2024 Period Drama TV Preview: 19 Bodice-Rippers, Royal Dramas, and World War II Shows to Binge This Year

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All Creatures Great and Small (2021)

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There are two things that fans of period dramas know deeply, truly in their hearts: people have always been drama queens — no matter what time or place they lived — and there will always be a new, sumptuous, incredibly acted period drama to binge on television. In 2024, we’re going to be spoiled with the return of Outlander to Starz, a Penelope-centric season of Bridgerton on Netflix, and a new star-studded World War II miniseries on Apple TV+ from the team behind Band of Brothers. Not one, but two shows about Empress Sisi are due to come back this year, Gentleman Jack creator Sally Wainwright is hitting Disney+ with an adventure series about an 18th century highwaywoman, and FX’s long-awaited remake of Shōgun will premiere on Hulu, complete with killer lady samurai and insane production values.

All of which is to say 2024 is going to be a banner year for period dramas. We’ve got decadent looks at the private lives of royals, heartfelt looks at the experiences of the Windrush generation, and even a spin-off of Belgravia to look forward to.

Whether you’re a World War II buff, bodice-ripper lover, or newly minted fan of shows like The Gilded Age, you’re bound to find something in the period drama genre in 2024 to adore. From the return of Masterpiece‘s Miss Scarlet and The Duke and All Creatures Great and Small to new series like Manhunt and Masters of the Air…here are all the period dramas, historic romances, and war-set thrillers we’re looking forward to streaming in 2024…

  1. Miss Scarlet and The Duke Season 4

    Kate Phillips in 'Miss Scarlet and The Duke' Season 4
    Photo: PBS

    RELEASE DATE: 1/7/24

    STARS: Kate Phillips, Stuart Martin

    PLATFORM: PBS Passport

    HISTORIC SETTING: Victorian London, during the crime-infested 1880s.

    Miss Scarlet and The Duke follows the spirited Eliza Scarlet (Kate Phillips), a brilliant young woman who finds herself in the lurch when her detective father passes away. Rather than acquiesce to societal pressure to marry, Eliza takes over her father’s business to the chagrin of long-time bestie William “Duke” Wellington, a Scotland Yard detective inspector. Miss Scarlet and The Duke finally returns for a fourth season and, as with all PBS Passport titles, subscribers can binge the whole season on the app rather than wait for the weekly Masterpiece airings… 

  2. All Creatures Great and Small Season 4

    Helen and James in 'All Creatures Great and Small' Season 4
    Photo: PBS

    RELEASE DATE: 1/7/24

    STARS: Nicholas Ralph, Rachel Shenton

    PLATFORM: PBS Passport

    HISTORIC SETTING: The idyllic world of the Yorkshire Dales during the early days of World War II, aka 1940.

    All Creatures Great and Small has swiftly become one of Masterpiece’s most beloved series thanks to its wholesome vibes and sweet storylines. However, things might be getting more dramatic for James (Nicholas Ralph), Helen (Rachel Shenton), and their veterinary practice. That’s because with the advent of World War II, the perfect peace enjoyed by our characters might just be about to be shattered. Nevertheless, expect kindness and camaraderie (and cute animals) to reign supreme. 

  3. Belgravia: The Next Chapter

    'Belgravia: The Next Chapter'
    Photo: MGM+

    RELEASE DATE: 1/14/24

    STARS: Harriet Slater, Benjamin Wainwright


    HISTORIC SETTING: London in 1871, the height of The Gilded Age, and a full 30 years after the events of the original Belgravia series and Julian Fellowes book.

    The original Belgravia was Julian Fellowes’s soapy look at an 1840s love story almost undone by family secrets. This sequel series, developed and written by Helen Edmundson, follows a similar situation. Frederick Trenchard (Benjamin Wainwright) falls hard for Clara Dunn (Harriet Slater), but their love story could be spoiled by the secret that he’s secretly the son of the rake John Bellasis (Adam James). Period drama lovers ought to soak up the drama along with the cast, which is full of familiar faces from Sanditon and The Last Kingdom.

