Crime Dramas The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked  

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List Rules Vote up your favorite suspenseful British shows.

British crime dramas are beloved around the world, thanks in part to the detectives who make sure the bad guys receive justice. The top British crime shows take viewers through the process of figuring out who done it. This is a list of the best British crime drama shows, including everything from Midsomer Murders to Death in Paradise to Wallander.

What series will you find on this list of the greatest British crime dramas? In LutherIdris Elba stars as a brilliant, but troubled detective with a bit of a temper. Waking the Dead is another good British crime series. Gillian Anderson hunts an elusive serial killer, played by Jamie Dornan, in the BBC Two series The Fall. Other great English crime shows featured on this list include Vera, Miss Marple, and Rosemary & Thyme.

Which of these popular British crime dramas is the best? Give your favorites a thumbs up to move them to the top of the list, and please add any great shows that are missing.

list ordered by

1
131 77
Father Brown is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Father Brown is a British television period drama which began airing on BBC One on 14 January 2013. It features Mark Williams as the eponymous crime-solving Roman Catholic priest. The series is ...more

2
100 45
Broadchurch is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Guest_a33c6e56-af79-42f0-8fff-3b917c83a4f7 added David Tennant, Olivia Colman, Jodie Whittaker Broadchurch is a British television drama broadcast on ITV. It was created and written by Chris Chibnall and produced by Kudos Film and Television, Shine America, and Imaginary Friends. The ...more

3
150 93
Sherlock is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Benedict Cumberbatch, Martin Freeman, Una Stubbs Sherlock is a British television crime drama that presents a contemporary adaptation of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes detective stories. Created by Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss, it ...more

4
128 87
Midsomer Murders is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Suzi Quatro, John Nettles, Neil Dudgeon This is a British television detective drama that has aired on ITV since 1997. The show is based on Caroline Graham's Chief Inspector Barnaby book series, as originally adapted by Anthony ...more

5
107 80
Foyle's War is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Michael Kitchen, Honeysuckle Weeks, Anthony Howell Foyle's War is a British detective drama television series set during and shortly after the Second World War, created by screenwriter and author Anthony Horowitz and commissioned by ITV after ...more

6
110 86
Vera is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Brenda Blethyn, Jon Morrison, David Leon Vera is a British detective television series based on the works of crime author Ann Cleeves. It stars Brenda Blethyn and is broadcast on ITV and in the United States on public television

7
108 95
Luther is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Idris Elba, Warren Brown, Dermot Crowley Luther is a British drama series starring Idris Elba as the eponymous character DCI John Luther. Written by Neil Cross, the first series, comprising six one-hour long episodes, premiered on 4 ...more

8
105 87
Happy Valley is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Happy Valley Sarah Lancashire, Siobhan Finneran, Shane Zaza

9
71 55
Doc Martin is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
NRoden1951 added Martin Clunes, Caroline Catz, Ian McNeice Doc Martin is a British television medical comedy drama series. Dr Martin Ellingham (Martin Clunes), a brilliant and successful vascular surgeon at Imperial College London, develops haemophobia ...more

10
14 1
Inspector Lewis is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Eric Thomas added Kevin Whately, Laurence Fox, Clare Holman Lewis is a British television detective drama produced for ITV. A spin-off from Inspector Morse, like that series it is set in Oxford. Kevin Whately reprises his character Robert ...more

11
8 0
Endeavour is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Shaun Evans, Roger Allam, James Bradshaw Endeavour is a British television detective drama series. It is a prequel to the long-running Inspector Morse and—like that series—is set primarily in Oxford. Shaun Evans portrays a young ...more

12
79 89
Death in Paradise is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Kris Marshall, Danny John-Jules, Ben Miller Death in Paradise is a British-French lighthearted crime drama television series created by Robert Thorogood, initially starring Ben Miller and Sara Martins, and later starring Kris Marshall and ...more

13
77 85
Line of Duty is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Keeley Hawes, Lennie James, Martin Compston Line of Duty is a British police drama, created by Jed Mercurio, which aired on BBC Two 26 June 2012. The first series was BBC Two's best-performing drama series in 10 years, with a consolidated ...more

14
79 89
DCI Banks is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Stephen Tompkinson, Jack Deam, Andrea Lowe DCI Banks is a British crime drama series produced by Left Bank Pictures for the ITV network. The series is based on Peter Robinson's Inspector Alan Banks novels and stars Stephen Tompkinson as ...more

15
74 85
Hinterland is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Richard Harrington, Mali Harries, Alex Harries Y Gwyll, titled Hinterland in the English-language version (S4C, 2013), is a Welsh noir police detective drama series created by Ed Talfan and Ed Thomas. Troubled Detective Chief Inspector Tom ...more

16
11 1
Shetland is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Shetland is a BBC Scotland crime drama television series starring Douglas Henshall as Detective Inspector Jimmy Perez. The story takes place on the Scottish archipelago of Shetland, though much ...more

17
80 94
The Fall is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Gillian Anderson, Jamie Dornan, John Lynch The Fall is a BBC drama television series set in Northern Ireland and created, written and, in its second series, directed by Allan Cubitt. The series stars Gillian Anderson as Superintendent ...more

18
75 90
Miss Marple is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Joan Hickson, Gwen Watford, David Horovitch Miss Marple is a British television series based on the Miss Marple murder mystery novels by Agatha Christie. It starred Joan Hickson in the title role, and aired from 1984 to 1992. All 12 ...more

