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7 shows like Netflix’s Inside Man you need to watch

November 2, 2022

BBC’s Inside Man is a crime television series directed by Paul McGuigan and penned by Steven Moffat known for series like Doctor Who, Dracula, Sherlock and others. The story revolves around Jefferson Grieff, a death row inmate in the United States who solves the case of the missing Janice, a woman trapped in a rectory in the United Kingdom. The series touches on sensitive subjects like murder and pedophilia and shows how morally ambiguous people really are.

The narrative covers various themes, such as B. a good man who falls victim to his circumstances, a murderer who regrets his actions, and a hungry journalist who learns the difference between sensationalism and actual news. If you’re a fan of the different themes of a crime drama or crime series, we’ve rounded up a few TV shows for you. You can watch most of these series, such as Inside Man, on Netflix, Hulu, or Amazon Prime.

7. Breakout Kings (2011-2012)

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‘Breakout Kings’ follows a task force of imposters set up by the US Marshals to catch some fugitives. In return, the members of the troop receive a reduced sentence. The series is being developed by Matt Olmstead and Nick Santora, of ‘Prison Break’ fame.

Although the series and Inside Man differ greatly in tonality, they have in common that the prisoners use their intellect to solve problems for others. In this series they do it for law enforcement, in Inside Man for people who fit his criteria. In both cases, the inmates have specific knowledge and skills that others around them do not have, making the narrative engaging and exciting.

6. For Life (2020-2021)

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‘For Life’ is a story that revolves around Aaron Wallace, a wrongly convicted man who studies the law to overturn his sentence while trialing for his other inmates. Loosely based on the true story of Issac Wright Jr., the series embodies the story of an outsider. While the BBC drama differs thematically from this series, there are some similarities when it comes to the protagonists.

Inside Man’s Grieff and For Life’s Wallace take on their cases based on their moral worth. On the one hand, Wallace takes on the cases of wrongly convicted prisoners. On the other hand, Grieff takes on cases that allow him to do some good. Despite the common will to do good, the characters are fundamentally different. Wallace is a good man who has committed no crime while Grieff is a murderer who strangled and beheaded his wife.

5. Happy Valley (2014-)

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The BBC series Happy Valley is a crime drama centered around the life of Catherine Cawood after the death of her teenage daughter. The narrative follows as she leads a team of police officers to solve crimes in the area, leading her down a dark path where her professional and personal lives collide. The story is a bit slower compared to Inside Man, but the emotional undertones in different scenes are similar.

In some scenes where a character is kidnapped, the way she reacts is reminiscent of Janice trapped in a basement. These scenarios share several common tropes found in other films and series in the kidnapping subgenre. However, both series put their own twist on these scenes, adding a certain uniqueness to the story and characters.

4. The Black List (2013-)

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‘The Blacklist’ is a crime thriller television series that centers on Raymond Reddington (James Spader), a criminal mastermind who turns himself in to the FBI after years on the run. The protagonist offers to help the agency find terrorists and other anti-social elements, on one condition: he gets to work with a profiler named Elizabeth Keen. Based on a real person named James Bulger, the series portrays Raymond Reddington as a slick, charming, and conniving criminal.

Raymond’s character traits are very reminiscent of Grieff’s from Inside Man. Both exude sociopathic traits and have incredible abilities when it comes to reading between the lines. But behind this seemingly perfect personality lies her deepest and darkest secrets. Both shows use the characters’ personalities to engage the audience with the story.

3.Luther (2010-2019)

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The BBC series Luther is a psychological thriller about the eponymous detective John Luther (Idris Elba) who, due to various circumstances, teams up with a psychopath and solves various types of cases. The five-season television series is dark and edgy. It portrays Luther as an almost genius crime-solver who tends to venture into dark realms and tries to escape them. His abilities are similar to those of Inside Man’s Greiff, and both characters exude a sinister aura, even if their actions say otherwise. This moral gray area in which the two men move is exciting for the viewer, who is torn between rooting for them and despising their way of thinking.

2. Blackbird (2022)

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Apple TV+’s ‘Black Bird’ is a dark story about convicted drug dealer James Keene (Taron Egerton) who decides to extract a confession from fellow inmate Larry Hall (Paul Walter Hauser) in exchange for his freedom. Based on the autobiographical book In with the Devil: a Fallen Hero, a Serial Killer, and a Dangerous Bargain for Redemption by James Keene, the story touches on sensitive issues such as rape, assault, serial killers and more.

James Keene and Grieff share the same similarities as the latter and Raymond Reddington. Like Grieff, James Keene has a smug facade that serves as his defense mechanism. While Grieff only leaves that facade for a few brief moments, we see Keene completely break down as he confronts his demons. In a way, Grieff is an evolved version of Keene. While Jefferson Grieff understands who he is is, and aware of its complexities and problems, James Keene needs time to deal with it. Though both are intelligent and adept at dealing with humans, Grieff seems a little ahead of the curve compared to Keene.

1.Broadchurch (2013-2017)

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Any list of crime film genres would be incomplete without BBC series Broadchurch. The three-season series tells about a specific case in each season. In season one, Alec Hardy (David Tennant) and his partner Ellie Miller (Olivia Colman) investigate the case of 11-year-old Danny Latimer, whose body is found on a beach. In some ways, the series’ visual tone is similar to Inside Man, particularly the scenes set in the UK.

Also, both series are about how the human psyche works and that the line between a decent person and someone who is evil is indeed very thin. Topics such as the sexual abuse of children are also dealt with in both programs. However, it is fascinating to look at the same subject from different perspectives. The core premises of the shows are quite strong and demand the audience’s attention. The emotional and philosophical undertones in the two stories make them compelling for the viewer and leave them with questions to ponder.