One of the first questions people ask when they start watching Peaky Blinders is how historically accurate the show is? Were the Blinders real or not? Well, the Blinders were real, but the show Peaky Blinders is not historically accurate. Considering the show is fiction. It is understandable that Seven Knight has just based the show in the 1920s. However, that does not stop them from using prominent historical figures throughout the show.
From Billy Kimber in the first to Diana Mitford in the sixth and final season. How many of these characters were like their in-life counterparts? Let us find out.
Historical accuracy of Peaky Blinders
The first baddie of Peaky Blinders, Billy Kimber, had a brief appearance on the show’s inaugural season. Charlie Creed-Miles plays Billy and is a great villain. However, completely different from the real Billy Kimber.
Kimber was a significantly more significant person in gangland history. At 12, the big bruiser began his career in Birmingham street gangs, worked his way up the underworld ladder, spread his empire south, and eventually became Britain’s first statewide crime lord.
He’s dubbed “Britain’s Al Capone” in the documentary. The actual Kimber was shot during a struggle with Alfie Solomons, but he survived and escaped to the United States, where he eventually worked for Al Capone.
Billy “Brilliant” Chang is an essential character in season five of Peaky Blinders. Chang is the one who offered Tommy the Shanghai: the purest opium ever seen on European shores. Even though he is a brilliant guy in the show, he knows how to steal attention from people like Tommy.
However, Chang was a dynamic immigrant who owned a Cantonese restaurant in Birmingham before turning to drug trafficking in real life. His reign disintegrated after he was accused of the death by overdose of bar hostess Freda Kempton, branded “dope king” by the tabloids. Chang was deported when police discovered drugs in his residence.
Diana is the newest addition to the list. Her first appearance was in season six episode two. She quickly became a potential threat to Tommy with her above normal intellect and calm cool demeanor so that you never know what she’s thinking. However, the real Diana was more vile and evil than actress Amber Andersons’ portrayal.
MI5 files characterized the real-life Mitford as “much cleverer and more dangerous than her husband.” Her episode of Desert Island Discs in 1989, in which she rejected the Holocaust’s scope, was one of the show’s most divisive.
To be honest, we do not care if Tom Hardy’s Alfie is historically accurate or not. He can never be as suave as Tom is. But as it turns out, the real-life Alfie Solomon was just like how the show imagined he would be.
In real life, Alfred Solomon (singular) was a Jewish bookmaker with underworld ties who was involved in the racecourse battles and disguised himself as a baker. After fatally knifing a fellow thug during a card game, he was convicted of manslaughter.