6 Shows Like 'Unforgotten' To Fill The Mystery Hole In Your Life


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Cassie Stuart may be gone from Unforgotten, but the show isn't over. Season 5 will eventually return with a new configuration of the cast. But the break between Unforgotten seasons runs around 18 months even in non-pandemic delayed times, and it's not clear how long fans will have to wait until the cold case unit that DCI Stuart originally put together will return.

For grieving fans who need a balm of other U.K. detective serials to fill the hole Nicola Walker's departure has left in their hearts, luckily, there are several options to binge in the meantime. Here are a few streaming suggestions fans can settle in to watch.

1. Lewis & Endeavour

Two of ITV's other major mystery shows, these Oxford-set Inspector Morse spinoffs, are both series in the same vein as Unforgotten, though with cases of the week rather than a single focused mystery over one season. The former stars Kevin Whately as DI Robert Lewis and Laurence Fox as his assistant DS James Hathaway in a modern-day crime fight, while the latter stars Shaun Evans as DS Endeavour Morse and Roger Allam as DI Fred Thursday in a 1960s-era look at Morse's early years.

Both shows call back to the popular Morse series, with Lewis' lead struggling to remember his old mentor's advice and Endeavour hinting at the Morse stories to come. But viewers who are just getting into the franchise can also watch and enjoy both series independently. Both Lewis and Endeavour are streaming on PBS Passport.

2. Line Of Duty

Jed Mercurio's Line of Duty is one of the BBC's most-watched police procedural programs. The series follows Steve Arnott (Martin Compston), a counter-terrorism officer transferred to the police internal investigations office of AC-12 (Anti-Corruption Unit-12). Arnott winds up partnered with DC Kate Fleming (Vicky McClure), an undercover specialist who embeds in a different office each season as the cases unfold, led by Superintendent Ted Hastings (Adrian Dunbar).

Each fast-paced thriller season features a different police unit that comes under investigation. High-profile guest stars include Keeley Hawes (The Durrels in Corfu), Thandiwe Newton (Westworld), and most recently, Kelly Macdonald (Boardwalk Empire). Seasons 1-5 are streaming on Acorn TV. Season 6 is exclusive to BritBox, which will be Line of Duty's home from now on.

3. Grantchester

Grantchester is currently the most popular entry in the "odd couple crime solvers in a small English town" model. Tom Brittney stars as young vicar Rev Will Davenport and Robson Green as the grizzled DI Geordie Keating, who somehow find that solving mysteries of the world and the soul takes two of them together. Earlier seasons featured James Norton as the former vicar, Sidney Chambers. 

With Season 6 debuting later this fall and Season 7 already filming for 2022, this is the perfect time to get acquainted with the world of Grantchester, and its murder addled residents, not to mention the Keating family, the Davenports, and the vicarage where Will has found his real family. All seasons are streaming on PBS Passport.

4. Happy Valley

Sarah Lancashire stars as PS Catherine Cawood in Happy Valley, a series that may look like a police procedural but is really a show about a mother's grief. Catherine and Clare (Siobhan Finneran) are two sisters living together and raising Catherine's grandson Ryan, who was left orphaned after the suicide of Cat's teenage daughter Becky. 

The two-season series focuses on Becky's death, first with Cawood obsessed with the man who raped her daughter, leading to her suicide, the recently-out-of-prison Tommy Lee Royce. Season 2 turns it around with Cawood accused of murder after the suspicious death of Royce's mother. Both seasons are streaming on Netflix.

5. Miss Scarlet & The Duke

 The most recent mystery added to the Masterpiece lineup, Miss Scarlet & The Duke, is the fictionalized story of London's first female detective, set in the era of Sherlock Holmes. Kate Phillips stars as Eliza Scarlet, a middle-class city girl rebelling against all social mores and standards by insisting on running her own detective business instead of settling down to marriage. Stuart Martin co-stars as the "Duke," her Detective Inspector/possible love interest, William Wellington

Masterpiece recently picked up the series for a second season, expected to arrive in 2022-2023. The show's first season, which focuses on the death of Eliza's father, Henry (Kevin Doyle), and her struggle to establish herself, is streaming on PBS Passport.

6. Mare of Easttown

Kate Winslet stars in the Emmy nominated HBO series Mare of Easttown as the most recent female detective fiction on TV. Though the series is set in America (small-town Pennsylvania with Wawa hoagies to match), it stars the British-born Winslet as the titular Mare and Australian-born Guy Pearce as the new author in town who catches her eye. 

In Season 1, Mare investigates the murder of a recent teen mother, Erin, while also probing two other teenage girls' disappearances which may or may not be connected. The show only has one season right now (though Winslet is openly angling for a renewal). All episodes are streaming on HBO Max.

And, of course, Unforgotten Seasons 1-4 are streaming on PBS Passport as well.


Ani Bundel has been blogging professionally since 2010. A DC native, Hufflepuff, and Keyboard Khaleesi, she spends all her non-writing time taking pictures of her cats. Regular bylines also found on MSNBC, CNN, Primetimer, and others. A Woman's Place Is In Your Face. Cat Approved. Find her on Twitter and other social media of your choice: @anibundel

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