[Top 15] Best Fantasy TV Series of All Time

Best Fantasy TV Series
"Hmmm" - Geralt of Rivia

Fantasy TV has seen a resurgence in popularity in recent years. What's the best out there right now?


In this day and age where it’s easy to stream anything, from anywhere, at any time, binging TV shows has become a common occurrence for everyone. I mean Netflix has asked all of us at least once if we’re still watching, right?!

Here, I'm going to try to list mostly “High Fantasy” shows but considering how popular fantasy has become recently, there are surprisingly few so there may be some crossover with “low fantasy” as long as it contains elements of high fantasy that we know and love.

So without further hesitation, whether you just fancy a change of genre or need an escape from reality for a while, this list will help you find your next TV series to get lost in


15. The Legend of the Seeker

Based loosely on the Sword of Truth novels by Terry Goodkind, the show tells the story of Richard Cypher and his companions as they set out on a quest to stop Darken Rahl after he invades the Midlands.

The show wasn’t particularly well-received by critics but took much more of a hold with fantasy fans. Whilst only running for two seasons before its cancellation, if you want a high fantasy fix this should scratch that itch.


14. Xena: Warrior Princess

The series follows Xena on her quest to redeem herself from her dark and dangerous past by using her abilities as a warrior to help people. Along the way, she makes friends and enemies whilst visiting locations from Ancient Rome and Greece, to more mythical places that are portrayed with the same level of realism.


I will confess, I’ve never sat and watched every episode of this show. In fact, it’s better to say I’ve just caught the odd one over the years. The production and SFX are very typical of that from the mid-’90s and during this age of big-budget, high production TV shows it doesn’t really stand up. But you can’t deny the cult following this show gained or its right to be placed on this list.


13. The Shannara Chronicles

The Shannara Chronicles Season 1


Based on The Sword of Shannara books by Terry Brooks, the show follows the adventures of Wil, Amberle and Eretria as they go on a quest to protect the ancient tree Ellcrys from dying, and in doing so stopping the demons locked in The Forbidding from returning to The Four Lands.

Originally picked up by MTV, the show is aimed at a more YA audience which means it has more than its fair share of romance and cheesy lines. Get through the first few episodes though and you’ll find something more entertaining under the surface.


12. Cursed

Another version of the Arthurian legend on the small screen


Based (very) loosely on Arthurian legend, Cursed is a Netflix original that does its best to give you that fantasy TV fix even if it doesn’t always hit the mark. Some minor plot points that don’t make much sense can’t mar the overall production value and art design which is pretty solid as are the well-choreographed action sequences. There’s enough here that may not make you want to binge-watch, but certainly, be interested enough to watch the next episode when you can.


11. Merlin

A family-friendly take on Arthurian legend.


Another loose retelling of Arthurian legend, this BBC TV show follows a young Merlin who has been sent to Camelot by his mother and becomes a manservant to young Prince Arthur. Merlin must learn to harness his powers to protect Arthur and influence him to become the King he is destined to be, all whilst hiding his powers as magic has been outlawed by Arthur's father, King Uther Pendragon.

Originally airing to mixed reviews, the perfect mix of cheesy and entertaining storylines led to greater success as the show went on and became the most-watched show on BBC Iplayer. It was nominated for several awards and became a global success, becoming a mainstay on Netflix in both the UK and the US.


10. Once Upon a Time

A fresh take on Fairy Tale narrative

Once Upon a Time is a fantasy drama that takes place in two settings: a fantasy world where fairy tales happen and the fictional Maine seaside town of Storybrooke. The inhabitants in the town are all fairy tale characters who have been transported and had their memories wiped by the Evil Queen Regina. Their only hope is Emma, the Saviour, the only person who can break the curse.

The show ran for seven seasons from 2011 - 2018 to both critical and fan positivity and through its run was nominated for and won numerous awards. Originally looking at adapting the comic Fables into a TV show, this idea was eventually dropped and replaced by the network with Once Upon a Time and the influences are easy to see.


9. Disenchantment

Fantasy mayhem from the mind behind The Simpsons

From the creators of The Simpsons and Futurama comes Disenchantment, a Netflix original set in the Kingdom of Dreamland. It follows the misadventures of Bean, an irresponsible and alcoholic Princess, her Elf companion Elfo and her own personal demon Luci.

Disenchantment is a lot of fun to watch and whilst it doesn’t provide much depth initially, the second and third parts of the show become more focused and take us to more varied and interesting locations as well as dealing with some darker and heavier themes along the way.


8. Castlevania

Stylish and gory anime based on the critically acclaimed video game series.

Count Dracula summons an army of demons and declares all the people of Wallachia will pay with their lives after his wife is burned at the stake as a witch, causing the inhabitants to live in fear. Trevor Belmont, aided by Sypha Belnades and Dracula’s dhampir son Alucard, takes up arms against Dracula’s forces.

More of a fantasy horror than high fantasy, it does have fantastical elements which earn it a place on this list. Castlevania has received positive reviews for each of its three seasons also becoming one of the most successful original animated shows in Netflix history. Not to be watched by the faint of heart, this violent and gruesome anime is a thoroughly enjoyable watch.


