What Americans Love to Watch from Across the Pond

It’s been a lot longer than four score and seven years ago since the United States declared its independence from Britain, but there are some things from across the pond that we just can’t quit. JK Rowling and the magical world of Harry Potter, royal weddings, and the charm of afternoon tea are just a few of the British exports we’re perpetually fangirling over. And British TV. So much British TV. With the rising popularity of Netflix and our ability to stream shows like Downtown Abbey and Sherlock, the team at CableTV decided to research popular British TV shows in the U.S. to see what might be trending on “the telly” in your state.

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We admit it. We expected to see a Downtown Abbey America, too. But because we looked at British TV past and present, we got lots more variety in our data. While some of the high-profile shows are still featured on our map, you’ll see some lesser-known favorites that American viewers have been hooked on for years. What is the most popular British TV show in America according to our research? All other TV from across the pond is outnumbered by Outnumbered, an award-winning sitcom about the realities of modern parenthood.

We arrived at each state’s favorite show by identifying popular British TV past and present, and then we used Google Trends to determine which ones were favorites in each state. Check out the complete results below.

State Top Show Network/Where to Watch Description
Alabama Outnumbered BBC One Comedy about life with growing children.
Alaska Whitechapel Amazon, Hulu Crime drama set in London explores historical crimes.
Arizona Survivors Amazon Post-apocalyptic Sci-Fi drama.
Arkansas Fresh Meat Hulu Comedy drama about college students.
California Raised by Wolves Acorn TV Comedy about unconventional childhood.
Colorado Spaced Hulu Sitcom about a professional couple.
Connecticut The Hour BBC America Drama about a BBC newsroom in the 1950s.
Delaware The Thick of It BBC TWO Dark political comedy/satire.
District of Columbia Yes Minister Amazon Political comedy/satire.
Florida Pulling BBC Three Comedy about three single women.
Georgia Coupling Amazon Romantic comedy about relationships.
Hawaii Episodes Amazon Comedy about British writers making TV show.
Idaho Line of Duty BBC TWO Police and crime drama.
Illinois Fresh Meat Hulu Comedy drama about college students.
Indiana Coupling Amazon Romantic comedy about relationships.
Iowa Luther BBC America Crime drama starring Idris Elba.
Kansas Mr. Bean Amazon Family comedy with slapstick humor.
Kentucky Spaced Hulu Sitcom about a professional couple.
Louisiana Outnumbered BBC One Comedy about life with growing children.
Maine Agatha Christie’s Marple Amazon Quaint murder mystery drama featuring elderly woman.
Maryland Top Boy Hulu Crime drama that takes place in London housing.
Massachusetts Gogglebox Channel 4 Reality show about Brits watching TV.
Michigan Raised by Wolves Acorn TV Comedy about unconventional childhood.
Minnesota Never Mind the Buzzcocks BBC TWO Comedy pop quiz.
Mississippi The Thick of It BBC TWO Dark political comedy/satire.
Missouri Survivors Amazon Post-apocalyptic Sci-Fi drama.
Montana Peaky Blinders BBC TWO

Netflix

Period crime drama about gangsters in Birmingham.
Nebraska Doctor Who BBC One Classic sci-fi with a cult following.
Nevada Love Island itv Reality dating show.
New Hampshire The Crown Netflix Drama about the early life of Queen Elizabeth.
New Jersey Episodes Amazon Comedy about British writers making TV show.
New Mexico Misfits Hulu Sci-Fi comedy drama about superheroes.
New York Pulling BBC Three Comedy about three single women.
North Carolina Outnumbered BBC One Comedy about life with growing children.
North Dakota Episodes Amazon Comedy about British writers making TV show.
Ohio Outnumbered BBC One Comedy about life with growing children.
Oklahoma The Office Hulu Sitcom mockumentary about corporate life.
Oregon Celebrity Juice Itv2 Comedy panel game.
Pennsylvania Gadget Man Channel 4 Covers new gadgets and technology.
Rhode Island Absolutely Fabulous BBC America Satirical comedy about two selfish, middle aged women.
South Carolina Southcliffe Netflix A drama about the aftermath of tragedy.
South Dakota Merlin BBC one, Hulu Fantasy drama for young adults about King Arthur legend.
Tennessee Spaced Hulu Sitcom about a professional couple.
Texas Getting On BBC four Dark comedy about life on a hospital ward.
Utah The IT Crowd Hulu Comedy about an IT group.
Vermont Happy Valley Netflix Crime drama about a small town cop.
Virginia War and Peace Hulu Historical drama about the rise and fall of aristocrats in Imperial Russia.
Washington Cold Feet Hulu Romantic comedy about relationships.
West Virginia Doctor Who BBC One Classic sci-fi with a cult following.
Wisconsin Monty Python’s Flying Circus Amazon Sketch comedy from the 70s with cult following.
Wyoming Doctor Who BBC One Classic sci-fi with a cult following.

What trends did we spot in our British TV data? Come join us for a spot of speculation.

The More Things Change, the More They Stay Exactly the Same

Our British TV map holds up the patterns of viewing we’ve noticed in other types of entertainment data over the past year. The Western and Southern portions of the States prefer comedies and the fluffier content of sitcoms, while in the Northern and Eastern regions, viewers snuggle up to dramas and strong female leads.

We Are What We Watch

We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again. Some states are watching shows that reinforce regional stereotypes. Here are just a few that’ll make you chuckle:

  • DC keeps it political with Yes, Minister.
  • Maine is quaint, quirky, and decidedly up to mischief with Marple.
  • Put a ring on it in Nevada with Love Island.
  • Utah’s tech boom is evidence that the IT Crowd has found a new home.
  • Vermont’s idyllic scenery makes Happy Valley an apt nickname.
  • War and Peace is still a matter of contention in Virginia.
  • It’s no surprise that Washington keeps getting Cold Feet.

Regional Trends

Across parts of the United States, we noticed some specific trends. While British comedies are generally more popular than other types of content, there were a few sub-genres that seemed to be favorites in certain pockets of the country.

  • The Midwest keeps it clean with cheerful comedies like Bean, campy Dr. Who, and young adult fantasy dramas like Merlin.
  • When the South does drama, they like it served with a side of apocalypse from Survivors.
  • Northern intellectuals think they have the answer with comedy pop quizzes, including Celebrity Juice and Never Mind the Buzzcocks.
  • New England stays true to their sarcastic nature with Absolutely Fabulous and Gogglebox, a reality TV show about watching TV. Because that totally makes sense.
And Baby Makes Three

There seems to be a bit of correlation between high birthrates and states that prefer comedies about couples or families, proving parents like to laugh at their own trials and tribulations as much as the next TV viewer. Some examples:

Like Guns? You probably also prefer your British TV with a side of firearms. 

States with higher rates of gun ownership per capita pull out all the stops with shows that feature plenty of sharp shooting.

 


Are you a fan of what your state serves up for British TV? Share with your friends to discuss and find new shows from across the pond to stream.