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15 Shows like Locke and Key for Lovers of Mystery, Horror and Fantasy

shows like Locke and Key

Books and Comics have always made for great springboards of many wonderful TV shows and Locke and Key is yet another. The series, based on the comic book by Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodriguez, starts out with the Locke family, who relocate from their old home into their family home, Key House, after the father’s murder. As they settle into the new house, they discover a set of magical keys that can open doors that at first seem like a fun addition to their lives.

However, as the Locke children explore the different keys and their unique powers, they realize quickly that a mysterious entity is also after the keys and will stop at nothing to get them.

We of course know nothing can replace Locke and Key, but it doesn’t hurt to try out a new TV show now and again. So, If you’re on the hunt for TV shows that combine elements of horror, fantasy and family drama, this is a list of 15 shows like Locke and Key for your viewing pleasure.

List of TV Shows like Locke and Key

1. Stranger Things (2016)

If you liked Locke and Key and you haven’t seen Stranger Things yet, then you need to put it at the top of your list, immediately! Considerably the crown jewel of Netflix streaming platform, Stranger Things is another coming-of-age story set in the 80s in the fictional town of Hawkins, Indiana. The science-fiction horror series is about three boys that discover their fourth friend, Will Byers, has disappeared under mysterious circumstances.

Alongside his parents and the law, they do everything they can to search for him. Then they meet Eleven, a strange girl, a day later and they are convinced it’s not a coincidence and uncover a mystery involving secret government experiments and frightening supernatural forces. Stranger Things has a lot of what Locke and Key has, including paranormal activity, supernatural powers and horror. And like shows similar to Locke and Key, it has a gripping story that doesn’t let go.

2. Shadowhunters (2016)

Shadowhunters is based on the young adult book series The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare, similar to other series like Locke and Key. Much like how the pilot of Locke and Key had itself suffered a delayed start, before this Netflix’s adaptation to series, there had been a film adaptation that was a flop. But this show was the answer to those woes.

This show follows Clary Fray, a young woman thrust into a world of fantasy and mystery as she tries to find her missing mother and discovers that she is descended from a long line of demon hunters called Shadowhunters, a human-angel hybrid who hunts demons. Clary maneuvers the dangerous Shadow World while uncovering family secrets and fighting evil forces.

3. The Umbrella Academy (2019)

The Umbrella Academy is a Netflix series based on the comic book series of the same name by Gerard Way and Gabriel Bá. The show starts out in 1989, around the world random women who showed no previous signs of pregnancy gave birth to 43 babies, 7 of whom were adopted by a billionaire Reginald Hargreeves and trained to save the world forming the Umbrella Academy.

Years down the line, the dysfunctional family of superheroes reunite once more when Hargreeves dies and tensions flare as they try to solve the mystery of their father’s death and all while trying to prevent a looming apocalypse. It’s a great story full of mystery just like a series like Locke And Key.

Also Read: Shows like Sense8

4. Half Bad: The Bastard Son & The Devil Himself (2022)

Half Bad: The Bastard Son & The Devil Himself or Half Bad for short, follows the story of Nathan, a teenage boy who is the illegitimate son of the world’s most feared Black witch father and White witch mother. In this world, witches are divided into two factions and Nathan tries his best to fit in but his father’s legacy constantly casts a shadow over him.

Seen as an outcast by both sides. He is hunted and oppressed, and must fight to survive and discover for himself who he truly is. The show, based on the book series by Sally Green, is the latest in a longline of series to be canceled by Netflix. Half Bad in a similar vein to TV series like Locke and Key had been well received by critics and viewers alike, so its cancellation leaves bittersweet sentiments.

5. Fate: The Winx Saga (2021)

A live action fantasy series like Locke And Key, Fate is based on the popular animated show Winx Club. The story follows Bloom, a teenager who discovers she is a fairy with extraordinary powers and is admitted to a prestigious magical boarding school called Alfea.

As Bloom and her new friends navigate their way through the school’s rigorous curriculum, they uncover dark secrets and hidden plans that threaten to overturn their world. With its drama, characters and stunning visual effects, the wildly loved series traverses topics of friendship, love, and the strife to fit in the world.

6. Lockwood and Co. (2023)

Lockwood and Co. is a Netflix production, also adapted from a Young Adult book just as in series similar to Locke and Key, this time adapting one of Jonathan Stroud’s book series. The show’s premise is in an alternate version of present-day London, Britain where ghosts have risen from their graves, and children are the only ones who can sense them.

