The Best New British TV Shows on Acorn TV in 2023

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Last Updated on December 7, 2023 by Stefanie Hutson

As we approach the end of the year, we like to look back on what's happened in British TV over the last 12 months. In the last year or so, the streaming world has been in a bit of turmoil, with many stations raising prices, cutting workers, commissioning fewer new shows, and reducing their total content libraries.

Even still, 2023 brought us loads of great new shows, and in this post we'll take a look at the best of them. We've divided the shows into three sections:

  • Brand New British & Irish Shows on Acorn TV in 2023
  • Best of Acorn TV's “And Beyond” Shows in 2023 (Shows from AU, NZ, CAN, and outside the British Isles)
  • Best Older Shows Added to Acorn TV in 2023

Please note that because of the HUGE amount of British/Irish cast and crew overlap in Irish shows and the fact that most British TV fans love Irish shows equally, we include Irish shows in with the British ones.

And if you want to see last year's list, you can check it out HERE

THE BEST NEW BRITISH & Irish TV SHOWS ON ACORN TV IN 2022

Mackenzie Crook gets the band back together again in this feature-length special

Detectorists 2022 Christmas Special

Though it originally aired as a Christmas special in the UK, it's not really a Christmas episode – and it didn't make it to Acorn TV until January 2023. 

The special sees the gang attempting to raise money to save their scout hall. Tensions are high, and things happen that could jeopardise not only the future of the club, but the future of Lance and Andy's friendship. Watch it HERE

Adrian Dunbar's Coastal Ireland

Adrian Dunbar's Coastal Ireland, Season 2

Award-winning Irish actor Adrian Dunbar (Line of Duty) reconnects to his homeland in this fun series exploring the wild coastal regions of Ireland. Over the course of two more episodes that premiered in January, he explores breathtaking scenery, tries unique local foods, and takes us to locations he (and many of us) always wanted to see. Watch it HERE

james nesbitt in bloodlands season 2 against coastal backdrop
Bloodlands returned for season 2 in February 2023

James Nesbitt returns as DCI Tom Brannick in a second season of this twisty crime drama, executive produced by Jed Mercurio (Line of Duty). This time around, he's pulled into a desperate hunt for a treasure that's been hidden since the days of Goliath.

The murder of a crooked accountant has helped to unravel clues that could potentially expose the true identity of the assassin code-named Goliath. Between Tom and redemption stands the accountant's widow Olivia (Victoria Smurfit), whose intentions may not be entirely innocent. They'll scheme together, collaborating so long as their intentions are aligned.

As their efforts go on, Tom's fellow officers  DS Niamh McGovern (Charlene McKenna, Ripper Street), DCS Jackie Twomey (Lorcan Cranitch, Cracker) and DC “Birdy” Bird (Chris Walley), as well as his daughter, Izzy (Lola Pettigrew) will be drawn into the mystery. Watch it HERE

The Madame Blanc Mysteries returns for season 2 on Acorn TV in February 2023 | Photo Credit: Mark Casser/AcornTV

The Madame Blanc Mysteries, Season 2 & Season 3 Christmas special

Early in the year, Madame Blanc Mysteries returned to Acorn TV with a new second season – and for Christmas, we can look forward to a new Christmas special that marks the first episode of season 3 (presumably, we'll be seeing the rest of the season in early 2024.

In season 2, seasoned antiques dealer Jean White (Sally Lindsay, Mount Pleasant) is back, fresh from surviving an attempt on her life. As she continues to enjoy life in the quaint French village of Saint Victoire, her antiques knowledge will once again prove useful in solving a variety of mysteries. 

As she grows more accustomed to life after her husband, she also begins to deepen her friendship with Dom. Could it turn into something more? Watch it HERE

Holding premieres on Acorn TV with all 4 episodes on March 6th

Holding (2023)

Based on TV presenter Graham Norton's novel of the same name, Holding premiered on Acorn TV back in March, and it takes place in the sort of tiny Irish town where nothing much ever happens – until it does. When human remains are found buried on a farm, police sergeant PJ Collins (Conleth Hill) suddenly finds himself with a real crime to solve. 

