The Tudors is like the king of all period dramas. Somehow, Jonathan Rhys Meyers goes from being super hot to quite repulsive in the space of four seasons. Maria Doyle Kennedy makes me love Catherine of Aragon, and Henry Cavill…I don’t think I need to say any more then. There are quite a few twists on what actually happened during the 16th-century. Still, The Tudors is addictive, right from the entrance of Anne Boleyn through to Henry’s exit.
I really, really hope my U.S. and Canadian friends have had a chance to see The Village. Out of all the dramas I have watched, it comes with the greatest historical accuracy. It basically focuses on a teeny little village with a Downton-like social structure, but from a gritty perspective. There is romance and controversy to keep us all engaged. What I really love it for, though, is the way it explores men being shot at dawn for PTSD. Nothing is flowery about The Village, which is why I love it so much.
I really didn’t expect to love Downton Abbey as much as I do. After starting it a month ago, I have watched all four seasons. This awesome drama focuses on the lives of the English aristocracy as their power slowly dwindles away during the early 20th century. I have cried on more than one occasion watching this series, and I absolutely love the director Julian Fellowes for his work. He’s quite a brave man in my opinion, as he’s touched on some seriously gritty issues. For example, eclampsia, anti-Catholic feeling, racism, and sexual assault. I will be very sad when this one comes to an end!
I’ve got to be honest, I was about as interested in Mr Selfridge as I was golf when I first started watching it. After my Twitter exploded with praise for the likes of Jeremy Piven, I gave it a whirl! So while Downton explores old money, Mr Selfridge tells the tale of Harry Selfridge, an American entrepreneur who swept into London and quite literally revolutionised our shopping scene with his new fortunes. Rather cruelly, ITV keeps showing a seriously addictive ad for the next series here. Then it reminds us that we have to wait until 2014 for it to air. The pain is too much for me, it really is.
I have only seen bits and bobs of The White Queen. This drama focuses on Elizabeth Woodville, who was sort of like a medieval Kate Middleton. It is slightly lacking in historical accuracy, but it’s shifted the world’s focus onto the medieval era, which is good enough for me! I am a massive Margaret of Anjou lover, so it’s fab that she’s getting some attention. They seem to have poached the odd ‘The Tudors’ character, but that isn’t the end of the world. It’s come at just the right time too, after a university went and dug up the remains of Richard III over here. Way to build on historical hype White Queen directors!
I can never decide whether I love Elizabeth for how good it is, or whether I love Cate Blanchett for how well she plays Elizabeth I. Since she perfected the accent of my home area for Robin Hood, I have become a devoted fan! In Elizabeth, she perfectly orchestrates the role from young woman, to horse riding queen with the stomach of a king, to an old queen refusing to give in in ‘The Golden Age’. I am not as hot on Elizabethan history as I am medieval or Tudor, so I won’t even begin to comment on accuracy. Still, when it comes to image and playing on those Francis Drake rumours, I love this drama.#
7 / 7
Wuthering Heights—the Tom Hardy Version
Okay, so many other huge Wuthering Heights fans do not love the Tom Hardy version. It starts way into the book, it jumps from place-to-place, there is no Lockwood, and the “Nelly I am Heathcliff” scene is way, way off what Bronte intended. However, if you can put Bronte and Lockwood to the back of your mind, this is an amazing period drama. Tom Hardy executes Heathcliff superbly. I literally felt shivers when he was crying for his lost love. Even better, he met his fiancé through the film. It’s like Cathy and Heathcliff actually get to be together… I can’t really put my finger on just why I love period dramas so much. In reality, life sucked for most of us back then. Maybe it is the entirely unrealistic romance. Who knows. If you have a period drama you love, what is it?