Best BBC iPlayer Shows to Watch [Updated Guide 2023]

Best Shows on BBC Iplayer

Psst! Here’s some good news: BBC iPlayer shows are now bubbling with good quality content like never before! Keep on reading our guide to know all the details.

Let us guess how a typical day at your house goes. You wake up, get ready in silence, spend the entire day in your office, and come back home. After relaxing, you need nothing more than a dose of interesting shows or movies. Looking forward to an awesome end to the day, you turn on your TV but don’t get intrigued by any of the titles. All seem to be too boring, too lengthy, or too bland.

Well, consider that to be a thing of the past because we’re here to end all your misery with the BBC iPlayer shows! The platform has hundreds of shows running like Celebrity Best Home Cook, Amanda & Alan’s Italian Job, the Apprentice S17, the Hairy Biker’s go local and many more but we know how difficult it can get sifting through them.

Binge-worthy series are, of course, hard to find everywhere but go through our recommendations, and you’d find a show within minutes! From shows having superheroes saving the earth like Avengers: Age of Ultron to animated shows like Shrek, there’s no way that BBC iPlayer UK is letting you go to bed without watching a couple of episodes Sherlock All seasons!

Without further ado then, let’s dive straight into our most recommended BBC iPlayer shows to watch:

Peaky Blinders (2013 -2022)

Peaky Blinders

Director: Anthony Byrne, Colm McCarthy

Writer: Steven Knight

Cast: Cillian Murphy, Paul Anderson, Sophie Rundle, Ian Peck

Runtime: 1 hr

Genre: Crime, Drama

IMDB Rating:  8.8/10

If BBC iPlayer shows had a list of the best crime dramas, Peaky Blinders would surely top the chart. The story is about Thomas Shelby and his family, who’ve recently moved to Birmingham. Thomas and his brothers have served the British army their entire lives, but now it’s time to break away from their good image. The group turns into gangsters who refuse to stop at anything to get their business empire to flourish. Their identifying characteristic is their weapon, a razor blade tucked smartly into the peaks of their caps.

Doctor Who (2005 – )

Doctor Who

Director: Graeme Harper

Writer: Steven Moffat

Cast: Jodie Whittaker, Peter Capaldi, Pearl Mackie, Paul Kasey

Runtime: 45 m

Genre: Adventure, Drama, Sci-Fi

IMDB Rating:  8.6/10

Like to see some time travel from the comfort of your couch? Doctor Who is just the right show for you! If there’s anyone from all the BBC iPlayer Sci-Fi shows that’s known for its storyline, it’s this show. The story is about a Doctor who has a knack for time traveling between different realms. Each episode takes you through many of his adventures into space, but that’s not it; the protagonist can shift shapes. Doctor Who can easily change his form to be anything he likes, but it doesn’t always turn out to be a transformation for good.

Death in Paradise (2011 -)

Death In Paradise

Director: Richard Signy, David O’Neill


Robert Thorogood

Cast: Elizabeth Bourgine, Don Warrington, Danny John-Jules,

Runtime: 1 hr

Genre: Comedy, Crime, Drama

IMDB Rating:  7.8/10

Looking for a cat and mouse chase having police and detectives? This show is bound to hold your attention right till the end! The story revolves around the unexplained murder of a police officer. To catch the culprits, the authorities appoint detective Richard Poole who performs exceptionally well at his job. Poole has to travel to a far-off island to investigate the case but finds it hard to adjust to life there. What follows is Poole’s struggle to unravel the mystery during his torturous stay on the island.

Killing Eve (2018 – 2022)

Killing Eve

Director: Damon Thomas

Writer: Luke Jennings

Cast: Jodie Comer, Sandra Oh, Fiona Shaw

Runtime: 42 m

Genre: Action, Adventure, Drama

IMDB Rating:  8.1/10

Rated as one of the best shows on BBC iPlayer, this is a story about Eve, who dreams of nothing more than being a spy. However, Eve’s life is reduced to working a desk-bound job all day. It’s not until her paths cross with Villanelle, that her life takes a drastic turn. This new acquaintance makes a living out of murdering people, and soon, the two women get insanely close to each other. Soon, the duo finds similar challenges thrown their way, to combat which, they must join forces.