A tiny ghost-hunting paranormal agency, run by two teenage boys Anthony and George, a newly arrived, super gifted girl, Lucy. The maverick trio are destined to unravel and fight mysteries and danger are lurking around every corner. With only eight episodes of season one so far, It will be interesting to see how the show handles the development of the characters and the overall story arc.

7. The Magicians (2015)

For fans of Locke and Key who are looking for blends of fantasy, mystery, and adventure. The Magicians is a fantasy TV series based on Lev Grossman’s novel. The story follows Quentin Coldwater, a talented young man who enrolls in Brakebills University, a secret institution where he and his fellow students learn the art of magic and discovers a magical world of spell-casting and fantastical creatures.

The Magicians is similar to shows like Locke and Key for its use of fantasy, magic, and adventure. So, if your favorite part about Locke and Key was the use of powerful magical abilities, then this is a must-see.

8. A Series of Unfortunate Events (2017)

It doesn’t take much to see how similar A Series of Unfortunate Events is to shows like Locke and Key. In A Series of Unfortunate Events, viewers follow the adventures and misfortunes of the three Baudelaire children as they are whisked off to their distant relative Count Olaf’s house after a mysterious house fire kills their parents.

Neil Patrick Harris delivers a particular grand performance as Count Olaf, whose various wicked disguises make for a comedic and theatrical viewing. His relentless intentions to gain custody is less than virtuous, with his regular attempts to murder the children so as to claim their parents’ fortune. This series is a much more family-friendly TV show with its dark humor and storytelling.

9. The Order (2019)

This is a series like Locke and Key that blends elements of horror, fantasy, and mystery. Jack Morton is a college freshman who is fueled by revenge, he joins a secret society called The Order to uncover the truth about his mom’s death. The more he gets caught up in the world of magic and the supernatural, the more he finds himself thrust in a dangerous battle between witches and rival werewolves.

The Order distinguishes itself with a steady dose of humor that perfectly compliments the drama and intrigue. Despite being canceled after two seasons, the show had gained a loyal fan following for its inventive storytelling and memorable characters.

10. The Witcher (2019)

Much like shows like Locke and Key, The Witcher is similarly based on the titular book series by Andrzej Sapkowski, and the hugely popular video game that followed it. The fantasy drama series follows the adventures of Geralt of Rivia, a mutant with special powers who kills monsters for money.

With the Nilfgaardian Empire’s brutal invasion of the kingdom of Cintra, Geralt’s destiny slowly becomes tangled with that of a young princess named Ciri and a powerful sorceress named Yennefer. As they navigate their way through a war-torn landscape filled with dark secrets and hidden agendas. This show has been lauded for its breath-taking action sequences, complex characters, and a richly imagined world.

Also Read: Shows like The Expanse

11. Dark (2017)

Dark is a German original sci-fi thriller, a first of its kind production on its streaming network. Easily one of the most exciting shows on the platform, Dark takes a more solemn approach to its storyline and characters.

Set in the fictional town of Winden in present day Germany where two young children disappear without a trace.

The ensuing search leads to a mind-bending exploration of four estranged families across different timelines revealing their sinful lives and difficult relationships. Dark, much like shows similar to Locke and Key, is the perfect mix of supernatural, science fiction and mystery and without a doubt one of the smartest series with complex explorations of human nature mixed with parallel worlds and time travel.

12. October Faction (2020)

October Faction is a supernatural mystery that is also based on comics and is just as equally focused on family. Adapted from a horror comic series by Steve Niles and Damien Worm, October Faction follows a monster-hunting husband and wife Fred and Deloris Allen who travel the world killing monsters.

They return to their hometown when they learn about the death of Fred’s father with their teenage twins Geoff and Viv as they strive to hide their vocation from their new neighbors. The Netflix series ran for just one season with each episode revealing more and more of the dark secrets of the Allen Family and monsters playing their new town. This is a must watch if you are looking for a show similar to Locke and Key.

13. Raising Dion (2019)

The plot of Raising Dion spans two seasons and is centered on the story of a young fatherless child Dion Warren and his superpowers which are beginning to manifest. This show however is as much about Dion’s mother, Nicole, as much it is about him.

Nicole, a widowed mom, will do everything within her power to keep him safe from the world and from those who would want to take advantage of his newfound powers. This is perfect for those who love how shows like Locke and Key feature supernatural elements and explore themes of family, loss, and growing up.

