Historical dramas have captured the imaginations of audiences since the invention of theater. The genre has never lost popularity. We love to view our history through a dramatic lens. If you're looking for something based in truth with perhaps a bit of artistic license, Netflix has quite a catalog to offer. The streaming service's 'Historical Drama' category is ripe for the picking. If you're having a hard time narrowing down your choices we've rounded up the 10 best titles available to stream right now. Get your binge on, you might even learn something along the way.
10. The Crown
9. North And South
North And South follows Margaret Hale as she navigates life in 19th century England. The show highlights the stark difference between the industrialized north of England and the more agrarian south. The show isn't afraid of tough themes like class and sexism. It tries to tell the story of life during the rise of the British empire. Under Queen Victoria's rule, England rapidly transformed becoming nearly unrecognizable. We watch the country and landscape drastically change as we follow the wealthy Margaret from the south to the north. This historical show demonstrates just how quickly a country can revolutionize its culture and economy.
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8. The Duchess
7. When Calls The Heart
When The Heart Calls is set in Canada at the beginning of the twentieth century. Erin Krakow takes the lead as Elizabeth Thatcher. Elizabeth leaves high society and leisure to offer hope to a working-class village. Elizabeth works as a teacher in a small coal-mining town. This show highlights the role of education in equalizing society. Social classes often experience gaps in access to education for the poorest areas. The show also takes on the huge differences in labor standards and practices over the last century.
6. The Tudors
The British royal family has always been an object of fascination. They've been featured in dramatic works since the crown was first worn. The Tudors illustrates the rein of King Henery the VIII. The four-part series examines the life of one of Britain's most polarizing figures. Each season focuses on a different aspect of the ruler's life. His history-making feud with the pope, his marriage to Ann Boleyn, the reformation and the siege of Boulogne are all featured.
5. Magnificent Century
Magnificent Century is a breath of fresh air. The series is set in Turkey and follows the reign of Suleiman the Magnificent. He was the emperor of the Ottoman empire in the 16th century. His accomplishments shaped the world but often remain unacknowledged in the modern era. He built an empire larger than Alexander The Great’s. It stretched from what is now know as Vienna to the Sahara Desert.
4. The Paradise
3. Peaky Blinders
2. To The Ends Of The Earth
To The Ends Of The Earth follows aristocrat Edmond Talbot on an epic journey from England to Australia. Benedict Cumberbatch stars in the main role as Talbot. Benedict has described the story as a rock and roll epic about a young man’s gap year. This show, based on a three-part novel series by the same title, is not for the faint of heart. The subject matter of the show is for a mature audience.
1. Call Me Francis
Call Me Francis casts the viewer’s gaze onto the pre-palpal life of Pope Francis. This shockingly honest piece explores the struggles of living in a country under a fascist military dictatorship. The show has met acclaim from both critics and viewers alike with one exception. The series doesn’t cover Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio’s estrangement from his own religious order. The exclusion leaves a treasure trove of dramatic material untouched.