Every time I fall in love with a great period film or series and realize there’s no more episodes left I always think, “That’s it. I’ve seen them all. Nothing will ever be what (Downton Abbey, Poldark, fill-in-your-favorite-here) was to me!” But I’m usually wrong and there’s a new favorite waiting to be discovered.
Lovers of binge-worthy historical dramas, hear ye, hear ye: I have a new favorite that you’ve gotta see.
But it does require reading subtitles for all 46 episodes. Are you opposed to subtitles?
Of course not! Subtitles are charming!
Great, I agree. Lest you think I’m sharing this gem selflessly, I’m basically writing this because nobody seems to know about this show and I need about 8000 people to discuss it with yesterday. 100% selfish endeavor.
So here it is: Kurt Seyit ve Sura. It’s a Turkish series, available on Netflix, set during and after WWI centering on the love story of a Russian aristocrat (Sura–pronounced “Shura”) and a Crimean lieutenant (Seyit) fighting for the Tsar. Since I was a nerdy homeschooler who checked out every book on the Romanovs available at my local library at age 10, KSvS’s setting is a dream come true. Then as the plot drives the characters from Russia to Crimea to Turkey, I learned so much about Turkish culture which I knew embarrassingly little about.
The story is based on real events. In fact, the series is drawn from novels written by the real Kurt Seyit’s granddaughter, Nermin Bezmen. She did extensive research to write her books including finding Sura’s sister, Tina (another character in the story) in her final years and interviewing her.
If you’re like me and very much into historical shows with elaborate costuming, romance, and a side of melodrama, then this one’s for you. It took me several weeks to finish the series (it is 46 hour-long episodes, after all) and it’s very much in the same vein as the recent (and fabulous) production of War and Peace.
Some of the show will feel a little quirky to audiences used to American and British shows. Halfway into the series random voiceovers begin and there’s a couple of awkwardly placed and completely unexplained scenes of actors playing Nermin Bezman interviewing Tina. There are lots of unfortunate moustaches, a few weird dream sequences, and the hair and make up is often very anachronistic. But the music and cinematography are wonderful.
Here’s what to expect:
Everyone is beautiful.
There’s no way you can talk about this show without just getting straight to the point and admitting that this cast is full of seriously gorgeous folks.
Kıvanç Tatlıtuğ plays Seyit Eminof and I’m very confused why he is not cast in every movie ever. He wears the heck out of a beard and swaggers through Russia and Turkey.
Farah Zeynep Abdullah plays lovable Sura and I had to keep reminding myself that she was not Lily James playing Natasha.
Seyit and Sura really carry the show and are fascinating characters. Both flawed but likable and undergoing heartbreaking experiences of war, loss of family, and betrayal. But pretty much every cast member is stunning. Even the villains. I don’t know how they found all of the world’s most beautiful people to be in one show, but well done, casting director.
So much vodka is consumed.
So. much. vodka.
Hats, coats, and veils a plenty
Who doesn’t love excellent hats and fur coats worn in Russian snowscapes?
And as the setting moves to Crimea and Turkey the women wear beautiful veils. (The men don unfortunate moustaches so let’s just focus on the pretty veils.) But the costuming in the entire show is on point. And because the scenes vary from imperial Russian ballrooms to tiny apartments in Istanbul, the styles change drastically.
Emotional Train Scenes
No one does heartwrenching train platform goodbyes like Kurt Seyit ve Sura.
He’s leaving, she’s leaving, someone’s leaving and it’s very dramatic.
Expect an absurd number of forehead kisses and tears. Speaking of…
Everybody cries a lot.
Like a lot a lot. Everyone is always crying. I don’t know if this is a cultural thing or if it’s just a melodramatic TV show thing. But every character cries at least 583984734838972 times over the course of the show. Except Evil Petro. Evil Petro only smirks. Always.
See, I told you.
Very Over the Top Romance.
The show is super clean. Maybe because of Turkish TV regulations? I don’t know, but I appreciated that it wasn’t full of gratuitous sex scenes. Thumbs up, Turkey. But the romance is absurdly over the top. Which makes for a fun show. And a LOT of staring into people’s eyes.
I cannot overemphasize how much of this show is simply gorgeous people staring into each other’s eyes.
So if you’re ready to have your heart broken by Russian tragedy and learn some Turkish (Ok, so all I picked up was “hello,” “yes,” “no,” and “I hope so,” but at least that’s something) get thee to Netflix and enjoy and then come back here so we can discuss EVERYTHING. Thank you, kindly.
P.S. The book the series is based on, written by Kurt Seyt’s granddaughter, Nermin Bezmen, is now available in English! You can grab it from Amazon (affiliate link below):
Kurt Seyt & Shura by Nermin Bezmen
This looks right up my alley! The only thing is, would it be more seasonally appropriate to watch in winter? I recently (when it was still chilly out) watched the BBC version of North and South (based on Elizabeth Gaskell’s novel). Set in Northern England, where it’s apparently always cold and snowing, winter was the perfect time of year to watch. It’s also only 4 episodes (1 hr each) and you’ll basically have to binge watch because it’s so beautiful. Did I mention that I re-watched the final episode 4 times? Because it’s so beautiful. It could probably be an entire podcast discussion too.
Also, you and Christy are always looking for good (Catholic) novels. I’m almost finished with Don Camillo’s World (a compilation of all the Don Camillo books) by Giovanni Guareschi, published in the 50s and 60s. Set in Italy, the books are full of short stories about Don Camillo, a Catholic priest and his friendly rival, the Communist mayor Peppone. Antics Ensue. And the townspeople…they are everywhere!
The first few episodes are very wintry but once you get to Istanbul, it’s hot and sunny!
