The Danish political series about a female prime minister's climb to power and how that power corrupts has already conquered Europe and it's easy to see why. Smart, honest and deeply moving, Borgen has managed the trick of actually getting better with its second season. Season three is currently on air in Denmark.
Photo by: KBS
Boys Over Flowers
The hottest of the many Korean dramas that have taken over Asian TV, the school days tale about a poor girl attending the elite Shin Hwa High deserves the crazy hype heaped on it by its growing international fan base. It's as funny as it is smart and dramatic.
Photo by: BBC America
If you missed it on BBC America, now's the time to binge your way through this powerfully atmospheric whodunit starring David Tennant as a police inspector investigating a horrific murder in a sun-drenched seaside vacation resort. Soon to be remade everywhere, see the original first.
Photo by: Roberto Garver
An Iberian Downton Abbey that's as crazily addictive, this Spanish melodrama is set in 1905, when young Julio gets a job as a waiter at the luxurious Grand Hotel. What follows is a soapy tale of wealth, sex and dangerous secrets set against the class divide. Can you say guilty pleasure?
Photo by: Channel10
You probably already know the plot to this Israeli thriller. CBS picked up the adaptation rights to Hostages early on and the American version of the story, in which a family of a surgeon is taken hostage to coerce her into killing the head of state on the operating table, hit screens before the original aired in Israel. Whether you're a fan of the U.S. remake or not, the original Hostages is worth a look.
Bridesmaids and The Sapphires star Chris O'Dowd created, co-wrote and stars in this sitcom about growing up in a small town in 1980s Ireland. O'Dowd plays Sean, the imaginary friend of the young Martin Moone (David Rawle) who helps him through life's scrapes. Wholesome (with a few four letter words -- this is Ireland after all), but hilarious.
Photo by: Michael Muller Pivot
Please Like Me
Sort of a gay Australian version of Girls, Please Like Me follows Josh who, after he breaks up with his girlfriend, realizes that, actually, he's homosexual. Ex-girlfriend Claire and best mate Tom help him make the transition from straight to queer. Funny, smart and featuring a star-making role for lead Josh Thomas.
Photo by: Canal+
This French zombie series has its devoted U.S. fan base thanks to its airing on the Sundance Channel, but still hasn't gotten the breakout recognition it richly deserves. More spine-chilling than the bloody horror of The Walking Dead, this subtle mystery involves a small Alpine down whose residents are disturbed when their love ones, who died violently, begin to return.
Photo by: Canal+
This French crime drama was a huge hit on BBC Four in the U.K. and its easy to see why. While Spiral starts slow, appearing to be a typical procedural about cops staking out drug dealers and tracking down terrorists, the plot soon deepens and explores the dark depths of its characters and the rot at the center of the French justice system.
Photo by: Hulu
Think an Australian Sons of Anarchy with a bit of Sopranos and a touch of Shakespeare, and you're getting close to the feel of this down under crime series. Set in Australia's far northeast and in Papua New Guinea (yes, really), The Straits features the extraordinary Brian Cox as the patriarch of the Montebello clan, who control organized crime in the region. The series starts with Cox announcing that he will be handing over his criminal empire to one of his three sons. It's King Lear with meth and biker gangs -- not to be missed.