As he investigates the case, the secrets of townspeople start to emerge, and PJ will have to come to terms with his own demons. The series also features Charlene McKenna (Bloodlands) and Siobhan McSweeney (Derry Girls). Watch it HERE

Happy Valley

Happy Valley

The first two seasons of Happy Valley came to Acorn TV in March, followed by the VERY long awaited season 3 in May. Designed to be the final season, it brought closure to the storylines that began back in 2014. 

Sarah Lancashire stars as Catherine Cawood, a West Yorkshire police sergeant who's faced more than her fair share of tragedy and hardship. Her community of Calder Valley is also known as Happy Valley for its drug problems – and her only daughter committed suicide after giving birth to a son. 

Catherine believes local drug dealer and all-around bad guy Tommy Lee Royce (James Norton, Grantchester) is responsible for the sequence of events that led to her daughter's death. When she learns he's been released from prison, she makes it her mission to find him – not realising he'll be central to another case she's working on. Watch it HERE

The Larkins, Season 2 | Photo Credit: Sam Taylor/AcornTV

The Larkins, Season 2

This updated adaptation of the novel “The Darling Buds of May” by HE Bates follows the wheeling and dealing Larkins family, and it returned to Acorn TV with a second season in March. Set in the 1950s, the series is a mix of village life and family adventures. Bradley Walsh (Law & Order UK), Joanna Scanlan (No Offence) and Sabrina Bartlett (Bridgerton) are among the stars. Watch it HERE

Bertie Carvel returned as Adam Dalgliesh in Dalgliesh

Dalgliesh, Season 2

In April, we saw Bertie Carvel (Doctor Foster) back in the role of Adam Dalgliesh as three more PD James novels were adapted for season 2. This time around, the books featured are Death of an Expert Witness, A Certain Justice, and The Murder Room. Watch it HERE

London Kills, Season 4 | Photo Credit: Gideon Marshall/AcornTV

London Kills, Season 4

This Acorn TV Original follows a team of London’s top detectives as they investigate homicides. Hugo Speer (The Full Monty) stars as lead investigator DI David Bradford, a man whose talents seem to solve every case but the disappearance of his wife. Sharon Small (The Inspector Lynley Mysteries) and Bailey Patrick (Bodyguard) also star.

In season 4, Rob wakes up in his car next to a dead body – and he's quickly arrested on suspicion of murder. As his team fights to clear his name, David and Vivienne see their past come back to haunt them. Watch it HERE

The Lost King comes to Acorn TV on August 7th

The Lost King (2022)

While this one is technically a film rather than a series, it's easily one of the best new offerings on Acorn TV in 2023. Sally Hawkins (The Shape of Water) stars in the story of one amateur historian's unusual quest to locate the lost remains of King Richard III. The film is based on a true story. Watch it HERE

The Chelsea Detective returns for season 2 on August 28th

The Chelsea Detective, Season 2

This Acorn TV Original returned for season 2 in August with four feature-length episodes and a brand new co-lead. This time around, Adrian Scarborough's DI Max Arnold is joined by Vanessa Emme (Dublin Murders) as DS Layla Walsh. 

The series the houseboat-dwelling DI as he works through cases in one of London's poshest neighbourhoods – cases that often involve big money and big entitlement complexes. Watch it HERE

RELATED: 10 of the Best British TV Shows Set in London, England

Mrs Sidhu Investigates

Mrs. Sidhu Investigates (2023)

Meera Syal (The Kumars at No. 42) stars as Mrs. Sidhu, a high-end caterer in Berkshire with a knack for solving mysteries. It seems many of her jobs lead her to cross paths with homicides, much to the dismay of Chief Inspector Burton (Craig Parkinson, Line of Duty), who doesn't always appreciate her meddling.

Recently widowed, she juggles her catering business while trying to help her son Tez find his passion. Watch it HERE

The Dry

The Dry 

Having premiered on AMC+ and Sundance Now back in late 2022, it wasn't too surprising to see this Irish series popping up on Acorn TV in September. The 8-episode dramedy stars Roisin Gallagher as Shiv Sheridan, a young woman who returns home to Dublin after years of partying in London. Handling family while also trying to stay sober will not prove easy. Watch it HERE

Season 2 of Harry Wild premieres October 9th on Acorn TV

Harry Wild, Season 2

Set in Ireland, this series follows Jane Seymour (The Kominsky Method) as a recently retired English professor with a knack for investigation and a tendency to interfere in her police detective son’s cases. When the series kicks off, she's staying in his home recovering from a mugging and she starts poking around in his work.

