The breaks between seasons of Outlander (which fans have affectionately nicknamed the “Droughtlander”) can be long. But there are only so many times you can re-read Diana Gabaldon’s books and re-watch past episodes of the television series. Ahead of season six, which just resumed filming following a lengthy delay due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, here are a few other TV shows fans of Outlander are sure to enjoy.
Men in Kilts
If you need a little more Sam Heughan and Graham McTavish in your life (or are simply missing those Scottish Highlands), tune in to the new travel show, Men in Kilts, which follows the Outlander actors on a roadtrip through Scotland. Along the way, they’ll showcase the country’s rich history, culture, and traditions.
Consider Poldark the Masterpiece PBS-version of Outlander (minus the time travel): There’s a romance at the heart of the story, a smoldering leading man in Ross, and a strong female star in Demelza, but less overt sex and violence. There’s also a change of landscape—instead of the Scottish highlands in the 18th century, Poldark is set in Cornwall after the Revolutionary War.
Game of Thrones
Outlander is sometimes referred to as a “more feminist” Game of Thrones, so it’s fitting that the popular HBO series would find a place on this list. Indeed, both shows are set in a time before cell phones or even electricity, and both feature graphic sex and violence. But GOT is fantasy and the tone is quite different from Outlander, so be prepared for that shift.
The Spanish Princess
If you’re already subscribed to Starz, may we suggest checking out The Spanish Princess? The beautifully-shot series tells the story of King Henry VIII, but from the perspective of his first wife, Catherine of Aragon. Come for the historical drama, stay for a hunky version of Harry (pre-gout, that is).
The Crown is a gorgeous period drama, and next season, the appeal for Outlander fans only increases, when Tobias Menzies steps into the role of Prince Philip.
Laoghaire MacKenzie is one of the most-hated characters in the Outlander canon, so it will come as a shock to see actress Nell Hudson playing Queen Victoria’s dutiful maid Mrs. Skerrett in Victoria. The Masterpiece PBS series about the British monarch’s early reign is worth a watch for Hudson’s performance, for the ill-fated romance between Victoria and her Albert, and for the gorgeous costumes.
If the time-travel element is your favorite part of the Outlander series, consider giving Doctor Who a try. The long-running program is a British institution, at this point, and a must-watch for many Anglophiles. The Doc these days is played by actress Jodie Whittaker, which Outlander’s feminist audience will appreciate.
Next season, the American revolution will begin to play a role in the plot of Outlander, and as always, the Frasers get caught up in the pivotal historical events. If that time period is intriguing, you may want to go ahead and watch Turn, an AMC show focused on George Washington’s spies during the rebellion.
It’s tough to call yourself a fan of British period drama if you haven’t watched Downton Abbey. The popular series chronicles the Crawley family and their household staff through WWI and the early 1920s, but this is hardly a boring history lesson. There’s plenty of scandal and intrigue to go around.
This History Channel series about (you guessed it) vikings in the late 700s, follows the strapping young Norsemen as they try to conquer new lands. Outlander obsessives will enjoy not only the sultry story lines, but also scenes on the battlefield.
Centering around a gang family in England right after WWI, Peaky Blinders is not particularly similar to Jamie and Claire’s time-traveling love story, except in that it’s a British period drama, but it will appeal to those Anglophiles in the Outlander audience.