So I JUST finished the series (this blog cracked me up – so on target with everything, haha) AND I am also reading Don Camillo, so I had to comment because it was too weird and awesome to pass up 🙂
I didn’t realize it was a true story, which makes it even more heart-wrenching, and I just read on another site that the real Seyit ended his life (Lord have mercy, may he rest in peace) because he couldn’t be with Sura. I’m not typically an emotionally person, but this story really hit me (despite the cheese-factor with the over-the-top romance and all).
I definitely recommend this series to anyone and everyone. As long as you can overlook the crazy moustaches 😉
Tina Dickinson says
I almost felt better when I read your post that Seyit ended his life. I know sounds bad, but after watching it I was just so disturbed with how he could just go on with a new wife and life while who knows what happened to Sura. I just could not figure out what the point of this love story was if he just moved on with no problem really. Thanks for the post. Makes more sense.
Eileen Bubeck says
I wouldn’t call this a love story ( well perhaps from Sura’s point of view ).She is a young, innocent and impressionable girl who meets a dashing ( the actor is perfect ! ) young officer called Seyit , at her first ball .He, it seems has a reputation as a ladies man that is well known.He is entranced by her beauty and innocence and basically seduces her. He makes promises to her and we hear a lot about how he is a very honourable man and Sura believes in him. At first I felt her sister was very hard on her , but if you watch to the end you can see that Valentina read his character perfectly, as did the Baroness ( admittedly jealous, but nonetheless she knew him intimately )who tried to warn Sura . When the story moves to Turkey Sura is no longer the innocent girl, she has lived through too much.She is stronger and Seyit is unable to deal with the changes in her.For all his talk of honour he leaves her in an untenable situation and she is classed as his mistress.Uncle Ali I think is shocked that Seyit has not married Sura and he finally asks her to marry him.In the end his family and upbringing mean more to him than Sura and he enters into the marriage contract with another young, innocent young girl ( which his parents would have approved of )and breaks Sura’s heart .I really thought his behaviour was despicable .If this is a true story it would have been better if it had been written by an impartial observer . I hope Sura went on to find happiness.
absolutely agreed. the ending is frustrating.
darla haviland says
I agree! According to what I’ve read, in real life they both had affairs (him more). Murka was also young. He destroyed Sura’s reputation and took advantage of her innocence. She was 16 when they met, he was 27, 28. They did love and think of each other all their lives and wrote to each other but did not see each other as she moved to America and was married. It is so sad that it ended this way for Sura although according to his granddaughter he was never really happy in his marriage to Murka. I agree with you that his whole behavior changed towards Sura once she became more her own woman. It turned out he was just like his dad and wanted someone to do his bidding and Sura was too headstrong.
darla haviland says
Sorry to disappoint everyone but according to his granddaughter, Kurt didn’t commit suicide because of Sura. He developed TB of the lungs and rather than be a burden, he killed himself. He did however keep in touch with Sura throughout his marriage to Murka. His marriage to Murka was not a happy one unlike what they show in the series. Sura married and was happy, but she did write to Seyit and basically beg him to come to America to see her. The granddaughter felt that they loved each other till they died.
I loved the series and am glad it’s still on Netflix. I’m obsessed with Kivanc and wish I had the money and connections to get him in a movie in the US as he would be the biggest star this country has seen in a long time. Much better looking and actor than Brad Pitt IMO.
For those who haven’t seen it yet and are doubting you can do the subtitles, don’t hesitate. This is truly great television, despite it’s small flaws. It’s incredibly acted and by the 10th episode you feel like you know everyone intimately and they become part of your life.
Actually I have communicated several times with Nermin Bezmen. Her grandfather did not die due to not being with Sura. There were many reasons why he chose to marry Murka- all those issues are addressed in her books, however the producers of the series chose to embellish or add things that were not in her original story. The truth of Seyit’s death was that he had been on a train trip and it was bitterly cold. He encountered a woman and she had no coat so he gave her his coat. He later became very ill and was deteriorating badly. In order to spare his family from having to care for an invalid who would obviously not survive, he decided to end his life. You have to remember this was a trained soldier who was used to being in charge and not having to depend on anyone for help. He chose to die with dignity at the time and place of his choosing, rather than suffer the infirmities of a disease that would have greatly taxed his family. He waited until he was sure no one was in the home and then he proceeded to end his life making sure no one would discover him. The irony was that one week later, Sura returned to Istanbul for a visit, only to discover that Seyit had died. By that time 20 or so years had passed. To know the real story which explains why Seyit married Murka you have to read the books.
What happened after Sura left to go to Paris? Did she ever marry and have a family.
The author says on another site that he had TB and ended his life to prevent hardship on his wife. But….I know where you’re coming from!
Marijke Smith says
Omg! I binged watched the movie and it was so beautiful! I have no words to do it justice!! I cried more than anytime I remember and the story and feelings stayed with me for weeks! I was starting to watch it again this week, but honestly I’m not ready yet! I know it sounds stupid but I’ve always believed in a love like that, but I picked the wrong men! Suffice to say I cried for the beauty, the spoken love language and the pain of a broken heart ? (yes I got one of those). I didn’t like how they both believed whenever someone lied and they didn’t talk to each other about it. I wish they make another one to see what happened to Suri and sayit. One can only hope!
Jaime Forth says
Loved Seyit ve Sura more than any series on Netflix and totally agreed with your comments. It is wildly romantic, but sometimes a girl just needs 46 hours of old fashioned swoon-worthy romantic cinema to fix what’s wrong with her world. I was disappointed with the book – too much reality for me. But then, maybe because it didn’t have the wonderful Kivanc Tatlitug in it!
