The Horror Honeys: Series Recap: Secrets and Lies

Series Recap: Secrets and Lies

A Horror TV Honey Series Review by Lisa

When you love horror, you tend to also love crime and mystery. Enter Secrets and Lies, the new show on ABC starring Ryan Phillippe as a man wrongfully accused of murder. Now that the season has just wrapped up, I feel the overwhelming need to talk about the women on this show. Or rather, the crazy ass bitches who are led by their emotions and think only of themselves. 



Beginning with the discovery of a body, we quickly learn that this young boy was named Tom and he also happened to be the illegitimate child of Ben and Jess. Played by Phillippe, Ben Crawford is the white whale of female fantasies. Hes handsome, smart, resourceful, kind, patient and wonderful with his two daughters. One catch, though. He slept with the pretty girl across the street once and it resulted in Tom, however, no one knew this bit of pertinent information until the DNA test after Toms death.

Working with a minor version of Memento, Secrets and Lies goes back into Bens questionable memory to try to piece the clues together. Being the good guy that he is, Ben lets his loser best friend stay in the guest house which is convenient for when you need to go out and get shit faced after admitting to your affair. It is this alcohol soaked night that holds to clues to the identity of Toms murderer. Over the course of the season, Bens steps are retraced and we begin to learn more about the, you guessed it, secrets and lies of everyone who lives in this tight knit neighborhood. 

Initially, each week tends to focus on a different family in Bens community. Ben believes he is some sort of amateur sleuth and in the process of trying to clear his name, he unintentionally, and intentionally, exposes the dirty laundry of those who live around him. Meanwhile, his wife seems to be carrying on her own affair while Bens two daughters take two very different paths while trying to deal with the situation at hand. The eldest, Natalie, starts out with defiance and a bad attitude while the youngest, Abby, is the sweet, vulnerable soul who is gutted over the possibility of her family being torn apart. 

Why am I surrounded by all of these crazy B's?

As Ben makes a million and one stupid choices while on his mission to prove his innocence, he is constantly being monitored by Agent Cornell. Juliette Lewis plays Cornell with a perfect balance of seriousness and serious unlikability. This is a compliment. As is par for the course with any woman who has the audacity to question men and authority, she is portrayed as a frigid woman who, possibly, uses underhanded methods to always close a case. Ultimately, she is the only one who is really looking at all of the evidence with clear eyes and wants only to incarcerate the true killer. This good part of her character is not revealed until well towards the end of the season and it makes it hard for you to change your feelings towards her despite the fact that they end the season clearly setting up to make her more likeable the next. 

Bens wife, Christy, suffers the same fate. She is brought in as the angry wife who dutifully stands by her man, begins an alleged affair and then pulls the ultimate power play: she takes the girls from Ben, doesnt let him see them on Christmas and threatens to sue for full custody. Bitches be crazy, yo.

What about the grieving mom? Well, Jess is female which means that she is also inherently fucked up mentally and/or emotionally. Shes so lovely and sweet and sympathetic until the moment that we find out that her mother suffered from mental illness and she also seems to suffer from a disorder. A woman on medication is, clearly, a woman who is capable of killing her own son. At the very least, shell kidnap another persons child so they know what it feels like to lose a child and then, just to make things more interesting, shell tell the police that the lovely night of sex you had was actually rape. I mean, isnt that what all crazy women do when they arent getting their way and want to punish a man? 

You can tell by my face that I'm a bitch.

With some bits of incest, stalking, kidnapping and torture, substance abuse and alleged child abuse, Secrets and Lies leaves no generic sin untouched. In the beginning, it was all so very engaging and ran at just the right pace. Every week they literally left you wanting more and it was hard to decide if you believed in Bens innocence or not. There were so many questions, with a myriad of possible answers and it was fun to guess who did it. If you are of the murder mystery variety, then you already knew what gender did the killing of Tom, but you went along with everything because it was truly intriguing nighttime television with some above average acting. Unfortunately, Secrets and Lies jumped the shark on a very specific episode and it was around the half way point. By the time the killer was revealed, it really wasnt that big of a shocker and if it was, perhaps its because you had been distracted by the 101 other random things that they threw at you the last few episodes. Storylines were completely abandoned when they didnt seem to have anywhere to go, characters went from sympathetic to awful from one episode to the next and Ben began to waiver from totally innocentto dude, stop interfering with the police.

Secrets and Lies started out really strong and then it just kind of went flaccid, but thats what happens when all of the females in a story are completely cray-cray. Women who act out emotionally, use sex as a weapon, hide money from their partners, look the other way to violent behavior, make excuses for illicit behavior or take mediation are always going to be the reason for all  of menssins. Even the frosty police detective who is just trying to uncover a child killer, she is also a real bitch because she never smiles and seems to have it out for all men. In a world full of unstable people, only the women will be the ones with the true moral failings and one of them will always be a sociopath. Thank you, uninspired writers for reminding me that women are always the ultimate downfall of men because we just cant control our goddamn emotions.