14. Once Upon a Time (2011)

If you’re a fan of series like Locke and Key, you will definitely enjoy Once Upon A Time. There’s nothing quite like this fantasy drama series that reinterprets classic fairy tales in a modern context. imagine all your favorite fairy-tale characters in one magical town, exciting right?!

At the beginning, a bail bonds collector Emma Swan is approached by her son, Henry, with a belief that she is the daughter of Snow White and Prince Charming who was sent faraway before the Evil Queen could cast a spell, trapping them in time till present-day Storybrooke, Maine.

15. Shadow and Bone (2021)

Imagine Game of Thrones, but for teens that’s what critics Shadow and Bone have described it as. With a dark tone reminiscent of shows like Locke and Key, the adaptation of Leigh Bardugo’s YA fantasy novels, Shadow and Bone. Jessie Mei Lei is a formidable lead as Alina Starkov, a young mapmaker who learns that she’s actually a Grisha with magical powers.

She is no ordinary Grisha but the Sun Summoner prophesied by many to undo the divide between East and West known as the Fold, an evil darkness created by the Darkling, filled with flesh eating monsters known as Vulcra. From beautiful costumes to its impressive worldscape, the critically-acclaimed Shadow and Bone sparks a breath-taking adventure for fans of shows like Locke and Key, as well as newcomers.

Honorable Mentions

Here are more shows like Locke and Key that didn’t make the list which you can watch regardless:

  1. The Haunting of Hill House
  2. The Haunting of Bly Manor
  3. Warrior Nun
  4. Guillermo del Toro’s Cabinet of Curiosities

When Lost aired over a decade ago, its successful narrative created a pop culture impact and changed the landscape of television. If you are a fan and want to watch shows like Lost then you can have a look at this list we made just for you.


The hugely successful television series Lost aired in 2004. The premise, as we know, deals with a group of people surviving a commercial passenger plane crash on a remote island. The show masterfully explores supernatural and sci-fi elements on this mysterious south Pacific island.

The use of cliffhangers at the end of each episode of Lost kept the viewers on the edge of their seats, desperately craving for the next episode to come. Even though it's a large ensemble cast, most of the characters receive a justifiable personal arch. Lost was inspired by the movie Castaway and became one of the most expensive pilots to be shot at the time! Lost continues to be appreciated for its originality in storytelling and dynamic character arcs. 

List of TV Shows Like Lost

  1. The Leftovers
  2. Manifest
  3. Lost Room
  4. Twin Peaks
  5. The Prisoners
  6. Battlestar Galactica
  7. The New People
  8. Flight 29 Down
  9. Fringe
  10. Alcatraz
  11. Under the Dome
  12. Dark

1. The Leftovers (2014)

IMDB ratings: 8.3/10

Cast: Carrie Coon, Justin Theroux, Amy Brenneman and Margaret Qualley

Creator: Damon Lindelof and Tom Perrotta

The director of Lost, Damon Lindel also created a supernatural drama series called The Leftovers. The show begins 3 years after an unexplainable global event called ‘Sudden Departure’  where almost 2 per cent of the population, nearly 140 million people, disappear. The Leftovers isn't about WHY people are gone, it's about how the ones who remain dealt with their loss, people often try to comfort themselves with dreams, angels, gods, or even death.

The Leftovers will leave you with so many questions but beyond words, you have to feel it and savour its unanswered questions to find peace. The Leftovers is an incredible television series that starts incredibly well but loses its way by the series's end. I have to say though, Carrie Coon has brilliant moments in the end. The Leftovers is so weird, fragmented and nonsensical at times that it reminds me of Lost. If you are looking for shows like Lost, I recommend that you give The Leftovers a try.

2. Manifest  (2018) 

IMDB ratings: 7.1/10

Cast: Melissa Roxburgh, Josh Dallas and J.R. Ramirez 

Creator: Jeff Rake

The Manifest is a supernatural drama show about a bunch of people who discover that they lost 5 years of their lives when they landed in New York after their aeroplane faced severe turbulence. All the people on the plane were presumed to be dead. Now, these people have to find a way to adjust themselves to a new life around their loved ones. Mild spoiler! They learn their loved ones and the rest of society is not as they left it.

