What to binge: 5 shows to watch after 'Bridgerton'

Rege Jean-Page and Phoebe Dynevor star in "Bridgerton." Photo courtesy of Netflix
Rege Jean-Page and Phoebe Dynevor star in "Bridgerton." Photo courtesy of Netflix

Jan. 7 (UPI) -- Shonda Rhimes' Regency romance drama Bridgerton is Netflix's latest hit. The streaming service projects that 63 million households will watch Bridgerton in its first four weeks, which will make it Netflix's fifth-biggest original series launch.


The show is a reimagining of the Julia Quinn book series, which follows the titular Bridgertons. Season 1 is based on the first novel, The Duke and I, which features the romance between Daphne Bridgerton (Phoebe Dynevor) and Simon, the Duke of Hastings (Regé-Jean Page).

The drama follows in the footsteps of other acclaimed period pieces like Downton Abbey, which is streaming on Peacock and Amazon Prime. Since that was a phenomenon long before Bridgerton, here are five more historical period pieces to binge next.

The Great -- Hulu

Hulu's retelling of Catherine the Great (Elle Fanning)'s marriage to Peter III (Nicholas Hoult) takes a comedic approach. You'll get your fix of lavish 18th-century Russian costumes and palace intrigue, but also laugh at Peter's buffoonery and Catherine's clever ways to usurp his power.


Harlots -- Hulu

Take a break from the wealthy side of historic London and visit the red light district. Harlots centers on the drama inside an 18th-century London brothel, with its prostitutes and clients. Samantha Morton plays madame Margaret Wells, who is raising daughters Charlotte (Downton Abbey's Jessica Brown Findlay) and Lucy (Eloise Smyth) around the family business.

The Tudors -- Showtime

Go all the way back to the 16th century and the reign of King Henry VIII (Jonathan Rhys Meyers). Henry's six wives provided four seasons' worth of drama for the Showtime series, which also starred a pre-Superman Henry Cavill. If you like The Tudors, you can go back another century for Showtime's follow-up The Borgias, starring Jeremy Irons as Rodrigo Borgia, aka Pope Alexander I.

Outlander -- Starz

Starz's hit romantic drama combines a love of history with a modern perspective. Twentieth-century woman Claire (Caitriona Balfe) travels back in time to 18th-century Scotland. She falls in love with Jamie Fraser (Sam Heughan) and uses her modern medical knowledge to help change history. Catch up on the first five seasons, based on Diana Gabaldon's books, in time for the upcoming sixth season.


Reign -- Netflix

The CW gave the 16th century a modern upgrade. Mary, Queen of Scots (Adelaide Kane) rises up in the French court to fulfill her historic destiny over four seasons. Reign gives you all the costumes and palaces of the era, but allows the characters to speak with more modern dialects.

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