The long wait between seasons two and three of Netflix’s award-winning royal biopic The Crown has left a throne-sized hole in most of our viewing schedules. As Oscar-winner Olivia Colman succeeds Claire Foy as Queen Elizabeth II, season three isn’t expected to air until the end of the year.
But for viewers craving a heady dose of period costumes and ornate stately homes during the interim, have no fear: there’s been a recent slate of acclaimed historical dramas and biopics. From Gentleman Jack to the upcoming Beecham House, there’s something for every taste.
Read on for the five shows to watch while waiting for The Crown season three…
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What is Gentleman Jack about? Forbidden love, intrigue and women defying gender stereotypes. For fans of The Crown, there’s plenty to get excited about in BBC1’s Gentleman Jack, starring Suranne Jones in the role of a lifetime as the real-life Anne Lister, a well-off Yorkshire landowner famous for her four-million-word diary that documented her lesbian relationships.
Set in 1832, the series follows the 41-year-old Lister as she returns to “shabby” Shibden Hall, with the aim of restoring her ancestral home to its former glory — and finding herself a wealthy wife.
Where can I watch Gentleman Jack? Gentleman Jack premiered in the UK on Sunday 19th May at 9pm on BBC1, and is available to watch on BBC iPlayer.
What is Beecham House about? ITV’s lavish new period drama series from Gurinder Chadha (Bend It Like Beckham) follows the fortunes of the residents of an imposing mansion called Beecham House in Delhi, India at the brink of the 19th century.
Vanity Fair and Da Vinci’s Demons star Tom Bateman leads the cast as John Beecham, an enigmatic former soldier and owner of the mansion. He hopes to set up a new life for his family, but despite his best efforts his past continues to haunt him. According to ITV, he is also troubled by “dangerous enemies in high places, rival suitors competing for his heart and discord with family members”.
Where can I watch Beecham House? The six-episode drama will air on ITV in June 2019.
What is Victoria about? The great-great grandmother of Elizabeth II, Queen Victoria inherited the throne at just 18 years old, going on to reign for over six decades. Starring Jenna Coleman as Queen Victoria and Tom Hughes as her husband Prince Albert, ITV’s royal period drama follows the highs and lows of the monarch’s long life, during which she became a national icon.
Surviving assassination attempts, fears of revolution and troubles within the royal marriage, Victoria must navigate the private and public pressures placed on her young shoulders.
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What is Versailles about? BBC2’s sweeping historical romp features more sumptuous palaces, costumes and hairstyles than you can shake a sceptre at.
‘Sun King’ Louis XIV (played in the drama by George Blagden) sets out to build a gorgeous palace that, behind the shining veneer, hides a dark underbelly of intrigue, betrayal, violence and poverty.
What is Summer of Rockets about? Set during the tumultuous summer of 1958, Keeley Hawes, Toby Stephens and Timothy Spall star in BBC2’s semi-autobiographical Cold War drama from Stephen Poliakoff, which follows two families against a backdrop of espionage, Britain’s class system, and leaps in technology.
Stephens plays Samuel Petrukhin, a Russian Jewish émigré and inventor who strikes up an unlikely friendship with the Shaws (Hawes and Homeland’s Linus Roache), attracting the attention of the British intelligence services…
Where can I watch Summer of Rockets? Summer of Rockets began on Wednesday 22nd May at 9pm on BBC2. The full series is now available on BBC iPlayer.