TV shows like Unforgotten are full of sad and suspenseful Crime, Drama, and Mystery movies and TV episodes about / with murder, cold cases, crime thrillers, murder investigations, missing persons, investigation, and police investigation themes.
How frequently does a show have characters who hit the mark and a plot that fully embraces their personalities and emotions? Seldom ever! One such program, “Unforgotten,” stands out for radically reinventing a prevalent genre, in this case, the criminal drama.
This series contains lots of realism not received by most readers, as well as some humor and a little sadness. You are drawn to this show by the characters’ inherent humanity, which keeps you invested in it to the very end.
The following list of TV shows like Unforgotten was put together to evoke the same sense of intrigue that you experienced when watching your preferred Unforgotten episodes.
1. Broadchurch (2013-2017)
- Creator: Chris Chibnall
- Star Cast: David Tennant, Olivia Colman, Jodie Whittaker, Andrew Buchan, Carolyn Pickles, Arthur Darvill, and Charlotte Beaumont
- IMDb Rating: 8.4/10
When one of their own goes missing, a tiny beach village in England is shocked. Within days, they discovered the body of the slain youngster, and the hunt for his perpetrator started.
Everyone starts to turn against one another due to the motives of numerous residents and family members.
The two dubious detectives must keep the lid on everything while figuring out “who did it,” as long-standing connections red are not there.
The conclusion will keep you up that night and make your brain spin. How is it possible for the town to move on from this? Watch Broadchurch season 1 to find out. This series is one of the best TV shows like Unforgotten.
2. Luther (2010-2019)
- Creator: Neil Cross
- Star Cast: Idris Elba, Michael Smiley, Dermot Crowley, Warren Brown, Ruth Wilson, Paul McCann, and Nikki Amuka-Bird
- IMDb Rating: 8.4/10
In series one and two, John Luther served as a Detective Chief Inspector (DCI) for the Serious Crime Unit and the brand-new “Serious and Serial” unit. Luther is a committed police officer who occasionally acts violently and with mania.
Luther has, however, paid a high price for his commitment, as he has never been able to keep himself from becoming engulfed by the gloom of the crimes he deals with.
The job is always put first for Luther. He and those near him experience blessings and curses due to his passion. In the show’s first episode, he looks into the brilliant psychopath and murderer Alice Morgan.
Even though he ultimately lacks the evidence necessary to place her under arrest, she becomes both his adversary and unlikely ally as the series continues.
He gradually gives in as she continues her obsession with him, and he learns more from her about some of the crafty criminals he hunts.
After assisting Luther in taking revenge for the death of his estranged wife, Zoe, Alice escapes the nation with the help of Luther.
In Alice’s absence, Luther’s life is once more dominated by his police work, culminating in the third series murder of his partner and protege Justin Ripley.
After Ripley passes away, Alice returns and persuades Luther to accompany her out of London. This series is one of the TV shows like Unforgotten.
3. Line of Duty (2012-2021)
- Creator: Jed Mercurio
- Star Cast: Martin Compton, Adrian Dunbar, Vicky McClure, Gregory Piper, Maya Sondhi, Aiysha Hart, and Keeley Hawes
- IMDb Rating: 8.7/10
Line of Duty centers on Detective Seargent Steven “Steve” Arnott, a former firearms officer who oversaw an operation to apprehend an Islamic terrorist planning to detonate a bomb.
Unfortunately, the strike team inadvertently entered the wrong apartment and killed an unarmed civilian.
Arnott received a transfer to AC-12, a unit tasked with revealing police corruption, after refusing to hide negligence in the planning and execution of the raid during the subsequent investigation.
Unable to continue working in his unit, Arnott was transferred to another place.
Detective Constable Kathrine “Kate” Fleming, a highly regarded undercover detective with a good sense of investigative instinct, is Arnott’s partner.
Superintendent Edward “Ted” Hastings, one of several Senior Investigating Officers tasked with exposing police department misconduct, oversees their job.
With each series focusing on a different corrupt police officer, AC-12 investigates seemingly unrelated cases involving corrupt police officers throughout the series.
