The secrets of Ancient Egypt have provided a great backdrop for fiction over the years. With its fantastical mythology and hidden treasures, it has captivated audiences since the Victorian era when the tombs of the Pharaohs were first uncovered. Today, there continue to be great television shows based on the period. Below, we give our pick of three action shows inspired by Ancient Egypt and discuss its legacy in different media.
The Legacy of the Ancients
It is not just TV shows featuring Ancient Egypt that make great entertainment. The modern era has spawned out hundreds if not thousands of creations inspired by the ancient period, from films to literature to games. Console titles are awash with Egyptian mythology, with Scarab ( 1997) being a well-loved early example. This adoration even branches into more niche sectors, such as iGaming, which has many offerings such as the Eye of Horus slot that uses the imagery of ancient Egypt to create enticing games. These games have proved extremely popular, and the Ancient Egypt theme brings thousands of players to the sector. Clearly, the legacy of the Ancients remains unchallenged when it comes to being conceptualised time and time again in a huge variety of media. Speaking of which, here are our top three TV shows which stay true to this.
Blood and Treasure
Blood and Treasure is a show that takes this concept and runs with it. It had its debut in 2019 and was aired on CBS, though for its second series, it moved to Paramount. Despite only having 25 episodes it was very well received.
The adventure follows expert in antiques Danny McNamara who finds himself paired with international thief Lexi Vaziri. Together, they try to stop the antics of a terrorist who bankrolls his attacks using stolen high ends goods and antiques. This draws them into a plot that centres on the cradle of civilisation in Egypt, and they have to solve a 2000-year-old mystery.
SG-1 is arguably the most successful installment in the Stargate franchise. Originally a movie, it has spanned multiple television series, web comics and gaming. It ran for ten series, beginning its life on the Showtime broadcaster and later moving to the Sci-Fi Channel.
The concept centres around cosmic wormholes that allow instant travel across the cosmos, which had been used by the ancient Egyptians. The series starts a year after the end of the first movie and is about a special task force who work to prevent alien attacks via the gates while exploring the galaxy. Not only does it draw heavily upon Egyptian mythology, but it also incorporates lots of European folklore and legends as an influence.
Moon Knight is part of the Marvel franchise, but it definitely is not family-friendly viewing. The story follows a mild-mannered museum assistant Steven Grant. Dealing with dissociative identity order, he soon finds that he is actually a hardened assassin known as Marc Spector. To make matters worse, he is plagued by visions of the Egyptian god Khonshu who provides him with god-like powers.
The series gained critical acclaim for its complex plot and lead actor Oscar Issac balancing multiple personalities. It has been green-lit for a second series which should be on its way soon.
There is also countless film franchises featuring this theme, with Indiana Jones and The Mummy being some of the most well-known examples. We hope to see what the future of media will bring us using Ancient Egypt as inspiration. For now though, there is a wealth of entertainment avaliable with the theme.