Series 1 - Episode 1



The Yukon at the turn of the 20th century was the site of the last great gold rush: a time when men were men, nights were cold and people would give a monologue about the American dream at the drop of a pickaxe.

If your idea of a gold prospector is a bearded man clicking his heels and hollering “nuggets as big as your head,” the carefully stubbled cast, including Richard Madden, Tim Roth and Sam Shepard, will be a welcome surprise.

Madden (the King of the North in Game of Thrones) looks especially at home bounding up mountains. The characters struggle to be more than ciphers, but there’s an energy to the story of young men seeking their fortune: “One of the most potent and foolish forces in the world.”

This is Discovery’s first scripted (ie fictional) series but it’s still solidly educational. “Oh yes, I’ve been reading about this in the papers,” someone remarks, before dropping a historical factoid, Downton-style. For most of the first episode Klondike feels like an expensive classroom aid, produced by Ridley Scott.

Yet it ends with the suggestion of a rich seam of drama lurking beneath the surface, waiting to be discovered.


Drama set during the 1890s Klondike gold rush, as seen through the eyes of Bill Haskell and Byron Epstein - two adventurers who are intent on striking it rich in the Yukon. Starring Richard Madden and Augustus Prew.

Cast & Crew

Bill Haskell Richard Madden
Byron Epstein Augustus Prew
Director Simon Cellan Jones