The Gilded Age is a period in American history characterized by the rapid growth of industrialization and the extravagance and ostentation of the very wealthy. The era is often referred to as “the Gilded Age” because an air of corruption and greed surrounded many aspects of society. The Gilded Age HBO show depicts this era through the lens of New York City’s elite families, including those who are part of America’s first “old money”, alongside those who would become its first “new money”. In doing so, it explores both the social life and political intrigue that defined this period.
The Gilded Age true story starts like this. The old money van Rhijn-Brook family and the new money Russell family have lived across the street in New York City since 1882. Marian Brook, a naive young woman, discovers the tight social scene and hard facts of life. The series follows folks from both the elite and lower classes.
The Gilded Age Cast
- Bertha Russell [Carrie Coon] – is determined to utilize her wealth and status to breakthrough into a genteel society that is averse to change at all costs
- George Russell [Morgan Spector] – Bertha’s husband, a traditional robber baron is representing “new money.”
- Marian Brook [Louisa Jacobson] – an impoverished young lady forced to live with her widowed aunts due to her circumstances
- Peggy Scott [Denée Benton] – after completing her education, a bright young African-American writer returns home
- Gladys Russell [Taissa Farmiga] – naive and innocent but eager to be handled like an adult
- Larry Russell [Harry Richardson] – a fresh Harvard University graduate looking to establish a name for himself in the world
- Oscar van Rhijn [Blake Ritson] – Agnes’ educated and attractive son is on the lookout for a wealthy heiress who will provide him with a comfortable lifestyle
- Tom Raikes [Thomas Cocquerel] – A reasonable young lawyer, charmed by the meeting with his former client’s bereaved daughter, Marian
- Bannister [Simon Jones] – The self-aggrandizing butler of the Van Rhijns who manages the employees and keeps them in line
- Church [Jack Gilpin] – The butler for the Russell family, eluding his past by succeeding at his profession
- Ada Brook [Cynthia Nixon] – Sister of Agnes who relies on her generosity
- Agnes van Rhijn (née Brook) [Christine Baranski] – Head of the Brook House, a proud and obstinate old money socialite
You can say that The Gilded Age is a better version of Downton Abbey. If you are a fan of historical drama, family drama accompanied by some black money scandals, and crime, then The Gilded Age is the perfect show for you. It is a series, but considering the hype about this show, it is not so surprising soon to see The Gilded Age movie. But for now, you can enjoy the first season of the drama on Disney + Hotstar. The Gilded Age Netflix is not available yet.