4 Television Shows History Buffs Will Love

If you're a history buff, then you probably like television shows that are based on historical incidents and involve real characters. With the advent of cable, more long form dramas are being produced, and many of them are historical drams. Below are four television shows that a history buff would love.

The Borgias

This television show ran on Showtime and depicted the lives of the powerful Borgia family. This family ruled over Rome during the middle ages and was influential in directing the course of history. Members of the family included Pope Alexander VI (played by Jeremy Irons) as well as Lucrezia Borgia. The series was created by the Irish director Neil Jordan, who had previously helmed the historical film Michael Collins. The show beautifully depicts the era, with lavish costumes and set design. You can get the complete series on BluRay.

Boardwalk Empire

This critically acclaimed series ran on HBO. It depicted the rise of organized crime in early Atlantic City. The main character was played by Steve Buscemi. He played a character called Nucky Thomson that was based on a real political boss named Enoch Johnson. The show also features a whole array of cameos from historical characters, ranging from Bugsy Siegel to Al Capone. The show is finished its run, so you can get the entire series on BluRay.


Rome was aired on HBO and depicted Rome through the eyes of two fictitious Roman soldiers. While two of the lead characters are fictitious, the plot of the show is based on real events, namely the conflict between Julius Caesar and the Senate, and his subsequent rise to power. The series was only on for two seasons, but it was well done and covers not only Caesar's war, but the subsequent actions of Mark Anthony and Cleopatra, as well as the assassination of Caesar and all of the inside political machinations that took place.

The White Queen

The White Queen is based on a series of books, which in turn where themselves based on the War Of The Roses. The television series tells the story from the vantage point of the women involved. The title character is Elizabeth Woodville, who was a country girl who ended up marrying Edward IV. The show details the fight between the House Of York and the House Of Lancaster over the throne of England. All of the main characters are based on real persons, including Lady Ann Neville, Margaret of Anjour, and Richard III.