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"The Hour"

The jolly good news: Shirley MacLaine will star in season three of Downton Abbey.

The bloody dreadful news: You?ll have to wait until 2013 to see it.

Luckily, we?ve found three fantastic British series to keep you glued to your telly while you wait.

The Hour Britain?s answer to Mad Men, this Emmy-nominated miniseries (which stars The Wire?s Dominic West) is set in a similarly slick 1956 London newsroom and boasts plenty of romance, conspiracy and--yes--gorgeous period costumes. Purchase or download the first season now before the second installment premieres in November on BBC America.

The Thick of It Parks and Rec meets The Larry Sanders Show: The Thick of It is England?s most beloved, raunchiest political satire since Yes Minister. Following the antics of an absurdly malfunctioning governmental department, this comedy of bureaucratic errors is seriously hilarious. All four seasons are streaming now on Hulu.

Foyle?s War WWII may be the backdrop of this detective drama, but the action takes place in Britain as Chief Superintendent Christopher Foyle fights crime on the home front. Each 90-minute episode (newly available on Netflix instant) follows a different mystery, making this a great show to pick up at any point in the six superb seasons.

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