Good lord man! I'm addicted to the BBC (America) chanel.

So I just discovered my cable compoany (Comcast) has a channel called BBC America. I’ve watched a few shows over the past couple of days and I have to say some of these shows are downright funny.

Some curious questions to my fellow Brit-Dopers…

1.) Just curious as to how my humor parallels with British folks. Is Coupling considered a good show across the pound? How about Brilliant?

2.) How old are these shows?

3.) Whats up with the 40min sitcoms? what do you guys do with the extra 20mins?

4.) Maybe it was just a coinsidence but I noticed from the shows I watched that Americans werre refered to quite often. So are you guys always poking fun at us? or was that just a fluke? (Not that I’m offended or anything.)

Brilliant!, known as The Fast Show here, was a huge success - it ran for maybe six years, had a few spin-offs and a grand finale, all that. It also introduced a quite incredible number of catchphrases into everyday British parlance - “suit you, sir”, “I’ll get me coat”, “n-ii-ce”… almost any Brit between the ages of 15 and 50 would get the Fast Show reference immediately.

I’m not sure about what people think of Coupling. I’ve only seen it once. I thought it was… OK. Good script, no so great acting. It gets decent ratings, though.

The 40-minute sitcom thing is because most of the shows on BBC America were originally made for the BBC’s British networks, naturally, and the Beeb don’t show any commercials here (there are commercial networks too). Obviously, a show made for a 30-minute slot on the BBC will need more time when shown on a commercial network, unless they edit it.

I’m addicted to Red Door myself.

Boutros Boutros Ghali

But why did they rename it ‘Brilliant’ for broadcast in the US?

They’re showing the Fast Show?!?! Brilliant!!!
The contrasting perspective on the 40-minute programmes…two back-to-back Simpsons episodes on the BBC takes 45 minutes. That’s two half-hour episodes. :wally

Coupling seems to have been surprise hit in America - it was never at all popular here. I didn’t like it. It seemed tedious, too script-driven, and (ok, cliche) formulaic.
What other shows do you get on BBC America?

There’s Absolutely Fabulous. I liked the older episodes way better. I think they show newer episodes on the Oxygen channel here in the US.

There’s also Keeping Up Apperances, which they also show sometimes on PBS. I found that one rather amusing when I caught it.

Does BBC America show BBC news? Watch for my cousin-in-law (my cousin is married to her brother), Caroline Hawley, reporting from Baghdad.

Yuk. You’re basically getting 10-year-old stuff.

It must actually be really difficult for the BBC to repackage their programmes into a commercial format.

I’ve seen her, in the last day or two!! (Regular BBC, mind you…still cool :slight_smile: )

Oh, excellent! I understand she is on all the time, but I don’t have a TV, let alone cable, let alone the fancy sort of cable that you need to have to get BBC America.

Here’s their website, along with a schedule of shows.

Err…that would be here:

I knew BBC America was bad…but I never realised just how bad it could get.

I don’t know where to start. You’re getting the worst generic elements of mediocre formats, and are being offered absolutely nothing interesting. Let alone challenging, or artistically adventurous.
I suspect it all comes down to our old friends, the lawyers. Getting full clearance for the typical BBC America programmes won’t be a problem. Dealing with anything controversial, and you’ve a whole new set of lawyers to talk to.

For some reason I love Ground Force. It is especially strange when you consider that I live in a Brooklyn apartment and have no yard. In fact, when I moved to NYC, the idea of never having to mow a lawn again was quite appealing.

I love Coupling. I laugh out loud even when watching it alone and depressed. Of course Changing Rooms, Desing Rules, and Faking It are really cool.
Now Bravo is now showing Queer Eye for the Straight Guy UK edition. The format is exactly like the US show. The really strange thing is that they sometimes have subtitles. They are speaking english but for some reason the producers don’t think we’ll get it. Sometimes they do translate a bit of slang and that makes sense but overall it almost exactly like the US show.

It isn’t all that bad… we’ve gotten Monty Python, and Blackadder, and The Office :D.

And it’s still better than most of the crap on regular Network TV, which is the really sad part.

And as ISiddiqui mentioned, we do get Monty Python. Sometimes on holidays (like New Year’s Eve) they’ll show a whole marathon of Monty Python.

BBC America shows an amazing number of home improvement shows: House Invaders, Changing Rooms, House Doctor, Life Laundry, Ground Force, etc.

My theory is that these shows translate better than some of the dramas or comedies. I’m a reasonably sophisticated American but still have problems with some of the cultural references in the jokes.

I love Blackadder and My Hero. Interesting about the 40 min shows though. No commercials would be great.

It’s simpler than that - just that an astonishing number of ‘makeover’ shows are being made (because they’re cheap). Our channels are stuffed full of them, too.

Another thing. When is BBC America going to show The Office Christmas special?