Top Five Sexiest BBC Stars

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According to one American blogger, that is. You may or may not be aware that today is the seventy-third anniversary of the founding of the British Broadcasting Company, which is probably (and sadly) best known stateside as a news organization or “that channel that makes all of PBS’s content.” But while our exposure may be limited, it doesn’t take long to see that like any good TV station, the Beeb likes their actors hot and saucy. Here are five of the best.

5. Alistair Appleton, Cash in the Attic

The affable host of several BBC shows – including the aforementioned Cash as well as Escape to the Country and Stately Suppers – Appleton has a relaxed air (aided, perhaps, by his devotion to yoga and conversion to Buddhism) and a boy-next-door grin. It's enough to make you fill every nook and cranny of your house just so he will come over with a film crew and rummage around with you.

4. Gina Bellman, Coupling
As Jane, the Phoebe Buffay of the BBC's witty and much sexier version of Friends, Bellman could switch from dreamy, dementia-like non-sequiturs to intimidating sexual aggression on a dime. What the character often lacked in tact or clarity she made up for with sex-kitten appeal.

3. Joanna Lumley, Absolutely Fabulous
True, while she was playing Patsy in the fashion-and-fame satire of AbFab, Lumley was more frightening than sexy, with a huge beehive of hair, a complete lack of manners or morals, and a blood stream long ago replaced by straight gin. But back in her days on shows like The New Avengers and Sapphire and Steel, Lumley was a bombshell blond who could easily hand you your ass in a fight. And, yes, neither of those shows were BBC productions, but that's just splitting hairs.

2. Keeley Hawes, Ashes to Ashes
A veteran of both the period-piece potboiller school and the hip-and-sexy new style of BBC programming, Keeley Hawes spans the gamut of what the BBC is known for. Currently playing the lead in Ashes to Ashes, a spin off of the successful Life on Mars series, Hawes was also an MI-5 agent on Spooks and first made a splash in Tipping the Velvet, a miniseries about a lesbian affair set in Victorian London. I'll give you a moment now while you hurry to add that to your Netflix queue.

1. David Tennant, Doctor Who
You might look at this picture and say, well, James, he's an attractive guy, but the sexiest BBC star? Hardly! But if you've seen the updated version of Doctor Who, you would understand. Channeling manic energy and rakish charm into the part of the 900-year-old Time Lord, Tennant is a boyish adventurer about to whisk you away to, well, wherever the Hell he wants to. If you still don't believe me, just know that he was voted "Sexiest Man in the Universe" by a British gay and lesbian paper, awarded "Most Popular Actor" three years in a row, and "Coolest Man on TV" in a Radio Times Survey. Trust me – he's sexy.

Like I said, I have limited access to the BBC, being an American and all, so if any of you UK readers out there see egregious errors in judgment, please let me know. Who would you want to be on there – Billie Piper? Idris Elba? Third elephant from the left on Planet Earth? It would be cruel of you to keep the knowledge of your hottest stars all to yourselves.