The Watcher: What TV Shows to Watch Next
If The Watcher leaves you wanting more compelling mystery, we've compiled a list of TV shows to add to your next binge session.
In a market saturated with true crime narratives, both real and fictional, it’s hard to know which TV series are worth your time and which are better left at the bottom of your queue. The Watcher is Netflix’s latest foray into the true crime world, and is absolutely the former.
After the critiques of distastefulness that Ryan Murphy’s other recent true crime series, Dahmer – Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story, has received, no one would be blamed for having low expectations for how The Watcher would handle its real life story. But it seems as though The Watcher has avoided the exploitative tilt of its predecessor and given us another compelling yet terrifying take on real events.
Whether you’re a true crime buff, looking for another mystery to binge, or need something to do while you’re googling whether or not the titular watcher was ever caught, we’ve got your back. The following TV shows have similar vibes to The Watcher and are the perfect additions to any watchlist.
Watch on: Netflix
If you’re looking for another show that will keep you glancing over your shoulder for potential stalkers and questioning the intentions of every person you meet, look no further than the Netflix drama You. Like The Watcher, this series features a stalker who believes himself to be the protector of his victims. What makes You different, and absolutely bonkers in the best possible way, is that the stalker, Joe Goldberg (Penn Badgley), is the main character. Not only do we see things from his perspective, but through voice-over narration we get to hear his thoughts and justifications for his increasingly unhinged actions. Joe is ready to do whatever it takes to prove his love to whichever unlucky woman is his current fixation, even if that includes cloning their cell phone, locking their friends in the glass cage he has in his basement, or killing several people each season. You is far from a prestige TV show, but it is a hell of a good time.
Under the Banner of Heaven
Watch on: Hulu
Another phenomenal true crime TV show, Under the Banner of Heaven also features a community full of secrets and a case that threatens to expose them. Set in a small town in the Salt Lake Valley of Utah during the 1980s, Under the Banner of Heaven follows Mormon Detective Jeb Pyre (Andrew Garfield) as he investigates the brutal murder of Brenda Lafferty (Daisy Edgar Jones) and her baby. With the help of his partner, Detective Bill Taba (Gil Birmingham), Pyre discovers that Brenda’s murder is connected to a fundamentalist sect of the Mormon church. Forced to reconcile his faith with the brutal acts done in his God’s name, Pyre struggles to appease the elders of his church – who would rather sweep things under the rug than get involved – while still getting Brenda and her child the justice they deserve. Under the Banner of Heaven features one of Andrew Garfield’s most compelling performances and is the perfect show to add to a true crime binge after The Watcher.
Only Murders in the Building
Watch on: Hulu
Only Murders in the Building is the perfect thing to watch next if you’re still after a gripping mystery, but would like to get some sleep at night. This comedy series follows Mabel Mora (Selena Gomez), Charles Haden-Savage (Steve Martin), and Oliver Putnam (Martin Short) after a murder in their apartment building brings these true crime afficionados together. Not accepting that the man’s death was a suicide, as initially ruled by the police, the trio decide to record their own true crime podcast detailing their investigation and the clues they uncover. Only Murders in the Building takes its premise seriously, but still leaves plenty of room for its characters and the audience to have fun – comedy legends Steve Martin and Martin Short are co-leads after all. If The Watcher has left you more than a little freaked out, then Only Murders in the Building is the perfect palate cleanser.
The Haunting of Hill House
Watch on: Netflix
Giant house that comes with a disturbing secret? Check. An unsuspecting family terrorized to their breaking point after moving into said house? Check again. The Watcher may not be a cut and dry horror TV series, but it has a lot more in common with The Haunting of Hill House than you might think. Whereas The Watcher’s menacing figure is thought to be an actual person rather than a collection of malevolent spirits as in The Haunting of Hill House, the terror that lies in not knowing who or what exactly you and your family are up against remains. The Haunting of Hill House moves between the present day Crain family as they deal with the shocking loss of one of their own, and the past when the Crain family first moved to Hill House. The miniseries is a really poignant look at the effects of trauma on a family that also features plenty of nightmare inducing moments.
Watch on: Netflix
The Sinner is an anthology crime series that follows Detective Harry Ambrose (Bill Pullman) as he investigates different small town murders and what led the killers to commit them. Each season focuses on a different crime with only Detective Ambrose to connect the seasons. Like The Watcher, The Sinner features a stacked cast that includes Carrie Coon, Jessica Biel, Matt Bomer, and Chris Messina across different seasons. Even though The Sinner has four seasons ready to binge, the anthology format and the series’ fictional stories make it perfect for those who want to continue watching crime stories in bite size chunks rather than diving deep into a true crime rabbit hole.
The White Lotus
Watch on: HBO Max
Looking for another series with Jennifer Coolidge to binge after The Watcher? Well The White Lotus might just be the show for you. Set at the fictional White Lotus resort in Hawaii, The White Lotus follows both guests and employees of the resort the week before a murder occurs on the premises. Throughout the season, we learn that the lives of the White Lotus patrons are not as idyllic as they may seem. While The White Lotus may not be as intense as The Watcher, the series still features plenty of unexpected twists and unraveled secrets that make it hard to know who to trust or root for.
Truth Be Told
Watch on: Apple TV+
While the narrative behind Truth Be Told is fictional, it still has an understanding of what draws people to true crime stories. Truth Be Told features Octavia Spencer as a true crime investigator and podcaster who is called to look into the case of a killer whom her podcast helped convict. As new evidence comes to light, she realizes she may have been wrong and the real killer may still be out there. If The Watcher left you wanting a mystery with more straightforward answers and an ending with true closure, then Truth Be Told is a pretty solid series to add to your list.