7. Carnival Row

Carnival Row was a huge hit for Amazon

Carnival Row gives us a story about fantastical creatures that have fled their homeland due to a great war that is being raged between two human armies. This results in high simmering racial tension amongst the citizens of the city. Against this backdrop are unsolved murders, power struggles and a frowned upon love.

This is one of those shows that gets your attention from the first and holds it through the various plot lines that weave their way through this show. The racial inequalities are tastefully handled and the story is compelling in a way that keeps the episodes flowing. The visual effects and the acting are all superb making it easy to see why it was instantly renewed for a second season.


6. The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance


Yet another masterpiece from the Jim Henson Company

Rian, Deet and Brea are three Gelflings who must go on a quest to unite the Gelfling clans against the Skeksis to save the planet Thra from a blight known as The Darkening.

Despite being cancelled after just one season, Dark Crystal was met with widespread critical acclaim. The show is visually stunning and with the Jim Henson company having made everything, the practical effects look fantastic. This is a fantasy classic and a masterwork in puppetry.


5. Attack on Titan


Attack on Titan trailer

Adapted from the manga of the same name, this dark fantasy anime follows the epic story of Eren Jaeger after his world comes crashing down when a titan, a giant man-eating humanoid, smashes through the walls of his protected city. Vowing revenge and to rid the world of titans, he and his friends join an elite group of soldiers fighting against the Titans.

Loved by fans and critics alike, this critically acclaimed anime is beautifully illustrated and is absolutely brutal. While not technically high fantasy, these giants are a terror to behold every time they’re on screen. The action hits hard and the personal relationships between the characters are difficult not to care about.


4. His Dark Materials


This stunning BBC adaptation brings the fantasy classic to the small screen.

His Dark Materials follows the story of Lyra Belacqua as she embarks on an epic journey to find her Uncle, Lord Asriel, who has been experimenting with a substance called Dust and to stop the disappearances of children.

Based on the classic fantasy book series of the same name, His Dark Materials is an absolute joy to watch. The production value is high and the SFX are of incredible quality. Seeing Iorek brought to the big screen yet again was a personal highlight. The cast is star-studded and the acting is brilliant throughout. Renewed for a third season and winner of multiple awards, this is a show not to be missed.


3. Adventure Time


Adventure Time in all its insane glory

Following the assorted adventures of Finn and his best friend Jake, Adventure Time is an animated fantasy tv show that is as weird as it is wonderful. This is a fantasy TV show like no other with a whole host of unforgettable characters.

While some may find this a controversial pick, it’s hard to deny the impact Adventure Time has had on the industry, on popular culture and even academic interest in its portrayal of gender roles and stereotypes This is an iconic show that draws huge inspiration from Dungeons & Dragons as well as video games. Adventure Time has a fandom that will be around for years to come and is well-deserving of its numerous awards and accolades.


2. The Witcher


The best selling novels finally come to TV

Based on the best selling book series, The Witcher follows the exploits of Geralt of Rivia, a mutant, professional monster hunter and Witcher as he finds himself embroiled in war and prophecy as well as his various misadventures along the way.

Another Netflix original, The Witcher fills that High Fantasy hole in your viewing schedule. The Witcher was beautifully shot with set and costume designs that don’t spoil the immersion at all. Staying relatively faithful to the first book in the series, The Last Wish, the show appealed to fans and critics alike. The fight scenes are well choreographed and Henry Cavill, a fan of The Witcher universe himself, is the ideal choice to play the stoic and sarcastic monster hunter.


1. Game of Thrones


The book series that spawned a cultural phenomon

Let’s face it, despite the ending, there was no way that this wasn’t going to be number one on this list. This is the big one. The cultural phenomenon that brought fantasy TV to the masses and changed the face of popular culture forever. Primarily following the members of the Stark family, it takes us through the trials and emotional turmoil they face through death, destruction, warfare and the resurgence of an ancient enemy. 

Winner of multiple awards, one of the largest franchises in history will forever be a timeless classic at the forefront of fantasy TV and there will never be a bad time to get invested.


So there we have it, the top 15 best fantasy tv series of all time. Whether you agree or disagree, each of these has left its mark in some small way and appealed to its respective fandom. And there really is no better time to be a fan of fantasy television, with Amazon adapting and releasing TV series of both The Lord of the Rings and The Wheel of Time, both classic fantasy franchises in their own right, there is a very real chance that this number one spot could be changed not just once, but twice. That’s not even taking into account The Poppy War adaptation that’s due to happen and Brian Mclellan’s Powder Mage adaptation as well as the long-awaited and much hoped for Kingkiller Chronicles TV show.




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As an avid gamer and reader, I have spent the vast majority of my life exploring darkened tombs, vast mountain ranges and crumbling wizards towers. I do the hard work so you don't have to.
Gamer Since: 1995
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: Immortals: Fenyx Rising
Top 3 Favorite Games:The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, Batman: Arkham Asylum, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

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