Can’t wait for Hulu’s cult thriller The Clearing? Here are 4 TV shows just like it

The back of a woman in front of a still lake with the movie The Clearing
(Image credit: Hulu)

If you’re anything like me and are fascinated by cults, then Hulu has a new TV show for you. The streaming platform debuted the trailer for its upcoming mini-series The Clearing on May 2, giving viewers a look at what to expect in this crime thriller. 

While the Hulu Original series is fictional, it is inspired by a real-life New Age group known as ‘The Family’ that was active in Melbourne, Australia, between the ‘60s and ‘90s. The notorious cult was led by the late Anne Hamilton-Byrne, who was accused of kidnapping and brainwashing children. 

For those based in Australia, a true crime docuseries called The Cult of the Family was released in 2019. Although the three-part show is not available in the US or UK, the TV show is a fascinating and sad look at the lives that were impacted. 

The Clearing is created by Elise McCredie and Matt Cameron, who both worked together on a 2017 mini-series called Sunshine, and is set to star Guy Pearce (L.A. Confidential and Memento) and Teresa Palmer (Discovery of Witches and Lights Out). Unlike the 2019 docuseries, Hulu's upcoming series is based on the book In The Clearing by JP Pomare.

The series is expected to be released on May 23 2023 and, looking at the trailer, is likely to be a contender for our best Hulu shows to watch. But while you wait for it to become available on the streaming platform, here are four more psychological thrillers about eerie cults worth giving a watch while you wait.

Wild Wild Country 

When this stylish Netflix mini-series was released back in 2018, it offered a unique look at the inner workings of a complicated and notorious real-life cult guru called Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh, also known as Osho, who was popular in the ‘80s. 

Wild Wild Country offers an unsettling look at how a yogi leader from India formed a community in Oregon called the Rajneeshpuram. It’s a riveting watch, with many dark twists and turns that lead to one horrifying reveal after another.  

Available to stream worldwide on Netflix. 

The Family 

This five-part Netflix docuseries created by Jesse Moss chronicles an infamous religious group’s wide-reaching connections to high-profile figures, providing a look at just how deep those ties go.

Perhaps one of the most high profile cults in this list, The Fellowship, which also goes by the name ‘The Family’, is a shadowy Christian organization with long-standing political ties to Washington that was founded in 1935.

Available to stream worldwide on Netflix. 

Waco: American Apocalypse  

Released in April, this six-part mini-series is a fascinating dramatized version of the events that occurred during an infamous siege in a city called Waco, in Texas. Waco: American Apocalypse tells the story of a standoff between US authorities and a religious cult called Branch Davidians. 

The real-life standstill, which occurred in 1993, lasted 51 days, culminated in a fire at the group’s compound that left 80 people killed. The show is a harrowing retelling of the events that led up to the shooting that is sure to give you a chill.  

Available to stream worldwide on Netflix. 

The Path 

Like The Clearing, this cult drama isn’t a true crime TV show. The Path, which premiered in 2016, stands out from the other series mentioned in this list for its clever take on a religious scientology cult. 

The show does a good job of not making you instantly suspicious of the New Age group at the center of it. Members of the movement played by Aaron Paul (Breaking Bad) and Michelle Monaghan (Kiss Kiss Bang Bang) are charismatic and relatable, but that's the thing about cults… 

Available to stream on Hulu in the US and Stan in Australia. The series is currently not available in the UK. 

Amelia Schwanke
Senior Editor UK, Home Entertainment

Amelia became the Senior Editor for Home Entertainment at TechRadar in the UK in April 2023. With a background of more than eight years in tech and finance publishing, she's now leading our coverage to bring you a fresh perspective on everything to do with TV and audio. When she's not tinkering with the latest gadgets and gizmos in the ever-evolving world of home entertainment, you’ll find her watching movies, taking pictures and travelling.