As the shortest month on the calendar, February doesn't have much going for it other than being over faster. Besides Valentine's Day and the occasional Marvel movie, entertainment hits the doldrums during the calendar's metaphorical month of Tuesdays. Movie studios either put out cloying romances or bury their box office bombs; in TV, it's not time to release the major series for Emmy consideration, and the shows that debuted in January haven't wrapped up yet.
PBS viewers are luckier than most during this time of year. Since Downton Abbey turned January into the debut spot for public television, February has always been filled with continuing episodes of fan favorites that arrived just after the new year. For 2023, that's Season 3 of Miss Scarlet & the Duke, All Creatures Great & Small, and Vienna Blood. That also means that for those who like to stream things via PBS Passport, all three shows have their full seasons available to watch all at once or to go weekly to keep pace with linear viewers.
But there are a few new additions to the streaming service for members to check out this month, including catch-ups ahead of March's next set of debuts, more Walter's Choice, and an early access arrival for members of PBS's new summer police procedural.
'Call The Midwife' Seasons 10-11
Call The Midwife Season 12 won't arrive until mid-March 2023. However, for fans who need to remind themselves where the show left everyone, PBS Passport and the PBS app have you covered. Both Call The Midwife Seasons 10 and 11 have returned to the public broadcasting streaming service ahead of the new season's debut, including the December 2022 Christmas special, which in the U.K. was the technical kick-off to Season 12. Spoiler alert: it features a charming wedding, and if you were too busy over the holidays to watch it on broadcast, it is highly recommended you catch up.
'St. Maik' (Sankt Maik)
The last few months have seen PBS Passport bulk up the Walter's Choice library for members with several award-winning series. This is the final slate of the first set of weekly arrivals, headlined by the German series St Maik (Sankt Maik). In an ironic twist, this series is a remake of an American series (so often it's American TV remaking European hits), Impastor, a failed one-season wonder over on TVLand, about a con artist who steals a priest's identity, only to find himself running a church and caring for his flock. The German version was so popular it ran for three seasons, ending in 2021. The first season arrives on PBS Passport on Thursday, February 2, 2023, along with a few others:
- The King of Warsaw (Król)
- A Murder of Crows (Der Kommissar und das Kind)
- The Crimson Rivers (Les Rivières Pourpres) Season 1
- The Paris Murders (Profilage) Seasons 1-5
The most significant arrival is the early access release for PBS's brand-new police procedural, DI Ray. The latest series from Jed Mercutio's outfit HTM Television is set in the fictionalized Birmingham police force; the series was conceived and written by Line of Duty vet Maya Sondhi and stars Sikh actor Parminder Nagra (Agents of SHIELD) as the titular DI Rachita Ray. It premiered in May 2022 in the U.K. and was hailed for its fresh perspective on the genre by positioning it from the POV of a woman who has experienced both racism and sexism at every juncture of her career.
DI Ray will debut on linear in July as part of PBS's "Summer of Mysteries," but members can watch all four episodes of Season 1 starting Monday, February 20, 2023.
Batch one of Walter's Choice arrivals may be over, but Part 2 is right behind it. This batch is led off by Top Dog, the compulsively bingable Swedish series that ran for one season in 2020. When the son of one of the richest men in Sweden gets kidnapped, his father hires everyone to get his son back, including lawyer Emily Jansson (Josefin Asplund), meanwhile, across the tracks, Teddy Maksumic (Alexej Manvelov) is released from prison and sent to track down who betrayed his gang boss. These cases are related, we promise. All episodes arrive on Thursday, February 9, 2023.
Other titles arriving that day include:
- The Wall (La Faille) Seasons 2-3
- Witnesses (Les Témoins) Season 2
- Inspector Ricciardi (Il Commissario Ricciardi)
'Sisi: Austrian Empress' (Sisi)
Arriving slightly off schedule from everyone else, Sisi: Austrian Empress (Sisi) follows the extraordinary life of empress Elisabeth of Austria, played by Dominique Devenport. This German series should NOT be confused with last month's Walter's Choice release, The Empress (Maria Theresia), which was also released in 2021, or Netflix's The Empress, which is about the same character, but a completely different cast and production series and came out in 2022. All episodes arrive on Friday, February 10, 2023.
'Paradise' (Il Paradiso Delle Signore) Season 2
Less than a month after Season 1 landed on PBS Passport in January, Walter's Choice brings Season 2 of the popular Italian series Paradise (Il Paradiso Delle Signore). Starring Alessandro Tersigni as Vittorio Conti and Giuseppina Buscemi as Teresa Iorio, the series is loosely based on Emile Zola's 1883 novel Au Bonheur des Dames. Seasons 1 and 2 were 20 episodes a piece, but it's now become a year-round series, with 160-180 episodes a season from Season 3 onward. (Season 7 comes out in 2023.) This binge drop is the second set of 20 episodes from 2016, arriving Thursday, February 16, 2023.
Other titles arriving that day include:
- Inside Suspicion (La Part du Soupçon)
- Bella Germania
- The Empress (Maria Theresia) Season 2
The off-cycle release for Friday, February 17, 2023, is Acquitted (Frikjent), the 2015 Norweigan thriller that helped define the concept of scandi-noir. The series stars Nicolai Cleve Broch as Aksel Borgen, who returns home to rural Norway to save an ailing local firm from bankruptcy. Despite being acquitted of murder two decades earlier, Aksel is still haunted by his past. The series ran two seasons because it was so popular; Walter's Choice brings the first ten episodes in this binge drop.
'Munch' Seasons 1-2
The popular French series Munch arrives on PBS Passport with two seasons to kick it off. Isabelle Nanty stars as Gabrielle Munchovski, aka Munch, a lawyer devoted to justice. Bold and irreverent, she will cross any line in defense of the innocent and marginalized; she's also famous for her Munch-ups and Munchisms. The series ran five seasons in France, ending in 2021. Season 1 ran eight episodes; Season 2 ran ten, so 18 episodes in all arrive Thursday, February 23, 2023.
Also arriving that day:
- Something to Hide (Le Mensonge)
- Raven (Kruk. Szepty Słychać Po Zmroku)
- Mafia Only Kills in Summer (La Mafia Uccide Solo D'estate) Season 1
- Pulled Apart (Jamais Sans Toi, Louna)
'Dicte' Season 1
The final Walter’s Choice arrival for February is the first season of the Danish series Dicte. Iben Hjejle stars as the titular newly divorced crime reporter Dicte Svendsen, who returns home to Aarhus with her teenage daughter in tow, where her childhood memories of growing up as a Jehovah’s Witness and of the son she was forced to give up. The series proved so popular that it ran three seasons from 2013-2016, but PBS Passport only brings the first ten episodes on Friday, February 24, 2023.