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Hulu offers hit international TV

While acclaimed British dramas such as 'Downton Abbey' and 'Sherlock' air on PBS here in the states, another BBC gem, 'Line of Duty,' is currently a Hulu exclusive.

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A scene from 'Line of Duty.'

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In 2007, NBC, ABC, and Fox created Hulu.com as a legal way for Americans to catch up on TV shows. Viewers can watch the five latest episodes of hundreds of programs on-demand and free of charge. Tossing in a few bucks a month unlocks entire seasons.

But this year, some of Hulu's best programming isn't shows that you missed – it's shows that you never had the chance to see.

Hulu recently pulled in several top-notch TV series from overseas. While acclaimed British dramas such as "Downton Abbey" and "Sherlock" air on PBS here in the states, another BBC gem, Line of Duty, is currently a Hulu exclusive.

The modern cop drama feels like the BBC's answer to "The Wire." After a counterterrorism bust goes terribly awry, officer Steve Arnott (Martin Compston) gets booted off his squad for refusing to cover up the department's mistakes. He lands in the anticorruption unit, where Arnott must investigate decorated detective Tony Gates (played wonderfully by Lennie James). Much like HBO's "The Wire," this tight, powerful show draws a surprising amount of drama out of bureaucratic machinations and hard-earned detective work.

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