By Sandra Gonzalez
Updated August 16, 2011 at 09:30 PM EDT
Credit: Quantrell Colbert/The CW

I’m a huge fan of the post-Pretty Little Liars direction ABC Family is headed in. That’s not to say I don’t appreciate the pure drama on Make It Or Break It. (Hey, it’s not cancelled yet. I can use present tense.) Or the campy corn served up on 10 Things I Hate About You. (R.I.P.) But The Lying Game, which premiered last night, is cut of the same Pretty cloth that has made me tune into the network more than ever.

The Lying Game, based off a book from Alloy (as is Liars), centers around identical twin sisters (both played by As the World Turns‘ Alexandra Chando) who were separated at birth and grew up with very different lives as a result. When foster child Emma finds herself on the run from her life as an unloved orphan, she ends up on sister Sutton’s swanky Phoenix doorstep. It seemed like a sweet reunion, but minutes after meeting, Sutton asks Emma for a favor (wow, she really took to this whole “family” thing quickly… ): Pretend to be her for two days. She uses the old “I have a lead on our real parents” excuse for her sudden departure (I’ve used it twice myself. My parents weren’t pleased) and leaves Emma with a heap of messy happenings to sort out. Consolation prize: A BMW.

Having never read the books, I have nothing to compare the series to, but I can’t help but dig it for what it is. In fact, I set a season pass because for some reason, I feel like my life will be sadder if I don’t keep up with the burning questions firing up in my brain: What is Sutton is really up to? Why were they separated in the first place? Why is Sutton apparently the bitchy twin? Where does she shop? And what’s going on between her and that Ethan guy?

Credit: Quantrell Colbert/The CW

I won’t go as far as to say the series is as good as Pretty Little Liars… yet. But it could get there, especially if they add an Ezra. By that I don’t mean a character who has inappropriate relations with younger characters; I just mean someone as attractive as Ezra. Lead Chando definitely fills the pretty girl quota on the series just fine (it helps that she’s there twice), but I can’t help but notice she looks like someone else on TV. In fact, during one scene in the premiere episode, I literally screamed out, “Oh my Dobrev!” (In the pic you see, Chando is on the left.) Seriously! Even Nina looks shocked! Agree?

More importantly, do you agree or disagree on my thoughts on The Lying Game? Will you watch more? Was it better or worse than Pretty Little Liars? And do you like the mystery-heavy series being churned out at ABC Family as much as I do?

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