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The best serial killer shows to watch after Dexter: New Blood

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The fall

To watch: Netflix (UK); Prime Video (US)

Move over to the Bay Harbor Butcher, it’s the Belfast Strangler’s turn. Like Dexter, The fall explores how a serial killer can lead a double life in mainstream society, though unlike Dexter, murderer Paul Spector doesn’t do justice to a vigilante, merely gratifying his own evil urges. The tourist‘s Jamie Dornan plays Spector, a married father of two and bereavement counselor with a side line in stalking and strangling women. The real star of this Northern Irish thriller is Gillian Anderson as Superintendent Stella Gibson, the detective brought in from England to hunt the killer. His cat-and-mouse dynamic with Spector is the real driving force behind this three-season drama from writer Allan Cubitt. – ML

The best serial killer series to watch after Dexter: New Blood - Manhunt

Manhunt

To watch: Britbox, ITV Hub (UK); Acorn (US)

A more restrained choice here for those interested in Dexterprocedural side. Martin Clunes impresses as the lead in this true crime dramatization of the hunt for British serial killer Levi Bellfield. Clunes played DCI Colin Sutton, the police detective who led the investigation into Bellfield following the 2004 murder of French student Amélie Delagrange. The dogged pursuit of Sutton and his team led to Bellfield’s arrest and eventual conviction for the attempted murder and murder of three women and a girl. Like much of the above, it’s not a sensational take on serial killers, but a well-rounded dramatization of a real crime investigation. Based on Sutton’s memoir, this is not the story of Bellfield, but of the people who found him and got him off the streets. A second series, subtitled “The Night Stalker”, was released in 2021, this time focusing on the pursuit of serial rapist Delroy Grant. – ML

The best serial killer series to watch after Dexter: New Blood - The Serpent

The snake

To watch: BBC iPlayer (UK), Netflix (UK and US)

If sociopathy is your TV itch, then this drama following the hunt for 1970s serial killer Charles Sobhraj just might scratch it. Based on a true story with real victims, The snake is obviously not as sinister or merely entertaining as Dexter – he shouldn’t be – but the portrait he paints of a narcissist without a conscience is ultimately fascinating. This is a slow-burning series that rewards patience as it jumps from country to country and year to year, following Sobhraj as he robs and murders backpackers along South Asia’s so-called ‘Hippie Trail’. Elegantly crafted with careful period detail, the story follows a Dutch diplomat’s lengthy investigation into Sobhraj’s crimes. a prophet‘s Tahar Rahim plays Sobhraj, with Doctor WhoJenna Coleman plays her conflicted partner. Written by Ripper Streetby Richard Warlow, the drama examines how a serial killer can go unnoticed for so long. – LM