Ah, sometimes there’s no better feeling than escaping into a good, old-fashioned fantasy! But, in a genre saturated with predictable clichés, finding those really great fantasy series can take a bit of digging. So, to save you guys some time, here are some exciting fantasy shows that stand out from the crowd!
Based on a series of novels by Andrzej Sapkowski, The Witcher has become a global phenomenon. In 2007, The Witcher series was adapted into a fantasy role-play video game and, later, into high-budget live-action drama series in 2019 – and like all the Witcher-based content before it, it’s pretty damn awesome! The story follows Geralt, a solitary man with the predetermined purpose of monster hunting. However, the more time goes on; the more monstrous humankind seems compared to those that Geralt instinctively hunts. Faithful to the original story with well-developed characters and famously on-point casting, The Witcher is oozing with those warm, familiar RPG vibes we all know and love.
Based on the graphic novel series by Neil Gaiman, initially published by DC Comics’ Vertigo imprint between 1989 and 1996, this Netflix adaptation of The Sandman is everything a fantasy fan could dream of. When Lord Morpheus, the King of Dreams, is kidnapped by an occultist seeking to resurrect his deceased son, the natural order is thrown into chaos as people worldwide fall into an irreversible state of catatonia. Powerless, trapped and humiliated, Morpheus quietly plots his revenge, biding his time to break free from his prison and embark on a journey to retrieve his stolen tools. With its eclectic cast of characters and mind-blowing cinematography, The Sandman is a dark trip through dreams and nightmares, exploring multiple facets of human nature from the mundane to the metaphysical – the perfect show to binge with a bucket of popcorn!
An intriguingly unique series, Arcane brings the contrasting genres of utopia and dystopia crashing together. Set in the Utopian city of Piltover, tensions are brewing between the affluent city and the poverty-stricken underbelly of Zaun. And political unrest leads to familial rifts as sisters Jinx and Vi find themselves on opposite sides of the brewing conflict. A hard-hitting series that delves into the effects of political hostility on both a large and small scale, Arcane will keep you glued to the screen – and you’re bound to be thinking about it for weeks after.
The 1982 Jim Henson film, The Dark Crystal, sprung from a comic series originally published by Marvel Comics. And in 2019, Netflix expanded on the lore with this beautifully crafted prequel series. Created with puppets in the same distinctively whimsical style as the original 1982 movie, The Dark Crystal: Age Of Resistance delves into the unrest between the oppressed Gelfling race and the tyrannical Skeksis and the horrifying secret of the Skeksis harbour. An epic journey of rebellion, this visually gorgeous fantasy can be watched as a continuation of the comics and movie or as a standalone series. Beautiful in terms of both plot and aesthetics, along with wonderful characters and exceptional worldbuilding, this gorgeous series is guaranteed to leave you wanting more.
We’ve seen the ‘school for kids with powers’ trope done over and over again, but The Umbrella Academy offers up a fresh new take on it. Based on the comic book series by Gerard Bà, the story begins on a day in 1989 when 43 children are inexplicably born to women who showed no prior signs of pregnancy. A handful of these miraculous infants are adopted by Sir Reginald Hargreeves, a billionaire industrialist who creates the Umbrella Academy to house his extraordinary new children. But as time passes, cracks start to show within the family, and clashing personalities meshed with powerful abilities come crashing violently together. From its excellent cast, gorgeous action scenes and gripping drama, The Umbrella Academy is a grittier take on the teenage superhero trope.
Based on the fantasy novel of the same name, co-written between Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman, Good Omens follows an Angel and a Demon assigned to intervene directly with human affairs on earth, for better or worse. Running into one another repeatedly since the time of Eden, the two develop a codependent bond, realising over time that they have both grown fond of the pleasures offered by the messy, chaotic planet they’ve been saddled with. However, when their respective head offices announce the approach of the apocalypse, they find themselves joining forces in an effort to preserve their comfortable life on earth. Emotional, wacky, and just great fun, Good Omens blends fantastical elements with strikingly observant humour, making for a uniquely memorable fantasy and a cosy feeling that’ll keep you coming back.
And finally, we’re wrapping up with this absolute gem of an animated show! Based on a diverse variety of Asian mythology, Avatar: The Last Airbender takes place in a world divided into four nations: the Fire Nation, the Water Tribes, the Earth Kingdom, and the Air Nomads. However, the delicate balance upheld by the four nations is thrown off when the Fire Nation begins expanding its borders, leading to a brutal, century-long war. Only the Avatar, master of all four elements, has the power to restore balance. But as the Fire Nation rose to power, the Avatar vanished from existence, leaving the world at the mercy of some of the most ruthless and tyrannical political leaders in history. A treasure trove of good storytelling with exemplary world-building and character development, Avatar: The Last Airbender is an absolute must for fantasy and mythology lovers alike.
What’s your favourite fantasy series? Any we’ve missed that you think deserve a mention? Let us know in the comment section below!