Tuesday, July 28, 2020
TV Tuesday: Lie To Me
Summer 2020 TV preview, our son recommended a show to us that my husband and I are loving so far. Lie To Me is a unique crime show about a consulting group that can tell if someone is lying, based on the science of micro-expressions, by studying subtle changes in their facial expressions.
British actor Tim Roth stars as Dr. Cal Lightman, who has devoted his life to studying the science of using facial expressions to tell when someone is lying and when they are telling the truth. He runs an independent consulting firm with his business partner, Dr. Gillian Foster, played by Kelli Williams, and their firm is often hired by various law enforcement officials, including the FBI, to assist with cases. Eli Loker, played by Brendan Hines, also works for the firm and has a rule to never lie, which makes working with him interesting! Rounding out the team is a new hire, Ria Torres (played by Monica Raymund), who is what they call "a natural" and has an innate ability to tell when someone is lying, though she is gradually also learning the science from the others. Always knowing when someone is lying makes relationships interesting, as when Cal's teen daughter, Emily (played by Hayley McFarland) tells him she is sleeping over at a friend's house, and he can clearly see that she is lying. Cal has learned there is a time and a place to call someone on a lie, though the younger members of the team are just learning that. In each episode, the team is hired for a case (sometimes two cases, and the four of them split up), where telling truth from fiction can provide crucial information to law enforcement or private clients. Early cases range from a drug kingpin in prison up for parole who says he is reformed to a high school student accused of killing a teacher who swears he's innocent to a congressman accused of having an affair. Sometimes, they discover the accused or the witness is lying but perhaps not about what the police think.
We are really enjoying this entertaining and unexpected show so far. Each case and each episode is unique, with twists we don't see coming, plus as with most crime shows, the personal lives of the characters come into play as well. There is a bit of a Mentalist feel to the show (an all-time favorite at our house), except the focus here is on science rather than tricks and mental maneuvering. One fun aspect to the show is that when one of the experts is explaining how a certain facial tic denotes lying, they often show photos of historical figures illustrating the rule! The characters are all interesting, and the acting is excellent. The combination of suspenseful mysteries, great characters, and a sense of humor has made this show one of our current favorites, in our regular rotation.
Lie to Me originally ran for three seasons, from 2009 to 2011 on Fox. It is available on Amazon or free through IMDB (use the Amazon link to see the free option).