TV Review: ABC’s ‘Secrets and Lies’

ABC’s mystery thriller Secrets and Lies—which stars Ryan Phillippe and Juliette Lewis—premieres March 1 at 9 p.m. ET. The 10-episode limited series is based on an Australian series of the same name. The following are reviews from TV critics around the web, compiled by B&C.

“Those tired of murder mysteries will find little here to pique their interest, but for fans of the genre (or Phillippe), there’s plenty to like, making for engaging, if not appointment, viewing.”
—Kate Kulzick,A.V. Club

“Better than Gracepoint and not as compelling as Broadchurch,ABC’s Secrets and Lies is a solid, twisty version of the increasingly popular murdered-kid-sets-series-in-motion formula, withRyan Phillippeas the seemingly ordinary family man who discovers the body and quickly becomes a target of police suspicion.
—Brian Lowry,

“ABC’s Revenge started out being pretty good for a lightweight melodrama. But after a couple of seasons, the bloom was off that posy and never coming back. By contrast, the show’s new Sunday night mate, Secrets and Lies, starts out stale and predictable, which really does save so much time, especially for viewers, who should immediately find something else to watch.
—David Wiegand,San Francisco Chronicle

“Despite the obvious intent to create something special, the combination of script, stars and transplanted story simply fails to mesh. As with NBC's own failed Australian remake, The Slap, Secrets seems to take place in a country that looks and sounds similar to ours — but isn't.”
—Robert Bianco,USA Today

“What should seem spellbinding feels more like The Same Old. Of course the neighbors turn against him, and of course his adoring younger daughter still loves him, and there's that moody music, crescendoing to commercial again. The subtext seems to be heading somewhere — the unstated tensions of the marriage, the family, the neighborhood, the media, even the Internet ‘kid killer’ posts — and then leads no place in particular.”
—Diane Werts,Newsday