Best Female Detective Shows

Are you a fan of crime dramas and mysteries? Do you love watching strong, independent women solve crimes and crack cases? If so, you’re in luck. We’ve put together a list of the 15 best female detective shows that are sure to satisfy your craving for thrilling investigations and captivating storylines. Whether you’re a seasoned detective show enthusiast or new to the genre, there’s something for everyone on this list. So, grab your detective hat and get ready to delve into the world of crime-solving heroines.

15. The Killing

Best Female Detective Shows: The Killing

If you’re a fan of intense and gritty crime dramas, then The Killing is a must-watch. This critically acclaimed show follows the investigation of the murder of a young girl in Seattle, Washington. The lead detective, Sarah Linden, portrayed by Mireille Enos, is a determined and tenacious detective who stops at nothing to uncover the truth behind the crime. The show is known for its dark and atmospheric tone, complex characters, and compelling plot twists that will keep you guessing until the very end.

Where to stream?

The Killing is available to stream on Hulu.

14. Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries

Best Female Detective Shows: Miss Fisher'S Murder Mysteries

If you’re in the mood for a lighter and more charming detective show, then Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries is a perfect choice. Set in 1920s Melbourne, Australia, this show follows the adventures of Phryne Fisher, a stylish and independent private detective who solves crimes with her wit, intelligence, and impeccable fashion sense. Essie Davis shines in the lead role, bringing Phryne Fisher to life with her charisma and charm.

Where to stream?

Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries is available to stream on Prime Video.

13. Killing Eve

Best Female Detective Shows: Killing Eve

Killing Eve is a critically acclaimed and highly addictive spy thriller that features two dynamic female characters on opposite sides of the law. Sandra Oh stars as Eve Polastri, an MI5 officer who becomes obsessed with capturing the elusive and deadly assassin, Villanelle, portrayed by Jodie Comer. The show is known for its sharp writing, dark humor, and complex relationship between Eve and Villanelle, which adds a unique twist to the typical detective show formula.

Where to stream?

Killing Eve is an available stream on Max.

12. Prime Suspect

Best Female Detective Shows: Prime Suspect

Prime Suspect is a groundbreaking British crime drama that stars Helen Mirren as Detective Chief Inspector Jane Tennison. This show is known for its realistic depiction of police work and the challenges faced by female detectives in a male-dominated field. Jane Tennison is a complex and compelling character who navigates the complexities of solving crimes while dealing with sexism, internal politics, and personal demons. Prime Suspect is a gritty and thought-provoking show that shines a spotlight on the struggles and triumphs of a female detective in the police force.

Where to stream?

Prime Suspect is available to stream on Prime Video.

11. Nancy Drew

Best Female Detective Shows: Nancy Drew

If you’re a fan of mystery and supernatural elements, then Nancy Drew is a show you won’t want to miss. This modern adaptation of the iconic teenage detective series follows the adventures of a grown-up Nancy Drew, portrayed by Kennedy McMann, as she solves mysteries in her hometown of Horseshoe Bay. With a mix of supernatural elements, small-town secrets, and a strong female lead, Nancy Drew offers a fresh take on the classic detective genre.

Where to stream?

Originally on The CW, Nancy Drew is available to stream on Max.

10. The Fall

Best Female Detective Shows: The Fall

The Fall is a gripping psychological thriller that follows the hunt for a serial killer in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Gillian Anderson stars as Detective Superintendent Stella Gibson, who is brought in to catch the killer, played by Jamie Dornan. The show is known for its chilling atmosphere, complex characters, and the intense cat-and-mouse game between Stella Gibson and the killer. With its dark and compelling storyline, The Fall will keep you on the edge of your seat from start to finish.

Where to stream?

The Fall is available to stream on Netflix.

9. Veronica Mars

Best Female Detective Shows: Veronica Mars

Veronica Mars is a beloved teen detective show that has gained a cult following over the years. Kristen Bell stars as Veronica Mars, a high school student who moonlights as a private investigator, following in the footsteps of her detective father. The show combines the elements of a classic detective show with the drama of high school life, creating a unique and addictive blend of mystery, romance, and witty banter. Veronica Mars is a must-watch for fans of teen dramas and detective shows alike.

Where to stream?

Veronica Mars is available to stream on Hulu.

