Sorry, I’m just fangirling a little bit over here because the new Sherlock series is back for January 2017. But if, like me, you’re an obsessive Sherlock fan, you’re probably quite put out that the series is only, as usual, 3 episodes long, then who knows how long we’ve got to wait for another season to be announced, let alone released?!
Fortunately, I’ve got plenty of other murder mystery detective type shows to keep you on the go in the interim, and even more fortunately, most of them have series airing right now. Or, as the case may be, I find that slightly unfortunate as I can’t help myself and watch them all immediately as they’re aired – can’t risk spotting spoilers online, especially when a vast part of my job includes social media!
So here are a few of my favourite murder mystery type TV shows that you might also like if you LOVE Sherlock like me, enjoy!
I’ve seen Jonathan Creek described as the proto-Sherlock, and I have to agree with that! He’s a quirky, magic obsessed man who lives in a windmill and always ends up being called upon to solve the latest murder, with locked room mysteries and weird clues galore. The first series aired in 1996, and while I’d usually steer clear of anything that was released when I was a small child, I wholeheartedly believe every mystery fan should watch these (although maybe skip that last series which just let it down entirely, 2016’s Christmas special was pretty awesome though!).
You can buy the Jonathan Creek Series 1-4 box set on Amazon here.
Death in Paradise
If you love like your murders with a side of comedy, check out Death in Paradise – classic murder mysteries are solved by a British detective in the Caribbean and his long suffering investigative team. We’ve had two detectives on Death in Paradise: the first played by Ben Miller who, of course, hates sun, sea and sand and turns up to crime scenes in a full suit and tie; the second played by Kris Marshall and is a clumsy but kind hearted version of his predecessor.
Death in Paradise Series 6 is airing on BBC One at 9pm on Thursday 6th January. You can buy Death in Paradise Series 1-5 on Amazon here.
Midsomer Murders is the classic British murder mystery show of the past couple of decades, having been going since 1997. We’ve been through 2 Mr Barnabys (our detective inspector) and many sergeants during that time (Jones will always be my favourite!) but the tone has never changed. Set in the rolling countryside and tiny quintessential English villages in Midsomer, it’s a more light hearted, humorous version of the murder mystery. Plus there are now 19 series for you to catch up on – Jones comes in at series 8 so I recommend starting there, although Scott in the previous couple of series wasn’t bad as a sergeant either!
Midsomer Murders Series 19 is currently showing on Wednesdays at 8pm on ITV. You can buy any of the Midsomer Murders series on Amazon here.
If you’re looking for more of the gritty murder location that is London and want a more serious crime drama, Silent Witness will be your cup of tea. This one looks at crime through the eyes of a team of forensic pathologists and also deals with more serious current affairs too. It’s currently on its 20th series, so you’ll have plenty to keep you going if you decide you like it! I started watching around series 15 and was absolutely hooked, but I can’t really get into the early episodes, so maybe start around the mid-teen episodes if you want something more modern.
Silent Witness Series 20 is currently showing on Monday & Tuesday nights at 9pm on BBC One. You can buy any of the Silent Witness series on Amazon here.
I have no idea why it’s relegated to day time TV, but this is one to set your recorders for – Father Brown is a bumbled Catholic priest played by Mark Williams who solves murders in the fictional Cotswold village of Kembleford in the 1950s. And yes, it is as awesome as it sounds, believe me.
Father Brown Series 5 is currently showing on weekdays on BBC One at 1.45pm. You can buy Father Brown series 1 to 4 on Amazon here.
ITV is brilliant at murder mysteries set in quintessentially British locations and Lewis is no different, set in the university city of Oxford with many of the cases set in the infamous colleges, solved by the brilliant duo, Inspector Lewis and Sergeant Hathaway (who would also make a brilliant Sherlock, may I add). Unfortunately, this is one that’s run it’s course and ended in 2015, but I highly recommend checking out all of the previous 9 seasons.
You can buy Lewis series 1 to 9 on Amazon here.
But where Lewis left off, Endeavour picks up, or starts off…as it’s the prequel to Inspector Morse (something I’ve actually never watched) for whom Inspector Lewis was sergeant. Set in the early 1960s, this follows the young Endeavour Morse setting out on his career as a brilliant police constable in and around Oxford. Even if you think you don’t like programmes that aren’t set in the present, I promise you’ll love the brilliance of this one.
Endeavour series 4 launches on ITV on Sunday 8th January at 8pm. You can buy Endeavour series 1-3 on Amazon here.
Vera is the female detective inspector representing the north of England, with crimes and murders to be solved in and around the (far more gritty than it is in real life!) Northumbrian coast and Newcastle. It’s ever so slightly humorous and witty, and you’ll fall in love with this tough Geordie lass.
Vera series 7 will air later in 2017. You can buy Vera series 1-5 on Amazon here.
A team of retired policemen and their female superintendent look back at cold case unsolved crimes rather than current murders, with sometimes hilarious, sometimes gritty, sometimes heartwarming results. The last series of this showed in 2015, but it’s one I loved and watched all the way back to the beginning.
You can buy New Tricks series 1 to 12 on Amazon here.
The Inspector Lynley Mysteries
Looking for another “dishy” (as Ben calls him!) detective? Inspector Lynley is your man. This programme had 6 series between 2001 and 2007, but they’re definitely still worth watching now for a good solid detective series, and also the brilliant relationship between the somewhat aristocratic inspector and his working class sergeant Barbara Havers.
You can buy The Inspector Lynley Mysteries series 1-6 on Amazon here.