Superman & Lois (2021 – )

Superman Lois

Director: Gregory Smith, David Ramsey

Writer: Katie Aldrin

Cast: Tyler Hoechlin, Elizabeth Tulloch, Jordan Elsass, Alex Garfin

Runtime: 42m

Genre: Action, Adventure, Drama

IMDB Rating:  7.8/10

Remember when Superman was just a character limited to comic books? Say goodbye to the adventurous pages because this show brings you all his thrilling chronicles to watch on TV! The show portrays the superhero as never seen before, where he has to juggle his heroic adventures and corporate life simultaneously.

He has an awesome wife and is also a parent, but his family duties are becoming an everyday struggle to keep up with. Between saving the world and leading a healthy family life, the superhero must make his choice.

Watch various other family movies on BBC iPlayer and enjoy you weekend them.

His Dark Materials (2019 – 2022)

His Dark materials

Director: Jamie Childs, William McGregor

Writer: Philip Pullman

Cast: Dafne Keen, Brian Fisher, Amir Wilson, Ruth Wilson

Runtime: 1h

Genre: Adventure, Drama, Family

IMDB Rating:  7.8/10

If you’re a family of adventure lovers, this show will ring in your lounge for hours. Set in the 20th century, the story begins to show an orphan, Lyra, who lives in another realm. Lyra’s world is surrounded by science and magic alike. However, her daily peace is ruined when her friend gets mysteriously kidnapped. Determined to rescue her, Lyra takes up a series of different challenges. What she discovers, though, is a great racket of stolen children and another phenomenal asset.

This is Going to Hurt (2022 – )

This Is Going To Hurt

Director: Lucy Forbes, Tom Kingsley

Writer :Adam Kay

Cast: Ben Whishaw, Ambika Mod, Rory Fleck Byrne, Michele Austin

Runtime: 45 m

Genre: Comedy, Drama

IMDB Rating:  8.4/10

If the best BBC iPlayer shows mean hours of laughing for you, give this show a chance and you won’t regret it! The show depicts the lives of a group of junior doctors who’re on the field all day, treating all types of people. Each episode gives you a first-hand insight into what happens in labor wards. While the doctors are seen having humorous moments with their patients, there are times when the emotional aspect of their jobs starts to get overwhelming.

The Responder (2022 – )

The Responder

Director: Tim Mielants

Writer: Tony Schumacher

Cast: Martin Freeman, Romi Hyland-Rylands, MyAnna Buring, Mark Womack

Runtime: 57m

Genre: Crime, Drama, Thriller

IMDB Rating:  7.4/10

Set in Liverpool, this show is all about drama with the police! When officer Chris Carson gets demoted from his position, he’s left with no choice but to accept things. Determined to prove his capabilities this time, he decides to leave all his engagements and focus on his job. However, with his constant therapy sessions, family drama, and mother’s ailing health, Chris can’t help but perform poorly again. Add to it the trauma of his past, and Chris gets a burning desire to quit and rebel simultaneously.

Bloodlands (2021 – )


Director: Pete Travis

Writer: Chris Brandon

Cast: James Nesbitt, Lorcan Cranitch, Charlene McKenna, Lisa Dwan

Runtime: 1 hr

Genre: Crime, Drama, Thriller

IMDB Rating: 6.6 /10

Tom Brannick is a passionate police officer who does justice to every case he takes up. All of the mysteries solved by him get public attention, and criminals particularly fear him. However, Tom’s career takes a significant turn when he comes across a kidnapping. The case seems pretty straightforward at first, but as the investigations deepen, Tom can’t help but think of a number of ways in which this case connects to an old one. The skilled police officer soon finds a linkage between the two, and it’s time to unwrap multiple mysteries.