As the series carries on, she makes new friends and realises she's actually pretty good at meddling in mysteries. Season 2 continues in much the same vein – including some cases with highly personal connections. Watch it HERE

Mayflies 

Mayflies (2022)

In October, Acorn TV brought Mayflies to the platform. This two-part Scottish drama is based on Andrew O'Hagan's 2020 novel of the same name and includes Martin Compston as Jimmy, Tony Curran as Tully, and Ashley Jensen as Anna. Tully and Jimmy have been friends since they met in Scotland in the mid-80s, but their friendship is put to the test 30 years later when Tully calls Jimmy to let him know he has terminal cancer. 

The Financial Times called it a “thoughtful exploration of how death liberates the soon-to-be deceased, and devastates those left behind”. Watch it HERE

RELATED: 70+ Scottish TV Shows Worth Watching

Hidden Assets returns with season 2 on November 13th

Hidden Assets, Season 2

One year after the events of the first season, there's a new boss along with plenty of old enemies. DS Claire Wallace (Nora-Jane Noone, The Ipcress File) finds herself butting heads with Belgian CI Christian de Jong (Wouter Hendrickx, Blackout) as Ireland's Criminal Assets Bureau is pulled back into the investigation in Antwerp. Watch it HERE

Steeltown Murders premieres on November 27th

Steeltown Murders

In 2002 Port Talbot, DCI Paul Bethell jumps at the opportunity to lead the re-opened investigation into two sexually motivated murder cases from the 1970s. The narrative then unfolds along two distinct timelines.

In one, we revisit the tragic events of '73, witnessing the grief that engulfed a small Welsh community. In the other, we observe young Paul as a determined junior officer.

The all-star cast includes Scott Arthur (Good Omens), Sion Alun Davies (Hidden), Philip Glenister (Life on Mars), and Steffan Rhodri (House of the Dragon). Watch it HERE

RELATED: 10 of the Best Welsh Shows You Can Stream

The Graham Norton Show continues on Acorn TV in December

The Graham Norton Show, Season 31A

Towards the end of the year, Acorn TV added the popular Graham Norton Show to the platform. The series sees Norton in conversation with some of the English-speaking world's biggest celebrities. Watch it HERE

Midsomer Murders returns for season 24 on December 4th

Midsomer Murders, Season 24

Homicide, blackmail, greed, and betrayal: just a taste of what goes on behind the well-trimmed hedges of Midsomer County in this classic British series. As usual, the culprits are no match for DCI John Barnaby (Neil Dudgeon, Life of Riley) and DS Jamie Winter (Nick Hendrix, The Crown). Watch it HERE

RELATED: 22 Things You Might Not Know About Midsomer Murders

SisterS premieres December 25th on Acorn TV

SisterS

The story begins when Sare (Sarah Goldberg, Barry) finds out her presumed father is not actually her father at all. Her real father was an Irish busker her mother met while backpacking through Ireland as a young woman. 

When she visits Ireland to track him down, she meets her half-sister, Suze (Susan Stanley, Fair City), who's going through a number of personal crises. Together, the two women embark on a road trip in an ice cream van to find their drunken father. 

This will be one of Acorn TV's last premieres of the year, arriving on the platform December 25th. If you have a Sundance Now or AMC+ subscription, you can watch it now HERE

The Best “And Beyond” (Australian, Canadian, European) Shows to Premiere on Acorn TV in 2022

The Paradise 

The Paradise (Finland, 2020 to present)

In a tiny corner of Malaga lies the Finnish community of Fuengirola. It's a peaceful place – until two murders destroy the tranquility. In season one, 60-year-old veteran detective Hilkka Mäntymäki (Riitta Havukainen) travels in from Oulu, Finland to help with a case. In season two, Mäntymäki is sent to the Costa del Sol in Spain to help with a new case. Watch it HERE

Charles Edwards as Louis Oakley and Rebecca Gibney as Daisy in Under the Vines | Photo Credit: Jae Frew/AcornTV

Under the Vines, Season 2 (2022 to present)

In January this light romantic drama returned for a second season. The series begins with a Sydney socialite who learns she's inherited a New Zealand winery from her recently deceased stepfather. She heads over for a short vacation to check it out before selling up, only to learn she has a co-owner – a grumpy British lawyer who had hoped to take refuge in the winery after a series of unfortunate personal events. 

