The Sopranos, as TV critic David Bianculli puts it, was “one of the first series I can remember watching where what isn’t said is as important as what is. And the characters never show their cards.”
Such an approach, which mirrors the approach that novelists use when exploring character, has been adopted by other television dramas. A good example is the BBC adaptation of Henning Mankell’s novels featuring Swedish police inspector Kurt Wallander. As played by Kenneth Branagh we see the inner life of a deeply conflicted man who seeks justice for victims but struggled to find peace in his own life.