This week, Netflix announced that
The Queen’s Gambit
made history as the streaming service’s most-viewed scripted limited series. Although it still hasn’t bested the unscripted
, which hit the streamer at the start of quarantine,
The Queen’s Gambit
received immediate acclaim for its stunning set and costume design, compelling story, and
lead performance by Anya Taylor-Joy
seven episodes, brings us from the 1950s to the late ’60s as orphaned chess prodigy Beth Harmon (Taylor-Joy) grows up, struggles with addiction, and competes to become the world’s best player. The mini-series has all the makings of a great period piece, coming-of-age story, and sports drama, but very few shows successfully blend all of these elements — maybe The Queen’s Gambit The Queen’s Gambit raked in tens of millions of views, in part, because there’s nothing out there quite like it.
But if you’re one of the many, many Netflix users who enjoyed the entire series in one week (or even weekend), allow us to introduce you to your next binge-watch. No, Netflix doesn’t have any other chess dramas unfortunately, but there are plenty of other shows with similar backdrops, themes, and complicated characters. Here are 15 picks to try before your next
Queen’s Gambit rewatch.
Godless Stream it on Netflix As far as plot is concerned, this Western drama about a man trying to outrun an outlaw gang leader is a far cry from Beth Harmon’s story. But 2017’s Godless , another Netflix limited series created by The Queen’s Gambit mastermind Scott Frank, received similar critical praise for excellent storytelling and stunning cinematography.
Peaky Blinders Stream it on Netflix If you can’t get enough Anya Taylor-Joy, you can find her in this award-winning BBC period drama, available to stream on Netflix. Like The Queen’s Gambit, Peaky Blinders features time jumps and an expansive timeline, bringing Tommy Shelby’s (Cillian Murphy) family from 1919 to 1929.
Stream it on NOW TV
The Queen’s Gambit, Euphoria is a character-driven coming-of-age story that doesn’t shy away from unglamorous truths about addiction and mental illness. Cynical protagonist Rue Bennett (Zendaya) isn’t necessarily similar to Beth, but she’s an equally compelling character.
11.22.63 Stream it on Prime Video This Hulu mini-series, based on the Stephen King novel of the same name, follows two friends who time-travel to the ’60s and attempt to stop the assassination of John F. Kennedy. If you’re looking for another quick binge that will transport you back in time, look no further than this supernatural drama.
The Crown Stream it on Netflix Netflix dropped the new season of The Crown shortly after The Queen’s Gambit, and it’s unsurprising that fans of the second are flocking to the first. Although The Crown tells a sprawling story more rooted in historical events, the first few seasons cover the same era as Queen’s Gambit, and both shows tackle complex familial dynamics, power, and control.
The English Game Stream it on Netflix The Queen’s Gambit reminds viewers that chess isn’t just a game; it’s a competitive sport. If you’re looking for another historical sports drama that digs into the professional triumphs and personal issues of skilled athletes, try Netflix’s six-part mini-series created by the executive producer of Downton Abbey.
Russian Doll Stream it on Netflix Russian Doll isn’t a limited series — a second season was confirmed last year — but the first season of this Netflix drama is as watchable and airtight as The Queen’s Gambit. In this dark dramedy, Nadia (Natasha Lyonne) becomes stuck in a time loop and must confront her past (and current) issues.
Cable Girls Stream it on Netflix This Spanish-language period piece, about four young women who begin working at a telecommunications company in Spain circa 1928, is a perfect pick for fans of The Queen’s Gambit who want another historical drama about women breaking boundaries in male-dominated spaces.
Call the Midwife Stream it on Netflix or BBC iPlayer Another feminist period drama, Call the Midwife centres around the work and lives of midwives in the ’50s and ’60s. The BBC series is on its tenth season, and has already been renewed for an eleventh. If you need to catch up, you can stream the first eight series on Netflix, or the first nine on iPlayer.
The Haunting of Bly Manor Stream it on Netflix The stand-alone follow-up to Netflix’s Haunting of Hill House tells the story of Dani (Victoria Pedretti), an American nanny who finds herself stuck in what might be a haunted house while battling her own demons. Bly Manor is technically a horror series, but its emotional themes and backstories make it a solid psychological drama, too.
The Undoing Stream it on NOW TV Nicole Kidman and Hugh Grant star in this psychological thriller about a woman whose husband becomes a primary suspect in a murder case. Like The Queen’s Gambit, The Undoing is a gripping mini-series that your whole timeline is probably discussing right now. Episodes are currently airing, and you can catch up on NOW TV.
Mrs. America Stream it on BBC iPlayer This FX and Hulu series tells the true story of the fight to pass the Equal Rights Amendment in America. It’s set in the ’70s, so the costumes and soundtrack are just slightly different from those of The Queen’s Gambit, but it’s a similarly stunning period portrait with excellent performances by Cate Blanchett, Uzo Aduba, and more.
Sharp Objects Stream it on NOW TV Sharp Objects, an HBO mini-series based on Gillian Flynn’s novel of the same name, is clearly a mystery, but fans and critics also praised its complex, troubled characters, depiction of mental illness and addiction, and balance of drama and substance.
Killing Eve Stream it on BBC iPlayer Like The Queen’s Gambit, Killing Eve has a straightforward premise — an assassin and a detective chase after each other, growing more and more obsessed — but the fascinating characters, twisted relationships, and story make it an easy binge-watch. The first three seasons are available to stream on iPlayer.
Mad Men Stream it on Prime Video If you love the costumes, setting, and overall style of The Queen’s Gambit, you’ll love Mad Men, another drama set in the ’60s and featuring another (different kind of) complicated lead. The best part? This is a show that won’t end after seven episodes. It actually spans seven seasons, and you can watch them all on Prime Video.
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