10 Shows like True Detective – List Of Same Dark and Mysterious Shows

Shows like True Detective

Nic Pizzolatto and Cary Joji Fukunaga, the writer and director, came together to launch the crime series True Detective, featuring actors Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson. The story was compelling and focused on the characters solving the investigation, creating a background for a mystery.

Though there are other series that evoke a similar feeling like True Detective, this distinctive program captivated many viewers. The eagerly anticipated fourth season of the show will end eventually, and its admirers will turn gloomy for a long time.  

To fill the void and create a similar eerie and mystical mood as HBO’s True Detective, you can watch these 10 gritty programs.

1. Mindhunter (2017 – 2019)

Mindhunter (2017 – 2019)

Stream on Netflix

The show Mindhunter, originally centered on the book titled Mindhunter: Inside the FBI’s Elite Serial Crime Unit, traces the FBI’s early use of psychology and criminal investigation, similar to True Detective. The Netflix series showcases the work of a pair of FBI agents, portrayed by Jonathan Groff and Holt McCallany, who seek to understand the mental processes of psychopaths to apprehend effectively future offenders.

Producer and director David Fincher returns to his exploration of the serial killer theme with Se7en and Zodiac, helming four of the ten episodes in the first season. The show immediately delves into examining the thoughts of criminals and builds its narrative from actual cases.

2. Hannibal (2013 – 2015)

Hannibal (2013 – 2015)

Stream on Hulu

Though there are some notable similarities between Hannibal and True Detective, Hannibal is much more intense. The primary character of the show is a vicious cannibal and a psychopath. The character Hannibal is drawn to criminal investigator Will Graham because of his unsettling empathy toward psychopaths. He becomes a really interesting individual and makes a great contribution to his field as a result.

Naturally, Mads Mikkelsen’s outstanding performance as the title character, Hannibal Lecter, dominates the series and gives the well-known antagonist a new dimension. There are die-hard fans of the show who are still clamoring for a Hannibal movie or season 4.

3. The Sinner ( 2017 – 2021)

The Sinner ( 2017 – 2021)

Stream on Netflix

Adapted from Petra Hammesfahr’s bestseller book of the identical name, The Sinner is an episodic thriller show on the USA Network. A young mother, portrayed by Jessica Biel, fatally injures a man on a busy beach in the first season’s central plot, and Bill Pullman, the lead investigator, must determine why she did it.

The Sinner is a compelling story because its dark side lies not in the “how” but in the “why” of what transpired. The actual suspense lies in determining what motivated Biel’s character to commit an act of violence in the first place. The show indeed has intriguing elements to keep the viewers hooked.

4. Homecoming ( 2018 –)

Homecoming ( 2018 –)

Stream on Amazon Prime Video

The intriguing and suspenseful plot of Homecoming revolves around an enigmatic establishment that assists troops who have left active duty to lead a civilian life. But the institution is more complex than it first appears. If True Detective fascinates you, Homecoming must be an honest recommendation for you to watch.

Homecoming, which stars Julia Roberts, Stephan James, and Bobby Cannavale and is based on a well-liked podcast from Gimlet Media, is inspired by vintage paranoid political thrillers. Sam Esmail, the man behind Mr. Robot, produces it. The show has been renewed for the 3rd season.

5. Fargo ( 2014 – )

Fargo ( 2014 - )

Stream on Hulu

Another anthology crime thriller is Fargo. Based on a well-known cult film of the same genre, Fargo is a highly regarded television series that has garnered numerous accolades during its four seasons, and the fifth season is quickly approaching.

The program records the horrifyingly violent crimes that occurred in the quaint-seeming Midwest throughout multiple historical periods. In addition to being a gripping crime drama, Fargo distinguishes itself from other comparable television programs with a great deal of dark humor. Similar to True Detective, Fargo has featured a star-studded cast in each of its seasons, with Chris Rock, Kirsten Dunst, Ewan McGregor, and Billy Bob Thorton among the show’s top performers.

6. The Night Of ( 2016- )

The Night Of ( 2016- )

Stream on HBO Max

This gripping HBO miniseries is based on the first season of the British television program Criminal Justice. It starts with a pivotal incident in the life of college student Nasir, a Pakistani-American performed by Riz Ahmed, and ends with his accusation of killing a young lady. The case is then investigated by the police investigation and the judicial system in the series.

The Night Of wisely chooses not to overextend its hand. The show unravels a mystery from the inside out, exposing all the signs that seem to point to Nasir’s guilt but also raising many questions that remain unanswered.

7. The Wire ( 2002 – 2008)

The Wire ( 2002 – 2008)

Stream on HBO

HBO’s The Wire is a criminal series that viewers should certainly consider binge-watching. If you have finished True Detective and are ready for something a little more grounded and less cerebral, then this is the right series for you. The Wire follows many crooks in Baltimore and the police officers who try to foil their operations throughout the entire show.

The show has received accolades for its realistic portrayal of police duties and for its insightful social criticism and broad examination of Baltimore’s institutions. The creator, David Simon, has extensive knowledge of how the city addresses its diverse issues; he was formerly a reporter for the Baltimore Sun.

8. Top Of The Lake (2013 – 2017)

Top Of The Lake (2013 – 2017)

Stream on Hulu

Top Of The Lake is an eerie, gripping detective thriller that centers on Elisabeth Moss’s character, Detective Robin Griffin. It is up to Robin to solve the unidentified disappearance of a twelve-year-old Tui, who was expecting a child. Her last known position was in the middle of an ice-covered lake.

Just based on the topic matter, the show is unsettling. While investigating Tui’s disappearance, Robin comes across an odd women’s camp run by a narcotics lord and is compelled to face up to her traumatic past. Moss gives an outstanding performance that enhances the suspenseful series directed by Jane Campion, the winner of an Oscar.

9. The Outsider ( 2020 )

The Outsider ( 2020 )

Stream on HBO Max

Based on the Stephen King novel of a similar title, The Outsider is another brilliant HBO program. A-list performers, including Ben Mendelsohn, Jason Bateman, and Cynthia Erivo, are among those starring in the series. It’s a crime drama that centers on the finding of a small child’s disfigured body.

The case appears to be very simple at first, but it gradually becomes clear that there is something quite odd, possibly something supernatural brewing beneath the initial appearance of the investigation. This series can captivate the audiences with its intricate plot and multifaceted cast of characters.

10. The Killing (2011 – 2014)

The Killing (2011 – 2014)

Stream on Hulu

Similar to True Detective, The Killing focuses on two co-detectives with essentially distinct work approaches. However, The Killing differs from the HBO series in having a woman as the main lead. It is a crime procedural with a focus on characters.

The first season focusses on investigating a local girl’s murder, which turns out to be a complicated political plot. The criminal drama is dark and somber, and it’s not always enjoyable to watch. However, as they delve more into this sinister world, viewers are drawn in by these characters’ suffering, just like they are with True Detective.


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