The 10 Best Thriller Series on Netflix

Best Thriller Series on Netflix: What do thriller series have ahead of their cinematic counterparts? They give the tension and the thrill a lot more: over many episodes, even seasons, thriller series create a constant alternation between tension and relief, a rollercoaster of emotions, which of course has one main goal: not to switch off!

Best Thriller Series on Netflix

And that is exactly what is even more difficult with thriller series than with other series, which is why this genre is particularly suitable for bingeing: The credo “Just one more episode!” has as much substance here as a New Year’s resolution. You don’t want to miss a second here, you ask yourself all the time: Who did it? What is going on here?

10. Ozark (since 2017):

Financial advisor Marty Byrde (Jason Bateman) moves from Chicago to the Ozarks, Missouri with his wife Wendy (Laura Linney) and their two children. To protect his family, Marty agrees to a dangerous and momentous deal: within five years he has to launder $500 million for a huge Mexican drug cartel. What he does not know: In Ozark, money laundering and the drug deal seem to be the latest trend.

Who would have thought: “Arrested Development” and “Kill the Boss” star Jason Bateman can also be serious and dramatic: The life of the Byrde family is hopeless and characterized by constant dangers. The pace of the narration is high, the actors convincing, the characters multi-layered and, thank God, halfway away from cliche drawings.

An average family man who suddenly finds himself in the midst of unscrupulous drug barons: Of course, this is reminiscent of “Breaking Bad” and should appeal to fans of the cult series as well, even if “Ozark” does not come close to the high level of its role model. So far there are three seasons, one more has already been secured.

9. You (since 2018):

The good-looking and charming bookseller Joe (Penn Badgley) firmly believes in one, great love, in soul mates. If the loved one doesn’t know anything about this relationship, that’s no problem for Joe – because what doesn’t fit is made to fit: the dream woman becomes an object of desire for him, for which he really pulls out all the obsessive stops – and also not from stalking or shrinking from even worse methods to prove how much love there is in him.

“You will love me” was one of Netflix’s biggest surprise hits in recent years and has gained a large fan base since its premiere in 2018. The dark psychological thriller gives abysmal insights into the mindset of a psychopath who – at least most of the time – is fully convinced of the correctness of what he is doing. How much Joe streamlines even the worst of deeds is terrifying but also fascinating.

At the same time, “You ” is a satirical-cynical love letter to all the ideals and notions of romantic relationships that society has instilled into us. In addition, Badgley plays the psycho-stalker terrifyingly believable. A third season is fixed!

8. Dark (2017-2020):

At the beginning of the very first Netflix series, the focus is on the disappearance of two children without a trace. Four families go on a desperate search for answers and the solution of a riddle that spans three generations and goes far beyond the concept of time and space.

Over the course of three episodes, banned viewers will experience a complex dramaturgy with surprising twists and turns, philosophical approaches and a slowly building tension. “Dark” is an exceptionally dark mystery thriller that was even awarded the Grimme Prize in the fiction category in 2018. Unfortunately dropped off much too early.

7. The Sinner (since 2017):

In this thriller anthology series, Detective Harry Ambrose (Bill Pullman) deals with a different crime per season, the roots of which can be found buried somewhere in the psyche of the perpetrator. Even if seasons two and three (with Matt Bomer) offer exciting entertainment and get under your skin, the premiere season with Jessica Biel as the inconspicuous young mother who one day murders a woman for no apparent reason still stands out.

Together with Ambrose (who also has to wrestle with his own inner demons), the confused, but tied-up viewer tries to uncover the respective secret and delves deep into the human psyche, which is in the best moments of the series resembles a perfidious horror trip. A bit like the very little sister of “Sieben” .

6. Bodyguard (2018):

The most successful BBC series of the past few years is set in the switching center of power and tells the story of David Budd (Richard Madden), a dashing, heroic, but unpredictable war veteran who now works in the personal protection of the London Metropolitan Police Service. As the bodyguard of the ambitious and influential Home Secretary Julia Montague (Keeley Hawes), he is torn between his duty and his beliefs. As their protector, could he become their greatest threat?

Non-stop excitement thanks to breathtaking twists and turns and an addicting mix of psycho and political thriller including action pieces! Richard Madden (“Game of Thrones”) as a bodyguard, who is increasingly pushing his limits and constantly oscillating between sensitive empathy and irrational anger, is the heart of this multi-award-winning mini-series. A second season has already been confirmed.