I found that the show’s premise was very intriguing and the actors give a very convincing performance. The narrative details of the show, however, in my opinion, are a bit sloppy and inconsistent. The writers surely have room for improvement but their concept is incredibly thrilling. Every episode of Manifest keeps you on your toes. Manifest has completed 3 seasons up until now and continues to be on air. Manifest is a pretty good choice if you want to watch TV shows like Lost.

3. Lost Room (2006)

IMDB ratings: 8.1/10

Cast: Peter Krause, Julianna Margulies and Peter Jacobson

Creator: Christopher Leone, Laura Harkcom

This lesser-known show The Lost Room is an American Sci-fi television miniseries which only had 3 episodes of 90 mins each and no follow-up seasons. The show was based on a very unique idea where the room in question (known as the ‘Lost Room’) and the objects in the said room had supernatural powers. This strange room is set in a 1960s motel along the iconic U.S. Route 66.

One day the protagonist (Peter Krause) Joe Miller’s daughter disappears inside the room. Joe, with the help of objects present in the room, tries to find his daughter Anna (Elle Fanning). The story of Lost Room was intensely engaging. I found the direction and the actor’s performances to be absolutely brilliant. It baffles me that the creators did not return to make another short season within the same concept. If you have been searching for TV series like Lost then I can assure you that Lost Room will be worth a watch.

4. Twins Peaks (1990) 

IMDB ratings: 8.8/10

Cast: Kyle MacLachlan, Mädchen Amick, Sherilyn Fenn and David Lynch

Creator: David Lynch

David Lynch, the well-known director of weird and captivating films such as Eraserhead and Blue Velvet created an iconic show called Twin Peaks. It is a hauntingly eccentric show about the investigation of the mysterious murder of a small-town homecoming queen named Laura Palmer. Believe me, as odd as the show may seem at first, you will grow to love it, after all, it is considered to be one of the best mystery shows ever created.

With the mysteries, the supernatural elements and the list of bizarre characters, Twin Peaks has it all. In my opinion, the cinematography of the show was truly ahead of its time. Kyle’s Dale Cooper was especially entertaining. Twin Peaks’ experimental formula of the satirical soap opera is extremely unsettling yet rewarding to watch, I must warn you, it’s not for the faint-hearted!  If you are in search of TV shows like Lost then Twin Peaks won’t disappoint you.

The Prisoners (1967)

IMDB ratings: 8.5/10

Cast: Patrick McGoohan, Angelo Muscat and Geroge Markstien

Creator: Patrick McGoohan

The Prisoner centres around an unnamed British agent (Patrick McGoohan) who tries to flee his country after abruptly quitting his high-ranking government job. He is abducted and held captive in a strange ‘sea-side’ village that is isolated from the rest of the world. This village is a highly secure and monitored place filled with weird technology. There are only 17 episodes to this late 60s show but it manages to bring up such surreal surprises, it's sure to leave a great impact on the viewer.

The Prisoner’s unique concept influenced many popular shows including Lost. The creators of Lost even cited the show. I was very impressed by how ahead of its time The Prisoners proves to be. If you want to watch more shows similar to Lost the Prisoners should definitely be on your list.

6. Battlestar Galactica (2004)

IMDB ratings: 8.7/10

Cast: Katee Sackhoff, Edward James Olmos and Tricia Helfer 

Creator: Glen A. Larson

The 2004 Battlestar Galactica is a reboot of the original 1978 miniseries of the same name. Do not be mistaken by the title, the show is not related to Star Trek.  Battlestar Galactica is set in the 7th millennium AD and follows Cylons, the robot enemy of humanity that resurfaces to destroy the 12 colonies of Mankind. Only a few survive and are able to escape on ships led by a powerful warship called Battlestar Galactica. Mankind struggles to fight the Cylons and work their own political agendas and disputes while finding their long-lost 13th colony Earth.

The show is a dark, intense and gritty socio-political commentary with EPIC cinematic value. The script is especially clever and as a huge fan of sci-fi shows, this show ticks the boxes in all the right categories. When the show was released, it blew the viewers and critics away. As far as an obsessive and gripping story goes, Battlestar Galactica is one of the most similar to shows like Lost. 

7. The New People (1969)

IMDB ratings: 7.3/10

Cast: David Moses, Zooey hall and Tiffany Boiling

Creator: Larry Gordon Aaron Spelling

The New People is an American Tv series that aired only for 1 season and is focused on a couple of college students who survive a plane crash. The incident takes place while they were returning from a trip to Southeast Asia, their plane crashes on an island in the south of the Pacific ocean. 