While they don't like each other and neither of them have any experience, they'll have to work together to make it successful if they want to get a good price. In season two, we'll see them continuing to make a go of it – and maybe even getting along once in a while. Watch it HERE

Candice Renoir 

Candice Renoir, Seasons 5-8

Over the course of the year, Acorn TV added seasons 5, 6, 7, and 8 of the French crime drama Candice Renoir.

This “medium grit” French mystery series follows Candice Renoir – a mother and detective who embraces the literal “la vie en rose”. Though she's often underestimated for being a mom and woman who loves pink and other bright colors, she's highly competent, using her unique perspective to gain insight into suspects and pick up on things others miss. Watch it HERE

Murdoch Mysteries, Season 16 | Photo Credit: Stephen Scott/AcornTV

Murdoch Mysteries, Season 16

With 24 episodes and just one airing each week except the initial premiere week (which had two), the new season of Murdoch Mysteries was airing new episodes for nearly half of 2023. The Victorian-era Canadian mystery stars Yannick Bisson as Detective William Murdoch, a man who uses what was then “cutting edge” forensics to solve a variety of interesting and challenging crimes. Watch it HERE

The Brokenwood Mysteries Returns for a Ninth Season on April 3rd

Brokenwood Mysteries, Season 9

Often called “the Midsomer Murders of New Zealand”, this quirky mystery begins when DI Mike Shepard showed up in Brokenwood with a classic car, a number of ex-wives, and a love of country music. He works alongside DC Kristin Sims, a by-the-book detective who's younger than Shepard's car.

Season 9 came to Acorn TV in April, and you can watch it HERE

Tomer Sisley returns in the fifth and final season of Balthazar on May 1st

Balthazar, Season 5 (FINAL SEASON)

This popular French crime drama returned for its fifth and final season in May 2023, and while many agreed the quality had dropped somewhat in the final season or two, it was still good to see a show given the opportunity to wrap up properly. 

Attractive but tortured forensic pathologist Raphaël Balthazar (Tomer Sisley) returns for one last season in which he tries to come to terms with the crazy path his life has taken. Still very much haunted by the murder of his wife, he's also forced to contend with a truly crazy ex and a regular caseload of homicides. Watch it HERE

Lost: Those Who Kill arrived on Acorn TV in June

Lost: Those Who Kill (2019, Danish)

Though a recent case has left her a bit on edge, the brutal murder of a couple leaves criminal profiler Louise Bergstein determined to get back to work and hunt down the killer. Teaming up with police investigator Frederik Havgaard, it won't be long before she's staring into the darkness again. Watch it HERE

RELATED: The Best Scandi Noir Shows on Netflix

The Best of Us 

The Best of Us (2022)

Known in France as Le meilleur d'entre nour, this French crime thriller begins when a local star athlete is found dead in a snowy field. Police captain Awa Sissako is dispatched from a nearby city to help the local lieutenant deal with the serious case. Watch it HERE

Black Snow comes to Acorn TV on October 16th

Black Snow (2023, Australian)

Twenty-five years after the murder of 17-year-old Isabel Baker, the unsolved case has largely been forgotten. When Detective James Cormack (Travis Fimmel, Vikings) opens a time capsule, however, it unearths a secret that might just offer the key to solving the crime. Watch it HERE

The Sommerdahl Murders will return to Acorn TV on October 23rd

The Sommerdahl Murders, Season 4 (Danish)

DCI Dan Sommerdahl investigates murders in a lovely Danish coastal town with his best friend, Detective Flemming Torp, and his wife, Marianne, a criminal technician. Unfortunately, Dan's dedication to the job has damaged his marriage, and with Marianne wanting a divorce, Dan discovers his rival for her affections is none other than his best friend.

