwatchable. But they're very much on their game with recent three parter The Ambassadors.

The duo play the British ambassador and his top aide in a fictional Central Asian republic in a scenario that has about as much to do with actual politics as hospital set UK comedy Green Wing had to do with actual doctoring. Which is to say none at all. It's essentially a fish out of water scenario with the fish being very, very much out of the water driven by very clever writing that steers well clear of obvious punchlines. It's not my favorite show on this list but it's very much the best thing the duo have done since Peep Show was in its prime and I'd very much like to see more.

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