5. The Fall – Death in Belfast (2013-2016):

Gillian Anderson (“The X Files”) in another feminist role, which, thanks to restrained, nuanced play, gives her plenty of room to develop and which subtly breaks conventions in a male-dominated world: As Detective Superintendent Stella Gibson, she hunts a psychopathic murderer in Belfast. We viewers know who that is from the first (scary!) Minute: namely Paul Spector alias Jamie Dornan (“Fifty Shades of Gray” ), who in his private life is not only a loving husband and father, but also a family therapist . So a devil in a nice human form.

What follows is a deliberately slow, but precisely for that reason so grueling psychological duel at eye level and a cat-and-mouse game on several levels: law against crime, woman against man, free sexuality against suppressed desires, rationality against emotions, Control versus loss of control. Anderson and Dornan play each other against the wall, tearing it down and tightening the tension screw quite well, often with minimal means.

What is special about “The Fall – Death in Belfast” is that the investigation is given as much time as the serial killer’s way of acting and thinking. A textbook chapter on opposing psychograms that, thanks to the slow narrative style, gives the viewer enough time to explore their own darker sides and ask themselves what is really going on in the nice neighbor – when you are that endures.

4. Safe (2018):

This British-French miniseries starring Michael.C.Hall (“Dexter”) deserves so much more attention than it is given: The wife of surgeon Tom (Hall) died a year ago. Now he lives alone with his two daughters in a beautiful, guarded residential complex. Close friends are always there and a new relationship is emerging. But when one day his eldest daughter disappears under mysterious circumstances, he realizes that he was mistaken about the people around him. Dark secrets about his hometown and the people closest to him surface.

Life partners, children, lovers, parents and friends – do we really know the people we love? The thriller drama series revolves around this probing question, in which everyone is suspect and which is precisely why it is so incredibly gripping. Cliffhangers are of course good form for such formats and “Safe” definitely doesn’t save money in the wrong place. The premise that everyone in the idyllic village has a dark secret is not new, but still works – at least with “Safe”, a (in the best sense) moody Whodunnit mix of “Broadchurch” and “Desperate Housewives “.

3. Mindhunter (2017-2019):

FBI agents Holden Ford (Jonathan Groff, “Glee”) and Bill Tench (Holt McCallany, “CSI: Miami”) delve deep into the psyche of people who have done the unimaginable. With the help of the psychologist Wendy Carr (Anna Torv, “Fringe”), they use their unique behavioral analyzes to hunt down notorious serial killers.

The series “Mindhunter”, inspired by real events and staged by David Fincher, is regarded as a hussar piece of serial storytelling and one of the best works that Netflix has ever produced: The beginnings of profiling are historically detailed, gloomy, understandable and of course extremely exciting . The heart of the series are the interrogations of well-known serial killers like Charles Manson or Edmund Kemper.

Every episode is movie-like – and similar to “The Fall”, the same applies here: The psychological horror is created by slowness. In addition, unlike other thematically similar formats, “Mindhunter” achieves a balanced mix of private and professional life of the investigators. The historical attention to detail is reminiscent of “Mad Men”.

2. Marcella (since 2016):

The crime thriller series by the internationally renowned screenwriter and novelist Hans Rosenfeldt (“The Bridge – Transit to Death”) takes place in today’s London and is about the London Commissioner Marcella (Anna Friel), who is going through a deep life crisis and about rejection and driven by their own intuition. After a twelve-year career break, she is immediately confronted with an unsolved old case: Is the same killer from back then at work? Last but not least, Marcella has to struggle with her psychological instability during the investigation.

Investigators who have to deal with some private problems themselves are known in abundance. But seldom has a commissioner danced as dangerously close to a mental breakdown as Marcella. This is exactly what makes the series so appealing: Will Marcella be able to cope with returning to work given her fragility and mental health? And: Will her work provide her with the answers she is looking for, or will she just lead her into dangerous terrain that she should avoid at all costs? Friel is so convincing that she was awarded an Emmy in 2017.

1. Breaking Bad (2008-2013):

The moral decline of chemistry teacher Walter White (Bryan Cranston) is a masterpiece in serial guise. No matter what turn the series takes: The situation is getting more and more tragic, more and more confused, more and more exciting – and the story is getting better and better! “Breaking Bad” is a relentless character study as well as an unrelenting and action-packed drug thriller. While White feels more and more comfortable in his reprehensible actions, we viewers are regularly catapulted out of our comfort zone with the greatest emotional force.

An ice-cold, uncomfortable atmosphere of fear is inscribed in “Breaking Bad”, spiced with never-ending brutality and psychological horror. We’ll never forget when White clarified, “I’m in no danger, Skyler. I am the danger. Someone opens the front door and gets shot and you think that’s me ?! No, I’m the one knocking on you. ” Wow!

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