Netflix’s new drama The Sinner has 94% on Rotten Tomatoes – here’s why you should be watching

The Sinner arrived on Netflix on November 7

Already binge-watched Stranger Things? Fear not: a gripping new drama that arrived without fanfare on Netflix UK last week could fill the Stranger Things-shaped gap in your life. It’s an American drama series called The Sinner, and it premiered on the USA Network back in August – but it’s only just arrived in the UK. Based on the German novel of the same name by Petra Hammesfahr, it’s about a woman who kills a stranger in public without really knowing why – and it’s got people hooked.

Who’s in it?

Jessica Biel has the lead role as the absently murderous Cora Tannetti. Netflix watchers will recently have heard Biel’s voice in the latest season of Bojack Horseman, in which she cameoed as herself to mock her own fame level with a perfume called ‘Biel-est’. This is quite a different role.


Cora’s husband Mason is played by Christopher Abbott, who viewers will probably recognise best from his Girls role as Marnie’s on-and-off boyfriend, Charlie. Then there’s Independence Day  and The Equalizer actor Bill Pullman – he plays Detective Harry Ambrose, the guy trying to figure Tannetti out.

What’s the story?

Cora Tannetti is out at a lakeside bach with her husband and young son. There, while eating a pear and watching a couple having a cheeky snog, she feels an overwhelming urge, getting up and stabbing one of the two strangers. Why did she do it? That’s the weirdly fascinating question The Sinner tries to answer.

Why should I watch?

By the time its finale came along, The Sinner was the most-watched cable show in its time slot. Fans on Twitter are loving it.


As mentioned earlier, reviews have also been consistently brilliant. New York Magazine‘s Vulture calls it “a superbly executed murder mystery.” The Guardian says: “the denouement is just as satisfying and horrible as the conclusion to the first Broadchurch“. And Time calls it “strikingly filmed, gratifyingly smarter than it needs to be and – better still in an era of bloated episode counts – snappily paced.”

What are you waiting for?

READ MORE: The Sinner season 2: everything we know so far