The Alienist could have been a groundbreaking crime series, but proves a complete, utter cliche

Featuring a stellar international cast, The Alienist was written and produced by Cary Fukunaga, Hossein Amini, Eric Roth and author Caleb Carr, whose 1994 novel provides the basis for the series. Granted an eye-watering $5 million budget for each episode, the show takes its time recreating late nineteenth century New York on location in Budapest – but its careful attention to detail hides a rotten plot.

Following the likes of Mindhunter, Hannibal and Broadchurch, The Alienist offers a retelling of how early criminal psychology attempted to prod and poke the minds of serial killers. Surely, given the success other police procedurals have had with the same material, this series should be an easy sell to viewers?

And yet it falls flat. Terribly flat.

The first episode serves – as it should – as an introduction to both the characters and the concept of the series, but disappointingly becomes a plot-by-numbers. As the

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