For the uninitiated: these are annual period dramas produced by and aired on the Japanese national tv channel NHK.
I love historical fiction. I love long series. I can't believe it took me this long to discover the existence of Taiga dramas.
Basically, each year they come out with a drama series that follows the life of a historical figure in Japan history. Most of them tend to be political, patriotic, a bit educational, and since this is a national thing they usually have a great cast and amazing production value. The best thing about it is that each drama is around 50 episodes, so that's A LOT of hours.
A few of them are available with English subtitles from gooddrama.net. I've been watching Shinsengumi! and this is exactly my kind of thing. They do take a few liberties, but for the most part it's extremely well-researched and historically accurate, which is something I really appreciate. On top of that they manage to add in a healthy dose of good drama elements. Characters feel real and relatable. A very decent script with engaging political intrigue. It keeps a good balance between accuracy and good story-telling.
If you don't know any Japanese history at all, you might be a bit lost, but if you like historical fiction, this might be just the thing for you!
So, I feel like I've struck gold!