If You Love True Detective, These Gripping Crime Dramas Are Just as Good

If You Love True Detective, These Gripping Crime Dramas Are Just as Good


Mare of Easttown (2021)

Kate Winslet shines as a Philly detective balancing a crumbling personal life while also trying to solve the case of a missing young girl. The miniseries won four Emmys, including one for Outstanding Lead Actress.

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Broadchurch (2013-2017)

If what you love most about True Detective is the chemistry between the two detectives, you won’t find better than Broadchurch. David Tennant and Olivia Colman (two incredible actors in their own right) play well off each other as officers who investigate the death of a boy in a small seaside town. Over the course of three seasons, the show not only unveils the killer, but shows how the town grieves and tries to move on.

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Criminal Record (2024)

Apple TV+’s Criminal Record hasn’t been out long, but the show has a 91% critics’ score on Rotten Tomatoes, so it’s worth checking out. An anonymous phone call brings two detectives together when it’s connected to an old murder case.

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Babylon Berlin (2018–Present)

True Detective may be all about uncovering the dark and corrupt aspects of police in America, but there’s a whole world of great international crime shows out there that’ll grip you just as well. Babylon Berlin follows a detective in 1920s Germany as he attempts to root out corruption throughout the city.

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The Night Of (2016)

This eight-part crime drama was a breakout role for actor Riz Ahmed, who later went on to star in Sound of Metal. It follows a young Pakistani-American student who is accused of murdering a woman, and the lawyer (John Turturro) who represents him.

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The Outsider (2020)

Based on a 2018 novel by Stephen King, The Outsider is the perfect show for those of you who may have ever wished True Detective would go in a more supernatural direction. When a baseball coach is arrested for the murder of a young boy, strange events begin to occur, and the investigators involved begin to realize it’s anything but a straightforward case. The always-great Ben Mendelsohn leads this one.

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Perry Mason (2020–2023)


Mindhunter (2017–2019)

Despite ending 5 years ago now, there are still fans of David Fincher‘s Mindhunter. The Netflix show mixes the gruesome crime seen in shows like Hannibal and Criminal Minds and adds in the incredible talent of Fincher as both occasional director and de facto showrunner. The show follows FBI agents who decide to start up their own division centered on profiling and then catching serial killers across the country.

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The Valhalla Murders (2019–2020)

This Icelandic murder mystery is another Netflix standout. An eight-part series, The Valhalla Murders follows two detectives as they investigate the murder of a man at the Reykjavik Harbour. But as the case unfolds, the pair discover there are more victims, and it’s likely part of something bigger than either anticipated.

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The Chestnut Man (2021)

Another short but gripping mystery is The Chestnut Man, which involves a cold case from the ’80s which in the present day ends up connecting to a politician’s missing daughter.

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Deadwind (2018–2022)

A homicide detective recently widowed is assigned a rookie detective, and together the two have to investigate the disappearance of a woman. But the two quickly find themselves out of their depths when a body turns up.

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The Fall (2013–2016)

Gillian Anderson and Jamie Dornan star in this detective show set in Northern Ireland that follows two detectives as they realize a serial killer is on the loose.

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Top of the Lake (2013–2017)

Jane Campion (Best Director Oscar winner for The Power of the Dog) co-wrote and co-created this Australian TV series starring Elisabeth Moss. Over the course of two seasons, the actress plays a detective who specializes in cases involving sexual assault.

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Black Spot (2017–2019)

This supernatural mystery follows a small town detective who’s tasked with investigating why her locale’s murder rate is six times higher than the national average. It turns out the answer lies in the town’s strange and feared woods.

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The Woods (2020)

Mystery and thriller writer Harlan Coben has had many of his works adapted over the years. In 2018, Netflix made a deal with the writer to adapt 14 of his works, according to Deadline; One of those was The Woods. The show is set in two different time periods–1994 and 2019–and follows a prosecutor whose past connects with his present when a body is found with newspaper clippings about him.

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Headshot of Milan Polk

Milan Polk

Milan Polk is an Editorial Assistant for Men’s Health who specializes in entertainment and lifestyle reporting, and has worked for New York Magazine’s Vulture and Chicago Tribune.

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