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Big Little Lies: The Newest Addition to Your Watch Next List

With all the drastic weather that Washington has been dealing with, I’ve had the opportunity to cuddle up on my couch and log some quality hours on my HBOmax account. Basically, it was too icy and cold for me the past few weeks, so I avoided most of my responsibilities and watched the entire series of a really great TV show. It’s one with drama, mystery, beautiful views and houses that I’m in love with and of course, so many strong women characters. “Big Little Lies” is a ‘whodunnit’ carefully crafted to keep viewers guessing and on their feet. It also helps that there are a lot of big-name actresses that play such unique and in-depth characters.

**There are scenes in Big Little Lies that might be triggering or hard to watch for some viewers. There are mentions or storylines pertaining to abuse, sexual assault, domestic violence, death, etc. Please watch with caution and take care of yourselves.**

First of all, let me just begin with naming a couple of the actresses that make up the show. Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, Zoe Kravitz and Meryl Streep, just to name a few. These women together have such a colorful background of previous roles and experiences. Each one of them is different from one another. There’s a focus on each of their characters’ backgrounds and current life in order to bring these characters to life. Each character has a full life and I think that’s the thing I liked the most about this show. Each character, female or male, had a full in-depth life. There was a backstory. There was current drama. There were conflicts, spinoffs, inconveniences and so much more. These characters became real people. The women in this show weren’t just mothers who had kids, they were women who had full lives and a part of that life was their children.

Another really great part about this show was the location. The series is shot in Monterey, California. Almost every shot features California’s beautiful coastline. Being locked inside due to the freezing weather, dreaming of California’s sandy beaches and warm weather was really something that got me through the snowstorm. On top of that, the area of Monterey Bay California is a fairly affluent place. It’s well known and a popular tourist destination for many reasons. Plus, when you think of California, you probably think of money, fame, Hollywood, flashing lights and the limelight. Since the show is set in California, these ideas are easier to convey and feel more natural. The homes are huge, the beachfront views are vast and the children’s birthday parties are insane. Yet none of it feels out of the ordinary because of the way that people view and think about California. I won’t lie, I caught myself thinking about what my life would be like on that beach once or twice during its two seasons. 

Essentially, it is a show that would fall in the mystery/‘whodunnit’ genre of entertainment. It starts out with flashing lights, extravagant dresses, alcohol, a press conference and an interrogation. So right off the bat, your brain starts to try and put pieces together. A tidbit of information over here, a hint or a clue over there. Then it cuts to the title scene, this is where you’re briefly introduced to the main characters. When this is over, it starts at the story’s real beginning. A date a few weeks prior to the night of the opening scene. 

I watched the two-season show once on my own and was absolutely blown away. I think I binged it in about three days. After that, I started to recommend this show to all my friends. I had a watch party with my best friend for the first few episodes so that I could see her reactions and talk to her about what she thought was going on. When I was rewatching the show, that’s when I realized how well-written the show truly is. As I was rewatching it with my friend, and having all the info since I had already completed it, I was picking up on new hints and clues. Phrases that characters said, specific camera angles and objects popped up in a different way the second time. This is a series that if you pay enough attention to the subtle clues, you can figure out the mystery before the end of the series. Some clues that are connecting pieces can be very subtle until everything all comes to light. My friend would send me her theories of what was really going on and I’ll admit she was close, but she wasn’t quite there.

Big Little Lies is a well-written well-crafted show that I haven’t heard enough people talk about. If you have some downtime in the future I highly recommend carving out some solid hours for this show. Once you get started, it’ll be over before you know it. 

My name is Gwenevere Ash, I am a senior at Central Washington University. I am studying English and Philosophy. This is my second year writing for HerCampus and in the past, I have written about real-world issues, my own experiences and have given my opinion on topics from self-care to podcasts. Stay tuned for this years articles!
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