Nuanced murder mystery series have become very popular in recent years, begging the question how ABC’s new drama Secrets and Lies will differentiate itself from the crowd.
Secrets and Lies stars Ryan Phillippe as Ben Crawford, a man who becomes the number one suspect after he discovers the body of his neighbor’s son in the woods. The drama also stars Juliette Lewis as the obsessive Detective Cornell out to prove Ben is guilty.
“Ours is so much better,” Lewis joked to reporters of the comparisons to Broadchurch and its American remake, Gracepoint, during the Television Critics Association’s winter TV previews.
In all seriousness, executive producer Barbie Kligman said she initially didn’t watch Gracepoint until this recent Christmas break “because I didn’t want to inadvertently steal anything,” she said, later noting that Lies‘ story is much more about the suspect than the victim. “Gracepoint and Broadchurch are more traditional in terms of being many points of view, and going on the journey with the two detectives who are solving the case of the murdered boy. Our show is a singular point of view, and for season one, it’s our prime suspect. Ours is a character drama with an underlying mystery.”
However, much like Gracepoint and Broadchurch—rather than the first year of The Killing—Secrets and Lies will reveal the identity of the killer by season’s end. “Hopefully in subsequent seasons, we’ll have a different mystery,” she said. “The only ongoing mystery is Detective Cornell as we unreel the layers of who she is.”
Secrets and Lies premieres Sunday, March 1 at 9 p.m. ET on ABC.