Rahul is a TV addict who can never get enough of good shows. His all-time favorites are The Wire, Breaking Bad, and The Sopranos.
What Shows Are Like Stranger Things?
Die-hard fans of Stranger Things have a good reason to rejoice! Netflix announced pretty recently that the second season of the beloved drama is in the making. If you’re anything like me, you’ve already binge-watched this series and then re-watched it already by now.
Update — The Stranger Things is an unstoppable phenomenon now. With 4th season around the corner, you're guaranteed tons of nostalgic fun!
For those who don’t know what this show is about, Stranger Things takes us back to the ‘80s in a small town haunted by a supernatural entity from a parallel world. When a child suddenly disappears, an investigation follows, which eventually leads them to a haunting discovery. It’s an adrenaline-fueled journey until the very end. If you somehow still haven’t watched it, go ahead and do it right now.
Those who’ve already seen this show, it only fits that you’re looking for some other shows like Stranger Things. Satiate your craving with these fantastic serials.
Shows Like Stranger Things
- Black Mirror
- Wayward Pines
- Hemlock Grove
Based on the 1973 film by the same name, Westworld takes place in a near-futuristic world where anything is possible, thanks to the technological advancements. Immersive theme parks have been created for wealthy clients who want to explore the Wild West and enjoy what that world has to offer. The main attraction is humanoid robots who act and talk just like humans. Unfortunately, most of the clients choose to murder, mutilate and rape the hosts (humanoid robots) just for fun.
Since the victims are not humans, they get away with everything. There are no consequences for their actions. Things go awry when one of the androids gains consciousness, leading to an ultimate showdown between humans and hosts.
How far is too far? How do we define rape? By the end of the first season, you’ll find yourself grappling with these uncomfortable questions that have no right answers.
Westworld does a commendable job of pulling you with its intriguing plotline and ambitious scope right from the get-go. From the moment you lay your eyes on the humongous theme park, you know that Westworld is going to be very different from other contemporary soap operas out there. I loved it so much that I compiled a list of some other shows like Westworld for everyone to check out.
2. Black Mirror
Black Mirror is an anthology series with stories that revolve around the sheer amount of technology we use every day. It shows us how the same gadgets that make our lives easier can also destroy us. Every episode tells a different, independent story with a dark, twisted ending that’ll certainly compel you to think about what the future might have in store for us.
This series is the biggest surprise I’ve come across in recent times. Every episode is unique and has a different storyline and actors. The only thing common between the stories is their jab at the current absurd world we live in. It’s one of those shows you’ll either love or loathe with passion. Give the first couple of episodes a shot and see how you like it.
Humans takes place in the near future where human robots have become a must-have gadget for everyone. They assist their masters with nearly every job, which ranges from doing household chores to romance. Things take a different turn when a group of conscious synths (robots) finds a way out to make other humanoids just like them. In a world where androids have become capable of doing much more than humans can even fathom, will humanity survive? Have humans created the weapons of their own destruction?
Gemma Chan shines in her role of Anita, a synth with a dark past. You'll be rooting for her in no time. Similarly, other leading and supporting casts have done a commendable job with their roles as well, making for one of the most likable TV casts in recent times.
The show borrows a lot from movies like Blade Runner, but it’s not a bad thing. They’ve only adopted some of the ideas that made the film a cult classic. The story, surprisingly, feels fresh and compelling, hooking you right from the very first moment.
If you’re looking for a serial like Stranger Things, Humans should be your best bet.
4. Wayward Pines
When a secret service agent is sent to a strange town to find out more about his fellow agents who went missing, he ends up being trapped there. He desperately tries to find a way out of the hellhole, only to be confronted with an ugly truth that changes his life forever. Realizing that something sinister is going on in this community, he decides to delve deeper into the matter. Can he make it out of town alive? Why does everyone in the town behave weirdly? What exactly is this place?
The show answers these questions, only to raise a couple more. The tried and tested formula of creating suspense and mystery works for Wayward Pines. Watch a few episodes and see how quickly you get addicted to it!
Just when you think that you have everything figured out, it throws you off balance with a new twist in the story. There are times when a regular shift the direction feels a little annoying, but those moments, fortunately, are few and far between. The first few episodes might seem a tad slow, and to some extent, surreal, but you need to stick with it. The final twist rewards you for your patience with a beautiful ending.
It’s hard to talk about this show while trying not to spoil any major plotlines. All you need to know is, it’s one of the best new shows like Stranger Things. The mystery, the suspense, and one jaw-dropping twist after the other – these two shows have a lot more in common than you’d think.
With shows like House of Cards and Daredevil, Netflix has managed to amass a huge subscriber base in no time. The success of these shows has allowed them to be more experimentative and create Sense8 - a serial that doesn't shy away from touching upon sensitive issues like homosexuality and feminism.