I had to stop watching after they got to Istanbul. Knowing how it was going to end I just could not go through with the heartbreak!! I have started to watch it again mainly because I am obsessed with him and the way he looks at her! But I will not make it through 46 episodes. The acting is superb and the emotions are stronger and more believable than much of anything I have watched in this country. I certainly felt what he and she were feeling…WOW!!
Excellent series, but so sad they didn’t end up together.
Not the first time I’ve thought we’d be great friends. I also binged this recently! And you are so right! Loved it!
So glad I’m in good company!
Ha! I love all the points you have made! It is so romantic that at times the subtitles are like pure poetry, I LOVE how they (Seyit and Sura) speak to or about each other, it always surprises me how they choose to express their love in words….I think that’s why I appreciate the creativity and challenge that NOT having Steamy R rated scenes gives to many period films…it takes GREAT writing on behalf of these movies and series to convey great love! The history here is very sad though I must say, it has made me even more sympathetic to any and all refugees.
Agreed! They couldn’t be lazy and just have oodles of sex scenes. They had to make it actually romantic and it worked!
Wow ! One can only wonder if such love exists now ! But there were moments when i felt that lovers cud have put their ego and unnecessary doubts aside and just marry , after a while it seems a little drag ! But yes love can be through eyes
Tina Dickinson says
Ha ha! I’m laughing out loud reading this! Thanks for sharing. I’ll add it my watch list!
I started watching this after you mentioned it in a post a couple of weeks ago. I’m only on episode 5 or 6 because I usually do my binge watching while doing other things and that isn’t possible with this due to the subtitles!! I’m really enjoying it though and plan to continue the series. I agree with everything you said above. I always enjoy watching movies and reading books that immerse me in a time and place I know very little about.
It actually reminds me a lot of a book series I’ve read several times called The Bronze Horseman by Paullina Simons. It is based in Russia during World War II and is about a handsome soldier falling in love with a beautiful young Russian. There have been talks about a movie/tv mini series for years but so far, nothing. Kurt Seyit ve Sura has indulged the part of me that has longed to see The Bronze Horseman on screen! It really is a great series and I learned a lot about Russia’s role in WWII and also the years that followed. There are many steamy scenes throughout the series but I always felt like it was within the context of the story instead of just because they author is trying to avoid describing a real connection between the characters.
I had the exact same thought about The Bronze Horseman! Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts. If only it too could be continued with a trilogy and then prequel!
Have you read A Gentleman in Moscow? Might be up your alley!
I found this on Netflix just after starting A Gentleman in Moscow. I had to put the book down because I couldn’t stop watching Kurt Seyit on TV!
Poldark is returning, you know — there’s a Season 3 – and a Season 4. It doesn’t start until October though… (sad trombone)
Where can I find seasons 3 and 4?
Lol. Well written….so funny. I will have to check this series out. Thanks Haley!
100% going to watch this. It sounds a lot like a k-drama (Korean soap opera–I’m a fan), which also lavish viewers with soooo much gazing, tears, drinking (soju, not vodka), and squeaky-clean but oh-so-dramatic romance. Coupled with occasional random cartoon sound effects and extremely pink lipstick. I love watching subtitled shows and picking up nuances of a culture and language I wouldn’t have been otherwise exposed to in one of the most fun ways possible. 🙂 Plus, romance. American media has seemed incapable of making truly romantic shows/films for a while now. Gotta go out of country for that!
Janelle G says
Once this baby decides to make an appearance I think I will have to give this show a try as my middle of the night nursing a newborn series 🙂 we shall see if I can do subtitles half awake lol
Candace Wilson says
I’m hooked!!! And only in episode 2.
I fell in love with this show as I think I may be your twin when it comes to the types of shows I watch and my interests. I also watched Love Bird. It is also Turkish and full of beautiful people and early 20th century. It is based on a classic novel. I came across Seyit and Sura in December and couldn’t watch anything else. So happy there is another soul out there that loves historical pieces as much as me.
As a huge Outlander fan, this series is perfect to fill in the gap until Outlander returns in Sept. It is a sweeping epic full of romance in addition to cultural information about Turkey, which is a country I have never given much thought to but now would love to visit. Kivanc Tatlitug as Seyit is drop-dead gorgeous and quite a fine actor and horseman. He steals every scene he is in. The cinematography is excellent and I do agree about the hair and makeup, which is much too contemporary. Although the series takes place during war time, thankfully the violence is minimal. I’m only on the 11th episode so I’m happy that I have many to look forward to.
BTW, since I started watching this series I keep thinking that the lead actor resembles another celebrity but could not put my finger on it. Then it came to me. IMHO, he is a great combination of Chris Pine, Chris Hemsworth and Tom Brady. Am I crazy?
He’s often referred to as the Brad Pitt of the Middle East : )
Rhonda Glogower says
He is more handsome, A total hunk!
Why do people keep saying this ? He is unique and nothing like anyone else!
and Celil looks like David Davunchy of X-Files. I love the series. its so beautiful the no steamy sticky sex scense, a pre-teen can watch while bonding with mom. Totally love it and hoping for the season 2 to come up soon.
Yes! Agree totally. My favourite character ⚘
Connie Kinsey says
He is beyond handsome.
I’m sure by now you’ve finished watching and hope you enjoyed the rest. I am on the second time. I’m also an outlander fan and this is right up there (I didn’t think I’d ever like anything as much as outlander or like any male lead as much as Sam Heughan but Kivanc sure makes ones heart flutter). There is a wonderful youtube video comparing Outlander with Kurt Seyit & Sura. Check it out.
