Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown
12 seasons, 95 episodes
There’s no better place to start than this series which won 12 Emmys and a Peabody Award. It seems there aren’t many places in the world Anthony Bourdain did not visit. In this wonderful series, the well-read Bourdain immerses himself not only in the local food culture, but delves into each destination’s history and politics, too. He is greatly missed. Happily, we present all 12 seasons for you to enjoy.
Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown is now streaming at SBS On Demand.
10 seasons, 86 episodes
This seminal UK spy drama ran for 10 incredible seasons and introduced us to a slew of players who would become the who’s who of British actors. Set behind the scenes of the modern British Security Service (MI5), Spooks shows what it’s like to be a spy, through the eyes of the spies themselves, balancing personal life storylines with intense and sleek action. The series became known for its shock twists, cliffhanger endings and the feeling that no character is safe (long before Game of Thrones killed off a lead character early, Spooks had already done so and in a completely brutal way).
Jump back to 2002 when in season 1 a young Matthew Macfadyen was the chief of section D, a clandestine counter-terrorism division who work round the clock to safeguard the nation.
Spooks is now streaming at SBS On Demand.
7 seasons, 27 episodes (season 7 arrives on 29 July)
Based on Viveca Sten’s hugely popular crime novel Still Waters, we’re on the Swedish island of Sandhamn. One beautiful summer morning is marred when a man’s body washes up to shore. Crime inspector Thomas Andreasson and colleague Carina Persson set to work through the hot days with very few leads. A holiday guest, banking lawyer and mother of two Nora Lindé, cooperates with Thomas on the case, causing friction with Nora’s husband Henrik. When more crimes are committed, the pressure mounts on our two detectives. This is a worthy addition to the Nordic Noir collection, with bonus sunshine. Many seasons, not as many episodes, this series is like the Scandi Midsomer Murders and you can’t miss it.
Sandhamn Murders is now streaming at SBS On Demand.
5 seasons, 48 episodes
Touted as one of the best drama series to come out of The Netherlands, you won’t want to miss an episode. Penoza takes us to the Amsterdam underworld where we meet drug lord Frans and wife Carmen. After their son, at 10, threatens a child with a gun, Carmen presents Frans with an ultimatum: get out of the criminal life or lose your family. But they end up losing Frans, who’s shot dead, leaving Carmen to deal with the debts he leaves behind, not to mention other unfinished business. With a mobster father, Carmen isn’t inexperienced in this life, and proves rather adept at coping with the clean-up. Will she be able to walk away?
Penoza will be streaming at SBS On Demand from 29 July.
The Cook Up with Adam Liaw
1 season, 60 episodes, and counting
There’s nothing like cooking with friends and with 200 episodes, this show is the biggest commission in SBS’s history. Adam Liaw, popular cook, author and TV presenter, is joined each night by two food-loving friends (such as Benjamin Law, Yumi Stynes and Jimmy Barnes) for a half hour of good fun and conversation as they cook up a variety of dishes centred around a nightly theme. Whether it’s an ingredient, a style of cuisine or cultural inspiration, Adam whips up his dish first before his guests follow suit with easy-to-follow recipes and tips for viewers to follow at home in time for dinner. There will be celebrities, culture and lots of laughs in a series that provides everyday inspiration for foodies and non-foodies alike.
6 seasons, 61 episodes
The rural Ontario town of Letterkenny is our setting in this series chockful of oddballs. Co-creators Jared Keeso and Jacob Tierney have grouped their characters into three ‘gangs’: the not-so-brainy hockey players, the meth-smoking skids and the close-knit hicks. Lead hick Wayne (Keeso) consistently emerges victorious in organised punch-ups that ensure everyone knows who’s the toughest bloke in town. The wordsmithing is a fun challenge to work out, the turns of phrase most certainly unique. Dive into this Canadian comedy smash – even Brad Pitt has sung its praises.
Letterkenny is now streaming at SBS On Demand.
1 season, 60 episodes
One season (split into two parts) with 60 episodes? That’s Martial Universe! Based on the popular online novel, Wu Dong Qian Kun (Martial Arts Reshapes the World) by Chinese web novelist, Li Hu, better known as Tian Can Tu Dou, Martial Universe is a combination coming-of-age tale and love story with plenty of drama, fight scenes and shock twists. A fantasy series for fans of Game of Thrones, it tells the story of Lin Dong who is forsaken by his clan. When he comes across a stone talisman with magical powers, life will never be the same again. His adventures help him hone his skills as a martial artist, to keep a demon sect from taking over the world. With a huge budget, this series sparkles, so settle in and enjoy.
Martial Universe is now streaming at SBS On Demand.
The Longest Day in Chang’an
2 seasons, 48 episodes
The Longest Day in Chang’an is essential viewing for action epic enthusiasts. It’s 744AD and a former detective turned convicted criminal becomes China’s last hope to thwart mysterious invaders who threaten the empire’s capital city on the day before the Lantern Festival. Fans of 24 will be familiar with the structure of this Chinese period drama, which follows one very stressful day in the cosmopolitan heart of the Tang dynasty, Chang’an. The series takes place over 48 episodes, each accounting for 30 minutes of the day. Based on Ma Boyong’s novel of the same name, the series is visually stunning with high production values, with the clothing, make-up and architecture as authentic as possible to the time.
The Longest Day in Chang’an is now streaming at SBS On Demand.
4 seasons, 24 episodes
It might not have as many episodes but winter viewing calls for this Canadian series. Winner of 20 Canadian Screen Awards over its four seasons, Cardinal has become one of the most watched and beloved series at SBS On Demand. If you love Nordic Noir then this Canadian crime thriller series is for you. Adapted from the crime novels by Giles Blunt, the series follows Algonquin Bay city detectives John Cardinal (Billy Campbell) and his partner Lise Delorme (Karine Vanasse). In season 1 Cardinal is on a chilling hunt for a brutal killer, in season 2 Cardinal and Delorme’s investigation exposes the seedy underbelly of picturesque Algonquin Bay. In season 3 it’s autumn but the glorious colours can’t hide the town’s most gruesome double murder as they investigate a doomsday cult with nothing to lose. And in the fourth and final season there are murders to be solved and they are challenged in fresh, frigid and frightening ways in the icy winter.
Cardinal is now streaming at SBS On Demand.