The Syndicate (2012 – )

The Syndicate

Director: Kay Mellor

Writer: Kay Mellor

Cast: Lorraine Bruce, Katherine Rose Morley, Kieran Urquhart, Neil Morrissey

Runtime: 1 hr

Genre: Drama, Mystery

IMDB Rating:  7.4/10

If drama and mystery always manage to keep you glued to the screen, this show is not to be missed. The plot consists of five members who make up a betting syndicate. This syndicate has eyes on only one reward: the lottery. However, each member can make as many efforts as he wants, but in the end, only luck can make you the winner. Each series has different groups hoping to win against each other, and the setting is also different with every syndicate.

Baptiste (2019 – )


Director: Hong Khaou

Writer: Harry Williams

Cast: Tchéky Karyo, Anastasia Hille, Tom Hollander, Fiona Shaw

Runtime: 1 hr

Genre: Crime, Drama, Thriller

IMDB Rating:  7.3/10

Julien Baptiste has served years as a police detective but now looks forward to a quiet requirement. His life-threatening surgery, though, changes all his perceptions by a large margin. He pursues work again and is instantly met with a missing-person case. The victim, Natalie, is nowhere to be found, but when Julien comes across her uncle Edward, a spark of hope rises amongst the professionals. Julien soon realizes, however, that Edward is not actually related to Natalie, and this is where things get spiced up.

Pose (2018 – )


Director: Janet Mock

Writer: Steven Canals

Cast: Michaela Jaé (MJ) Rodriguez, Dominique Jackson, Indya Moore, Billy Porter

Runtime: 1 hr

Genre: Drama

IMDB Rating:  8.6/10

Set in New York, this show aims to bring multiple societal issues to you in the form of a dance musical. From capitalism to the raging war against AIDS, you’d find that your current information was very limited about these topics. Blanca, tired of the struggles thrown by life, decides to become a beacon of hope for all the LGBTQ youth who are often shunned by society. The people who join Blanca’s clan not only come from very different backgrounds, but they also have a lot of different stories about themselves. We recommend watching this show because it’s one of the good shows on BBC iplayer available.

Roadkill (2020 – )


Director: Michael Keillor

Writer: David Hare

Cast: Hugh Laurie, Helen McCrory, Olivia Vinall, Iain De Caestecker

Runtime: 3 hr 47 m

Genre: Drama, Thriller

IMDB Rating:  6.8/10

If thrillers are your go-to whenever you want to watch something, don’t forget to tune in to this show. The story is about a politician, Peter Laurence, who has built his empire after years of struggle. All goes well, and his strategies are as successful as ever; however, turmoil starts boiling in his personal life. Peter fails to draw the line between his public and private affairs, and this costs him more than he could ever imagine. Now, Peter must plot sensibly but can he? Find it all out with the next episode of Roadkill!

Torchwood (2006 – 2011)


Director: Andy Goddard

Writer: Russell T. Davies

Cast: John Barrowman, Eve Myles, Kai Owen, Gareth David-Lloyd

Runtime: 50 m

Genre: Action, Drama, Mystery

IMDB Rating:  7.7/10

Look no further if you’re into action because Torchwood will take care of all your requirements when it comes to bangs and explosions! The show is about Captain Jack Harkness, who has spent a large chunk of his life conning people. The unique thing about Jack is that he frequently travels in time whenever he feels like it. This once, he teleports himself from the 51st century to the 21st, where the chaos begins.

Toast of Tinseltown (2022 – )

Toast Of Tinseltown

Director: Michael Cumming

Writer: Matt Berry

Cast: Matt Berry, Doon Mackichan, Fred Armisen, Cecilia Appiah

Runtime: 28 m

Genre: Comedy

IMDB Rating:  7.5/10

Toast is a man full of anger issues, and lashing out is his immediate response to everything. His furious episodes cost him a lot of relationships, and this makes him compelled to put an end to his rude behavior. Toast decides to go to an Anger Management Center, where he spends a considerable amount of time. When he gets out, his outlook is a lot more positive, and he decides to right all his wrongs by apologizing. This phase, however, doesn’t last for long, and Toast is back into trouble.