AC-12 quickly understands the pervasiveness of corruption and the police’s deep connections to an organized crime group with ties to drug trafficking, prostitution, child exploitation, and people trafficking.
4. Happy Valley (2014-2022)
- Creator: Sally Wainwright
- Star Cast: Sarah Lancashire, Siobhan Finneran, Charlie Murphy, James Norton, Rhys Connah, Rick Warden, and Shane Zaza
- IMDb Rating: 8.5/10
A determined police sergeant in West Yorkshire named Catherine Cawood is still processing the death of her teenage daughter, Becky, eight years ago.
Currently separated from her husband, Cawood lives with her sister Clare, a former alcoholic and heroin addict who assists her in raising Becky’s young rape victim Ryan. Ryan is not welcome by Catherine’s ex-husband or their adult son, Daniel.
Catherine learns that Tommy Lee Royce the perpetrator of the terrible rape that resulted in Becky becoming pregnant and ultimately leading to her suicide soon after Ryan was born. Also has been released from jail after completing an eight-year sentence for narcotics offenses.
Unaware that Royce is complicit in the kidnapping of Ann Gallagher, a scheme hatched by Kevin Weatherill and carried out by Ashley Cowgill. Catherine quickly develops an obsession with finding Royce.
The situation swiftly turns gloomy as the kidnappers struggle to conceal the kidnapping, even though Catherine has them covered. This series is one of the best TV shows like Unforgotten.
Eighteen months after the first series’ events, Catherine Cawood has returned to the workforce. She has been awarded the Queen’s Police Medal (QPM) for bravery in saving Ann Gallagher from Tommy Lee Royce, who is currently serving a life term in jail.
But when Royce’s mother died, Catherine was accused of several homicides. Catherine is assigned to investigate a human trafficking organization connected to serial deaths while attempting to establish her innocence.
Senior HMIT officers Detective Superintendent Andy Shepard and Detective Inspector Jodie Shackleton start to doubt Victoria Fleming, the alleged fourth victim of the serial killer.
5. River (2015)
- Creator: Abi Morgan,
- Star Cast: Stellan Skarsgård, Nicola Walker, Adeel Akhtar, Lesley Manville, Owen Teale, Georgina Rich, and Eddie Margan
- IMDb Rating: 8/10
A Swedish-born police detective in London who is both psychologically strong and tough finds it challenging to deal with having seen his partner’s murder. While looking into her murder, he must come to terms with the loss.
He is assisted (and occasionally hampered) by what he refers to as “manifests,” which are the ghosts of both victims and gang members, including the shadow of his partner. When you talk about exciting TV shows like Unforgotten, this is one of them.
6. Scott and Bailey (2011-2016)
- Creators: Sally Wainwright, Diane Taylor
- Star Cast: Suranne Jones, Lesley Sharp, Tony Mooney, David Prosho, Amelia Bullmore, Delroy Brown, and Ben Batt
- IMDb Rating: 8/10
With the Manchester Police Major Incident Team, detectives Janet Scott and Rachel Bailey look into homicides. This series is one of the best TV shows like Unforgotten.
7. Shetland (2013 -present)
- Creator: Ann Cleeves
- Star Cast: Alison O’Donnell, Steven Robertson, Douglas Henshall, Lewis Hoden, Mark Bonar, Erin Armstrong, and Julie Graham
- IMDb Rating: 8.2/10
Shetland, a television series based on the novels of bestselling crime author Ann Cleeves, follows DI Jimmy Perez and his squad as they look into crimes within the small island town.
The crew must rely on a particularly inventive type of policing in this remote and occasionally hostile setting.
Shetland is based on bestselling works like Red Bones, Raven Black, Dead Water, and Blue Lightning and is against a hauntingly gorgeous environment. This series is one of the best TV shows like Unforgotten.
8. Grantchester (2014-present)
- Creator: Daisy Coulam
- Star Cast: Robson Green, Tessa Peake-Jones, Al Weaver, Kacey Ainsworth, Skye Lucia Degruttola, Tom Brittney, and Nick Brimble
- IMDb Rating: 7.9/10
Sidney Chambers is the rector of Grantchester, a village near Cambridge, in the year 1953. Until a murder comes his way, Sidney’s life is peaceful.
