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10 Shows Like Broadchurch To Watch If You Enjoy Engrossing Mysteries

shows like Broadchurch

Broadchurch is an enthralling show with an exceptional cast that includes the likes of David Tennent and Olivia Colman. This series explores the mysteries, and the deep secrets rooted in the coastal town, it exceeds expectations. If crime dramas with emotional traumas in shows like Broadchurch are of your interest,  this list of recommendations is for you.  

Broadchurch is a suspenseful murder mystery show created by Chris Chibnall with a talented cast and it first aired in 2013… The show begins with the discovery of the body of an 11-year-old boy called Danny in the small fictional town of Broadchurch on the coast of Dorset, England. The story focuses on Detective Inspector Alec Hardy played by David Tennant and Detective Sergeant Ellie Miller played by Olivia Colman. 

The performances by the main and the supporting cast were exceptional. It puts into light how we often think everything with people is okay from afar, but when we look closer dark secrets unravel. The show portrays new colours of grief, and internal struggles not only through the actor’s performances but from places one least expects. The show has beautiful and atmospheric locations and the soundtrack feels like a haunting ballad. The show symbolises nature’s inadvertent influence on life that challenges human morality.

We have compiled a great set of recommendations for series like Broadchurch that we are sure you will like. 

List of TV Shows Like Broadchurch

  1. Gracepoint
  2. Deadwater Fell
  3. Collateral
  4. Sherlock
  5. The Sinner
  6. The Killing
  7. Luther 
  8. Sharp Objects
  9. Fargo
  10. Big Little Lies

1. Gracepoint (2014)

Gracepoint is an American version of Broadchurch. It also has David Tennent playing the same character in the American crime scenario. Here detective Ellie Miller is played by Anna Gunn and the show is set in California instead of Dorset. The plot of the show is the same. It is about the murder of a young boy where Emmett Carver is appointed as the lead detective and Ellie, who was on her maternal leave is upset when she discovers that she has to work with another person on the murder case. 

The American version attempts to seal all the loose ends of the British version of the show. If you have seen Broadchurch, the story will be of no surprise to you but it may help you get closure with certain questions. If you are looking for shows like Broadchurch to watch and don’t mind watching a remake, you should check this out. 

2. Deadwater Fell (2020)

This crime drama sees David Tennant again in the lead, but this time as a part of the family affected by the tragedy. He plays Tom Kendrik, a village doctor. There is a fire at Kendrick’s home which kills Tom’s wife and 3 young children, Tom is the only one rescued from the fire. It is soon discovered that all 5 members were drugged before the incident which leads the investigation in a new light. 

David’s performance is undoubtedly good, but Jesse Milner (Cush Jumbo) and Kate Kendrick (Anna Madeley) elevate the show with their layered performances. Deadwater Fell reminds us that everything that shines is not always gold, if you want to watch more of David Tennant as the central character and are interested in Family trauma crime shows like Broadchurch, this is a perfect fit.

3. Collateral (2018)

Created by Academy nominee David Hare and directed by S J Clarkson, this is a 4-part British drama series. The main character Detective Inspector Kip Glaspie is played by Carrie Mulligan, who is known for her skilful portrayal of complex female characters. 

In the show, a crime that seemingly starts off as a random shooting of a pizza delivery man soon unravels a deeper story. DI Kip finds herself in co-incidental situations where she uncovers secret links that lead her to the special forces of the branch military. 

Collateral focuses on the portrayal of the conventional police procedural in a more authentic way, The show refrains from cliche characteristics and delivers excellent acting performances and cinematography. The writing is lacking in many places but the rest of the elements of the show make up for it. If you are searching for TV shows similar to Broadchurch, you might like this one.

4. Sherlock (2010)

The 2010 modern-day re-imagining of the classic stories of Sherlock Holmes has had an extremely dedicated fan following and, rightly so. Produced by BBC, Sherlock is set in present-day London. Talented actors, Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes and Martin Freeman as Dr John Watson play their characters to perfection. The show uses innovative ways to express the extraordinary intelligence and ever-green charm of Sherlock Holmes. 

The perfect mix of nostalgia with the ‘221 B Baker Street’ to the time-appropriate re-imaging ‘The Game is on!’ makes this not just a perfect adaptation for previous Sherlock fans but also provides them with an excellent directed scenario of Sherlock using technology and forensic science with his brilliant skills of deduction, observation, and logical reasoning.

The show does not miss a single beat, it’s worthy of all its praise and critical acclaim. Andrew Scott’s take on Moriarty brings a cult following for the typical villain of the story. If you want to watch something similar to the detective TV shows like Broadchurch and still haven’t seen Sherlock, this one’s a no-brainer. 

Also Read: Shows like Person of Interest

5. The Sinner (2017) 

The Sinner show was inspired by Petra Hammeshfahr’s novel. This is an American Police Procedural anthological series. The Sinner has received great reviews from critics and viewers alike. In this investigative show, Detective Harry Ambrose investigates a new murder each season, where he is exposed to new crimes, he is often trying to understand the inner motives behind the actions of the criminals. 

