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The result is a series that has all of the brooding intensity of Fukunaga's HBO show, but little of the necessary narrative energy to pull it off.
What must have come to life in the pages of the book struggles to find so much as a spark on the screen -- difficult, admittedly, through the pall of smoke and shadows that tend to choke it.
It's a lushly rendered, gritty tale with the kind of nudity, gore and explicit themes often seen in today's quality TV shows. But it's still a largely predictable story.
... somewhat unique in setting but same old/same old in terms of the overall genre.
Serial killers are always intriguing because they feel so alien, but The Alienist can't will itself to be anything more than an R-rated update.
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