SNARK WEEK POLL: What Historical Costume TV Do You Love to Hate-Watch?


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We know you don’t watch every frock flick because it’s beautifully costumed and historically accurate. C’mon, fess up. Sometimes you enjoy the schlock-fests. We do too. It feels dirty, and you like it. This is a safe space, just between us and the Interwebs, so confess what show you dig into with a bottle of cheap merlot and a bag of cheese doodles. We get you.



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Three historical costumers who decided the world needed a podcast and blog dedicated to historical costume movies and everything right and wrong with them.

26 Responses

  1. Charity

    I don’t hate-watch Victoria, I love-watch it.

    It was a tough call between The Tudors and The Musketeers, but in the end, I went for the latter — although there too, it’s more of an enjoyment-watch. It’s just a fun series! The Tudors, on the other hand, I want to scream at the screen at the total WRONGNESS of most of the history of it. :P

  2. Susan Pola Staples

    Victoria but also Versailles, Reign and Poldark and Murdoch

    • MoHub

      Really? We love Murdoch and think it gets a lot of the styling right. However, the same production company makes The Frankie Drake Mysteries, set in the 1920s, and the costumes in that are gorgeous but questionable. Furthermore, there seems to be a lot of present-day underwear supporting the garments—to the point that even my husband noticed that characters were wearing 21st-century bras under their tops.

      • Susan Pola Staples

        Haven’t seen Frankie Drake but I’m waiting for the DVD

  3. Peacoclaur

    Most things based on Phillipa Gregory (hiss) count as a love to hate for both production and plot. I have a dislike for that smug hack bordering on pathological yet the morbid fascination remains….

    Also I know this doesn’t count as a costume film by your standards but Invictus is also a favourite bad history film of mine for its very bad acting, hokey plot, lazy directing and weird casting. Oddly enough, the costumes esp the rugby kit were actually pretty good.

    Ps why the Victoria hate? It’s actually good, even if it’s not on par with say The Crown.

  4. Natalie Ramirez Weyermuller

    I choose Victoria although I don’t think it quite fits. I’ve never thought of the costumes as awful. I did at one time love The Tudors but the later seasons became tiresome. Poldark was another close choice but I don’t love it either. It’s constant nonsense also becomes tiresome.

  5. Sarah Lorraine

    I know I was originally all snooty about Versailles when we did the podcast, but the show has seriously grown on me. Even the girl doctor prodigy doesn’t grate as much as she did in the beginning. And while the costumes are sort of off, and I’m tired of staring at Montespan gripping her skirts for dear life as she tromps around the palace, I cannot stop watching.

  6. Sisi

    Poldark because I honestly love The Musketeers despite the outfits. Victoria was pretty close for the plot mostly.

  7. Cecily Van Vaerenewyck

    Poldark mainly cuz I love Dymelza but Ross annoys the fuck outta me (but soooo hot)

  8. Nzie

    I don’t watch any of these. Only seen an ep each of Reign and Victoria. But I probably could get into Victoria, at least if I can get past the housekeeper actress having been a super weird character with a really disturbing relationship with her husband in Broadchurch season 2. I was just glad I’d seen William D’Arcy (her equally disturbing husband and gross character) in other stuff first.

  9. Loren Dearborn

    Poldark – I actually really like a lot of the actors, which is a mean feat for someone who loved the old version, but the costumes are often SO BAD.

  10. Alys Mackyntoich

    Life is generally too short for hate-watching, but I did hate-watch The Musketeers vicariously through nearly every one of my friends who did so. We started a parlor game out of it: cast the worst possible Three Musketeers remake, with extra credit for the worst possible director. We came up with some “special” ideas that should never ever see the light of day.

  11. Rori

    Not really a love-hate watch, but i still like Poldark and Victoria despite some issues i had with it. I find Victoria to be harmless out of all the shows here. Yes, all the melodramas in Poldark are annoying and tiring, but goddamn I’m still watching for Dat abs!

    I dropped The Tudors immediately after the first 2 episodes. I’m pretty boring and it’s straight up soap opera.

    Vikings on the other scale… I will endlessly hate-hate watch it to snark all those biker hairs and leather pants.

  12. Frannie Germeshausen

    Poldark because Ross can be SO DAMN STUPID and so smokin’ hot at the same time.

  13. Janette

    It was a hard choice between Victoria and Poldark but I think I am unlikely to bother watching any more of the later whereas I can still stomach the former though I have yet to watch season two.

  14. Ann

    Victoria and Poldark -love watching. The composers of the theme music for Poldark could learn from Victoria. If they are going to play it every five minutes it has to be something that one can listen to that often. Poldark has a few too many scenes with their theme music and a horse galloping along the edge of a cliff or people gazing at the sea.

    • Susan Pola Staples

      Poldark needs more scenes with the adorably cute Horace. Even Horace starring hurt out on the cliffs waiting for Caroline.

  15. Adina

    wait, I love Versailles and Ripper Street, and I even like the first two seasons of Robin Hood. I tend to avoid hate watching costume things because I’ll either like the plot or I don’t, and if the plot can’t keep me, I won’t watch.

  16. picasso Manu

    You forgot Outlander. Yeah, I know, anathema, but the second that nipple dress hit my French retina, I shot to the ceiling in fury… Haven’t come down yet.

  17. Saraquill

    The only one I’ve seen is Ripper Street. While the pilot was interesting, everything else was so bland, yet I persisted.

  18. bespectacledbibliophile

    None of these are my go to.

    I did, however, hate-watch the entirety of the Starz Camelot series. The costumes were BONKERS (I still occasionally yell about the one-sleeved velour number Guenevere wore) but I’d have watched five seasons if it was just Eva Green plotting evil Morgan plots with her gathering of loyal women.

  19. Lynne Connolly

    The Musketeers, or, as it was called in my house, Jacket Porn. But the makers knew. They knew it was ridiculous as history, and the characters kept hamming it up or going way over the top in their acting, so that makes it fun.
    Victoria is wrong but boring. So slow! Downton lost its sense of fun after the first series, apart from Dame Maggie. The Tudors was unwatchable, far too serious for its own good.
    There’s a new one that looks like it’s going to be fun to watch if you don’t take it too seriously. Troy: Fall Of A City. it premiered on BBC1 last Saturday. It easily fits the bonkers trope!
    Oh yes, and I loved The Last Kingdom. That man is so hot!