Your guide to the best drama series of 2017, currently streaming now at SBS On Demand.
29 Nov 2017 - 3:22 PM  UPDATED 30 Nov 2017 - 3:06 PM

The team at SBS pride themselves in their curation of the finest scripted dramas from around the world. Each year they watch hundreds of series in an effort to select the best shows for the SBS audience. These are high end, premium dramas that entertain, thrill, and challenge viewers.

We have assembled a list of some of these great shows that continue streaming at SBS On Demand over the end of year break. Celebrate your holidays by catching up on the very best dramas.

The Handmaid's Tale

Based on the best-selling novel by Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid's Tale tells the story of life in the dystopia of Gilead.

This was one of our biggest shows at SBS On Demand this year and with very good reason. Viewers and critics alike were unanimous in praising this compelling new series. Even if you have already watched the first season, this is one to rewatch before the second season debuts in 2018.

 

The Young Pope

Created and directed by Academy Award-winner Paolo Sorrentino, The Young Pope follows the story of Lenny Belardo (Jude Law), the newly elected Pius XIII- the youngest and first American Pope in history. Always bold and compelling, The Young Pope looks and feels unlike anything else on TV in 2017. Viewers looking for a challenging drama will be in heaven.

 

Fortitude

Fortitude is the most northerly town in the world, and the most peaceful - until a prominent member of the community is found eviscerated in his own home, and suddenly the town's sheriff has his first ever murder to investigate. 

The first two seasons debuted at SBS On Demand this year, boasting a great cast including celebrated actors Stanley Tucci, Michael Gambon, and Dennis Quaid. SBS favourite Sofie Gråbøl, star of the original version of The Killing (Forbrydelsen) is also a regular cast member of the series. 

This is a series that delights in surprising at every turn.

 

Riviera

Riviera is an intoxicating thriller set in the dangerous, dark world of the ultra-rich. At the heart of the show is a simple question: Does money make you corrupt or does corruption make you rich? 

The writer of The Crying Game and series The Borgias Neil Jordan created this series, with the beloved Julia Stiles in the lead role. No television show has looked as intoxicating as this series, filmed in the south of France and making the most out of its stunning environment. 

 

Harlots

London 1763, the capital of the world, the most cosmopolitan place on Earth. One in five women in London is making her living selling sex. In some areas brothels, run by indomitable Madams, are to be found on almost every street. Margaret Wells’ brothel is in a down-trodden area of the capital, but she’s making her move upwards, aiming to move her family and her girls and take a new house in the vibrant new area of Soho. Margaret is determined to take her piece of the wealth of this great city. She is hungry for success – even when her ambition begins to threaten everything she cares for.

We try and seek out dramas that are confronting and challenging - this series certainly fits the brief. The grungy British drama series has the outstanding Samantha Morton as its lead.

 

The Bureau

Based on real accounts from French spies, this gritty series reveals what life is like for the deep cover agents that put their lives on the line in the so-called 'Bureau of Legends' - a clandestine branch of the French secret service. 

The first three seasons of this acclaimed French drama series are all available at SBS On Demand.  It is a series that has quickly earned a fiercely loyal viewership with very vocal fans. Trust us - you'll want to catch up on this one before your friends all discover it.

 

Sunshine

Sunshine is a vibrant, kinetic and compelling high stakes fictional crime drama that delves behind the headlines to get up close and personal with the lives of the South Sudanese community in Australia.

An SBS Original production, the four-part drama boasts Anthony LaPaglia and Melanie Lynskey leading a talented cast that includes newcomer Wally Elnour. 

 

Cardinal

In this atmospheric thriller, demoted Detective John Cardinal is brought back into Homicide when the hunch he wouldn't let go is proven correct. Now, as he relentlessly tracks a serial killer, he must keep a watchful eye on his new partner.

SBS viewers will be aware of the commitment to broadcasting the best Scandi Noir shows. This Canadian Noir series is every-bit as compelling. Starring Billy Campbell from the US adaptation of The Killing and Tales of The City, the show offers one of the most complex and mysterious lead characters in an SBS series to date.

 

Search Party

Five self-absorbed 20-somethings who become entangled in an ominous mystery when a former college acquaintance suddenly disappears.

This series isn't strictly a drama. It is very funny. But, it does have a lot of interesting things to say about the way we live our lives in a connected world. Plus, viewers of the great murder mystery shows on SBS will be very familiar with a lot of the genre conventions that the series is playfully exploring. It'll have you laughing, but SBS drama fans will find a lot to love about Search Party.

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