Five things about The Alienist – out today on Netflix


Starting today (Thursday 19th April), The Alienist – originally appearing on TNT in the US – makes its debut on Netflix. It’s a Victorian-era, 10-episode procedural series with a bit of difference – it not only has a strong serial killer/procedural element but it also looks at the nascent and developing world of criminal profiling and psychology.

• The Alienist is an adaptation of Caleb Carr’s novel of the same name from 1994.

• Daniel Brühl, Luke Evans, and Dakota Fanning as an ad hoc team assembled in mid-1890s New York City to investigate a serial killer who is murdering street children.

• The show’s opening line is: In the 19th century, persons suffering from mental illness were thought to be alienated from their own true natures. Experts who studied them were therefore known as alienists.

• The period drama features real historical figures including Theodore Roosevelt, financier JP Morgan, serial killer Jesse Pomeroy and journalist Lincoln Steffens, among many others.

• Daniel Brühl says about the show: “On the one hand, obviously a psychological thriller, a dark crime story, but it’s also a book that deals with New York at the time, so you’ll learn a lot about things that happened in New York historically. Then it also deals with the beginnings of many sciences, like psychology and forensics.”


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