19
12 2
Scott & Bailey is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Eric Thomas added Suranne Jones, Lesley Sharp, Amelia Bullmore Scott & Bailey is a British detective drama series that debuted on ITV on 29 May 2011. The programme's main characters are Detective Constable Janet Scott and Detective Constable Rachel ...more

20
12 2
Wire in the Blood is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Eric Thomas added Robson Green, Simone Lahbib, Hermione Norris Wire in the Blood is a British crime drama television series, created and produced by Coastal Productions for the ITV network, that ran from 2002 to 2008. The series is based on characters ...more

21
70 89
The Bletchley Circle is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Rachael Stirling, Julie Graham, Sophie Rundle The Bletchley Circle is a television mystery drama miniseries, set in 1952–53, about four women who used to work as codebreakers at Bletchley Park. Dissatisfied with official failure to ...more

22
70 92
Wallander is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Kenneth Branagh, Richard McCabe, Jeany Spark Wallander is a British television series adapted from the Swedish novelist Henning Mankell's Kurt Wallander novels and starring Kenneth Branagh as the eponymous police inspector. The first ...more

23
54 74
Jonathan Creek is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Alan Davies, Caroline Quentin, Stuart Milligan Jonathan Creek is a British mystery crime drama series produced by the BBC and written by David Renwick. It stars Alan Davies as the title character, who works as a creative consultant to a ...more

24
7 1
Unforgotten is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Sanjeev Bhaskar, Trevor Eve, Anthony Farrelly

25
5 0
Top of the Lake is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Elisabeth Moss, Thomas M. Wright, Peter Mullan Top of the Lake is a 2013 television miniseries written by Jane Campion and Gerard Lee, and directed by Campion and Garth Davis. It marks Campion's first work for television since An Angel at My ...more

26
63 91
Rosemary & Thyme is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Felicity Kendal, Pam Ferris, Ryan Philpott Rosemary & Thyme is a British television mystery series starring Felicity Kendal and Pam Ferris as gardening detectives Rosemary Boxer and Laura Thyme. The show began on ITV in 2003. The ...more

27
5 3
Silent Witness is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Eric Thomas added Emilia Fox, William Gaminara, Tom Ward Silent Witness is a British crime drama series, produced by the BBC, focusing on a team of forensic pathology experts and their investigations into various crimes. First broadcast in 1996, and ...more

28
3 0
Agatha Raisin is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Ashley Jensen, Katy Wix, Mathew Horne Agatha Raisin is a British comedy-drama television series based on the novel of the same name by M. C. Beaton. Agatha Raisin (Ashley Jensen), a public relations professional, gives up her life ...more

29
3 0
Life on Mars is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Jason O'Mara, Harvey Keitel, Jonathan Murphy Life on Mars is a science fiction crime drama television series which originally aired on ABC from October 9, 2008 to April 1, 2009. It is an adaptation of the BAFTA-winning original UK series ...more

30
4 2
Grantchester is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
James Norton, Robson Green, Morven Christie

31
3 1
Marcella is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Anna Friel, Nicholas Pinnock, Ray Panthaki Marcella is a British crime noir detective series produced, written and directed by Hans Rosenfeldt. Former London detective Marcella Backland is devastated when her husband leaves her and their ...more

32
3 1
Peaky Blinders is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Cillian Murphy, Helen McCrory, Paul Anderson Peaky Blinders (BBC Two, 2013) is a British television action drama created by Steven Knight, based upon the exploits of the historical gang. In 1919 Birmingham, England, leader Tommy Shelby ...more

33
2 0
Maigret is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Michael Gambon, Geoffrey Hutchings, James Larkin Maigret was a British television series that ran on ITV for twelve episodes between 1992 and 1993. It was an adaptation of the books by Georges Simenon featuring his fictional French detective ...more

34
3 3
Dalziel and Pascoe is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Eric Thomas added Warren Clarke, Robert Powell, Colin Buchanan Dalziel and Pascoe is a popular British television crime drama based on the novels of the same name, written by Reginald Hill. The series was first broadcast on 18 March 1996, with Warren Clarke ...more

35
1 1
The Missing is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
James Nesbitt, Frances O'Connor, Ken Stott The Missing is a British drama television series. It premiered on 28 October 2014 on BBC One in the UK, and in the US on Starz on 15 November 2014. The eight-part series was written by Harry and ...more

36
36 88
Waking the Dead is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Trevor Eve, Sue Johnston, Wil Johnson Waking the Dead is a British television police procedural crime drama series produced by the BBC featuring a fictional Cold Case unit composed of CID police officers, a psychological profiler ...more

37
21 79
The Bill is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Paul Cummings added Graham Cole, Trudie Goodwin, Jeff Stewart The Bill is a British police procedural television series that was broadcast on the ITV network from 16 October 1984 until 31 August 2010. The programme originated from a one-off drama, entitled ...more

38
18 80
The Professionals is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Paul Cummings added Gordon Jackson, Lewis Collins, Martin Shaw The Professionals is a British crime-action television drama series produced by Avengers Mk1 Productions and London Weekend Television that aired on the ITV network from 1977 to 1983. In all, 57 ...more

39
14 73
The Sweeney is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Peteinterpol added The Sweeney

40
11 90
The Trials of Jimmy Rose is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Very Best British Crime Dramas, Ranked
Marion Bailey, Pippa Bennett-Warner, Jack Colgrave Hirst