The Pursuit of Love (2021)

The Pursuit Of Love

Director: Emily Mortimer

Writer: Nancy Mitford

Cast: Lily James, Emily Beecham, Dominic West,  Emily Mortimer

Runtime: 1 hr

Genre: Drama, Romance

IMDB Rating:  6.7/10

This mini TV series is set shortly before World War II and shows the story of Linda Radlett. Nobody in this world gets Linda more than her best friend, Fanny. The duo decides to try their luck at finding husbands and begins their hunt with a light-hearted approach. As things get serious, though, Linda and Fanny realize that the men who attract them are very different from each of their tastes. Their relationship is further tested when both of their choices make them live poles apart.

The Girl Before (2021)

The Girl Before

Director: Lisa Brühlmann

Writer: J.P. Delaney

Cast: Gugu Mbatha-Raw, David Oyelowo, Jessica Plummer, Ben Hardy

Runtime: 3h 49m

Genre: Drama, Romance, Thriller

IMDB Rating: 6.5 /10

This show is about a woman named Jane, who’s been on the lookout for a good house for ages. All of the rental properties viewed by Jane dont seem to appeal to her until she lands at a super minimalist house. This house stands out because of its profound architecture, and Jane instantly falls in love with it. However, to live on this property, you must abide by a set of rules provided by the owner. Ecstatic about moving in, Jane soon realizes that this house has a lot more to it than just architecture.

The Green Planet (2022 – )

The Green Planet

Director: Paul Williams

Writer: –

Cast: Cong Liu, David Attenborough, Elisabeth Oakham, Tim Shepherd.

Runtime: 59m

Genre: Documentary

IMDB Rating: 9.2 /10

Take a deep dive into The Green Planet, an otherworldly place where a single life can last a thousand years. This David Attenborough-narrated show delves into the fascinating and beautiful world of plant life on Earth. From towering sequoias to delicate flowers, you’ll see things no eye has ever seen before and find out more about the vital role plants play in our planet’s ecology. With stunning visuals and Attenborough’s captivating narration, The Green Planet is a must-see for anyone who loves nature documentaries.

Horrible Histories (2003 – 2022)

Horrible Histories Rotten Romans

Director: Steve Connelly, Dominic Brigstocke

Writer: Gemma Arrowsmith

Cast: Simon Farnaby, Jim Howick, Martha Howe-Douglas, Mathew Baynton.

Runtime: 28m

Genre: History, Comedy, Family

IMDB Rating: 8.7 /10

Horrible Histories is a wonderfully entertaining and one of the BBC iPlayer top shows that provides an alternative view of history. Featuring a group of British comedians, the series delves into the aspects of history that are often left out of traditional classroom settings. Viewers are given a full and often humorous look at some of the most populous eras in human existence.

Cleverly written and breezily narrated, Horrible Histories is essential viewing for anyone with an interest in the past. With a unique perspective on historical events, it will leave you laughing out loud at the same time.

Blue Planet II (2017- 2022)

Blue Planet II

Director: –

Writer: –

Cast: Peter Drost, David Attenborough, Roger Munns, Russell Boulter

Runtime: 6hr 4m

Genre: Documentary

IMDB Rating: 9.3 /10

Few people have as much experience exploring and documenting the world’s oceans as Sir David Attenborough. In Blue Planet II, he returns to the depths to reveal even more rare and unusual creatures and the problems our oceans are currently facing.

From the majestic but endangered blue whale to the tiny yet deadly scorpionfish, there is something for everyone in this captivating series. So dive down into Blue Planet II and be prepared to be amazed, appalled, and inspired in equal measure.

Dodger (2022 – )


Director: Rhys Thomas, Hildegard Ryan.

Writer: Lucy Montgomery, Rhys Thomas

Cast: Mila Lieu, BillyJenkins, Christopher Eccleston, Aabay-Noor Ali

Runtime: 44m

Genre: Family, Comedy, Drama

IMDB Rating: 4.8 /10

Set in the squalor of early Victorian London, Dodger is a gripping tale of crime and punishment. The Artful Dodger, a young pickpocket, leads a band of street urchins in a life of petty crime. But when they cross paths with the police, the gang must use all their ingenuity and courage to survive.

It’s a realistic portrayal of life in the slums, but also very funny and entertaining. If you’re looking for a great drama to sink your teeth into, Dodger is definitely one to watch.

