Like any good crime thriller worth its salt, this latest effort starts with a fresh corpse and the hunt for a serial killer. But Shining Girls quickly separates itself from the pack, injecting some multiverse-inspired twists into its storytelling. The sci-fi trappings do stumble a bit, but overall make for a murder mystery that nicely subverts the usual genre tropes.
As Kirby, a character navigating shifting realities, PTSD, and the prospect of pursuing and facing the person who previously tried to kill her, Elisabeth Moss delivers a stellar performance. Jamie Bell, as the occasionally charismatic, but mostly just creepy Harper -- a killer with the seeming ability to travel through time -- is equally captivating. Additionally, the series' dreary, early '90s setting, complete with landlines, chunky computers, and a welcome lack of smartphones and social media, is as compelling to watch as the excellent cast. The narrative can get a bit muddled, too often mixing Kirby's altered realities with the time-hopping twists and turns without enough context or explanation. Still, if you're craving a gripping crime yarn that's more Dark than Dexter, Shining Girls is well worth the cerebral gymnastics.