8. Midsomer Murders

Best Female Detective Shows: Midsomer Murders

If you’re a fan of classic whodunit mysteries, then Midsomer Murders is one of the best female detective shows that should be on your radar. This long-running British series follows the investigations of Detective Chief Inspector Tom Barnaby, played by John Nettles, as he solves murders in the fictional county of Midsomer. One of the highlights of the show is the character of Detective Sergeant Jones, portrayed by Daniel Casey, who provides a perfect foil to Barnaby’s calm and collected demeanor. Midsomer Murders is known for its picturesque countryside setting, intriguing murder mysteries, and a touch of dark humor that keeps viewers coming back for more.

Where to stream?

Midsomer Murders is available to stream on Acorn TV.

7. Rosemary & Thyme

Best Female Detective Shows: Rosemary And Thyme

Rosemary & Thyme is a British cozy mystery series that follows the adventures of two amateur detectives, Rosemary Boxer, and Laura Thyme, as they solve murders while tending to gardens across England. Felicity Kendal and Pam Ferris star as the titular characters, who use their keen sense of observation and horticultural expertise to unravel mysteries in picturesque settings. With its charming duo of female detectives, beautiful gardens, and intriguing murder cases, Rosemary & Thyme offers a unique and refreshing take on the detective genre.

Where to stream?

Rosemary & Thyme is available to stream on Prime Video with BritBox.

6. Cagney & Lacey

Best Female Detective Shows: Cagney And Lacey

Cagney & Lacey is a groundbreaking police procedural series that follows the lives and careers of two female police detectives in New York City, Christine Cagney, and Mary Beth Lacey, portrayed by Sharon Gless and Tyne Daly, respectively. The show explores the challenges faced by women in law enforcement, including sexism, discrimination, and balancing work and family life. Cagney & Lacey is known for its realistic portrayal of the complexities of police work and the strong bond between the two lead characters, making it a trailblazer in the representation of female detectives on television.

Where to stream?

Cagney & Lacey is available to stream on Prime Video.

5. Happy Valley

Best Female Detective Shows: Happy Valley

Happy Valley is a gritty British crime drama series that features Sarah Lancashire as Catherine Cawood, a tough and determined police sergeant in a small town in West Yorkshire. Catherine is haunted by the tragic events of her past and is determined to seek justice for those she cares about, even if it means putting her own life at risk. Happy Valley is known for its dark and intense storytelling, complex characters, and realistic portrayal of crime and its impact on a community.

Where to stream?

Happy Valley is available to stream on Netflix.

4. The Bletchley Circle

Best Female Detective Shows: The Bletchley Circle

The Bletchley Circle is a unique British mystery series that follows a group of four female codebreakers from World War II who reunite in the 1950s to solve crimes using their skills in deduction and cryptography. The show combines elements of historical drama, mystery, and friendship as the women navigate post-war society and use their intelligence and resourcefulness to crack cases. The Bletchley Circle is known for its intriguing mysteries, strong female friendships, and compelling characters.

Where to stream?

The Bletchley Circle is available to stream on Peacock.

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3. The Closer

Best Female Detective Shows: The Closer

The Closer is an American police procedural series that features Kyra Sedgwick as Deputy Chief Brenda Leigh Johnson, a skilled interrogator, and leader of the LAPD’s Priority Homicide Division. Brenda navigates the challenges of solving high-profile murder cases while dealing with the politics and bureaucracy of the police department. The Closer is known for its strong female lead, complex character dynamics, and compelling murder mysteries.

Where to stream?

The Closer is available to stream on Hulu.

2. The Bridge

Best Female Detective Shows: The Bridge

The Bridge is a Scandinavian crime drama series that follows a partnership between a Danish and a Swedish detective as they investigate murders that occur on the bridge connecting the two countries. Sofia Helin stars as Saga NorĂ©n, a socially awkward and highly intelligent detective who is known for her blunt personality and unorthodox methods. 

Where to stream?

The Bridge is available to stream on Hulu.

1. The Level

Best Female Detective Shows: The Level

The Level is a British crime drama series that stars Karla Crome as Nancy Devlin, a detective sergeant who finds herself caught in a dangerous web of lies and deceit while investigating a murder case. As Nancy delves deeper into the case, she must confront her past and navigate the complexities of her personal and professional relationships. 

Where to stream?

The Level is available to stream on Acorn TV.

In conclusion, our list of the best female detective shows only scratches the surface of what is out there. The subgenre is rich and diverse, offering a plethora of options for viewers who enjoy crime dramas with strong female leads. From classic shows like Cagney & Lacey to modern hits like Killing Eve, there are numerous options to choose from, each with its unique storytelling styles, characters, and settings. Whether you prefer a traditional whodunit mystery, a psychological thriller, or a period drama, there is a detective show for every taste.