British television includes a lot of gems including classic comedy and drama programs and contemporary science fiction. Now two of the biggest names in British TV have partnered on a subscription-based service for US customers.

But a lot of the most popular BBC and ITV shows are missing from the BritBox service, which launches today.

Still, for folks willing to pony up $7 per month, there’s plenty to watch.

You won’t find some of the most popular shows like Doctor Who or Top Gear. But BritBox does feature classics like Miss Marple, Poirot, Prime Suspect, Absolutely Fabulous, Blackadder, and Are You Being Served.

The service also has some newer shows including New Blood and Tutankhamun, and you can watch some current shows 24 hours after they air in the UK. Most of those shows are soap operas like EasteEnders, Emmerdale, and Holby City.

If you’re already getting your British TV fix through BBC America, Acorn, Amazon Video, or Netflix, it’s not sure how much value you’ll find in BritBox. But if you’re addicted to UK soaps, I suppose it’s nice to have an option to watch them the day after release.

BritBox was first announced in December. But you can sign up for the service (or at least a 7-day free trial) starting today.

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2 replies on “BritBox launches in US: $7 per month for BBC and ITV shows from the UK”

  1. Interesting. As an expat Brit, I’ve seen a lot of the classic shows over the years — Blackadder, The Young Ones (I was a student when that was on TV!), Fawlty Towers, Morse, Prime Suspect, Cracker, Cadfael, Ab Fab, and lots more. Seems like a pretty good quality selection to me. Lots of classics.

    Unless it becomes a real money spinner, you’re not going to find too many of the newer headliners on this service since many of them will be included in deals with Amazon (e.g. Fleabag) or Netflix (e.g.The Detectorists) already, and some are actually joint productions with US companies, or are destined for PBS first. It’s also never going to be the same as BBC iPlayer or the ITV equivalent because the US broadcast rights to many shows on there are, again, already tied up in other deals, as well as much of the content being too parochial to be popular in the US.

    I was curious to see how they would manage long running series like Casualty and Holby City, and soaps like Eastenders, and it seems for the latter, you only get to watch a rolling month’s worth of content (no going back 30+ years – yikes! – to the beginning) and a season or two for the others.

    Anyway, seems like a pretty good deal if you’re an Anglophile. Some of the shows will seem a little dates — even period dramas from the 70s and early 80s are different from today, especially in terms of production values — but the show selection is solid, with plenty of excellent shows to choose from. I’m still new to Netflix, so have more than enough to catch up on there, but I may drop in at some point to have a gander…

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