Missing ‘Bridgerton’? Stream These Under-the-Radar Romantic Period Dramas on Amazon Prime

For many fans of Bridgerton, the only problem with the show is that it’s too short. With just eight episodes, it’s all too easy to binge the entire series in one sitting. We’re still waiting to hear if Netflix has renewed the series for season 2, but given that it seems to have been an instant hit for the streaming service, we think it’s likely we’ll see more of the Bridgerton family.

Phoebe Dynevor and Regé-Jean Page on 'Bridgerton'
Phoebe Dynevor and Regé-Jean Page in Bridgerton | LIAM DANIEL/NETFLIX © 2020

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In the meantime, there are plenty of way for you to get your romantic period drama fix. We’ve already recommended a few shows to stream, but these under-the-radar series on Amazon Prime are also worth checking out. 

‘Doctor Thorne’ 

If you’re looking for a quick post-Bridgerton binge, check out Doctor Thorne. This four-episode Amazon Original from the creator of Downton Abbey is about a young woman (Stefanie Martini) of dubious parentage who is searching for a husband. She’s in love with her neighbor (Harry Richardson), but his family’s falling financial fortunes means he needs to marry a woman of means to save their estate. 

‘Vanity Fair’

Set against the backdrop of the Napoleonic Wars, Vanity Fair takes place during roughly the same time period as Bridgerton. Heroine Becky Sharp (Olivia Cooke) is an ambitious and charming young woman of low social status (she’s the daughter of an opera singer and an artist). Becky aims to marry well, and the seven-episode series follows the consequences of her ruthless romantic machinations. This 2018 Amazon Original also stars Bridgerton’s Claudia Jessie, Johnny Flynn, and Tom Bateman. 

‘Aristocrats’

Eager for more tales of drama and romance in a large family? Dive into the story of the Lennox sisters in the 1999 BBC series The Aristocrats. Based on the exploits of four real-life daughters of the Duke of Richmond, this six-episode miniseries (which is set in the 1700s) follows the Lennox women and their turbulent relationships with their parents, each other, and the men they love (including the future King George III, seen briefly in Bridgerton).

‘Empresses in the Palace’

This Chinese costume drama is set in 1722 during the Qing Dynasty and focuses on the lives of concubines to the Emperor. Prepare for plenty of backstabbing and intrigue as the women jostle for power and the Emperor’s affection in this soapy series. Note: The English-subtiled version on Amazon consists of six 90-minute episodes, but the original Chinese series was 76 episodes long. 

‘Z: The Beginning of Everything’

Christina Ricci plays Zelda Fitzgerald in this Amazon Original series. It looks at the early life of Zelda, an Alabama socialite, and her tumultuous marriage to F. Scott Fitzgerald. The high-flying couple parties their way through New York in the jazz age, even as personal demons threaten their happiness. Though the show was canceled after just one season, there are still 10, 30-minute episodes available to stream. 

‘Desperate Romantics’ 

If you were hoping to see more of Benedict Bridgerton’s adventures in bohemian London, check out Desperate Romantics. This six-episode series offers a fictionalized take on the lives of the members of the group of artists known as the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood. Poldark’s Aidan Turner stars as Dante Gabriel Rossetti, who has a heated affair with his model and muse Lizzie Siddal (Amy Manson) 

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