Despite being released amid a deluge of period dramas and biopics, Starz's The Serpent Queen, which follows Catherine de' Medici’s rise from Italian servant to Queen of France, is a strong standout in today's streaming fare.
By balancing modern storytelling (expect poppy needle drops and fourth-wall breaks a la Fleabag) and historical realism (the costume and production design are as accurate and detailed as any thoughtful production), The Serpent Queen manages to have a genuinely fresh take on the historical drama. It's also refreshing in its refusal to sugarcoat history’s crude ways, so despite its modern feel, don't be too surprised to see 13-year-olds bedded and bodies graphically pulled apart by horses.
Genre: Drama, History
Actor: Amrita Acharia, Barry Atsma, Beth Goddard, Danny Kirrane, Enzo Cilenti, Liv Hill, Nicholas Burns, Ray Panthaki, Raza Jaffrey, Samantha Morton, Sennia Nanua