Omgahh so glad I found someone who loved Seyit and Sura as much as I did. The ending was really sad and a bit frustrating but I was obsessed with this show.
Oh Hayley, bless you and your ability to find these gems! I too had a fascination with the Romanov family and have been equally fascinated by Russia (and the faith in Russia) through such books as Father Ciszek’s “He Leadeth Me” and Michael O’Brien’s “A Father’s Tale” both set in Russia, the former the most profound book to me faith wise and the latter a fictional but equally compelling novel. All this to say, I started this series last night and already watched more episodes than I had planned. I better be careful, this show is enchanting! Thank you and keep the suggestions coming when you find them!
My Husband and I enjoy watching the Father Brown series on Netflix although it’s nothing like this series or Downtown Abbey, and we also enjoy watching Rick Steve’s episodes. In fact, we recently watched his episodes on Turkey and the Holy Land. I’ll be intrigued to see if he’s visited Russia. Sadly, I don’t have any romantic period series like this one to recommend at the moment.
Just finished, was consumed for a week. Just to mention one thing, Sura’s sister was quite annoying throughout, but really shone in the last episode with the excellent advice she gave to Murka.
And I loved how the Turkish men kissed each other so affectionately.
Oh my oh my…I’m on episode 4 and I’ve forgone all my stacks of books to consume this emotionally charged ridiculously romantic stunning heart wrenching gorgeous series! No commas because I’m too excited. Back to the episode. I just had to thank you for telling me about this!!! After crying over Downton and now aching for season 3 of Poldark, this will do nicely. Very nicely.
Cary Leon says
I am addicted to Turkish shows most are simply masterpieces with outstanding storylines and best actors; Kivanç is a human legend soon will be filming in US
Deborah Edwards says
I found this wonderful series on netflex too. Along with a lot of people with a group of lots of people here. On face book I belong to Called Turkish Drama Appreciation Group . Thank You for this nice review
I joined the group so I could see what else is out there! I had no idea there were so many Turkish shows!
I found a great FB group, Kivanc Tatlitug North America. Their website, KivancTatlitugNorthAmerica.com has all his shows with English subtitles. Great discussions on the FB page, and plenty of shows to watch : )
Of course you did Ginger Monette
I loved it. Bat sad Seyt and Sura were separated. My heart was broken!
I’m actually very upset!!They made you fall in love with the romance between the two and the incredibly romantic scenes, the way the look at each other! My gosh!!!! How beautiful!
And then Seyit just moved on with his life with another woman for whatever the reasons were. I couldn’t believe he just went to say goodbye and let her go!
I could not finish it!
It was just a tease and not true love!
Barbara Rice says
Sayit wanted Sura to believe in him unconditionally and she proved she could not. That is why he moved on. I loved the series and have watched it over and over. Cannot find season 2.
Fantastic show, truly mesmerized me !
First Turkish show I watched, only because it was a period drama. Since then, I have had the opportunity to watch other Turkish TV shows. They are all by far superior to anything offered on US TV, and much more engaging that most things on British TV. Turkey, it so happens, is the largest TV-shows exporting countries in the world after Hollywood, appealing to audiences from the Philippines to the Middle East, from Eastern Europe to Latin America — there must be a good reason for this after all…
OMG, I found Seyit and Sura several weeks ago and I’ve been begging everyone i know to watch it ever since! Kavanic is to gorgeous. He grabs me with his captivating eyes, expressions, and emotions. The actress that plays Sura is wonderful as the young, sweet, innocent girl. I also love the supporting cast as well. I want punch Petro, but he’s quite charming when he’s not plotting and the actor is quite good as well. I belong to a facebook group that the author recently joined as well. It’s Kurt Seyit and Sura (english).
That is SO cool! I joined the group and will be asking the author all my questions! Thanks, Sarah.
Cassie V. says
Honestly, your review was on point! Found this show last month, binged every night when I tucked the kids in, drank lots of wine, shed lots of tears, fell in love with the characters, googled the real story a thousand times, and obviously downloaded the only English version of the book. Great series, great story, and great review!
Aw, thanks, Cassie!
Deborah Edwards says
I watched this show last year . It was fantastic. I highly recommend Kurt Seyit’ve Sura . It exciting romantic and take you on an incredible emotional journey that will stay with you for a long time.
Going through serious SvS withdrawl? Check out Cesur ve Guzel, modern day SvS. Has horses, Kavanic, great costumes, romance and pretty sets……
Is it available on youtube with english subtitles?
Watch everything Kivanc has been in ..www.kivanctatlitugnorthamerica.com..with English subtitkes. Found on fb of same name..Kivanctatlitug northamerica. He is an amazing actor. Loved Cesur ve Guzel , he’s beyond sexy in that series. You tube has S&S also. I found on netflix by mistake
Deborah Edwards says
I already binge watch the series I became a lover of it and the book as well as the authors
I just finished watching Cesur ve Guzel and wrote a review of it on my Romantic Musings blog at GingerMonette.com. Loved Cesur ve Guzel as much as Kurt Seyit ve Sura!
Christine Smith says
I must admit my addiction to this wonderful series. I have watched it over and over. I would love to discuss with anyone interested.
Check out the Kivanc Tatlitug North America FORUM on FB. Great place to talk about any/all of his shows.
Just finished it. Want everyone to watch it. Thank you for writing this review so I can convince them!
