Foyle’s War tops poll of most missed TV shows

Foyle’s War has been named the programme from this century that television viewers would most like to see back on screens.

The ITV Second World War detective drama starred Michael Kitchen as Detective Chief Superintendent Christopher Foyle and Honeysuckle Weeks as his resourceful driver Samantha.

Written by Anthony Horowitz, it was first broadcast in 2002 and ran until 2007.

Anthony Horowitz
Anthony Horowitz (Ian West/PA)

It returned for a further three series between 2010 and 2015, taking the story beyond the end of the war to Cold War-era criminal intrigue.

In a poll conducted by Radio Times, it was named as the show viewers would most like to see again, followed by police drama The Bill, which ran from 1984 to 2010, and Count Arthur Strong, which ran from 2013 to 2017.

Other shows that made the top 10 include Spooks, Home Fires, Life On Mars, Detectorists, Downton Abbey, Phoenix Nights and Happy Valley.

Spooks initially starred Keeley Hawes, Matthew Macfadyen and David Oyelowo (BBC)

Horowitz told the magazine: “I’m really thrilled that Radio Times readers have voted Foyle’s War as the show they’d most like to come back.

“It reminds me that years ago, ITV decided to axe the show — we missed the whole of 1944 as a result — and it was only thanks to pressure from viewers that they were persuaded to change their minds.

“I wrote the last episode of Foyle’s War in 2014, but no matter where I am in the world, people still tell me how much it means to them. And the repeats still get high viewing figures.

(Radio Times)
(Radio Times)

“I’d certainly be up for a Christmas special or two if anybody asked. There’s still that missing year to cover — it would actually make a whole series!

“Foyle’s War was a passion project for me from start to finish and I miss it to this day. It really cheers me up to think that Radio Times readers still hold it in such high regard.”

The most missed TV shows of the 21st century:

1. Foyle’s War, ITV, 2002-15
2. The Bill, ITV, 1984-2010
3. Count Arthur Strong, BBC2/BBC1, 2013-17
4. Spooks, BBC1 2002-2011
5. Home Fires, ITV, 2015-16
6. Life On Mars, BBC1, 2006-7
7. Detectorists, BBC Four, 2014-17
8. Downton Abbey, ITV, 2010-2015
9. Phoenix Nights, C4, 2001-2
10. Happy Valley, BBC 1, 2014-16

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