  4. Masters of the Air

    Austin Butler in 'Masters of the Air'
    Photo: Apple TV+

    RELEASE DATE: 1/26/24

    STARS: Austin Butler, Barry Keoghan, Ncuti Gatwa

    PLATFORM: Apple TV+

    HISTORIC SETTING: The European Theater — specifically that of the U.S. Air Force — during World War II

    Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks are teaming up yet again to executive produce a lavish World War II miniseries starring a who’s who of rising acting talent. Masters of the Air stars Oscar-nominated Austin Butler and Boys in the Boat star Callum Turner as two Air Force majors attempting to bring fire and fury to the Nazis on their home turf. However, much like Band of Brothers, those two leading men aren’t the only actors worth tuning in for. Saltburn star Barry Keoghan, the new Doctor Ncuti Gatwa, and Morgan Spector’s The Plot Against America scene partner Anthony Boyle also make appearances. 

  5. Feud: Capote vs. the Swans

    Naomi Watts as Babe Paley in 'Feud: Capote vs. the Swans'
    Photo: FX

    RELEASE DATE: 1/31/24

    STARS: Naomi Watts, Tom Hollander

    PLATFORM: FX on Hulu

    HISTORIC SETTING: Midcentury — that is, mid 20th century — New York high society. 

    Ryan Murphy’s long-awaited second season of Feud focuses on the kerfuffle Truman Capote caused by betraying the secrets of his rich lady pals by writing thinly-veiled accounts of their lives for all to read. While The White Lotus Season 2’s Tom Hollander is poised to sink his teeth into the idiosyncratic Capote, the press around the show has put Naomi Watts’s Babe Paley front and center. Look for this limited series to be a delicious dish of high class bitchery. 

  6. Three Little Birds

    Three Little Birds on BritBox
    Photo: BritBox

    RELEASE DATE: 2/1/24

    STARS: Rochelle Neil, Yazmin Belo, Saffron Coomber

    PLATFORM: BritBox

    HISTORIC SETTING: The follows the lives of women who moved to the UK from Jamaica during the 1950s Windrush.

    Three Little Birds is a new miniseries from Sir Lenny Henry, inspired by his own mother’s stories about what she experienced as part of the Windrush Generation. Leah Whittaker (Rochelle Neil) travels all the way to England with her three children to escape her abusive husband. Joining her on the journey are best friend Hosanna (Yazmin Belo) and half-sister Chantrelle (Saffron Coomber). What the three friends find in this new land of opportunity is a bittersweet new place to call home.

  7. Sisi: Austrian Empress Season 2

    Sisi: Austrian Empress Season 1
    Photo: Walter Presents

    RELEASE DATE: 2/2/24

    STARS: Dominique Devenport, Jannik Schumann

    PLATFORM: Walter Presents via PBS Passport

    HISTORIC SETTING: 1850s Vienna, a time of opulence and art for Austria.

    Empress Elisabeth, aka Sisi, of Austria is the history girl du jour. In just the last few years, we’ve gotten a steamy Netflix series about the royal as well as a critically-acclaimed Vicky Krieps film. Sisi: Austrian Empress is yet another of these projects. PBS Passport subscribers might have discovered the German series via Walter Presents, a curated collection of high quality foreign drama that PBS wrangled onto its streaming service a few years back. Season 2 drops early February, just in time for Valentine’s Day binges.

  8. The New Look

    Ben Mendelsohn as Christian Dior in 'The New Look'
    Photo: Apple TV+

    RELEASE DATE: 2/14/24

    STARS: Ben Mendelsohn, Glenn Close, Juliette Binoche

    PLATFORM: Apple TV+

    HISTORIC SETTING: The haute couture fashion houses of post-World War II Europe.

    The New Look might just be the bold new take on fashion history we’ve all been dying for. Created by Damages and Bloodline’s Todd A. Kessler, the series stars Ben Mendelsohn as Christian Dior, Juliette Binoche as Coco Chanel, and an all-star cast populating the rest of World War II-era and post-war France. The series, which also features a soundtrack curated by Jack Antonoff, will explain how the nightmare of the Second World War spurred fashion’s bold new look. 

  9. Shōgun 

    Anna Sawai as Mariko in 'Shogun'
    Photo: FX

    RELEASE DATE: 2/27/24

    STARS: Hiroyuki Sanada, Cosmo Jarvis, Anna Sawai

    PLATFORM: FX on Hulu

    HISTORIC SETTING: 1600 Japan, an inflection point for both the East and West. 