I loved your review! I have watched a few Turkish shows and then I came across Kurt Seyit ve Sura. I was captivated, addicted and obsessed with this show! The glamorous depiction of life in Russia to the ethnic and cozy lifestyle of Turkey, really shows what a rollercoaster their life must have been. I think Kivanc does so much justice to the character and show, his expressions and acting make you live the actual heart ache and tragedy of Seyit and Sura. I wonder how hard their life was after they parted ways, its such a shame that they lost each other. Together they went through love, loss, tradegy and emptiness only to seperate from each other in the end. It was frustrating to see them not able to solve their issues and let their love get lost in their egos and insecurities. Anyway I can ramble on about this forever! It left me heart broken and has haunted me for days. Therefore I decided to read the actual story, I found the english version of Kurt Seyit ve Sura on kobo.com. The real story is different from what is depicted in the show. If you are obsessed with them then you must read the book. Love to discuss if anyone is interested!
I do not read very well in English. If you can tell what happened to Seyit’s life and Sura’s after your separation, I’ll be very grateful.
The wedding was a disaster when he didn’t show up. He was kidnapped and put on a boat back to Russia.
She was heartbroken . She waited and waited.
I watched it four times. I loved all the kissing and the in between forehead and hand kisses.
He is gorgeous. I’m so infatuated with him.
Tina Dickinson says
I felt exactly the same way. Haunted that they did not end up together. To love so profoundly and lose it forever because of misunderstandings. I just could not figure out why it would be called Seyit and Sura and they would not end up together. Just seemed tragic.
Just started watching 2 days ago based on a recommendation from a friend who I recommened Velvet to (which btw, if you haven’t watched, is AMAZING!!) . I’m already into episode 6. Watched 3 the first night!!
So far, I’m loving it!
Have you also watched Gran Hotel and Pardise?? If not, you should. Also both really good!
Thanks for this blog!
Janet Morrissey says
OMG I watched all 46 episodes in 3 days. I loved, loved it.
I didn’t want it to end. Maybe I should have taken more days than the 3. I just couldn’t stop watching it. Are those eyes of Kivanc really that blue? Unbelievable!!!!!!
I know I’ll be watching this again.
This is truly a romantic love story ever.
I too watched the whole thing in about four to five days. That was because I fell in love with Kurt immediately. He hipnotised me with his blue eyes.
I happen to be a kisser. Although Im divorced and single now.
No one has ever kissed me like Kurt kissed Suda, including her hand.
I dream of him every night. It’s like he’s alive and in my life.
His expressions with his chin drive me crazy. I wonder if its idea to do that. It’s so military for 1917.
My grandfather was born in Ukraine. He was a foot soldier in the Great War with Austria Hungary. He told me brutal things that occurred.
My mom lived through WW I hiding in a deep outdoor cellar. From age four through the end of the war.
Once outside their village was inundated by locusts., she wound up in Krakow for a while then back to her one room peasant hut.
Xavier O. Sanchez says
This show completely surprised me as it was historical and rather entertaining in a very different way. I agree that the lack of sex scenes somehow makes it worth watching and understanding that love exists, though we may not realize it. The casting was excellent and the costumes were impeccable! I urged others to watch it and the reception was incredible. I only wish that it were available with English subtitles so others in America could enjoy it, as well. Kivanc and Farah are unforgettable. The story ends much like some do in life, not always a happy ending, but realistic. This series was masterpiece! I would highly recommend it to anyone who wishes something worth watching!
I agree with you all – I started watching this series a few weeks ago – had a break during the hols coz internet not available – and have been binging on a few episodes a night for a week! Love ALL the characters, think Guzide’s husband is quite a dish (well he’s more my age than darling Seyit!!) and love the fascinating Turkish language. I feel thoroughly ashamed of the horrible British soldier (I’m a Brit) – were they really that sadistic? I’m on episode 25 and feeling sad that there is no second series! But on your advice I’ll give Poldark a look, although I saw the original series in the 70s and that will be hard to beat!
Great blog, Haley.
PS love Father Brown! Check out Grantchester – not bad!!
I cried my eyes out I think in every episode and finally had to quit watching it cause my heart couldn’t handle any more breaking. I understand the cultural differences and I think that is why the choices were made that broke them apart. I couldn’t watch him marry another woman so I stopped watching. I did do some research and was delighted to know it was all real and the writer was related. I wonder what it was like listening to him tell stories of his true love while being married to another woman??? And must have been told in such a way to possess the grand daughter to write her own book about it. The story is about Seyit and Sura, not Seyit and the Turkish Girl (can’t remember her name). I also appreciated the lack of sex scenes. Thank you Turkey!! I loved hating the bad guys especially Azhe. She made me very angry.
Tina Dickinson says
Me too! I just could not believe he married someone else. Heartbreaking.
ID. HUSSAIN says
Selfish Valentina “Tina” Verjenskaya why she not accepts YUSUF’s proposal he give her to life i hate TINA
Johaina Oumghar says
I have loved turkish tv shows since I was little because my mom always watched them (dubbed in arabic), now that I am quite older I started watching them myself with english subtitles.
I watched the first season online, but cant find the second season anywhere (bolum 14 to 21).
Can’t find it on netflix either, not on the Dutch netflix, which I didn’t expect either, but also not on the American, a friend of mine in NY lended me her account.
Did they take the show off netflix?
Where can i go to watch season 2 in America. English or Spanish?
Is there a season 2?
I love this show!
I watched it in 6 days – super wonderful
Have also watched Gona and loved it too
Nermin Bezmen says
Dear Haley, hi!
Thank you so much for opening your heart to my story and to my heroes which one of them is my grandpa.
This saga which is both sweet and bitter, enchanting and heart-wrenching is written in my genes and soul. And reading and hearing such down to earth reviews like yours makes me nothing but emotional.
Thanks for sharing it on your page too. I feel so fulfilled that his special story which was and still is my obsession and came out after years of painstaking research and another years of sleepless nights and so much tears, is now enchanting millions all over the world. And I sincerely hope that you and your followers will also like reading the book which narrates the true story behind the screen.