Created by Lana and Lilly Wachowski and J. Michael Straczynski, the story follows a group of people from all over the world who find out that they're somehow linked to each other. When a mysterious organization starts hunting them down, they band together to combat the threat. Things go awry when they finally learn the nature of their reality.
Despite being a mix of sci-fi and thriller, it never feels far-fetched and outlandish. It’s filled with suspense and nail-biting drama all the way through. It never backs away from taking a dig at the weird society we live it and the stupid norms we’ve come to accept.
From the crowded roads of Mumbai to the busy streets of London; it’s shot all over the world. Put your seat belts on and get ready for one hell of a ride.
6. Hemlock Grove
I bring to you another Netflix original that has a reputation for being polarizing. Some critics have gone on to call this show scary bad while others loved every moment of it. Since I loved every minute of it, I thought Hemlock Grove would make for a fine Black Mirror alternative.
The story follows a small-town teenage girl who is brutally murdered. An investigation ensues to hunt down the murderer, which brings the whole town under suspicion. In a community where everyone is hiding sinister secrets, will the killer be found?
It’s a shame that the show had to be canceled just after three seasons. There was much more that they could have done with the story. Unfortunately, Hemlock Grove never found a place in the hearts of its audience. Kudos to Netflix for experimenting with something like this and giving it a chance for three seasons. Even though they failed, there is no denying that it’ll go down as one of the most underrated shows ever.
Bloodline follows a contemporary American family that runs a quaint inn as their family business for quite some time. The men in this family are infamous for their high temper and too much drinking. The women are manipulative and not too far behind the men when it comes to creating a fuss. No one outside of the family knows about the heinous crimes they’ve committed to stay afloat. When one of their family members returns home to help with the family business, his recklessness threatens to unearth their sinister secrets.
It's a slow drama. If you’re into fast-paced action, perhaps it’s better that you skip this entry. The slow-burning story gives ample time to every main and supporting character on screen, which helps you connect with the characters on an emotional level. You'll know the motives behind their heinous actions.
Unless you‘re living under rocks, you must have heard of Lost before. Smoke monsters, ghosts, time travel, and afterlife – you'll witness everything over the course of more than one hundred episodes of Lost. It's indeed one of the greatest shows to ever land on our screens.
You might think that 121 episodes are a lot to consume. Believe me; you'll burn through them in no time. The first few episodes take some time to develop the plot and characters, but once it gets going, there is no letting up. There is not a lot of fluff, only the meat. Try not to skip any episodes as every little scene and dialogue have a deeper meaning.
Apart from amazing cinematography, solid character development is also one of its strongest suits. You'll fall in love with the characters you loathed initially and vice versa. Just when you think that you have them figured out, a flashback to the past compels you to change your opinion about them. The drama, mystery, and suspense never let up. Here's a couple of other shows like Lost you should try once you finish binging this gem of a show.
Created by Robert Kirkman, this series follows the story of a young man who’s haunted by the supernatural possessions occurring all around him. All his life, he has tried to understand the reason behind it but never found the answer. That powerful entity refuses to let him be and torments him even in his dreams.
When he digs deeper with a priest, it turns out that things aren’t always the way he thought they were. The monster he was always looking to slay isn’t even there. What’s going on? What exactly is that entity?
It grabs your attention right from the very first episode and never lets you go. The dynamics between the characters is nothing short of amazing. A few episodes in, and you finally begin to understand what’s at stake and why’s everyone behaving in a certain way. The acting, cinematography and flawless direction are to die for.
If you’re looking for some weekly dose of horror and suspense, Outcastwon’t disappoint you. There’s plenty for the gorehounds to feast their eyes on. Good horror is almost impossible to find these days, but Outcast is among the very few serials that’ll compel you to think about what you just witnessed on screen.
I’ll be brutally honest here. I’ve never been a huge fan of the “Slasher” genre, as it often involves dumb decisions taken by victims, resulting in their horrible deaths. We’ve seen it one too many times now. Created by Aaron Martin, Slasher, however, won't disappoint you.
The story follows Sarah Bennett, who comes back to Waterbury, a small town where her parents were murdered by a serial killer almost 30 years ago. It doesn’t take her long to realize that things haven’t changed much since she left the community. She finds herself in the middle of a series of systematic murders revolving around the theme of the seven deadly sins.
As the hidden secrets begin to resurface one by one, she starts realizing that the killer could very well be one of her own.
Give it a chance, stick to it, and you'll find out that it's much more than a guilty pleasure show.
Did I miss out on any other serials like Stranger Things? Let me know in the comments section. I’ll be more than happy to add it to this ever-growing list.
Monique Legault on February 17, 2018:
German. Been compared to Stranger Things. Add Time travel