This is not an unusual occurrence though, as I have many US friends who have said the same thing to me. They forget until about 20 or 30 years ago most UK TV was imported from overseas.
My interest in US history goes back to my days as a stamp collector, when I tried to get a collection of stamps featuring all the presidents. From there, I gained a huge interest in US culture and not only westerns but all types of reading. I have read many books from US reporters in Vietnam and based the character Mark Johnson on "real" photographic reporters like Tim Page, Sean Flynn, Philip Caputo and Michael Herr, rather than the glamorous world of celebrity media, who to me are not (!) reporters.