There’s only one historical romance show you need to be watching — and it’s not ‘Bridgerton’

    Jane Grey, played by Emily Bader, is a hilarious heroine who’s easy to root for.

    Prime Video

    “My Lady Jane” is Prime Video’s answer to “Bridgerton.”Both are historical romance shows set in an alternate version of the past.But while “Bridgerton” might be losing steam, “My Lady Jane” is red hot.

    If you, like many others, were feeling a bit let down by the highly anticipated third season of Netflix’s streaming sensation “Bridgerton,” we have the show for you.

    All eight episodes of “My Lady Jane” dropped on Prime Video on June 27. Since then, the show’s following has only grown.

    The response from critics and audiences has been overwhelmingly positive — every day since the show’s premiere, outlets such as Slate, Forbes, and Variety have published glowing reviews. It is holding steady in the streaming charts, and it boasts a 93% critics score and an 81% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes. By comparison, “Bridgerton” has an 84% and a 73%, respectively.

    But what makes it a better hang than “Bridgerton”? Let’s discuss.

    The premise is deranged in the best way

    What, exactly, is “My Lady Jane” about? We’re glad you asked. The show, which is based on a young adult novel of the same name, is an alternate retelling of the events immediately following King Edward VI’s death in 1553.

    And while all the palace intrigue, scheming, and feminist reclamation of Jane Grey — known in history as the Nine-Day Queen — are delightful, the true fun comes from one small but significant detail: This world is populated by shapeshifters.

    u guys kinda have to tune into my lady jane…..its like if they wrote bridgerton while on ketamine and i mean that in a good way

    — trish (@ULTRAGLOSS) July 8, 2024

    It’s hilarious watching Jane (played by Emily Bader) discover her new husband Guildford (Edward Bluemel) — whom she detests — can turn into a horse at night.

    Yes, a horse.

    Shows like “The Great” and “Bridgerton” are simply not giving you people who turn into horses, hawks, or bears. In those shows, everyone is a plain old human.

    The chemistry between Jane and Guildford is sizzling

    “My Lady Jane” is a perfect example of enemies-to-lovers.

    Prime Video

    Some of the discourse around the third season of “Bridgerton” is that the chemistry between Penelope and Colin, played by the extremely charming Nicola Coughlan and Luke Newton, wasn’t always as powerful as it was between other characters in prior seasons.

    What was missing? Well, for some, the friends-to-lovers trope isn’t the most satisfying. Others might point to the fact that Colin’s yearning didn’t quite convince us that he was a truly tortured soul like all the best romantic leads are.

    Guildford is a romantic lead for the ages.

    Prime Video

    If either critic sounds like you, buckle in for Guildford and Jane. These two have witty banter that hasn’t been seen on screen since perhaps Kate and Anthony on season two of “Bridgerton” (and we’d argue Jane and Guildford are still superior).

    The enemies-to-lovers trope has never been stronger. And the way that Guildford runs around brooding about his relationship — and his predicament of turning into a literal horse — is giving Mr. Darcy.

    @aabbysm him marying her for her brain was all i needed to know #myladyjane ♬ i love you im sorry bridge – jil ୭.⋆。⋆༶⋆˙⊹

    It’s impossible to watch these two without giggling and kicking your feet.

    But there’s more to the show than romance

    The world of “My Lady Jane” is populated by multiple complex and compelling characters who are all vying for the throne in some way. In other romance shows, supporting characters and their respective plots can sometimes feel superfluous. Did anyone really care if Will Mondrich kept his club on “Bridgerton” this season?

    While the relationship between Jane and Guildford is a huge part of the show, there’s a lot more going on in this universe.

    Half-siblings Mary and Edward have a complex relationship in “My Lady Jane.”

    Prime Video

    The shapeshifters, known as Ethians, are a persecuted population, forced to live in the woods and scavenge for food. Anytime an Ethian is caught by someone from the palace, it’s almost certainly a death sentence. The Ethians’ resistance is one of the most compelling arcs on the show.

    You also have Jane’s complicated relationship with her mother, Guildford’s conniving (and hilarious) father and brother, Jane’s best friend who’s secretly been an Ethian this whole time, and the mystery of who wants King Edward dead … and that’s somehow not all.

    Think “The Great” meets “Game of Thrones” meets shapeshifting.

    There’s actual queer representation, and it didn’t take years to get there

    One of the biggest criticisms across “Bridgerton’s” three seasons, and of many historical shows in general, is that they are overwhelmingly straight. It took until season three for Benedict to be revealed as, at the very least, bisexual and to tease an updated WLW relationship for Francesca in the future.

    Francesca Bridgerton marries John Stirling in season three of “Bridgerton,” but it’s heavily implied that her true love story is still to come in future seasons.


    Not so for “My Lady Jane.” While we won’t spoil exactly who the queer character is, we will say that they figure it out almost immediately, and they do not have a tragic ending with a love interest dying.

    This show is marked safe from the “bury your gays” trope.

    But most of all, it’s just fun

    Things can get a little heavy while watching a historical show, even in comedies like “The Great” and “Dickinson.” “Bridgerton” and “Queen Charlotte” for all their ridiculous fashion and anachronistic covers of Taylor Swift’s songs, are straight-up tearjerkers sometimes.

    But “My Lady Jane” never stops with the laughs. Jane’s mother and Guildford’s father are consistently firing off a cackle-worthy zinger. The omniscient narrator is always cheeky, and the physical comedy from Kate O’Flynn as Princess Mary and Dominic Cooper as Lord Seymour is admirable.

    Jane is simply the best — even the narrator agrees.

    Prime Video

    If you want to watch a young woman come into her own without being really worried for her safety, “My Lady Jane” is the perfect summer binge. It’s time to check it out — we need a season two.

    Read the original article on Business Insider


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