With most heart-felt wishes from my self, Kurt Seyit and Shura…
I am positively star struck hearing from you, Nermin! Thank you for taking on the painstaking task of making your grandfather’s story come to life for all of us. Can’t wait to read the book in English!
Just finished watching it and I am heart broken… I’m not ready to accept that Seyit and Sura are not together in the end… WHY? WHY? Eventhough I felt that the distance between them is growing bigger and bigger, my heart kept on hoping that they’d find a way to each other but in the end that didn’t . 🙁 What makes it worse is that it’s based on a true story… I’ve watched 46 episodes on Netflix….but some one please tell me there’s another season where they get back together…
BTWN, great blog , truly reflects the show and very humorous..
Tina Dickinson says
I felt exactly the same way. Why why why would they name it Seyit and Sura and they not end up together?
I feel so much better after reading all the comments about KS&S. I initially thought I was the only American woman who loved this series. This romantic saga has consumed me. I do not know another soul who has watched this series. Just wonderful!
Renata Vergers says
If you’re looking for another great period drama set in foreign lands, take a peek at Morocco: Love in Time of War also on Netflix. It is set in 1921 during the Spanish – Moroccan War (Rif War) and is based on a true story about a Red Cross hospital there. The three main actors (Cristobal Suarez, Alex Garcia and Daniel Lundh) are super, super hot and the story line is very engaging. So far, just one season but hopefully a second one is in the works. BTW – I’m loving KS &S!
Lorena Beckham says
I had already gotten hooked before I found your forum. So in love with this story…the history the romance. Every single actor is wonderful even if they weren’t so beautiful. I’m on episode 46 and ready to do it all over again.
Michele Raddin says
I am now watching the entire series for the fourth time in three months. I have been completely captivated by every moment. I relate on a very personal level, having been through an equally forbidden yet different ethnic story with a very sad outcome that I will lament forever.
I will come back and rewatch each episode, perhaps forever, as the love and hopefulness are so powerful. I look forward to learning of an equally happy life for Sura.
Christine Cline says
Enjoyed everyone’s comments. Kept passing this one by although have devoured everything Turkish and Pakastani on Netflix. (American TV/movies have lost all appeal for me now.) I like historical dramas and for some reason the female lead in the photo didn’t look appealing to me. Not like him! Oh boy was I wrong. She is charismatic and lovely. Oh I am still weepy at the goodbye ship scene. Hope I get over it quickly I have a life to live. Didn’t think would still be in this state days after finishing series. But every time I play it in my mind, oh the tears flow. Scenery, music, actors excellent. This one will grab at your heartstrings and emotions. Gorgeous love story.
Nancy Dobbins says
I just finished the series yesterday and I so identify with your comment “Hope I get over it quickly as I have a life to live”. I can’t stop crying and I feel like I will never be the same! Such a beautiful but heartbreaking love story and so much history! I LOVED this so much.
I have been watching Seyit ve Sura for the last couple weeks on netflix, but only up to season 2 is available, would you know where to find the rest of the series? I really love it too. As you described it has a few flaws, but it is still wonderful.
I’m so happy to have found your website. I love your review of Kurt Seyit ve Sura. Just when I thought nothing could take the place of outlander I found KSveS. It’s become a bit of an obsession. I have started reading the book now. I thought the book would be more biographical and less “novely” – it’s written very much like a romantic novel and doesn’t feel like a true story but I want to read more about the real events. It’s the saddest love story I’ve seen – not sure why they didn’t end up together – he married Murvet very quickly and she was too influenced and controlled by her sister and Petro (I can’t believe I’m so involved with a story of a hundred years ago. Enjoyed reading everyone’s comments. I’m trying to get everyone I know to watch it.
still on episode 9 but I am so loving it!!!! this blog was so funny but true! haha
And oh please watch Gran Hotel if you haven’t yet. Love!!!
I read this review when you posted it almost a year ago, and stuck it on the back burner for some reason. Just started watching it 2 days ago, and I’m hooked!! But a little sad to see scrolling through the comments that they won’t end up together… 🙁 Now trying to convince myself to keep watching.
I just loved it!! I was hoping for a second season. I loved the history and yes it was quirky… but thank you Turkey!! I was hoping they ended up together in the end. Whatever happened to Sura? Did she remarry? Have children? I’m going to read the book too. I wish I found this series sooner. I cried so much because this is a true love story that spanned years.
Thank you for telling us all.
Just finished season 1, all 46 episodes and want more. Love everything about Seyit and Sura. I watched on Netflix and heard others watching season 2 but I can’t locate and very desperate to find season 2. Or does the book cover all? Help? Thanks!
Leidyt Sotolongo says
I’d also like to know where to locate season 2. Thank you
There is no second season
The number of episodes in the Turkish show is 21 episodes with two hours per episode
Netflix split all the episodes into 46 episodes and the end is when Turkey’s independence
There is no second season
The number of episodes in the Turkish show is 21 episodes with two hours per episode
Netflix split all the episodes into 46 episodes and the end is when Turkey’s independence
Katie Cook says
OMG I just discovered this show and have binged watched the last few nights. My husband could only endure one episode, and after all the staring and intense music was like “Katie, nothing happened in that entire episode” and i was like “LOVE happened, duh!”….so d to say, I was DYING laughing reading your review. SO spot on!! The staring…unbelievable, but I secretly love it!! An Petro’s smirk is GAHHHHH, do not like that guy. And yes, so many beautiful people. And I agree, the main guy Seyit should definetly be in every movie EVER!! the end. Thanks for the review!!!
