TNT pulled out all the stops to celebrate the new season of The Alienist: Angel of Darkness. The period drama starring Daniel Brühl, Luke Evans, and Dakota Fanning follows a group of detectives in the late 1890s, so it only made sense for the premiere party to immerse guests in the show’s mystery-filled world. But how to do that when COVID-19 restricts live gatherings? With a virtual murder mystery party, of course.

“While the pandemic has forced us to stay at home, it has not curbed our ambition or passion for celebrating and promoting our series the way they deserve—so we have committed to finding new ways to evolve and enhance our connections with consumers,” explained Jori Arancio, executive vice president of communications for HBO Max, TNT, TBS, and TruTV. “It’s important that we adapt the typical ‘premiere’ experience for audiences as well as filmmakers and talent.”

On July 16, cast, crew, and VIPs were invited to view the premiere episode and then attend an hourlong virtual after-party chock-full of interactive, immersive moments. Produced by creative studio and theater company Little Cinema, the three-act party asked guests to solve the mystery of who killed fictional character Alejandro Valdez.

To make the event even more immersive, VIP guests were mailed a custom swag box filled with clues, including a branded journal to track their findings, photo cards for each of the suspects, a magnifying glass, a calligraphy set, and other props that evoked the show such as a suffragette pin, a locket, a matchbook, and faux newspapers. The box was created by Little Cinema, while a specialty food and drink delivery was curated by Taste Catering.

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