25 Period Dramas to Watch on Netflix – Mini-Series and TV Shows Edition (2015)

#21: Fleming: The Man Who Would Be Bond (2014)

Photo: BBC America
Photo: BBC America

A look at the man who created James Bond. This one is just plain, old-fashioned fun. Fleming is rated TV-MA.

RELATED | Review of Fleming: The Man Who Would Be Bond

#22: Murdoch Mysteries (2008)

Photo: CBC
Photo: CBC

An amusing Canadian mystery series set during the early 1900s. While some of the dialogue can be stilted at times, I really love the main character! It’s definitely fun seeing the various mysteries unfold.

RELATED | Review of Murdoch Mysteries

#23: Bomb Girls (2012)

Bomb Girls Image3
Global TV / Muse Entertainment

A Canadian look at WWII. While I haven’t seen it, we have a review here to give you an idea of what the show is all about.

RELATED | Review of Bomb Girls

#24: Jewel in the Crown (1984)


Another period drama still on my list to see, The Jewel in the Crown won a Golden Globe for Best Mini-Series and several Emmy Awards as well. This one does contain graphic content including a rape that is central to the story. It’s set in India at the end of British rule.

#25: Mad Men (2007)

Don and Peggy Photo: AMC
Don and Peggy
Photo: AMC

When I first started Mad Men, I hated all the characters and couldn’t get into it. It’s seriously about a bunch of terrible people working at an advertising company. Somehow, however, I just couldn’t take my eyes away from Don Draper and all of his lies. Finally, I just had to keep watching. The highlight (for me anyway) of the series is the strange friendship between Don and Peggy. On a side note, there is definitely adult content in this, but most of the time Mad Men is rated TV-14.

For more recommendations, check out: Romantic Period Films to Watch On Netflix Part 1

What are you planning to watch on Netflix? Any favorites? Sound off in the comments…

Featured image photo at top: When Calls the Heart/Photo: Crown Media/Hallmark

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By on August 5th, 2015

About Autumn Topping

In second grade, Autumn wrote her first story, “The Spinach Monster,” and hasn't stopped writing since. Intrigued by the tales her grandmother told of vampires, witches, and ghosts as a girl, she's always been drawn to the fantastic. Later, Autumn studied English and Creative Writing (continuing her love for classic literature and everything old-fashioned) and graduated with an MA in Children’s Literature and an MS in Library & Information Science from Simmons College. Currently, she co-runs this lovely site and works as a YA Librarian.

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64 thoughts on “25 Period Dramas to Watch on Netflix – Mini-Series and TV Shows Edition (2015)”

  1. Just to warn you, Island At War does not have an ending. The writer died and it was cancelled. It was very frustrating. You can catch a glimpse of Sam Heughan from Outlander too. My favorite is Phillip Glenister, though.

  2. Two mini series that can be streamed on pbs.org right now that are amazing are “Poldark” and “The crimson field”. These mini series are excellent!

  3. Surprised Peaky Blinders didn’t make the cut. While it may be a more rough and tumble than some of the titles that made the list it would seem to meet the criteria and from what I have feasted on so far, it’s delicious.

    Also, for those who love their western setting, Hell on Wheels gives you a very “Sam Elliot” spirit in a leading man, strong female characters, along with grit and intrigue.

    • I have to admit that our site tends to prefer the less graphic period dramas, so while I included a few with adult content and gave a warning, I hoped they weren’t extremely graphic. Looking at the advisory of Peaky Blinders and seeing the excessive gore warning, I finally decided against it. The same for “Hell on Wheels,” but I admit to seeing neither if anyone wants to throw their two cents in.

      • Oh no I can totally understand that. I suppose I looked at it for the content in the context of the show and in that found that for ME personally it “fit.” Though I could totally understand why if others prefered to avoid that sort of content all together why the site or viewers would avoid the programs mentioned.

  4. I watched Jewel in the Crown recently and hate to describe it so harshly but it was awful. The rape is only the tip of the iceberg and not even the most offensive part. There’s also torture with male nudity tossed into the mix and other very sexual scenarios. Not only that, there’s almost zero happiness involved in anyone’s life and it doesn’t really end that nicely. Just a heads up!

  5. Out of all on the list, Dancing on the Edge was really one of my favorites, mystery, murder, and intrigue. I also enjoyed The Hour which was not included in this list but is worth the watch.Thanks for all of the recommendations.

  6. I love North & South; Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries (saw all 3 seasons), Father Brown (although not here) is often hilarious and still serious at same time. I’m starting to watch Velvet; saw till 2×6 of When calls the Heart (don’t know if they’re going on with the show).

    If you enjoy a good period drama (even if it is in a foreign language) I suggest Elisa di Rivombrosa and La Dama Velata (both Italian fiction)…they’re lovely and I enjoyed every bit of them. Try looking them up (streaming), they’re from RAI fiction. Also Violetta; Anna Karenina; La Bella e la Bestia (all in Italian). From what I read there’s going to be an Italian version of The Grand Hotel, if I’m not mistaken.

  7. I gave up when you called The Bucaneers silly and fun. You’re entitled to your opinion, of course. However, I couldn’t finish this article after reading that comment.

  8. My sister keeps telling me to watch Grand Hotel but I’m too scared because of how crazy addicted she became over it!! Lol. Perhaps sometime in the future. 😀

  9. The beauty of Mad Men is that, yes, whilst the characters are often unlikeable and frequently do terrible things, they’re probably the most multi-faceted and complex characters in any TV series ever. At its core it’s about a group of people who sell an idea of ‘happiness’ that they’re all desperately trying to attain for themselves. It’s a slow-burning show, but it can afford to be as the the writing and character development is so sharply drawn, nuanced and compelling. By the end you really do feel like they’re real people; people you know better than most of your actual friends and even family (as you’re privy to some of their most private moments). Plus, the costume and set design is stellar.

    Should’ve been a lot higher on the list, in my opinion.

  10. Your description of “THE BUCANEERS” is a little off-putting. “A little bit soapy”? “Silly and fun to devour”? That’s your opinion? Huh.

    • Perhaps over dramatic and sometimes cheesy dialogue would suit better? We both love Edith Wharton but the adaptation did have a problematic script and directing which made it feel over dramatic at points. But we both enjoyed it overall. Perhaps you thought it was brilliant! We all interpret things differently. 🙂 But hey, on our site, silly and fun to devour is a compliment! We actually enjoy many “soaps” on this site. Sorry you found her comment (which had no ill-intent behind it) off-putting! And yes, that’s her opinion. But we always welcome friendly discussion!

  11. When Calls the Heart is my favorite, just started North and South. Poldark is AMAZING, wish they’d put it on Netflix. Googled more does like Poldark and your blog came up. Thanks for recommendations I made a list.

  12. I like poiriot (especially the older ones) a lot better then most crime shows. I haven’t seen most of the others though know my parents like folys war…


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