Skip Navigation

Netflix original “Peaky Blinders” a must watch historical drama featuring glorified gangsters

By Amanda Barbato, ‘19

As I was browsing through my suggested shows I saw “Peaky Blinders.” I didn’t really understand the name and normally I am not interested in historical dramas, but I decided to give the first episode a shot based on the positive reviews.

I watched the first episode and half of the first season all within the same day. Between the dynamic characters, the brilliant settings, and the English accents – I was hooked.

The series surrounds a group of glorified gangsters from Birmingham after WWI known as the “Peaky Blinders.” They are all well known as gamblers, running a popular horse racing company, Shelby Company Limited. The show focuses on the Shelby’s expanding their kingdom, their run-ins with the law, and the relations among the Shelby family.

The Shelby’s, gypsies, gain the attention of a detective in the Royal Irish Constabulary and spend their days manipulating, being manipulated, and becoming ‘kin’ with other gangs for protection.

The “Peaky Blinders” is based on the true story of the Peaky Blinders, a real gang who operated after the war known for their style of flat caps and jackets. According to Daily Mail, the name “Peaky Blinders” is said to be derived from the practice of sewing razor blades into the flat parts of their caps which they would use as a weapon to “blind” the rival gang. There are many great points of cinematography in the series, the fight scenes being some of the best.

“Peaky Blinders” was originally a BBC original series. Its popularity prompted Netflix to buy the rights and rework it to a “Netflix Original Series.” This show is definitely for mature audiences; Violence, nudity, and profanity are plentiful.

If you can get past the violence and other mature content, “Peaky Blinders” has an intense storyline involving shocking twists. Absolutely nothing is sacred to this series. Your favorite characters could be killed off completely out of the blue. With each episode you watch your opinion on character will change. Although you witness the terrible acts the Peaky Blinders conduct you might begin to feel sympathy for their characters and end up rooting for them instead of the law.

There are currently three seasons of “Peaky Blinders” on Netflix, with a fourth season in the works. Each season comes with six hour long episodes, so it is very easy to get carried away.