Discussion Post: Recommend Period TV Shows to Each Other!

Again, there is a basic assumption that readers of DCIB share an interest in relationship dramas, romance, and clothing. With that in mind, I feel we can probably recommend non-Indian (and Indian if you have one you love) historical drama TV shows.

Assuming no other disaster comes up to prevent it, I am having toe surgery in a week and then being even MORE locked inside as I slowly wait for my toe to come back to life and be able to walk again. This is clearly the time to use my TV set as a time machine and escape to another world. I’ll recommend shows to you, but you have to give me something to watch in return!

Endeavour: I’m halfway through the series now, it’s the best show I’ve seen for the late 60s/early 70s era. It doesn’t get bogged down with drugs and hippies and things, or even with the “generation gap”. It just has things in the background like woman in the workplace, shifting class boundaries, medical leaps forward, and even a huge room sized computer. It’s also got some solid episodic mysteries, along with mild personal drama among the detectives to tie it together. Really, you should check it out! If you are looking to escape to a different time, without all the drama of a historical soap opera. And all your 70s miniskirt cravings will be filled.

Amazon.com: Watch Masterpiece: Endeavour, Season One | Prime Video

Victoria: Now, if you DO want the drama of a historical soap opera, this is the show to watch. It’s like The Crown, but lower budget and a story you probably know less about. Victoria and Albert, Victoria and her weird childhood and mother issues, all the old men who felt like they had a right to advise her, and of course These Changing Times, only the new technology is the steam engine instead of the computer. Oh, and all your hoopskirt cravings will be filled.

Victoria TV Show - Season 2 Episodes List - Next Episode

From the Earth to the Moon: I used to feel bad about recommending this one because it was so impossible to get. But now there is HBOMax, so it’s not as hard! If you have HBOMax, this is a great soothing historical series, from back in the late 90s so a little time capsule of actors from that era too (Tom Hanks produced!). It’s about the space race in a very calm step by step way that shows serious hardworking honest men wearing thin ties and black rimmed glasses. It makes the world feel sane and safe and anything is possible. Also, if you happen to have a fetish for Tom Hanks/50s dressed men in crewcuts/competence, this is the show to watch.

Apollo movies to watch on the moon landing's 50th anniversary ...

Okay, now it’s your turn! What are your favorite historical shows? Anything from Happy Days to Downton Abbey is acceptable!

20 thoughts on “Discussion Post: Recommend Period TV Shows to Each Other!

  1. Siyaasat!!! Romance between Salim and Mehrunissa (Nur Jahan). A divorcee with a child becomes the the last queen consort of Salim and chief consel.

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    • Wait, really? not just in my fanfic? That’s amazing! Although I still think they should make my movie version with Shahrukh and Tabu.

      On Fri, Jul 17, 2020 at 12:40 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • Oh absolutely they should make a movie with your SRK-Tabu fan fic.

        I think the show it is WAY too long for you to review for the blog, but if you need something to bing watch while you recover, do check it out and let me know what you think. And if you are not blogging about it, you can fast forward through boring fight scenes and other random stuff that you think is not very important. My sister and I loved it. The characters are really well developed. I was surprised that they showed things like miscarriages, marital rape, sibstance use disorders, specifically related to alcohol and opium. And it is mostly historically accurate. One complaint is that it ends with the Salim and Mehrunissa’s marriage and I really wished I could have seen a show that shows their partnership and romance post marriage.

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        • My fanfic ends with him naming her “Nur Jahan” after they have finally admitted their marital love and fidelity and respect and stuff.

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      • I can’t really handle it for unrelated personal reasons, but the little I’ve seen is basically perfect. Witty, perfectly costumed, well done LGBT content and women’s issues, deals with the real Anne’s particular issues reasonably well.

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  2. These all have Nicola Walker, an English actor I love.
    Last Tango in Halifax (too hard to explain)
    The Split ( Mother and two sisters in a law firm of divorce lawyers)
    Unforgotten (has Sanjeev Bhaskar as a detective)
    Gavin and Stacey (broad humor and some bad language but delightful. Get through the first episode. James Corden wrote it a while back)
    Period pieces:
    Miss Fischer mysteries

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    • Love Unforgotten and Gavin and Stacey, have debated trying Last Tango in Halifax, but had not heard of The Split at all!

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  3. I’m gonna get a reputation for liking the brutal, dark stuff: The last period showI watched was Outlander. A woman from 1940s England accidentally travels through time to 1740s Scotland and falls in love there.