When forced into the dangerous world of deceit, murder, and lies, Sidney immediately discovers that his understanding of the human condition. And likewise, the trust he naturally inspires in others makes him an excellent “detective.”
The amiable but weary Detective Inspector Geordie Keating, the innocent but well-intentioned curate Leonard Finch, and his stern and consistently disapproving housekeeper Mrs. Maguire accompany Sidney on his voyage through this terrible realm.
But Sidney is preoccupied with more than crime. He’s in love with the intelligent, gorgeous Amanda, but might high society Amanda ever wed a meek rural vicar?
When the world of murder demands that you see the worst in people, do you still see the best in them?
9. Sherlock (2010-2017)
- Creators: Mark Gatiss, Steven Moffat
- Star Cast: Benedict Cumberbatch, Martin Freeman, Una Stubbs, Rupert Graves, Louise BrealeyLouise Brealey, Mark Gatiss, and Andrew Scott
- IMDb Rating: 9.1/10
Sherlock shows Sherlock Holmes, a “consulting detective,” resolving different crimes in contemporary London. Dr. John Watson, Holmes’ flatmate and friend, who had just served with the Royal Army Medical Corps in Afghanistan, assists Holmes.
Although Detective Inspector Greg Lestrade of the Metropolitan Police Service and others are first wary of Holmes, in time, his great intelligence and daring observation abilities win them over.
With the media covering his cases and unconventional personal life, Holmes reluctantly becomes a celebrity partly because of Watson’s blog that chronicles their escapades. The British government and ordinary people both request his assistance.
Holmes’s fight with his arch-rival Jim Moriarty is a recurring motif, even though the series presents a range of crimes and offenders. Holmes occasionally receives help from St. Bart’s Hospital pathologist Molly Hooper.
Una Stubbs plays Mrs. Hudson, Holmes and Watson’s landlady, and Mark Gatiss, the series’s co-creator, plays Mycroft, Holmes’ older brother, in further regular appearances. This series is one of the best TV shows like Unforgotten.
10. Miss Scarlet and the Duke (2020-present)
- Creator: Rachael New
- Star Cast: Kate Phillips, Rachael New, Cathy Belton, Stuart Martin, Ansu Kabia, Evan McCabe, and Danny Midwinter
- IMDb Rating: 7.6/10
When Eliza Scarlet’s father, Henry Scarlet, passes away suddenly in Victorian London (1882), she is left nearly bankrupt.
Although it might seem that the only route to a woman’s financial security is through marriage, Eliza decides to run her father’s detective service on her own, using his name.
She frequently turns to her old acquaintance William Wellington (Duke), a stern, womanizing Detective Inspector of Scotland Yard.
However, to help her find cases as she tries to establish her name in the male-dominated crime-solving field, but this rarely fails.
Eliza frequently turns to take case files out of William’s office instead. Eliza Scarlet is tenacious, wise, and cunning. This series is one of the best exciting TV shows like Unforgotten.
Elizabeth Bennett from Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice and Scarlett O’Hara from Gone with the Wind inspired Rachael New, the series creator and writer, while creating the character.
When raised in a middle-class family, Eliza makes the most of her persona as a poised Victorian lady working on crimes. To many people’s surprise, Eliza is tough and aggressive underneath, which works to her advantage.
Eliza and William collaborate on several instances together even though she isn’t acknowledged, which leads to arguments between them.
William is displeased by Eliza’s use of Moses, a convicted felon. Eliza’s tenacity amuses Moses, and they relate as social outcasts.
11. Jack Taylor (2010-16)
- Creator: Stuart Orme
- Star Cast: Lain Glen, Nora-Jane Noone, Killian Scott, Paraic Breathnach, Síghle Ní Chonail, Áine Ní Mhuirí, and Liam Kearney
- IMDb Rating: 7.4/10
Based on Ken Bruen’s crime novels set in Galway, the series stars Iain Glen as the main character and Jack Taylor as an old-fashioned detective and a maverick who frequently consumes far more alcohol than is healthy.
