First 3 episodes of “One of Us Is Lying” brings promising series adaptation consistent with Karen McManus’ 2017 debut novel



ONE OF US IS LYING — Pictured: “One of Us Is Lying” Key Art — (Photo by: Peacock)

Sofia Treviño

After only four out of five students walk out of detention alive, fingers quickly point to the others. Which one of them is lying to protect their secret?

Adapted from Karen McManus’ 2017 debut novel, the eight-episode mystery series, “One of Us Is Lying,” follows four students — Bronwyn Rojas (Marianly Tejada), Nate Macauley (Cooper van Grootel), Cooper Clay (Chibuikem Uche) and Addy Prentiss (Annalisa Cochrane) — hunting for answers after Simon Kelleher (Mark McKenna) suspiciously dies in detention from peanut oil poisoning. As the person behind the scenes of “About That,” a “Gossip Girl”-esque app, Simon exposes his classmates’ secrets. 

Because each of the students in detention hides a secret scheduled to be released on the app prior to Simon’s death, each holds a motive and the four quickly become obvious suspects.

Though the first three episodes premiered on Peacock on Oct. 7, episodes four through six release Oct. 14 and the final two Oct. 21. Building on the increasing suspense of the plot, the elongated release schedule forces viewers to wait for the inevitable reveal of each suspect’s hidden mystery. “About That” alerts come at the perfect time, such as Addy’s secret dropping right after confiding in the others, creating even more tension between them.

Using extremely saturated filters, the show feels like a 2010 “Pretty Little Liars” teenage drama. Also reminiscent of the cheesy, and sometimes cringe era, the character stereotypes come off as predictable: Bronwyn as the goody two-shoes nerd, Nate as the “bad boy,” Cooper as the jock with high expectations and Addy as the blonde, pretty, popular girl. However, each of their veiled stories work to break those conventional archetypes.

For fans waiting to watch the book’s story on screen, the first three episodes stay true to the predecessor, promising loyalty to readers, the only difference lying in minor scene changes, such as the distraction during detention while Simon grabs his poisoned water changing from an originally written car crash to half-naked boys running through the parking lot.

“One of Us Is Lying” brings the page-turning story to life on screen, while remaining true to the novel for dedicated fans. The first three episodes add increasing suspense in a whodunit detective story, reeling watchers in.

4 liars out of 5