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Want to watch more shows like The Sandman? Get your fill with these 9 high-fantasy series

Starring stars like Rosamund Pike and Orlando Bloom, here’s a lineup of new and old shows with great world building

Chandreyee Chatterjee Calcutta Published 12.08.22, 12:12 PM
Shadow and Bone

Shadow and Bone IMDb

With Netflix’s The Sandman ruling the top 10 spots and House of the Dragon landing in a couple of weeks and The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power following soon after, it is a good time for fantasy fans. If you are itching to stay in the mood between The Sandman and the epics to drop later, here is a list of nine shows — that is not Outlander or The Witcher — that you can choose from to keep you going.

Good Omens (2019)

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Let’s start with another Neil Gaiman classic that is absolutely brilliant. Good Omens, based on the book of the same name by Gaiman and Terry Pratchett, is a six-episode series where the angel Aziraphale (Martin Sheen) and the demon Crowley (David Tennant) try to prevent the coming of the Antichrist and the ensuing Armageddon. Why? Because they have grown fond of life and the lives on Earth. Tennant was born to play Crowley and it is stitch-in-your-side funny, with a lot of serious symbolism thrown in, just like the book. Good news is that Season 2 has been commissioned and Gaiman is still the showrunner.

Where to watch it: Prime Video

No. of seasons: 1

The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance (2019)

The prequel to the 1982 cult classic The Dark Crystal by Jim Henson is high fantasy magic. Set before the events of the 1982 film, the Netflix series delves into the world of Thra as three Gelflings embark on a journey to unite seven clans in a rebellion against the evil Skeksis. It is visually stunning with some incredible voice acting by actors like Taron Egerton, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Caitriona Balfe, Helena Bonham Carter, Jason Isaacs, Simon Pegg, Benedict Wong, Mark Hamill, Awkwafina, Eddie Izzard, Toby Jones, Alicia Vikander, Mark Strong, Andy Samberg and Sigourney Weaver. Oh and the characters are all puppets, not a single human nor animated character in sight. So it might take some time to get used to but it is well worth it.

Where to watch it: Netflix

No. of seasons: 1

The Wheel of Time (2021)

With Game of Thrones long gone (and an utter disappointment in the end) and The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power and House of the Dragon round the corner, this high-fantasy show based on a book series of the same name by Robert Jordan is the perfect watch to tide you over. The show follows Moraine (Rosamund Pike), an Aes Sedai (witch/sorcerer/magician) as she embarks on a quest to identify The Dragon Reborn and prevent the world being broken by the Dark One. If you are looking for epic world building and an entertaining adventure, these eight episodes are perfect, even if you haven’t read the books yet. Season 2 is on the way.

Where to watch it: Prime Video

No. of seasons: 1

Shadow and Bone (2021)

One of the best fantasy book-to-screen adaptations in recent times, this eight-episode series delves into the Grishaverse, a young-adult fantasy world created by author Leigh Bardugo. The show, which has been commissioned for a second season, will adapt the Grishaverse trilogy and the Six of Crows duology, which is also based in the same world. Pitch perfect casting (Ben Barnes as The Darkling is delicious), committed world-building and smart tweaks to the original storylines make it an absolutely engaging watch.

Where to watch it: Netflix

No. of seasons: 1

Merlin (2008-2012)

Not all the shows on our list are new ones. Some, like Merlin, are gems that can be watched (or rewatched as is the case with some people (*ahem*) even amidst shows that are far grander in size and scale. The British fantasy-adventure drama is based on a loose interpretation of Arthurian lore with the focus on a young Merlin (Colin Morgan) and Arthur Pendragon (James Bradley) and their growing relationship and adventures. It is a delightful watch from first to finish, even with all its cliches and predictability. Not every fantasy show has to be highbrow. This one is just simple fun. And the chemistry between Morgan and Bradley makes it even more so.

Where to watch it: Netflix

No. of seasons: 5

Carnival Row (2019)

Starring Orlando Bloom as a half-fae inspector and Cara Delevingne as his fae love interest, this dark fantasy series follows Bloom who is investigating murders on an earth where mythical creatures have been forced to cohabit with humans after their homeland is destroyed by war. It is visually great and has some detailed world-building and mythology. Sometimes that becomes a little too much. We are hoping that the second season (which has been wrapped up but without a release date yet) will take it forward and make it better.

Where to watch it: Prime Video

No. of seasons: 1

Arcane (2021)

If you believed that video games could never be successfully adapted on screen, and you would have been justified given the abysmal examples that have been made (The Witcher was a book first!), Arcane would quell that doubt forever. What’s even better? You don’t even have to be into League of Legends to appreciate the show which has a 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The animated show is a visually stunning, emotionally mature and wonderfully complex story of two sisters torn apart by class war in a world filled with magic and arcane technology. This is a must-watch if you like fantasy.

Where to watch it: Netflix

No. of seasons: 1

Legend of Vox Machina (2022)

You don’t have to be a Dungeons & Dragons fan to watch this animated show. You just have to love fantasy and quests… and Deadpool-like cussing and humour… and lots of over-the-top violence. Set in Exandria, it follows a group of mercenaries called Vox Machina as they go on a quest to save the world from a threat. It has great animation and is absolutely irreverent and a lot of fun, if you have the stomach for it. It does have a 100% score on Rotten Tomatoes and a second season has already been commissioned.

Where to watch it: Prime Video

No. of seasons: 1

Cursed (2020)

Based on Frank Miller and Tom Wheeler’s illustrated novel of the same name (they are the show creators as well), this is another reimagining of the Arthurian legend from the point of view of Nimue, a young enchantress who is in denial of her destiny to become the Lady in the Lake. You know, the one who gives Arthur the Excalibur. The show is slightly confused in tonality, veering between Young Adult and a lot of blood and gore, but it is a good binge if you are looking for some fantasy to see you through a weekend.

Where to watch it: Netflix

No. of seasons: 1

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