With The Crown slowly and surely filming its second season and Downton Abbey settling into reruns, the demand for a gorgeously crafted, monarchical period drama has never been higher. Victoria, which premieres January 15 on PBS, is sure to fill that void, as the eight-part series chronicles Queen Victoria’s ascension to the throne at the ripe age of 18 through her first few years as British monarch. (A second season is already in the works, you lucky Anglophiles.) Ahead of the PBS premiere, Vulture has put together a helpful guide to all of the pertinent historical figures in the series. Their stories are a lot more dramatic than you might expect.