Jack starts working as a private investigator after being fired from the Garda (the Irish police force) for attacking a politician he must have stopped for a traffic infraction. He reluctantly accepts cases the police won’t look into.
According to the narrator for the series, there are no private investigators in Ireland since “it’s too near to being an informant – a questionable concept.” Jack quickly realizes that his background is an asset in his new position.
His contacts, which include some of his former Garda colleagues, like Officer Kate Noonan, assist him in his investigations.
12. Hinterland (2013-2016)
- Creators: Ed Talfan Ed Thomas
- Star Cast: Richard Harrington, Mali Harries, Alex Harries, Hannah Daniel, Aneirin Hughes, Geraint Morgan, and Geraint Lewis
- IMDb Rating: 7.6/10
DCI Tom Mathias, a bright but damaged man on the run from his London past, isolates himself on the outskirts of a village where the secrets are just as dark and terrible as his own.
As they work together to crack cases involving the ultimate anti-social crime, murder, they forge an exciting bond with the complex and intellectual DI Mared Rhys. This series is one of the best TV shows like Unforgotten.
13. Paranoid (2016)
- Creator: Bill Gallagher
- Star Cast: Robert Glenister, Indira Varma, Dino Fetscher, Christiane Paul, Neil Stuke, Lesley Sharp, and Michael Maloney
- IMDb Rating: 6.6/10
In the made-up town of Woodmere, a famous local doctor of the people named Angela Benton died in the playground.
The group investigated the case of detectives from the Woodmere Police, including DS Nina Suresh, DC-DC Bobby Day Alec Wayfield, and DI Michael Niles, who serves as their commanding officer.
They first believe that the murderer is Jacob Appley, a local mental patient treated by Dr. Chris Crowley. Henry, Appley’s brother, is confident that Jacob was not the murderer and had been set up by an unidentified party or parties when Appley was later discovered dead.
The team is receiving information and hints from an unnamed guy known as the “Ghost Detective” about possible pieces of evidence that could help them find Angela’s killer.
The crew learns as the inquiry progresses that Ruben Lukana, Angela’s ex-boyfriend, may have been involved in her death.
To dig into Lukana, the team enlists the assistance of Düsseldorf investigator Linda Felber. His body is discovered in his swimming pool, face down, and Felber and her companion Walti Merian launch an inquiry.
The murderer’s suspect is found, but when he escapes and returns to Germany, Niles arranges for Bobby to go there to help with the German inquiry. This series is one of the best TV shows like Unforgotten.
14. No Offense (2015-2018)
- Creator: Paul Abbott
- Star Cast: Joanna Scanlan, Elaine Cassidy, Will Mellor, Paul Ritter, Ste Johnston, Tom Varey, and Saira Choudhry
- IMDb Rating: 8/10
Focuses on a group of police officers on the front lines who are left wondering how they got to be where they are in the undesirable part of Manchester.
Even the most astute novice would become discouraged by the Herculean effort of keeping these streets clean.
But these officers are in this force for a reason. Inspector Vivienne Deering, the station’s witty, hard-charging boss, and her team, led by DCs Dinah Kowalski and Joy Freers.
However, they demonstrate that they have what it takes to solve crimes and expose the crazy, the posh, the pimps, the petty, and the proper nasty bastards for the sewer rats they are. This series is one of the TV shows like Unforgotten.
15. Whitechapel (2009-2013)
- Creators: Ben Court, Caroline Ip
- Star Cast: Rupert Penry-Jones, Phil Davis, Steve Pemberton, Sam Stockman, Claire Rushbrook, Ben Bishop, and Hannah Walters
- IMDb Rating: 7.8/10
A contemporary police unit is engaged in a long-standing conflict in 2008, set against London’s incredibly evocative Whitechapel neighborhood.
A string of violent, tragic, and impossibly violent crimes would imply that someone is committing Jack the Ripper-style killings.
Our three unexpected heroes are Channing, a fast-tracked, media-savvy DI on his first significant murder case.