My Life as a Rolling Stone (2022 – )

My LIfe As A Rolling Stone

Director: Sam Anthony, James Giles.

Writer: –

Cast: Ronnie Wood, Charlie Watts, Keith Richards, Mick Jagger

Runtime: 1hr

Genre: Music, Documentary, Biography

IMDB Rating:  8.0/10

Take a closer and deep look at one of the most iconic bands of all time with My Life as a Rolling Stone. This BBC iPlayer show gives an exclusive look at some never-before-seen footage and stories from Keith Richards, Charlie Watts, Mick Jagger, and Ronnie Wood. Hear firsthand accounts of life on the road and in the studio from the band that changed the face of music. This is a must-see for any Rolling Stones fan. You will find it one of the good shows on BBC iPlayer available to watch.

M.I. High (2007 – 2014)

M.I. High

Director: Mat King, Simon Hook, Richard Elson.

Writer: Keith Brumpton

Cast: Jonny Freeman, Chris Stanton, Channelle Owen, Rachel Petladwala.

Runtime: 28m

Genre: Crime, Action, Comedy.

IMDB Rating: 6.2 /10

M.I. High is one of the best shows on BBC iPlayer, and it’s only getting better! Three teenage schoolchildren work as undercover agents for MI9 and fight against the criminal agency Skul. The show, with excitement, adventure, and humour, is perfect for the whole family to enjoy. The characters are brilliantly played by a talented cast, and the storylines are always unpredictable.

If you’re looking for a show that will keep you entertained, then M.I. High is a ideal choice. Moreover there are many other good comedy films on BBC iPlayer.

Marriage (2022 – )


Director: Stefan Golaszewski

Writer: Stefan Golaszewski

Cast: Nicola Walker, Chantelle Alle, Sean Bean, Henry Lloyd-Hughes

Runtime: 57m

Genre: Drama

IMDB Rating:  6.0/10

If you’re looking for a fun and heartwarming show, we highly recommend Marriage! It’s one of the new BBC iPlayer shows 2022. This delightful series follows Ian and Emma, a married couple who have been together for 30 years. Throughout the show, we see the highs and lows of their marriage, but ultimately it’s a feel-good story about the enduring power of love.

The writing is also very sharp and witty, with plenty of laugh-out-loud moments. We guarantee you’ll fall in love with Marriage, so be sure to add it to your watch list today.

Ratchet & Clank (2016)

Ratchet Clank

Director: Jericca Cleland, Kevin Munroe

Writer: Gerry Swallow, T.J. Fixman, Kevin Munroe

Cast: David Kaye, James Arnold Taylor, Sylvester Stallone, Jim Ward.

Runtime: 1hr 34m

Genre: Animation, Adventure, Action

IMDB Rating: 5.5 /10

Do yourself a favour and check out Ratchet & Clank. It’s one of the best shows on BBC iPlayer platform, and you’re sure to love it. This animated series follows the adventures of Ratchet, a mechanic, and Clank, his robotic ally, as they join an elite squad of combatants to save the galaxy from a nefarious space captain.

With its stunning animation and action-packed plots, Ratchet & Clank is a must-watch for anyone looking for a fun and exciting show. Plus, with its lovable characters and humour, it’s sure to please everyone in the family.

Final Words

Time to say goodbye because our list of the best BBC iPlayer shows has come to an end! Hopefully, by now, you’d have your favorites ready, and there’ll be no useless scrolling anymore!

With the help of a VPN, you can access BBC iPlayer on iPhone or any other device and enjoy any show or movie outside UK easily but what if BBC iPlayer stopped working with a VPN you can check our detailed guide for it.

BBC iPlayer has been overshadowed by other streaming platforms for ages, but there’s no denying the fact that BBC iPlayer TV shows are one of a kind. The best part is that you get hundreds of options in the same place in terms of genre, quality, or even actors. You can watch BBC iPlayer reality show like Stacey Dooley Ready for War, as well as animated shows like Shrek!

The wide variety makes the platform a popular choice amongst the audience, so if you don’t have a subscription already, consider getting one as soon as possible!