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Netflix’s new British crime series looks almost too scandalous

Published Apr 14th, 2022 3:31PM EDT
Anatomy of a Scandal releases on Netflix on April 15th.
Image: Netflix

It seems like every other show that has come out this year has been about a scandal either real or imagined. The Girl from Plainville, Inventing Anna, WeCrashed, The Dropout – all four of these 2022 shows were dramatizations of true stories. Of course, there’s still plenty of room for scandalous dramas that don’t actually mirror the real world. One such upcoming limited series is Anatomy of a Scandal, launching on Netflix this Friday.

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Anatomy of a Scandal hits Netflix on April 15th

Anatomy of a Scandal is a six-episode courtroom drama based on a book by Sarah Vaughan. The series was developed for Netflix by David E. Kelley (Big Little Lies, Nine Perfect Strangers) and Melissa James Gibson (House of Cards). It stars Sienna Miller, Michelle Dockery, Rupert Friend, Naomi Scott, Josette Simon, and Ben Radcliffe.

If you want to know more about the plot of Anatomy of a Scandal, you can read the synopsis from Netflix below and watch the trailer:

A psychological thriller and gripping courtroom drama, the series infiltrates Britain’s elite through personal and political scandal, where the truth lies between justice and privilege. James and Sophie Whitehouse live in a blissful and rarified world. A Minister in Parliament, a loving family at home, James’ trajectory appears without limits. Until a scandalous secret suddenly comes to light. Barrister Kate Woodcroft has a trajectory of her own, and her prosecution threatens to tear into Westminster, the Whitehouse marriage, and her own personal esteem.

Reviews and more scandalous Netflix dramas

If you’re looking for a quick binge this weekend, this series should certainly do the trick. All six episodes are all around 45 minutes long, so you should easily be able to finish the entire series in an evening. On the other hand, if you’re looking for the next great TV drama, then look elsewhere. In Angie Han’s review for The Hollywood Reporter, she called Anatomy of a Scandal “unsatisfying as either a lurid thriller or a serious drama.”

This seems to be the consensus among the critics. Variety’s Daniel D’Addario says “the show is so addicted to chaos that it squanders its chance to say anything substantive.” Meanwhile, BBC’s Laura Martin found the show to be “unintentionally hilarious.” Needless to say, no one seems to think this is David E. Kelley’s best work.

Of course, not all television needs to be high art. If you’re looking for a quick, trashy thriller to keep you occupied on a rainy Saturday, give Anatomy of a Scandal a try. Some other crime thrillers worth watching on Netflix are Money Heist, Bodyguard, and The Sinner. The Sinner isn’t actually a Netflix original series, but the first season is incredibly compelling. In fact, it might be the best work that Jessica Biel has ever done.

More Netflix coverage: For more Netflix news, check out our coverage of the latest new Netflix movies and series to watch. And for a Netflix alternative, check out these 10 apps for streaming free movies and TV shows.

Jacob Siegal
Jacob Siegal Associate Editor

Jacob Siegal is Associate Editor at BGR, having joined the news team in 2013. He has over a decade of professional writing and editing experience, and helps to lead our technology and entertainment product launch and movie release coverage.