I am so happy to find this blog! I, too, just finished Kurt Seyit ve sûra and am experiencing withdrawals! I’ve enjoyed reading these comments. I’m pretty much down to watching turner classic only…,because current fare is just so pc, salacious, immodest. I was thrilled when someone recommended this to me.. ,I had despaired that it was possible to find someone still producing a series about romance, honor, strength….it was lovely to see a properly ordered brotherhood…and female characters displaying tenderness and love for their domestic domain. The tasteful love scenes and modest dress were such a gift. I hope Netflix has some way of seeing the many titles I ditch after episode one versus Seyit & Sura!
Just finished watching this series and loved it so much. Visually breathtaking and you’re right, all the main characters are stunning, male and female, especially Celil, who’s my favourite. What a tragic love story but so beautifully brought to life on screen. Also agree that Turkish shows are so much better than US. Low level violence and no sex scenes makes it great family viewing but oh the heartache that they didn’t end up together. Such sadness.
Agree with everything being said here. First Turkish TV series for me as well. Way better than K-drama. Truly love the costumes worn by the female casts in this series, simply EXQUISITE. Of course, the male lead (Seyit) and his beard … irresistible.
Could not have asked for better casting. The ladies who played the role of mother as well as the auntie are remarkable.
Happy to have discovered Turkish shows. This has inspired me to visit the historical Istanbul.
Alison Campbell says
I randomly chose this show, from the new 30 second ‘trailer’ Netflix forces you to watch when you pause long enough while scrolling through titles. And I saw gorgeous Seyit and the beautiful Sura staring into each other’s eyes, and I decided ‘Eh, why not?’ Boy am I glad I did. After the 1st episode, I decided to search for information on this series, and found (this) your blog post. Wow. I’m so glad I decided to give it a try, and I can’t wait to watch more ? Um, could you add somewhere that there may be spoilers in the comments. Or maybe I’m a newbie at this and shouldn’t have started reading comments ?♀️ I got 2 or 3 comments down and thought ‘Eeek!! What am I reading these for?! Why am I reading these comments?! Delete that, don’t remember that!’ Anyway, my bad. I’m looking forward to finishing the whole thing, and coming back to join in the discussion-more fully, and better prepared ?
I ended up finding the show by intros on pinterest, had heard alot abt turkish shows bfr but never gave them atry so this was my first Turkish soap as well.
It put to rest an ancient longing of seeing The Summer Day is Done by R.L.Steven on screen. That novel is also based around the RR n WWI era n has been a longtime fav. It sparked my interest in that time of history n how the whole world changed as monarchies n kingdoms gave way to dictatorships n communism n the fight for freedom amongst the east from the west.
Anyway binge watched it within the last week, to the detriment of my sleep routine n daily routine.
Being from the east its easier for me to connect to the turkish culture… n despite the heart wrenching & sadly wilful separation of the Seyit from Sura, i can see where he is coming from. Why he choses to go for his family & religous n cultural preferences…
Notwithstanding …for men to this day, their work n motive of life … will consume many a passionate love stories. At one point in the series it appeared to be the main reason for his shifting his love interest, being involved in the struggle for freedom from the occupation by British, his wife coming from a place simmering with resistance to occupational forces…
havent read the book so cant say if this part in the series is included in the actual story.
Lastly its true to date, in eastern culture men will sleep n love whomever fate may place in their lives, but they will always marry a girl from their own background … ?
Does anyone know what happens to Şura after she leaves on the boat? What happens to Ayla? I’d love to know the after story. Anyone talk to the author? I found out after watching the entire series that it was based on a true story so now I have an excuse to watch it all over again and with friends and family! I must be crazy because I loved Petro! Seyit was breathtaking but he annoyed me to no end sometimes as did Şura. Ha! I loved all the characters though. It’s so realistic sometimes yet so dramatic and romantic and fanciful! I actualy enjoyed the mix of over the top dreamy romance with heartbreak, loss, tragedy and the realistic end. I loved that Seyit moved on and that he was able to find the precious small things in life! I really like Murka even her mother! I kept thinking she was so crazy fun I would have wanted her around protecting me from all the soldiers. They seemed to be scared of her! Ha!
I stayed up way too late, way too many nights to finish watching this story but I just couldn’t turn it off. So glad to see others have the same feelings about period dramas. Your article is spot-on and made me laugh and nod my head in agreement at every sentence. What to say about Kinvanc? Devastatingly handsome. Tall. Rocks a beard AND a uniform. I absolutely loved his acting. Intense one moment, soft and gentle the next. Don’t get me started on him riding the white horse. I’d jump off a train or a cliff for him too. Oh, to be wooed, just once, by a man like that.
I am absolutely addicted to this show, even though I must admit that I like the first 14 or so episodes set in Russia more than the later ones set in Istanbul and was a bit disappointed that so many of the characters from that first part just disappear … I read that it was actually separate seasons in Turkey and the series did not get us much viewership for the first season as they had hoped, so they changed the concept and I find that change quite visible. Anyways, I watched it twice in Turkish with German subtitles and am now almost done rewatching it a thrid time, this time with the Spanish dubbing because I am learnin Spanish at the moment. And the series is perfect for learning, because a) obviously I know the story by now, but b) the dialogue is also quite simple and straightforward and there is a lot of time between the lines (with, you know, all the epic music and the crying and the lovers staring deeply into each others eyes and such), that it actually even gives you time to look up words while waching.
I found Kurt Seyit ve Sura on Netflix after falling in love with Lovebird…and it’s disappointing ending. I got so wrapped up in both shows and their characters it was all I thought about. I couldn’t wait to get into my binge watching mode and watch this show.
