5 period dramas you won't believe are turning 5 in 2024

It's hard to believe that so many shows are hitting milestone birthdays this year. Here are five that you won't believe turn five in 2024.
Chernobyl premiere. Photo: HBO
Chernobyl premiere. Photo: HBO /

There have been many excellent period dramas over the years. Some of them are reaching milestone birthdays in 2024, and they’re sure to make you feel a little older than you did before starting to read this post.

We’ve already looked at 10 shows that are turning 10 in 2024. These aren’t all period dramas, although Outlander and a few others are on the list. For this post, we’re specifically looking at period dramas. And we’re trying to stick to period dramas rather than fantasy shows that feel like period dramas (like Carnival Row).

Some of these you may have forgotten all about. Others you’ll have watched time and time again. Are you ready?


Many people will remember about the Chernobyl disaster. The land around the nuclear power plant is still radioactive. This was one of the biggest disasters in Eastern Europe that wasn’t due to war, and it was heavily covered up. We still don’t know all the details.

Chernobyl takes us through the aftermath of the nuclear power plant exploding. We see as people innocently stand and watch—knowing what it means for them all—and we see how many fought to make sure the truth came out. Of course, there was the investigation into the situation to make sure it never happened again, but how do you do that when you don’t want anyone to learn the truth?

Chernobyl is available on Max.

Gentleman Jack

Suranne Jones, Sophie Rundle - Gentleman Jack
Suranne Jones, Sophie Rundle. Photo: Aimee Spinks/HBO /

If you love a period romance, Gentleman Jack is certainly a series to check out. Suranne Jones plays Anne Lister who is in love with Ann Walker. Yes, two women are in love with each other in the 1800s. It’s a time when this wouldn’t just be “frowned upon,” but it was illegal.

On top of that, Anne Lister is not a woman of her time. She doesn’t want to dress like a woman or act like one. She is a landowner, and she intends to act like a gentleman. She doesn’t care what society has to say. And society has a lot to say.

Gentleman Jack is available to stream on Max.

Les Misérables

No, this isn’t about the movie starring Hugh Jackman. This is about the miniseries that follows the novel’s storyline. It’s time to go back to the story that Victor Hugo created.

Overall, it’s the same story. We get to see how Jean Valjean created a life of his own through an initial act of thievery after he was released from prison. We see how Fantine ended up with a child out of wedlock and the steps she took to find a home for Cosette. There’s a look at the way Javert was determined to find Valjean and take him down.

This is a dramatic story and not a musical. It’s a beautiful masterpiece, and certainly one worth watching if you love the original story.

Les Misérables is available on PBS Masterpiece.

The Spanish Princess

The Spanish Princess 2019
Photo: The Spanish Princess.. Image Courtesy Nick Briggs, Starz /

You know a little about Catherine of Aragon from The Tudors. That showed us how her life ended, but how did Catherine’s life in England begin? It was a difficult journey to become Queen of England.

The Spanish Princess takes us through Catherine landing in England, ready to marry Henry VII’s son, Arthur Tudor. While she was betrothed to marry the elder Tudor brother, she and his brother, Henry, grew interested in each other. Of course, Catherine married Arthur, but it was only six months later that she found herself a widow. Unable to return home, she became a somewhat prisoner of Henry VII, who looked for a way for Catherine to marry his younger son, who would become Henry VIII of England.

The Spanish Princess is available to stream on Starz.

World on Fire

Are you ready for another World War II drama? World on Fire brings us a look at events from the very beginning of the war with the invasion of Poland all the way to the end with the Battle of Britain.

The series follows a group of ordinary people in Europe. There’s an English translator in Warsaw who wants to smuggle his Polish lover back to England. Then there’s an American war correspondent who learns all about censorship in Germany. The characters come from different backgrounds and lifestyles, but they are all thrown into the same war and the same issues as the Nazis look to take over.

World on Fire is available on PBS Masterpiece.

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