Queue: Dark Suspense
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The world can be a dark place, and when art imitates life, you get eerie television shows. Not only are they somber in theme, but the color schemes are just as shady. While these selections may not be as easy to access as those in the Netflix catalog, they deserve the extra effort. Based around looming mystery and questionable morals, these selections will all have you biting your nails in suspense.
Let’s be honest: anything starring Oscar-nominated actor Tom Hardy is good enough to warrant, at the absolute least, three out of five stars. But mix his incredible acting presence and dashing looks with a captivating storyline, and a fourth star is itching to roll in.
Hardy plays James Keziah Delaney, a brooding man who must return home to London from Africa after news of his father’s death to claim his rightful inheritance. Assumed dead by most, Delaney’s arrival sparks immense controversy — he comes back a new man, far less naive, as he tries to recover the problematic shipping company destiny left to him. As Delaney attempts to maneuver his way around a whirlwind of politics, love and his family name, he soon realizes that few can be trusted if he wants to stay alive.
“Taboo” is a fairly new series, its first season premiering in January on FX. Its generally positive reception allowed it to be renewed for another season.
Bates Motel: 5/5
A modern prequel to the Alfred Hitchcock classic “Psycho,” “Bates Motel” tells the story of a teenage Norman Bates and how he spiraled into a legendary, household name in horror.
Following the death of his abusive father, Norman Bates (Freddie Highmore) and his mother, Norma Bates (Vera Farmiga), move to Oregon to start a new, simpler life in which they run a small motel. Simple may be what they hoped for, but it’s not what they receive. Upon realizing the quaint town is actually funded by drug money, Norman’s mental illness going dangerously untreated and dramatic familial realizations, the Bates inextricably descend into psychological turmoil.
Currently on its fifth and final season, “Bates Motel” is the longest-running original scripted drama series in the history of A&E, and understandably so. It is an emotionally-charged thriller that lends insight into the backstory of one of the most infamous horror characters of all time.
Based on the Archie Comics universe, the story of “Riverdale” centers around an ensemble cast of characters thrown into solving the murder mystery of a classmate. Of course, love triangles, high school drama and cliche comedic relief are thrown into the mix, as per the teen drama genre.
More than anything, “Riverdale” has potential. It is a new show, its premiere back in January, and The CW has already renewed it for a second season. But that potential may have already been squandered. The comic-turned-television-show has a formulaic yet entertaining feel that makes it bearable to watch but never the first choice. It’s a show you can watch when there is nothing else on, but you have the insatiable thirst to veg out and not think critically for a while — which is not characteristic of truly exceptional television.
Nonetheless, the show has garnered positive reception from its viewers, which on average is about 1.16 million people per episode.