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    • Oh! I watched the first season of that, but then never went back to it. I also read all the books, that was like half a year of my life just working on that.

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  4. – War and Peace (2016) – not perfect (the Soviet movies are the best adaptation and they can be found on YouTube with subtitles easily and in HD), but it is a good show with gorgeous cinematography, great music, splendid acting and a quite a lot of inaccurate costumes you can snark at. A LOT OF CLASSIC RELATIONSHIP DRAMA!
    – Reign – Mary Queen of Scots’ life in the French court by the way of Gossip Girl-like soap opera plots, costumes varying from clearly inaccurate in the first seasons before getting much better, lots of women there for one another and ever the best Guilty Pleasure if you are a history buff
    – Grand Hotel – Spanish show about a hotel in the 1900s with pretty costumes, murder mysteries, romance, fun and a lot of cute Spaniards
    – North and South – with Richard Armitage as your Victorian Darcy, a very well done romance that will have you swooning and wishing you would be in the heroine’s place
    – Versailles – Louis XIV builds Versailles, queer representation with his brother that is historically accurate and pretty 17th-century Baroque costumes
    – Medici – Start with Maters of Florence, then The Magnificent Part 1 and 2. Good family drama there, mostly accurate, but costumes are a bit boring. The men are extremely good looking men in this show!!
    – Aristocrats – about four sisters in the 18th century and how their lives went. Very good plot wise and costume wise
    – Death comes to Pemberly – a Pride and Prejudice fanfic, good acting, good costumes and Matthew Goode is Wickham and he is especially easy on the eyes in the same way that Kunal Kapoor is
    – Wives and Daughters – good costumes, good romance and a good plot. I’ve only heard good things about this one.

    I will add more if I remember something

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    • Thank you! I’ve watched a couple of these, considered the others, and never heard of the rest. A good sign, that our tastes are similar!

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  5. The only period piece on there is Miss Fischer but you have already found my favorite Endeavor. Have we discussed Grandchester? That’s also in the 50’s.

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    • Yes, but Grantchester got so angsty!!! Endeavour is heading that way a little too, but not nearly as much.

      On Fri, Jul 17, 2020 at 3:37 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  6. Oh and Norsemen!!! Done in an actual Norwegian recreational village with a lot of re-enactors. Makes fun of Vikings (which is not accurate and it’s leather clothes) and is very funny!! Not strictly Period Drama, but very good.

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  7. One of the best period dramas in india was Bharat:Ek Khoj,the plus point being the use of real locations.Nowadays there aren’t many good period dramas in India(the Ekta Kapoor mockery of history doesn’t count)but Chittod Ki Rani Padmini Ka Johar is a good watch.There is also a 10part Pakistani adaptation of Umrao Jaan Ada which had amazing costumes and sets,and it is true to the original novel.The acting is mostly good with the female characters,but the men are meh(not surprising since men are useless in a show about a courtesan).
    I am surprised you haven’t watched Gentleman Jack.Do give it a try,it is perfect in every sense of the word.I liked Victoria in general,but the beginning with Victoria’s infatuation with Lord Melbourne was creepy.

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    • I’d completely forgotten about Victoria and Melbourne, the Victoria and Albert romance dominated so much after that. Ew, now you are making me remember.

      On Fri, Jul 17, 2020 at 10:15 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  8. A Very Secret Service on Netflix is a French comedy about spies, set in 1960. Apart from the fantastic clothes it’s really smart and funny and I can’t understand why it’s not a huge hit.

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  9. Adding some more that I remembered!

    – Picnic at Hanging Rock (2018) – a series based on the book, pretty dresses and expands on the plot of the book.
    – Still Star Crossed – Rosaline and Benvolio are married and this short-lived series deserved more love, but it is wonderful with lots of POC in the leads.
    – The White Queen + The White Princess + The Spanish Princess – based on the Philippa Gregory’s infamous books about the Wars of the Roses and Tudor women, has a bunch of historical inaccuracies and sub-par costumes, but if you want to snark at bad writing and little brainpower needed series these are the series to go for, which is a shame because the actors are very good and Aneurin Barnard is a treat as Richard (iii) in TWQ.
    – Return to Cranford – YOUNG CURLY BLONDE HAIRED TOM HIDDLESTON IN THE SWEETEST ROMANCE EVER!!!

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