The Alienist premiered a few weeks ago as cable’s #1 new series. The show follows Dr. Lazlow Keitzler in finding a serial killer. An alienist is basically the original psychiatrist. The series is based on Caleb Carr’s 1994 novel. Here’s three reasons to tune in for the rest of the season!
A Good Mystery
If you like Sherlock Holmes mysteries, this one is right up your alley. A back alley, that is. The dark, back alleys of America New York in the 1800’s. This plot is more psychological than logical, and more like Jack the Ripper. Instead of female prostitutes, the killer is after underage, trans* male prostitutes. It’s a little disturbing that only our kind detective is concerned about the boys being killed. The local police department isn’t even concerned about shutting down the child prostitution rings in the city.
Daniel Bruhl (who was hand picked by Jessica Chastain to co-star with her in The Zookeeper’s Wife.) is fabulous as the warm, open-minded alienist. He isn’t phased by blood and guts or by people’s imperfections and quirks. He is often correcting the misconceptions of the mentally ill or people who simply lean different directions. He’s an all around great guy, who runs a home for children and is the only character that seems concerned for the welfare of the young.
The last role I saw Dakota Fanning in was the Western, Brimstone. In that part, she didn’t speak. In this series, her character has to choose her words carefully as a woman trying to maintain her independence in a corrupt man’s world. Her character adds a twist to a genre and era dominated by men. Despite the corsets and pinned hair, her character does an amazing job of handling the testosterone-laden office and finds her way around those she can trust. There may yet be a way for her to live in both worlds, with a certain liberal alienist.
This nine part series is a slow burn, so give it more than three episodes to warm up!
TNT’s Alienist airs Monday’s at 9pm TNT. You can catch up on the first two episodes before this week’s episode and get an inside look into the filming HERE.