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10 Shows Like The Blacklist To Watch If You Enjoy Espionage Thrillers

shows like the blacklist

The Blacklist follows a wanted fugitive called ‘Red’ who mysteriously surrenders himself to the FBI and offers to help catch criminals. James’ performance is the predominant reason why The Blacklist is regarded as one of the best shows on television by critics and viewers alike. If you miss watching this series, we have put together a list of shows like The Blacklist that will make great substitutes.

List of TV Shows Like The Blacklist

  1. The Blacklist: Redemption
  2. Blindspot
  3. Homeland
  4. White Collar
  5. Person of Interest
  6. Hannibal
  7. Criminal Minds
  8. Sherlock
  9. Jack Ryan
  10. Killing Eve

1. The Blacklist: Redemption (2017)

After watching The Blacklist, if you wondered what happened to Tom Keen, then you should definitely watch The Blacklist: Redemption. The spin-off show explores the secrecy around Tom’s parents. Many familiar faces like Famke Janssen as Susan Scott Hargrave and Matius (not as a villain but on the good side) return. 

Tom, a secret agent, teams up with Susan, the leader of a mercenary organisation, to deal with severe criminal cases that the government is not able to solve (all while he tries to uncover his past). Tom finds himself in a loop of a situation where he is challenged with deciding whom he can trust. The show only lasted 1 season but will provide you with some closure. If you are looking for shows like The Blacklist, then The Blacklist: Redemption should be at the top of your list. 

2. Blindspot (2015)

Blindspot is a crime drama tv series about a mysterious, heavily tattooed woman with no memory of her past or identity. The show lets in a bit of suspension of disbelief. Still, it is a humourous, entertaining and action-packed thriller great for a weekend watch. 

The cast is quite likeable, and the crisp story has a delivery, Blindspot is sure to compel you to stick around as soon as you finish the first episode. It is that engaging! Filled with action, mystery and twists, Blindspot is an excellent match to TV shows like The Blacklist.

3. Homeland (2011)

Homeland succeeds as both a compelling thriller and an engaging character drama. This is a compellingly tragic end-stop in the life of a shrewdly plotted, breathlessly entertaining and occasionally remarkable series.

As a fan of the show, I must appreciate the high emotional intelligence the fictional characters and the creators of this show hold. This one had me hooked through all 8 seasons.  Not only is it packed with great actors, but it also has great writing that makes the characters very believable and compelling. If you are searching for shows similar toThe Blacklist, Homeland should be the right choice for you. 

4. White Collar (2009)

White Collar is a Police Procedural Drama that centres on a former con artist and criminal, Neal Caffrey (Matt Bomer). Neal works as a criminal consultant with the Law Enforcement agency FBI under Special agent Peter Burke (Tim DeKay). At the beginning of the show, Peter Burke catches Neal Caffery for the second time and cuts him a deal to work with them till the end of his sentence and avoid being in prison. Neal, in the meantime, is finding answers to why the love of his life, Kate, leaves him and disappears. 

Here’s a clip from White Collar:

Talented and undeniably gorgeous Matt Bomer’s performance as the sophisticated and highly skilled artist Neal Caffery is too good to miss. Just as, well, the performances by the rest of the cast are absolutely on point. The show ended on a high note with its 6th season. A 100% binge-worthy show has the protagonist you might be looking for. So I say, White Collar is a perfect match for you if you’re looking for shows like The Blacklist. Check out more shows like White Collar.

5. Person of Interest (2011)

Person of Interest is a Sci-fi crime drama that follows John Reese, a former special forces soldier and CIA operative. A bygone soldier, John is thought to be dead by everyone. He in fact, is alive and now a homeless man in New York. Harold Finch, a billionaire software genius, builds a computer called ‘the Machine’ that monitors all electronic media and communications to predict future terrorist activities. Harold approaches Reese to intercept the possible threats. Check out more shows like Person of Interest.

On the surface, Person of Interest seems like a standard procedural crime drama series, but it is in fact, a well-crafted action sci-fi that explores the concepts of AI vs human nature. The main characters of the show are phenomenal. If you want to explore more series like The Blacklist, then a show like Person of Interest is sure to keep you on the edge of your seat. 