How could one not fall in love with this man. What he did to Sura was unthinkable, but in his heart he had to keep his promise to his father and marry a Turkish woman. Even though he loved Sura. As for Petro, who was not a real person, he got what he deserved.
I did start watch The Gran Hotel, Cable Girls, Morocco, Land Girls, The Parade, Tango in Halifax, Shtisel…Love them all!
I have been addicted to historical romantic dramas since watching the Russian love story I was named after- Doctor Zhivago. And the K. Seyit and Sura series completely captivated me and broke my heart.
I actually woke up in the middle of the night and went online to find out ending because I couldn’t take not knowing what happened in real life.
A small consulation is that some of my other binge worthy series are still being released: Victoria (PBS), Poldark(PBS), The Spanish Queen ( last of this series on Starz), The Crown (Netflix) and Outlander.
Also enjoyed EKaterina, Moroccan War and Reign ( mature content & cheesy but gulity pleasure) series.
I read on another site there is a book about Sura’s life in Paris- wondering if recommended read to find out if Sura finds happiness in her marriage?
darla haviland says
Interesting you brought up Dr. Zhivago. Kivanc and Omar Shariff are very similar in that they are both devastatingly handsome and have a combination of strength and sensitivity that pours through the screen. I always thought Hollywood was stupid for not doing more with Omar and they are even more stupid that they haven’t grabbed Kivanc.
What can I say, I was blown away by the two characters. Kivanc Tatlitug ?? where has he been all this time, how is it we don’t know anything about this actor? Any way I have been heart broken, how could he just carry on with another woman, knowing he still loves her deeply and that he was Sura’s world. I am so frustrated as the story took an unexpected turn. So sad now I’m left wondering what Şura’s life was like afterwards.
Haley! Thank you for the wonderful recommendation – my husband and I loved what we affectionately dubbed “Seyit the Wolf”. Only problem is that we are soooo sad it’s over – what would you recommend next?! Feels like nothing will ever compare!!
I’m into this show watching as we speak! It has me so emotional on every level!!! Kivac the actor playing Seyit is truly wonderful so much emotion in just one look amazing actor … think all us girls watching this fell in love with him too. Reminds me of when my husband and I met we had love like this always saying goodbye always crying … still together 30 years. Petrol ugh makes me mad lol …. I’m not finnished yet episode 30 love it glad I found this show!!
What can l say. I watched the whole episode’s in 1 week. If this is truly love, then I’ve missed my something beautiful in my life. I fell in love with Set it and his piercing blue eyes. How unlucky can one woman be as Sura was !!! And Petrol, what a snake! I couldn’t stop crying especially when Dry If went to say goodbye from the ship Sura was on. Sura googbye my love….??
Esther Travis says
Haley! Loved your blog! It made me laugh (lots of crying, so.much. vodka.) and sigh (yes, all the actors are SO beautiful). Like everyone else, I’m obsessed with this series as well as completely heartbroken now (I just finished the last episode). It doesn’t seem possible that Seyit and Sura do not end up together! It’s such a great series though and completely steals your heart. It’s all I’ve been thinking of for the past several weeks as every day I rush home to watch another couple episodes. And yes, PLEASE bring Kivanc Tatlitug to America!
OBSESSED! I binge watched the series in 3 days and since than, I’ve watched it again and again. My husband thinks I’m nuts. I ditto everything everyone else said, Kivanc should be in US movies and would be a star the likes of which we haven’t seen since Paul Newman or Cary Grant, bigger perhaps. I unlike most, feel they worked too hard at keeping the love scenes “clean”. If I counted all the forehead kissing I would probably lose count at 500. With passion like that, it deserved at least some passionate open mouth kisses. I don’t want blatant sex scenes but there are ways to tastefully show sexual passion. At first I thought it was a censorship, religious thing but than researched and found out there are many Turkish evening series and movies that feature nudity, sex scenes,etc.
What really bothered me was that they made Seyit more sexual with Murka than Sura. That was just wrong. It reminded me of a documentary I watched about old Hollywood movies all the way from the 30’s through the 50’s. They would not let any “immoral” woman in the movie have what appeared to be a happy life or marriage. Only the wife or “moral” woman was allowed those things. It seems watching the episodes again that’s exactly what they did here. They let Sura have the sensual, romantic “love” but Murka got the “all day in the room” love.
Don’t read this part if you don’t want anything to spoil your idealism about this series. Seyit really betrayed Sura, stole her innocence and youth and good name. Luckily she went to America and started a new life as it would have likely been impossible for her to find an upstanding man with her past in Istanbul. It’s funny but we could never love this story if it happened today. Sura was somewhere between 14-16 when they met which we all allow as it happened at a different time period but honestly, even in that time period most girls married between 18-20 so it was still considered very young for a 15 year old girl to be seriously involved.
None of what I just said matters though because it is still a wonderful story and series. At first I only really loved the “Russia” part of the series but the more I’ve watched it, I’ve come to love the Istanbul more. The characters at the hotel and the descent of Seyit into a hard drinking, shut off kind of guy and Sura’s growth into a strong independent woman really brought the series into a realism we wouldn’t have had otherwise. The actors of the hotel families really made you feel one with them..I want to stay there!
Ok, off my soapbox. JUST LOVED IT ALL!
Yanira Howell says
Soooooo, just got dine with the series on Netflix. OMG! One of my favs! This coming from a huge GOT fan! I’ve been introduced to Turkish coffee last year and now dramas. And the men!!!! I want to live on the Seref Hotel and marry a Turkish guy, well…actually just Kivanc!
Love your article, which is spot on! My only question is, Where can I see season 2????? Is confusing because it says season 2 online when I pull up the info. Pray tell!!!!