They worst part? They have to keep working together. Watch it HERE

The Best Older Shows to Arrive on Acorn TV in 2022

The Clinic comes to Acorn TV in January 2023

The Clinic (2003 to 2009)

Set in an upscale neighbourhood in Dublin, this drama follows a group of young medical professionals as they deal with work in a busy clinic plus the challenges of young adult life. The series featured a number of actors who would go on to become quite well known, including Amy Huberman (Finding Joy), Chris O'Dowd (The IT Crowd), and Aidan Turner (Poldark). Monarch of the Glen fans will also recognise Lorraine Pilkington, who played love interest Katrina Finlay. Watch it HERE.

Count Arthur Strong comes to Acorn TV on March 13th

Count Arthur Strong (2013 to 2017)

Added to Acorn TV in March, this modern British comedy calls to mind the classic Britcoms of days gone by, following former actor Count Arthur Strong as he holds court in the local greasy spoon. He and his friends spend their days coming up with ill-conceived schemes to earn money to buy tea. At the same time, he's convinced his next big break is just around the corner. Watch it HERE

Injustice 

Injustice (2011)

Though Injustice was on Acorn TV in the past, it returned to the platform in April 2023. A defense barrister has to deal with the consequences of defending an indefensible crime. Foyle’s War and Midsomer Murders screenwriter Anthony Horowitz created the series, and it features an all-star cast with actors like James Purefoy (Rome), Dervla Kirwan (Ballykissangel), Charlie Creed-Miles (The Fifth Element), and Nathaniel Parker (The Inspector Lynley Mysteries). Watch it HERE

Jennie Jacques plays WPC Gina Dawson, coming to Acorn TV June 12th

WPC 56 (2013 to 2015)

This period crime drama came to Acorn TV in June, and it follows Gina Dawson, the first woman police constable (WPC) in her West Midlands hometown. The first two seasons focus on Gina’s struggles to gain acceptance in a male-dominated work environment, while the third season follows her successor at the station. Watch it HERE

The Fall comes to Acorn TV on July 3rd

The Fall (2013 to 2016)

In July, Acorn TV brought all seasons of the Northern Irish thriller The Fall to the platform. Gillian Anderson (The X-Files) and Jamie Dornan (50 Shades of Grey) star in this crime drama/thriller about a senior investigator who goes head-to-head with a serial killer who’s attacking young professional women in Belfast. Watch it HERE

The Trip comes to Acorn TV on September 25th

The Trip, Seasons 1-4

Food critic Steve Coogan (The Other Guys) tours a number of European countries and their dining establishments while engaging in banter with his companion Rob Brydon (Gavin & Stacey). Watch it HERE

The Chase comes to Acorn TV on October 16th

The Chase (2006 to 2007)

If one Yorkshire-based veterinary drama (All Creatures Great & Small) isn't enough for you, put this one on your list. Co-created by British TV powerhouse Kay Mellor (Band of Gold; The Syndicate; Girlfriends; Fat Friends; Love, Lies, & Records) and her daughter, Gaynor Faye (Fat Friends), it follows the lives and work of the people around a family-run veterinary practice. 

George Williams and his daughter Anna run the market town-based practice, and their lives are full of drama and activity. Anna has three kids and another on the way, the practice is struggling, a big wedding is drawing near, and her London-based sister is about to head north and drop a major secret on the family… Watch it HERE

Killing Eve comes to Acorn TV on November 6th

Killing Eve (2018 to 2022)

Adapted from Luke Jennings' novellas, this fast-paced series revolves around the unusual lives of two women. Eve (Sandra Oh) is a brilliant yet bored security services operative stuck behind a desk, yearning for the excitement of being a “real spy”. On the other hand, there's Villanelle (Jodie Comer), an elegant and skilled assassin who relishes the luxuries her unsavoury work provides.

Over the course of an otherwise ordinary investigation, these two intelligent women develop an intense obsession with each other. What follows is an enthralling cat-and-mouse game that spans a number of countries and results in a substantial body count. Watch it HERE

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