    Based on James Clavell’s runaway 1970s bestseller, FX’s new spin on Shōgun reframes the story’s action to focus on the complex Game of Thrones-style cutthroat politicking of feudal Japan. When Protestant navigator John Blackthorne (Cosmo Jarvis) finds himself shipwrecked close to Osaka, he has no notion of just how momentous his arrival will be for the cunning warlord Toranaga (Hiroyuki Sanada) or the Catholic lady Mariko (Anna Sawai). Shōgun is a lavish, brutal, and sumptuous series that is poised to surprise audiences.

  10. Manhunt

    Tobias Menzies in 'Manhunt'
    Photo: Apple TV+

    RELEASE DATE:3/15/24

    STARS: Tobias Menzies, Hamish Linklater, Patton Oswalt

    PLATFORM: Apple TV+

    HISTORIC SETTING: Spring 1865, in the weeks and months immediately following the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln

    Tobias Menzies is one of those actors you can always count on to deliver a whopper of a performance in any drama he pops up in. So it should go without saying that when we learned he was starring in a new period drama about the hunt for John Wilkes Booth…we were already there. The series promises to reframe the arrest of the famous actor-turned-infamous assassin as a thrilling mystery. Even better? The show will also feature a dramatic turn from comedian Patton Oswalt. There’s so much going on and we’re geeking out about all of it.

  11. Nolly

    Helena Bonham Carter in 'Nolly'
    Photo: PBS

    RELEASE DATE: 3/17/24

    STARS: Helena Bonham Carter, Mark Gatiss, Con O’Neil

    PLATFORM: PBS Passport

    HISTORIC SETTING: British TV in the ‘60s and ‘70s, a landscape dominated by Noelle “Nolly” Gordon.

    Masterpiece’s big spring miniseries isn’t a Jane Austen or Charles Dickens joint, but a look at the real life scandal that erupted when popular British TV personality Nolly Gordon (Helena Bonham Carter) was unceremoniously fired from her own show. Expect high class writing and even more extraordinary writing from period drama great Helena Bonham Carter. 

  12. Renegade Nell

    Louisa Harland in 'Renegade Nell'
    Photo: Disney+

    RELEASE DATE: Spring 2024

    STARS: Louisa Harland, Nick Mohammed, Frank Dillane

    PLATFORM: Disney+

    HISTORIC SETTING: A magical version of 18th Century England, complete with plucky spirits and highwayman drama.

    Period drama nerds should be excited for Disney+’s upcoming Renegade Nell for one reason: it’s BAFTA-winning writer Sally Wainwright’s follow up to the exquisite Gentleman Jack. The adventure series stars Derry Girls standout Louisa Harland as the titular Nell, a “quick-witted and courageous young woman who finds herself framed for murder and unexpectedly becomes the most notorious highwaywoman in 18th Century England.” The show also features a who’s who of British actors including Ted Lasso alum Nick Mohammed as the magical Billy Blind, Frank Dillane as a charming rogue, and the great Pip Torrens doing whatever Pip Torrens does to liven up period dramas.

  13. Bridgerton Season 3


    RELEASE DATE: Part 1: 5/16/24; Part 2: 6/13/24

    STARS: Nicola Coughlan, Luke Newton

    PLATFORM: Netflix

    HISTORIC SETTING: A candy-coated fantasy version of the English Regency period, London in the 1810s.

    Bridgerton is one of the most rabidly-watched period dramas of the 2020s and it’s finally coming back for Season 3 this spring. For the first time in the Shondaland show’s run, Bridgerton will be playing fast and loose with the order of Julia Quinn’s romance novels, skipping ahead to Book 4, to tell the story of how Penelope Featherington (Nicola Coughlan) finds love. Pen’s been pining after Colin Bridgerton (Luke Newton) for years, but after hearing him place her firmly in the friend zone last season, she’s casting a wider net on the marriage mart. The only problem? Now that Penelope’s gained confidence — and rival suitors — Colin might finally be noticing her. 

  14. The Empress Season 2

    Photo: Netflix


    STARS: Devrim Lingnau, Philip Froissant

    PLATFORM: Netflix

    HISTORIC SETTING: Oh, hey, it’s our second Empress Sisi show!

    When The Empress landed on Netflix back in 2022, it became the streamer’s latest surprise hit. That’s in huge part because it married the steam of Bridgerton with the magic of real-life history. Now, after a long hiatus, it seems that The Empress might finally be returning. Rumor has it the German series filmed its second season in Czechia last year, putting it on track for a 2024 premiere. So far, though, Netflix has remained mum on its return, even though we’re pretty darn confident calling it.

