Title: The Buccaneers (Season #1)
Released: 2023

Fix: Historical-esque Drama, Free-Spirited Americans in Stuffy Old England
Platform: Apple TV+

Apple TV+ Summary:

A group of fun-loving American girls burst onto the scene in tightly corseted 1870s London, kicking off an Anglo-American culture clash. Sent to secure husbands and status, the girls’ hearts are set on much more than that.

FYA Summary:

Basically, what if a show was set in the 1870s with Reign sensibilities, but has Bridgerton ahistorical (i.e., non-white) casting, was based on an unfinished Edith Wharton novel, and has the same name as an NFL team? If you’re sold on that pitch, then you’re in the right place!

After their ostensible ringleader marries an English man, a quintet of New York friends find themselves in London for debutante season. Two are trying to lock down a man, while their younger sisters are just along for the ride — or, at least, that’s the plan.

Familiar Faces:

Alisha Boe as Conchita Closson, Josie Totah as Mabel Elmsworth, Kristine Frøseth as Annabel “Nan” St. George, Aubri Ibrag as Lizzy Elmsworth, and Imogen Waterhouse as Virginia “Jinny” St. George

Newlywed Conchita already had her whirlwind fairy tale romance. The happily ever after, however, remains to be seen.

In Bennet sisters parlance, Jinny is the perfect Jane to rambunctious Nan’s Elizabeth, although there’s more of a jealousy angle with the sisters St. George, as Nan regularly — albeit unintentionally — steals the spotlight from Jinny. (And yes, Waterhouse as in sister of Suki.)

There’s less focus on the bond between the Elmsworth sisters, since Lizzy mostly functions as Jinny’s overlooked brunette friend, and unassuming Mabel gets ignored — until both of their stories expand.

Guy Remmers as Theo and Matthew Broome as Guy Thwarte

Both of these guys (HAR*) are Mysterious Loner-ish Dudes. Definitely lots of BROODING and SECRETS. Also, I kept getting distracted by how Matthew Broome is so Theo James coded.

* This is just like another show I’ve covered, in which a character and a different actor have the same first names. I would say “What are the chances?”, but apparently, not that low!

Josh Dylan as Lord Richard Marable

IT’S YOUNG BILL FROM MAMMA MIA 2. Although decidedly less charming as Conchita’s new husband who woefully underprepares her for life in England.

Barney Fishwick as Lord James Seadown

Not to influence anyone else’s opinion too much, but loudly, vociferously — FUCK THIS GUY. Kudos to the actor, I suppose, because this character is Joffrey Baratheon levels of loathsome.

Christina Hendricks as Patricia “Patti” St. George

OH HI, CHRISTINA HENDRICKS. (Who has been in more of our Stream It picks than I realized.) Of the parents’ generation, Patti is the most prominent, as a new money social climber from Florida who wants nothing more than to secure her girls’ futures. Continuing with the Pride and Prejudice parallels, think Mrs. Bennet if she had an interior life.

Couch-Sharing Capability: Medium

This kind of show isn’t going to be everybody’s jam, but its eight episodes are easily bingeable for those who prioritize swoon over history.

Recommended Level of Inebriation: Adjust As Necessary

While this show is mostly frothy fun, it does also touch on sensitive topics — mainly, abusive encounters and relationships. The depictions aren’t sensationalized, but they’re present nonetheless.

Also not great is calculating the age gap between Nan (too young to debut, canonically a teen) and her love interests (at least 26 or so).

That being said, the show’s not all doom and gloom, so feel free to emulate the Buccaneers’ joie de vivre by imbibing your favourite beverage! (Even though I’m not sure the girls ever get referenced by that name in the entire season.)

Use of Your Streaming Subscription: Decent

Now that The CW’s offerings are all but extinct, we gotta get our YA TV show fixes somewhere, am I right? Plus, production for the second season has already started, so more episodes are on the way!

Mandy (she/her) lives in Edmonton, AB. When she’s not raiding the library for YA books, she enjoys eating ice cream (esp. in cold weather), learning fancy pole dance tricks, and stanning BTS. Mandy has been writing for FYA since 2012, and she oversaw all things FYA Book Club from 2013 to 2023.