6. Hannibal (2013)

Hannibal series, based on Thomas Harris’ novels Red Dragon, Hannibal and Hannibal Rising, is an American psychological horror starring Mad Mikkelsen and Hugh Dancy in the challenging roles of Dr Hannibal Lecter and Will Graham, respectively. Not shying away from gory imagery, this show is often appreciated for its powerful visuals that leave the viewers thinking. 

With elements that remind you of Silence of Lambs, the series showcases the complexities of human behaviour through murder, cannibalism and a twisted relationship with the FBI trainee. The charms and mysteries of the main characters leave one wanting to see more. It’s safe to say, that Hannibal will be a good reminder for the viewers of the crime world they experienced in series like The Blacklist. 

7. Criminal Minds (2005)

The police procedural drama, Criminal Minds premiered in 2005 and was created by Jeff Davis. The show follows a group called the Behaviour Analyst Unit (BAU) of criminal profilers who work for the FBI to help solve crimes and find a suspect known as an ‘unknown subject’. The show manages to handle a large cast really well; every character gets the opportunity to shine. The dark and somewhat grim story of Criminal minds is very compelling.

Criminal Minds is action-packed and full of suspense. Having been on the air for a total of 15 seasons, the show has gathered a dedicated viewership. Much of the cast changes as the seasons progress, but the presence of the well-liked core cast keeps the viewers hooked. For a show running as long as Criminal Minds, writers managed to write new episodes with engaging plots almost every time. If you want to watch shows like The Blacklist then Criminal Minds will surely be worthy of a watch. 

8. Sherlock (BBC) (2010)

The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes have been a detective fiction classic for decades. There have been innumerable adaptations of the stories since then, but none have quite gained popularity, like the 2010 modern-day re-imagining of Sherlock. The BBC Sherlock has had an extremely dedicated fan following, and rightly so. The show has an extremely talented cast of actors, Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes and, Martin Freeman as Dr John Watson, Andrew Scott as the iconic Professor Moriarty. Check out more shows like Sherlock.

Directed with a perfect mix of nostalgia to the time-appropriate re-imaging of classic lines like ‘The Game is on!’ makes the show go beyond perfection. Sherlock uses technology and forensic science with his brilliant skills of deduction, observation and logical reasoning. The show has raving reviews and highly dedicated fans. So, if you are in search of TV shows like The Blacklist, Sherlock is an unmissable watch. 

9. Jack Ryan (2018)

Known as Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan, this show is based on Tom Clancy’s popular ‘Ryanverse‘ fictional stories. Here, John Krasinski takes on the role of Jack Ryan- CIA’s up-and-coming analyst. Jack is given a dangerous field assignment where he goes after international terrorists hoping to save the world. As an underrated show on Amazon Prime, Jack Ryan is very engaging and well thought-out. 

In the usual limited-style series, it is hard to develop a great antagonist, Jack Ryan does it perfectly, and the villain is terrifically dynamic. The performances and writing are amazing, but my favourite has to be the cinematography. The title sequence is so good that I never skip it! Jack Ryan is a masterfully directed show like The Blacklist; nothing about it feels dumbed down or censored. Overall a perfect action-spy thriller to binge on the weekend.

10. Killing Eve (2018)

Killing Eve is a dark comedy about an international assassin and an investigator in British intelligence. They both get the tip on each other (Eve is looking for Villanelle, and Villanelle is- well- not looking for her but “interested” in her). The show gets straight to the point, so it doesn’t allow you to lose track of the events.

In my opinion, Killing Eve is a wild ride of a spy thriller show. Jodie’s Villanelle is such a charismatic beast of a character, and even though she’s a chaotic psychopathic killer, you still want to watch her and empathize with her. Sandra’s Eve starts as an understated MI5 agent who gets drawn to Villanelle like a moth to a flame. Killing Eve is definitely worth a try if you are a fan of a series like The Blacklist

Honourable Mentions

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

  1. The Wire
  2. Alias
  3. How To Get Away With Murder
  4. The Punisher

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.

Lost

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. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KTu8iDynwNc

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.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FLT3YUALJno&t=8s

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.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I1hNAIzkQWY

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. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DfWrECLnFYU

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. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zwn9ou_nf-I

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.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4JrNr85fPms

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.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TnYsf2Yv8i8

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.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MLeG0w3kL8k

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.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=29bSzbqZ3xE

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.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V514ACIGp_k

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. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f_Y5YeYrqUk

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.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rrwycJ08PSA

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