Miles, a front-line, hard-bitten DS close to retirement; and Buchan, the unconventionally brilliant Jack the Ripper tour guide—who investigate the killings.
16. Safe (2018)
- Creator: Harlan Coben
- Start Cast: Amy James-Kelly, Michael C. Hall, Amanda Abbington, Freddie Thorp, Marc Warren Hannah Arterton, and Louis Greatorex
- IMDb Rating: 7.2/10
Safe emphasizes Briton Pediatrician Tom Delaney (Hall), a widower father of two teenage girls. He finds it difficult to relate to his girls because they are still mourning the death of his wife to cancer one year ago.
As he desperately searches for his daughter Jenny, 16, who has vanished, Tom learns about a network of secrets. This series is one of the TV shows like Unforgotten.
17. The Stranger (2020)
- Creator: Harlan Coben
- Start Cast: Richard Armitage, Shaun Dooley, Siobhan Finneran, Jacob Dudman, Misha Handley, Jennifer Saunders, and Paul Kaye
- IMDb Rating: 7.3/10
The series sits on the same-titled book by Harlan Coben, which follows Adam Price, who appears to be leading the ideal life.
He has two incredible sons and a solid marriage—until a stranger approaches him at a bar and shares a startling fact about Price’s wife, Corinne.
Adam Price meets an enigmatic stranger—a young woman wearing a baseball cap—who shares a secret with him. The revelation causes his wife to go missing. As the narrative continues, the stranger knows more mysteries.
18. Marcella (2016-2021)
- Creators: Hans Rosenfeldt, Nicola Larder
- Start Cast: Anna Friel, Ray Panthaki, Jack Doolan, Jamie Bamber, Nicholas Pinnock, Imogen Faires, and Asher Flowers
- IMDb Rating: 7.4/10
Marcella is a Scandinavian noir set in modern-day London and features a British Metropolitan Police Officer at its center.
The series will guide the audience through a narrative maze till the very end, telling the story in Rosenfeldt’s unflinchingly straightforward Nordic manner and packed with hooks and action.
The psychology of a single female investigator working alone on a case involving multiple potential suspects and victims will also be covered in Marcella. This series is one of the best TV shows like Unforgotten.
Marcella Backland, a detective in her late 30s who left her fast-track position to marry and devote her life to establishing a family, has returned to the Met’s Murder Squad after a 12-year hiatus.
Marcella returns to work while struggling to make sense of what has transpired in her life after the unexpected termination of her marriage to the love of her life Jason. However, is being separated from her daughter while she attends boarding school.
19. The Fall (2013-2016)
- Creator: Allan Cubitt
- Start Cast: Gillian Anderson, John Lynch, Jamie Dornan, Aisling Franciosi, Niamh McGrath, Sarah Beattie, and Bronagh Waugh
- IMDb Rating: 8.1/10
The police tried to evaluate the status of a murder investigation that had been ongoing for more than 28 days.
Metropolitan Police Superintendent Stella Gibson, a senior investigating officer, charged with assessing studies, is assigned to the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI).
Local detectives must collaborate with Stella to track down and apprehend Paul Spector. He is attacking young professionals in Belfast when it becomes clear that a serial murderer is on the loose as time passes.
Stella’s team puts in a lot of effort to put together a case, but they run into problems inside and outside the PSNI.
20. Absentia (2017-2020)
- Creators: Matthew Cirulnick, Gaia Violo
- Start Cast: Stana Katic, Patrick Heusinger, Neil Jackson, Paul Freeman, Christopher Colquhoun, Patrick McAuley, and Cara Theobold
- IMDb Rating: 7.2/10
She vanished. For six years, no one heard from her. Even she doesn’t know what happened to her. An FBI agent following a Boston serial murderer disappears and is later pronounced dead.
However, she is discovered in a cabin in the woods six years after going missing, but she has no memory of what transpired. She returns to a remarried husband whose new wife is caring for her son.
Afterward, she will have to adjust to her new world, and soon she will be connected to a new wave of homicides. This series is one of the best TV shows like Unforgotten.