2018 saw some incredible performances in period dramas on British television.
From heartthrobs Sam Heughan and Aidan Turner in Outlander and Poldark, to the captivating Benedict Cumberbatch in Patrick Melrose and a darker-than-usual Hugh Grant in A Very English Scandal, it’s been hard to choose a favourite from the past year!
Over the past couple of months, we asked you to vote for 2018’s best actor in a British period drama, TV movie or mini-series.
Now that we’ve counted up all 1,869,866 votes, we can reveal the Top 20…
20. Mark Williams as Father Brown in ‘Father Brown’
19. Alexis Georgoulis as Spiros Halikiopoulos in ‘The Durrells’
18. David Morrissey as Aulus Plautius in ‘Britannia’
17. Stephen McGann as Dr Patrick Turner in ‘Call the Midwife’
16. Idris Elba as Walter in ‘In the Long Run’
15. Ben Hardy as Walter Hartright in ‘The Woman in White’
14. Louis Hunter as Paris in ‘Troy: Fall Of A City’
13. Hugh Grant as Jeremy Thorpe in ‘A Very English Scandal’
12. David Mitchell as William Shakespeare in ‘Upstart Crow’
11. Benedict Cumberbatch as Patrick Melrose in ‘Patrick Melrose’
10. Daniel Mays as Colin in ‘Mother’s Day’
9. Tom Bateman as Rawdon Crawley in ‘Vanity Fair’
8. Bill Nighy as Leo Argyll in ‘Ordeal By Innocence’
7. Alexander Skarsgård as Becker in ‘The Little Drummer Girl’
6. Shaun Evans as Endeavour Morse in ‘Endeavour’
5. George Blagden as Louis XIV in ‘Versailles’
4. Alexander Dreymon as Uhtred of Bebbanburg in ‘The Last Kingdom’
3. Jamie Dornan as Liam Ward in ‘Death and Nightingales’
Now, this was unexpected…
The top two actors in the list combined took a whopping 90.03% of all the votes, with each actor’s final total only hundredths of a percentage apart.
However, as some readers will know, unfortunately there was some irregular voting from fans of these two shows, which actually broke the site several times.
Even more disappointing to us – a small, independent site which is just run for fun in spare time, not by a company or a business – was that a number of so-called fans of both shows felt it was acceptable to harass the site’s owner on Facebook, sending abusive messages even on Christmas Day! Yes, grown adults harassing someone over Christmas because of their favourite TV show.
This cheating (that’s the only word for it, sadly) and really upsetting behaviour only came from a tiny minority of fans, so we decided it would be unfair on all the honest fans who had voted to just disqualify these two shows from the poll.
Instead, the only sensible thing to do seems to be to announce that the top two actors both came in joint first place.
Sorry to anyone who’s disappointed by this choice, but we hope you’ll understand that given the circumstances it’s the only fair option.
We have now ensured that this irregular voting will not be possible on any future polls we run. Perhaps naively, it genuinely hadn’t occurred to us before that people would try to cheat the voting.
The final results were so close and it’s clear that there’s a huge amount of love for these two shows. Please share a bit of that love towards other people in 2019?
So, without any further ado, we can announce that (in alphabetical order) the two best British period drama TV actors of 2018 are…
1=. Aidan Turner as Ross Poldark in ‘Poldark’
1=. Sam Heughan as Jamie MacKenzie Fraser in ‘Outlander’
Take a look at our guide to the 28 best British period drama TV series of 2018.