By now this show must already be sounding a lot like Lost to you, and it surely is. The remaining group of people discover an unusual truth about the island: there’s an above-ground unused nuclear test site filled with supplies for the survivors. If you want to see more plane survival stories like Lost then The New People should definitely be on your list.

8. Flight 29 Down (2005)

IMDB ratings: 7.2/10

Cast: Allen Alvarado, Halle Hirsh and Corbin Bleu

Creator:  Stan Rowgow D. J. MacHale

The show Flight 29 Down is a drama series about a group of pre-teens/teens who are stranded on a South Pacific island after their plane crashes in a tropical storm while they were flying from an eco-adventure camping trip in Palau. The show is in many ways a younger version of the Adult-centred show Lost but sans the supernatural elements. I’d say that the show draws inspiration from the show The New People.

Flight 29 Down uses the technique of a video diary as a plot device for the viewers to keep up with the story of these children. It was very engaging to watch young intelligent characters finding their way on the island. The first two seasons of the show are quite engaging but I seemed to lose interest in its 3rd and final season. Regardless, Flight 29 Down is a really good series to watch if you want to see TV shows like Lost.

9. Fringe (2008)

IMDB ratings: 8.4/10

Cast: Anna Torv, John Noble and Joshua Jackson

Creator: J. J. Abrams, Alex Kurtzman, and Roberto Orci

Fringe is a popular Sci-fi crime drama television series. It may seem like a standard procedural drama at first, but the show actually explores the parallel universe, alternate versions of people filled with crazy scientific experiments. I personally had a great time watching this show.

Fringe is actually inspired by shows like Lost, The X-files and The Twilight Zone. The 3 main characters of the show work with a special division called Fringe. There are so many brilliant twists and turns in Fringe that in my opinion, the show is at the top of its category. If you are searching for TV series like Lost, I strongly recommend you watch Fringe

10. Alcatraz (2012)

IMDB ratings: 6.9/10

Cast: Sarah Jones, George Garcia and Jonny Coyne 

Creator: Elizabeth Sarnoff, Steven Lilien, Bryan Wynbrandt

This American fiction show is based on the infamous Alcatraz Federal Penitentiary built on Alcatraz island in San Francisco Bay. The prison is now closed but once kept some of the most dangerous criminals of America. The show takes the liberty to make a show around the conspiracies of the place.

In the interesting premise we see that under unknown circumstances, 256 inmates and 46 guards of the prison disappear without a trace. Later the disappeared ones start to appear one by one without ageing a day and resume their criminal activities with no realisation of disappearance. A special government unit is dedicated to finding and putting those criminals back in prison. If you are looking for mystery shows similar to Lost, try watching Alcatraz. 

11. Under the Dome (2013)

IMDB ratings: 6.5/10

Cast: Alexander Koch and Rachelle Lefevre

Creator: Stephen King

Based on a novel written by the sci-fi legend Stephen King, Under the Dome tells the story of the residents of the fictional small town called Chester's Mill, when a huge, transparent and indestructible dome suddenly cuts them off from the rest of the world.

Now the trapped residents try to find a way to discover the truth, origin and purpose of these domes. This journey forces them into situations where they learn more about each other than they ever knew. Under the Dome may not be on the top of this list but it’s quite a decent watch if you’re looking for mystery shows similar to Lost

12. Dark (2017)

IMDB ratings: 8.7/10

Cast: Louis Hofmann, Lisa Vicari and Gina Stiebitz

Creator: Baran bo Odar, Jantje Friese

The German-language Netflix series Dark is an interesting blend of Science fiction and Mystery. Truly a compelling and mind-bending story to watch. At the beginning of Dark, many children suspiciously start disappearing in the German town of Winden. The dark past of generational mysteries of 4 families living in the town namely, Kahnwald, Nielsen, Doppler, and Tiedemann is brought to light.

After the discovery of a wormhole, the lives of the families intertwine more than one can imagine. I believe every element of the show is top-notch, especially Dark’s cinematography, which is a TRUE masterpiece. If you are looking for TV series similar to Lost then the intense and gripping story of Dark is sure to keep you engrossed.

Honourable Mentions

Here are a few TV shows like Lost that didn’t make the list, but you can check them out nonetheless: 

  1. Carnivale
  2. Yellowjackets
  3. Game of Thrones
  4. Black Mirror
  5. Flashforward
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