10+ TV Shows Fans Tend To Forget Are Based On True Events

I think that a lot of people might be surprised to learn that some of our favorite TV shows aren't just the product of someone's imagination — they actually happened.

I know it's both trite and cliché to state that "truth is stranger than fiction," but sometimes if the shoe fits — you wear it. See what I mean and check out these 10+ TV shows based on true events.

*Peaky Blinders*.

While the exploits of the Shelby family are largely fabricated on the popular Netflix series, the Peaky Blinders gang did most definitely exist at one point in time.

Fun fact: they really used to sew razor blades into their hats — ouch!

*The Borgias*.

If you've ever wondered where the concept of Organized Crime came from, look no further than The Borgias.

This incredible period piece tells the true story of how Rodrigo Borgias bought and secured the Papacy for himself and his family.


Before sitting down to watch Waco, I was largely unaware of what actually took place during that infamous standoff between David Koresh and the police.

The Waco tragedy is largely considered one of the greatest failings in the history of law enforcement.

*The Crown*.

It shouldn't surprise anyone to learn that The Crown is based on the Royal Family of England. It begins with the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II, and is currently in its 4th season.

The series is so accurate that Netflix recently rejected a proposal to add a fictional disclaimer to the show.

*John Adams*.


Whatever happened to Paul Giamatti? I feel like he used to be everywhere and now I feel as if seldom see him.

His portrayal of founding father, John Adams, is without question one of the highlights of his illustrious career.

*Masters Of Sex*.

Were it not for the groundbreaking work of William H. Masters and Virginia E. Johnson, we'd still be fumbling around in the dark when it came to our concepts of sex and sexuality.

This show is a must-watch.


Hunters wants you to know that it is not only based on a true story but that some of the events they describe in the series actually happened.

You'll be able to spot these by the giant flashing "THIS ACTUALLY HAPPENED" disclaimers scattered throughout.

*Orange Is The new Black*.

It's widely accepted that the events of Piper Kerman's memoir have been largely embellished and exaggerated for Orange Is the New Black.

Still, her novel is well worth the read — especially for diehard fans of the series.


The story of the rise and fall of Pablo Escobar is truly one of the most fascinating tales you're ever likely to hear.

If you think you know all there is to know about El Patron, think again.

*When They See Us*.

When They See Us is a harrowing tale of racism in America. It revolves around a group of young teens who were falsely accused and stood trial for a crime they didn't commit.

The story of "The Central Park Five" will shock you.


Most of what we see in the series Mindhunters has been fabricated for television.

But the concept as a whole is inspired by the real-life events of John E. Douglas and Robert K. Ressler. These two invented the concept of profiling.

*Band Of Brothers*.

A lot of people tend to point to Saving Private Ryan as being the best depiction of war in film.

And while there's no denying it's a fantastic movie, it doesn't hold a candle to Band of Brothers.



I wasn't alive when the Chernobyl disaster took place, so I admittedly have no frame of reference as to how much of the HBO series was fact or fiction.

I will say, however, that this is one of the better TV shows I've seen in the past five years.

*Boardwalk Empire*.


Boardwalk Empire brings to life some of the most notorious figures in American history: Enoch Thompson, Arnold Rothstein, and of course — Al Capone.

This true story of prohibition is mired in bloodshed. It's without a doubt one of my all-time favorites.

*Spartacus: Blood And Sand*.

Whether you fancy yourself a student of history or just a casual observer, the story of Spartacus is one every person should know.

The show tells the true story of a Thracian soldier, sold into slavery. The man who would become Spartacus then rebelled against his master, leading a slave army of thousands against the might of Rome.