  15. Mary & George

    Julianne Moore and Nicholas Galitzine in 'Mary & George'
    Photo: Starz


    STARS: Julianne Moore, Nicholas Galitzine 

    PLATFORM: Starz

    HISTORIC SETTING: Jacobean England, specifically the court of King James I in the early 1600s.

    If you’ve seen the trailer for Starz’s Mary & George, wherein Moore’s Mary calls King James I (Tony Curran) as “cockstruck” and plots to push her handsome son George (Nicholas Galitizine) into his bed, well, you have a pretty clear idea while we’re amped for this new period drama. The series looks at how ambitious widow Mary Villers schemed her son’s rise to power through his ability to get a “rise” out of the king. Expect sex, scandal, and bloodshed…not to mention great performances from Oscar-winner Moore and Hollywood’s heartthrob du jour Galitizine.

  16. My Brilliant Friend Season 4

    Lila and Lenu in My Brilliant Friend Season 2
    Photo: HBO


    STARS: Margherita Mazzucco, Gaia Girace


    HISTORIC SETTING: 1950s and ‘60s Sicily, with some flash forwards to the present day in Italy.

    Elena Ferrante’s gorgeous quartet of novels about best friends Lenu (Margharita Mazzucco) and Lila (Gaia Girace) became modern masterpieces upon their publication during the 2010s and HBO pulled off a miracle adapting the Neopolitan novels for the screen. The Italian series lovingly depicts the tight-knit, competitive, tender, and toxic friendship between the characters. Now, with the show’s forth season, the story of Lenu and Lila will finally be wrapped up once and for all. 

  17. Outlander Season 7 Part 2

    Sam Heughan in the 'Outlander' Season 7 mid-season finale
    Photo: Starz


    STARS: Caitriona Balfe, Sam Heughan

    PLATFORM: Starz

    HISTORIC SETTING: Let’s see, Claire and Jamie just arrived in 1770s Scotland, Bree is in 1980s Scotland, and Roger and his distant ancestor time-traveled to some point in history…

    The dreamiest, steamiest period drama on TV is 100% coming back for more in 2024. When we last tuned in to Outlander, Claire (Caitriona Balfe) and Jamie (Sam Heughan) had finally left the Revolutionary War-torn colonies to return to Scotland. Meanwhile, Roger (Richard Rankin) was leaving Brianna (Sophie Skelton) back in ‘80s-era Lallybroch to hunt down their kidnapped son. Outlander Season 7 Part 2 promises to pick up all these storylines and then some. (Don’t think we’ve forgotten that Mr. Bug is out for revenge!!)

  18. Ripley

    Black and white photo of Andrew Scott as Tom Ripley in 'Ripley'
    Photo: Netflix


    STARS: Andrew Scott, Johnny Flynn, Dakota Fanning

    PLATFORM: Netflix

    HISTORIC SETTING: The 1960s ex-pat scene in Italy, ciao.

    Andrew Scott’s upcoming star turn in Ripley might turn out to be the actor’s greatest performance yet. Scott will get to play Tom Ripley, Patricia Highsmith’s indelible con artist in a bold new take on The Talented Mr. Ripley from Oscar-winning writer Steve Zailian. In case you haven’t seen the classic Minghella film adaptation, Tom Ripley is a clever, but impoverished New Yorker who gets hired by a rich man to travel to Italy with the express purpose of wooing former “classmate” Dickie Greenleaf (Johnny Flynn) home. What Tom Ripley discovers in Italy, however, soon appears to hold an even bigger prize than a rich dude’s paycheck.

  19. The Serpent Queen Season 2

    Catherine (Samantha Morton) in 'The Serpent Queen'
    Photo: Starz


    STARS: Samantha Morton, Sennia Nanua

    PLATFORM: Starz

    HISTORIC SETTING: 16th century France, as seen through the eyes of its ruthless Italian-born queen, Catherine de’Medici

    The first season of The Serpent Queen was one of the most deliciously dark looks at courtly politics. The series followed Catherine de’Medici’s (Samantha Morton) unlikely ascension from abandoned Florentine orphan to de factor leader of France. The Serpent Queen Season 2 should see Catherine on the rise, but she’s got a cunning rival/protege in Rahima (Sennia Nanua)…who is far more conniving than we initially were led to believe.