The best TV shows airing in 2019

From dramas and documentaries to comedy and entertainment shows, here are all the biggest new and returning series of the year. What will you be watching?

Martin Freeman, Olivia Colman, Holliday Grainger, RuPaul

2019 has been a stellar year for TV so far – and there’s much more to come.


Whether you’re into period dramas like Gentleman Jack and Peaky Blinders or contemporary thrillers such as Line of Duty and Traitors, there’s a scintillating range of series on offer.

In the world of entertainment, there’s also the return of some of Britain’s biggest shiny floor shows – take Strictly and The X Factor for instance – as well as the addition of The Greatest Dancer and a Shipwrecked reboot.

In comedy, Catastrophe is back for a final series and Alan Partridge bumbles back onto our screens with a brand new show.

Netflix release dates 2019: all the major upcoming TV shows revealed

And finally there’s a diverse selection of documentaries, from David Attenborough’s new Netflix series to Danny Dyer’s exploration of his family history.

Check out all the series to look out for in 2019, below…


Dark Money

Channel: BBC1

Air date: Monday 8th July 2019

Dark Mon£y (BBC)
Dark Mon£y on BBC1

A four-part drama by writer Levi David Addai (Damilola, Our Loved Boy), about a London family that accepts a substantial pay-off from a renowned filmmaker to keep silent about the abuse of their youngest son. Read more

Peaky Blinders series 5

Channel: BBC1

Air date: TBC

Peaky Blinders s5 BBC publicity pic, BD
Peaky Blinders series 5 on BBC1

Cillian Murphy returns as Tommy Shelby in Stephen Knight’s Birmingham-based gangster family epic, which is moving to BBC1. Sam Claflin and Emmet J Scanlan (seen most recently in Butterfly) join the fray. Read more

Adult Material

Channel: Channel 4

Air date: TBC

Hayley Squires (Getty)

Hayley Squires stars as a leading British porn star in a drama examining the adult film industry. It promises to be a timely look at how porn’s influence on mainstream culture has affected society’s ideas of consent. Sheridan Smith was originally attached to the project but dropped out due to a scheduling conflict. Read more

The Man

Channel: ITV

Air date: late 2019

Ken Nwosu as Thomas Benson in The Man

Doctor Foster writer Mike Bartlett is back with a new three-parter, The Man, which looks at the impact of workplace bullying. Ken Nwosu stars in the lead role of the psychological drama as Thomas Benson, a hard-working father who bottles it during a pitch to a client, a career mistake which ends up having disastrous consequences. Read more

The Looming Tower

Channel: BBC2

Air date: Friday 26th April

Jeff Daniels) stars in The Looming Tower, coming to BBC2 in spring 2019 (Photo by: JoJo Whilden/Hulu)

The Looming Tower is a political thriller charting the events in the run-up to 9/11 during the late 1990s. It stars Jeff Daniels as the chief of the New York FBI’s Counterterrorism Centre, and follows internal rivalries between the FBI and the CIA. Read more


Channel: ITV

Air date: TBC

Bancroft, ITV Pictures, SL

ITV’s murder-mystery is set to return for a second series, after the show’s cliffhanger series one finale which left us guessing about the fate of Detective Superintendent Elizabeth Bancroft. Read more


Channel: Sky

Air date: Friday 13th September 2019

Temple sky drama

For Mark Strong’s character Daniel Milton, a desperate mission to save his wife from life-threatening illness takes him deep underground into the tunnel network beneath Temple tube station in London. He is a talented surgeon, and sets up a literal “underground” clinic. But how far is he prepared to go for the woman he loves – and what will be the consequences? Read more

Catherine the Great

Channel: Sky Atlantic

Air date: Autumn 2019

Catherine The Great

Helen Mirren stars as the Empress of Russia in this four-part period drama full of “politics, passion and power”, which delves into the “politically tumultuous and sexually charged court of the most powerful female monarch in history” – Catherine the Great. Mirren’s co-stars include Jason Clarke, Gina McKee and Rory Kinnear. Read more


Channel: BBC1

Air date: Sunday 17th February

Baptiste, BBC1
Baptiste on BBC1

The Missing’s beloved detective, Julien Baptiste, is getting his own spin-off show. The new drama stars Tchéky Karyo as the titular sleuth and Tom Hollander as a man desperately searching for a disappeared sex worker in Amsterdam. Read more

Summer of Rockets

Channel: BBC2

Air date: 22nd May 2019

WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 15/05/2018 - Programme Name: The Summer of Rockets - TX: 12/05/2018 - Episode: n/a (No. n/a) - Picture Shows: Kathleen Shaw (KEELEY HAWES) - (C) Little Island Productions - Photographer: Sophie Mutevelian
Summer of Rockets on BBC2

Stephen Poliakoff’s semi-autobiographical six-part series set in Britain during the Cold War stars Toby Stephens and Keeley Hawes. Read more

The Luminaries

Channel: BBC2

Air date: TBC