The Best British TV Shows On Netflix With Near-Perfect Rotten Tomatoes Scores

Chewing Gum, The Crown, Humans, Derry Girls, and more.

by Sophie McEvoy
Originally Published: 

In recent years, Netflix has become a haven of self-produced, original, and fantastic content. From Stranger Things to Ozark, Mindhunter to Making A Murderer — there are plenty of series to sink your teeth into, but the majority of them are American. That's where the little British tab hidden away in the TV section of Netflix comes into play. There is a plethora of television to indulge in, whether it's produced by the streaming giant itself or via broadcasters like BBC or ITV. Also, a lot of these options are critically revered, so finding British Netflix shows with near-perfect Rotten Tomatoes scores isn't that hard at all.

Britain has its fair share of brilliant television, and it's high-time it got the recognition that it deserves. For instance, Happy Valley’s Rotten Tomatoes score was near perfect for the longest time. As was Luther’s Rotten Tomatoes score. Sadly both have since been removed from the streaming site. But thankfully, some of the best British shows with high Rotten Tomatoes scores are produced by Netflix themselves, including The Crown and Sex Education. But if you want even more high-quality content to stream or shows like Happy Valley and Luther, here’s what the streaming site has to offer.


'Peaky Blinders,' 92%

If you ever wondered what crime gangs in 1920s Birmingham were like, Peaky Blinders has you covered. Based on the real criminal gang of the same name, Peaky Blinders demonstrates the English criminal underworld in the early to late '20s.

Starring Cillian Murphy and Tom Hardy, the show already has five series and a BAFTA under its belt, with its sixth and final season on the way. If that isn't enough reason to put Peaky Blinders on your list, I don't know what is.

Watch Peaky Blinders on Netflix here.


‘Chewing Gum’, 100%

Speaking of 100% ratings, Michaela Coel’s Chewing Gum rightly earns the top ranking on Rotten Tomatoes.

The 2015 E4 Comedy series was hailed as “bold” and “brash”, but more importantly, it was celebrated for its ability to resonate with a generation of Black women and girls who did not see themselves on screen. The story of Tracey Gordon, a religious, Beyoncé-obsessed twenty-something on a journey of self-discovery and sexual awakening. It’s not long before she discovers that the more she learns about the world, the less she understands.

Watch Chewing Gum on Netflix here.


'End Of The F***ing World,' 94%

Based on the mini-comics of Charles Forsman, End of the F***ing World follows 17-year-old James who believes wholeheartedly that he is a psychopath. He forms a connection with the moody Alyssa — after planning to kill her — and the pair decide to embark on a road trip to find her real father.

A fantastic recipe of dark, sarcastic British humour, End of the F***ing World has deservedly received enormous critical acclaim.

Watch The End of the F**king World on Netflix here.


‘Back To Life’, 100%

Following in Chewing Gum’s footsteps, Daisy Haggard’s Back to Life is also one of the rare British shows on Netflix that has earned a top spot on Rotten Tomatoes.

Co-written by Haggard and Laura Solon, Back To Life sees Haggard star as Miri Matteson, a woman who walks from prison after an 18-year prison sentence and has to rebuild her life after returning home to Hythe, Kent.

A mix of dark comedy and drama, Back to Life is a testament to Haggard’s skills as an actor and writer.

Watch Back to Life on Netflix here.


'The Crown,' 90%

Whilst we all prepare for the fifth season of Netflix original series The Crown, the first four seasons exploring the early years of Queen Elizabeth II and her marriage to Prince Philip, her coronation, and all the drama that comes with it, are still available to obsess over.

Even though we will be saying goodbye to Olivia Colman, Tobias Menzies, and Helena Bonham Carter Claire Foy, Matt Smith, and Vanessa Kirby due to new actors being cast every two seasons, I for one can't wait to see what Imelda Staunton, Jonathan Pryce, and Lesley Manville will bring to the main roles.

Watch The Crown on Netflix here.


'Marcella,' 70%

While Marcella’s Rotten Tomatoes score is the lowest of the bunch, that’s not to say the series isn’t decent – far from it. ITV's Marcella stars the incomparable Anna Friel as former London detective Marcella Backland, who returns to her role to investigate an ongoing cold case involving a serial killer who seems to have returned after 11 years.

A successful, British take on a Nordic noir, Marcella is definitely not one to miss.

Watch Marcella on Netflix here.


‘Derry Girls,’ 98%

Set during The Troubles in the 1990s, Derry Girls follows a group of girls – and a lad – as they explore what it means to be a teenager in Northern Ireland.

Over the course of twelve episodes, the series strikes the balance of genius writing and solid performances so perfectly that it’s one of the best comedies on telly.

Watch Derry Girls on Netflix here.


‘Sex Education,’ 95%

With viewers eagerly awaiting Sex Education’s third series, now’s the perfect time to catch up or rewatch its first two seasons. Created by Laurie Nunn, the comedy-drama follows Otis Milburn as he sets up a sex advice clinic in his school thanks to his unbridled knowledge on the subject from his mum, a sex therapist.

The series has an all-star cast including Asa Butterfield, Gillian Anderson, Emma Mackey, and Connor Swindells, so if you’re not already watching the series add it to your watchlist ASAP.

Watch Sex Education on Netflix here.


‘Motherland’, 91%

Now in its third season, Motherland follows a group of middle-class mums as they deal with the trials and tribulations of – you guessed it – motherhood. It covers everything from the parental dramas at home and school where a lot of things can go wrong.

Starring Anna Maxwell Martin, Diana Morgan, Lucy Punch, and Paul Ready, parents across the UK will totally relate with this series.

Watch Motherland on Netflix here.


‘Humans,’ 94%

If you like scaring yourself with Black Mirror, then you’ll love Humans. This sci-fi series focuses on one particular aspect of future tech – synths. Basically, think Westworld but without the theme park.

Starring Gemma Chan, Pixie Davies, Colin Morgan, and Katherine Parkinson, Humans will really get you thinking as to whether realistic androids would be a good idea (they probably wouldn’t be).

Watch Humans on Netflix here.


‘Criminal: UK,’ 92%

Released in tandem with four other shows set in France, Germany, and Spain, Criminal is an anthology series based around the police procedural genre. Each episode focuses on one criminal, and takes place in just one location during an interrogation.

The UK series is the only one out of the four that got a second series, and has so far starred David Tennant, Hayley Atwell, Youssef Kerkour, Sophie Okonedo, Kit Harington, Sharon Horgan, and Kunal Nayyar.

Watch Criminal: UK on Netflix here.

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