Jon's Telly blog

So, you've doubtless seen a lot of American TV shows. They are so well known. Friends, The Simpsons, The Big Bang Theory; the list goes on and on. However, what you be a touch less familiar with is British TV. So, Jon thought it might be useful to give you some information about some of the best (and best known) shows from the UK.

1. The IT Crowd (

This is a hilarious comedy. It's set in the IT department of a large company and its three main characters are Roy (a misanthropic, Irish computer expert who hates his job), Moss (Roy's socially incompetent but extremely likeable colleague) and Jen (the HR manager who knows next to nothing about computers). The show is good natured, funny and easy to understand.

2. Panorama (

This is the BBC's flagship documentary programme. It usually covers important issues (for example recent editions have reported on violence at football matches, America's gun culture, and the problems associated with care for the elderly in the UK). It provides a really good insight into British life and culture.

3. Coronation Street (

One of the longest running (it’s been on TV for more than fifty years) and most popular programmes on TV. It is set in the fictional town of “Weatherfield” which bears a lot of similarities to Manchester. It is the ordinary story of ordinary people with sometimes extraordinary lives. It is a great way to learn about the UK rather than just London and you should try it at least once just for the experience. I would, however, point out that it’s really not very good!

4. Later…with Jools Holland (

This is a must for all music fans. It’s usually on at around 11:00 p.m. and has an eclectic but consistently excellent line up of different musicians every week. Unlike most other music shows on TV it’s not full of commercial boy bands, instead it has real musicians performing live and often playing tracks that wouldn’t normally form part of their repertoire.

Many thanks to our guest blogger Jon!


a touch (adverbial noun) - slightly, a little

hilarious (adj.) - extremely funny

socially incompetent (adj.) - used to describe someone without social skills, who frequently fails to understand the rules of society

misanthropic (adj.) - describes someone who hates the rest of society

flagship (n.) - the best or most important thing owned or produced by a particular organization

insight (n.) - an accurate or complete understanding of something

eclectic (adj.) - from mixed sources, or from a combination of unusual sources, usually with a pleasing or beneficial effect.

bears a lot of similarities (to)  - (idiomatic phrase) to be similar to but not the same as

long running (adj.) - commonly used to describe TV series, film series and theatre productions which have been continuously produced over a long period

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