The talented Bill Pullman acts as the central character of the show, Detective Harry Ambrose, viewers look at the world from his point of view. The show’s obsession with finding the answer to ‘Why would someone commit a crime?’ gives the audience the opportunity of looking at the criminal state of mind in a more dynamic way. Excellent performances from Chris Messina, Matt Bomer and Jessica Beil highlight the political, religious, and dark philosophical intricacies. If you are in search of shows similar to Broadchurch, you will like The Sinner’s darker take. 

6. The Killing (2011)

Based on the Danish TV show Forbrydelsen ‘The Crime’. The main characters of the show are detective Sarah Linden and detective Stephen Holder. Set in Seattle, Washington, the series follows the various murder investigations by the two, one of which is the focus, The murder of a teenager called Rosie Larsen. The characterisation of both the main characters is as dynamic as the story, both of them have their own personal traumas. 

As many crime dramas go, the investigation unravels more secrets hidden within the victim’s family. The cinematography of the show is hypnotising and terrifying to watch. The Killing is a great show for you to binge if you want to watch shows like Broadchurch. 

7. Luther (2010)

Luther is a British crime thriller drama series, with Idris Elba playing the intelligent DCI John Luther. Luther works in the Serious Crime Unit, he is often obsessed with the investigation, the questions possess his mind which also brings out the violence in his character. 

Luther is dedicated to bringing justice to the victims of brutal crimes who are stuck in a twisted bureaucratic legal system. It’s a constant struggle for Luther to retain his morals as he uses questionable methods to ensure justice. Set in the gloomy and harsh London to translate the show’s nature, the show does not shy away from focusing on the dark side of reality to bring out a more honest representation. If you want to watch shows like Broadchurch then Luther’s rawness will be worth a watch.

8. Sharp Objects (2018)

Sharp Objects premiered in the year 2018 and is based on the 2006 debut novel by Gillian Flynn of the same title. The show is directed by Jean-Marc Vallée, the story follows talented Amy Adams as a crime reporter Camille Preaker. Camille after distancing from her home for years and treating her childhood traumas and mental illness is now asked to return to her hometown to investigate the murder of two young girls. The show is set in a small, isolated town. Upon return, she is unwittingly forced to deal with her own demons. 

Camille goes home to meet her strange, uptight, and controlling mother and her younger sister, whom she never really got to know. Richard Willis, an out-of-town detective, is appointed to the case. The town folks advise Willis not to get involved with Camille but he goes against the advice and helps Camille. Camille uncovers the horrifying truth through her forgotten traumas. Through a combination of characters’ flashbacks and epiphanies, the show reveals haunting yet deeply engaging elements. Sharp Objects conveys a story that viewers will not imagine in their wildest dreams. This is an incredible series to watch next if you are in search of shows like Broadchurch

9. Fargo (2014)

Fargo show is inspired by the 1996 movie of the same title, which by itself was inspired by real-life events where an ordinary salesman out of desperation for money, formulates a plan where two thug men have to abduct his wife so that he can create a situation of kidnapping and force his rich father-in-law to pay a ransom. The plan falls apart quickly with a series of mishaps and rogue actions like the thugs shooting a state trooper take place.

Fargo gained high critical acclaim upon release. The show has a skilful cast with actors like Martin Freeman, Chris Rock, and Kirsten Dunst. The themes of deception, intrigue and great dark humour in the cold-blooded murder in the frozen town of Minnesota bring out a cynical, unsettling yet amusing side of humanity. If you are in search of shows like Broadchurch that can bring out eeriness and morbid humour effectively, Fargo will be the right fit for you. 

Also Read: Shows like Twin Peaks

10. Big Little Lies (2017)

Big Little Lies is based on Liane Moriarty’s best-selling novel of the same name. The only show that’s not a conventional crime series on this list. This show is a dark comedic drama series that tells the story of 3 mothers or first-graders, Madeline Martha Mackenzie (Reese Witherspoon), her best friend Celeste Wright (Nicole Kidman), and their new friend Jane Chapmans ( Shailene Woodley).

Big Little Lies has an illustrious cast with some of the biggest names in Hollywood.  Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, Shailene Woodley, Alexander Skarsgard, Laura Dern, Zoe Kravitz, and Adam Scott. The 2nd season includes the legendary Meryl Streep as Mary Louise Wright. The show is set in the coastal town of Monterey Bay, California.

It’s a jarring take on the classes of society, abuse, and American culture.  The Big Little Lies finale is incredibly satisfying to watch. If you are looking for shows similar to Broadchurch in terms of its setting, cinematography, and brilliant performances,  you are sure to love Big Little Lies. 

Honourable Mentions

The following shows like Broadchurch did not make the recommendations list, but you check them out as well. 

  1. Under the Banner of Heaven
  2. The Bridge 
  3. The Fall
  4. True Detective

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