I was hearing a lot of people that I know or follow on social media talk about how amazing Big Little Lies is so I had to watch and decide for myself. I’ve officially made the decision that this show is a MUST SEE for 2017. It’s funny, smart, compassionate, intense, and more. Every minute of the show had me on my toes and engaged.
The show is centered around the lives of wealthy families, specifically the wives and mothers, and the drama and gossip in their town of Monterey, California. Gossip and drama surrounds this town and that becomes clear in the very first episode. It seems that the women have chosen sides from the start and conflict comes from all different angles. What the show did that was really creative was set it up as a flashback leading up to the turning point of the show: Who was killed at the school fundraiser?
Shailene Woodley, Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, Adam Scott, Zoe Kravitz, and more headline the show and if this isn’t a STACKED cast then I don’t know what is. The show goes through each of the character’s back stories with their relationships and families which begin to put together an important narrative for the show. The two stories that really stuck out for me were Jane Chapman’s, Shailene Woodley’s character, and Celeste Wright’s, Nicole Kidman’s character.
Early on in the series, audiences discover that Celeste is in a very violent and physically abusive relationship with her husband, Perry Wright. The physical abuse only gets worse and worse as the series moves on to the point where Celeste sees a counsellor and rents an apartment for the day that she really needs to leave her husband for the sake of her saving her and her two twin boys’ lives.
We also find out about Jane’s past. She is new to Monterey and moved there for a fresh start and better life for her and her son, Ziggy. Jane opens up to Madeline Mackenzie, Reese Witherspoon’s character, about her struggle to cope with the rape that resulted in having Ziggy. It is clear from the beginning that she doesn’t know her attacker and that he used an alias when she was attacked. Eventually, Jane begins a man hunt to find who raped her and she insinuates on multiple occasions that she would want to kill him for what he did to her.
By the final episode, after amazing character and plot development in a very short seven episode, these two narratives come together. In a huge brawl that happens in the last episode at the fundraiser, we find out that the man that raped Jane is Perry Wright. As we watch this scene unfold, we find out that Perry is the man who was murdered at the fundraiser and it was all because of self defense after he begins to attack Celeste and the rest of the women.
This show is so powerful in so many ways because it recognizes the reality of women who are in physically abusive relationships and what women have to deal with emotionally as a result of sexual assault. Nicole Kidman and Shailene Woodley give an honest and captivating portrayal of two women consumed and trapped by their attackers. If you’re looking for a show to watch then Big Little Lies is definitely one to put at the top of your list.