historical reality shows to watch when you are sad or ill or hankering to watch a bunch of nerds talk about sheep shearing
- the supersizers eat/the supersizers go: one food critic and one sue perkins spend a week eating the oft terrible upper class meals of various time periods in full regalia, whilst also doing assorted historical activities and opining to the cameras about how drunk they are/how much they miss vegetables. if u ignore giles corin sometimes being a real dick, you break through to the DELIRIOUS JOY of watching great british bake-off mvp sue perkins drinking excessively, eating disgusting things and enthusiastically applying elizabethan tooth blackening. 800,000 stars. sue perkins is a true gift. please search this on youtube. you will not regret.
- tales from the green valley/victorian farm/edwardian farm/9 other farms: these are gentle, delightful experiences. you know historical reality shows in which they force a bunch of civilians into corsets and watch them tear up a bit over their temperamental stove? no disrespect, i also enjoy those sorts of programmes – see the next item on this list – but the farm series has cast a bunch of historians and archaeologists to nerd out for a year, living the lives of historical farmers. it is so clear and obvious that this casting is the best choice. there is minimal misery. there is optimal glee. they are so thrilled to try out these historical piss-fermenting laundry methods! top banter, beautious friendship, excellent shots of sheep being silly.
- 1900s house and similar: i am only human. i also like watching families forced into the garbs of their ancestors and struggling thru terrifying cookbooks!! it does make me feel better about my life when they are miserable about plowing. amongst other delights, the children are by far the mvps of the experience and are super adorable about their pet chickens. if you want more Drama than a gently exasperated archaeologist trying to get a pig to stop being a dick, these shows are the ones for you.
- shoutout to edwardian country house for being a terrifying display of class issues. the patriarch is such a yikes!!
- many countries have got in on the historical reality fun! less so much with historians, much more so with families who don’t quite know what they’re in for. samples include outback house in australia and frontier house in the us, the latter of which is MEGA DRAMA, plus a couple australian ones about ships which i have never been able to source on the internet
- turn back time: the family and turn back time: the high street: like a sped up version of the previous shows. each week the participants change time periods and social positions based on whichever of their ancestors the producers decide are most interesting.
- back in time for dinner and electric dreams: these are more contemporary, dealing exclusively with the 20th century. families have their homes transformed back and time and either have to (a) eat or (b) technology in the style of the decade. spoiler alert: they are very hungry in the 1950s and their carpets are the worst in the 1970s.
- AND MANY MORE!!! this genre is a Gift, time to paint the veneer of Learning on top of good old fashioned Entertainment. ENJOY.