Secrets and Lies: Season 2 Finale – Surprise (Review)



The second season of Secrets and Lies pulled out all the stops with its two-hour finale. Surprise after surprise was trotted out before the end credits rolled and Kate’s killer was finally unmasked.

Every rattling bone of each closet skeleton was dusted off and pulled front and center for the audience’s consideration. The Warner family managed to have a lot of secrets and enough lies to fill all the presidential elect’s campaign speeches.

The patriarchal head of the family turned out to not only be a bigamist but his “other” son blackmailed Eric in order to save his failing business. This was not, however, the biggest shock of the evening.

That moment went to Cornell who revealed that Amanda Warner, the family’s legal beagle, pushed her sister-in-law over the edge of the building to her death. There was an awful lot of dirt to be dished up in the last two episodes of Secrets and Lies though.

Detective Cornell did not uncover all the juicy facts for the viewer; everyone got into the act before the episode ended. Patrick could not wait to tell us that his brother Michael knocked their drunken brute of a mother down the stairs. This act, which turned out to be an accident, left Mommy Dearest in a vegetative state.

Amanda turned out to be pregnant with Nick’s baby and the one-time best bud of Michael’s lacked the intestinal fortitude to stand by his murderous baby momma.

The fact that Big Daddy Warner turned out to have two families stretched things a bit. John was running S.E.G. until recently and while his one wife was in a coma it must have been terribly difficult to run the business and juggle two houses at the same time.

Warner handing things over to Michael must have seemed to be the ideal solution until Mandy shoved Kate over the railings.

Danny finally finds his naughty daughter, this time in Mint Hill 2.0.  Things are still dodgy between the aggressive New York cop and his prostitute offspring. After a few rocky moments, where Rachel declares she finds jail preferable to staying with dad, things are worked out.

Patrick and Michael making up pushed the lines of credibility a touch. The idea that if one sibling murders your wife and your unborn child, the other one who lied and stole from you is preferred could work. Presumably the Warner’s are so colossally screwed up that this is not unusual.

The very tail end of the second episode makes it seem that a third season may not be in the running for this American revamp of a one season Aussie detective series. Cornell arrives home, after the Major celebrates her victorious solving of the case with her new partner and a glass of whiskey, to find her drug addict daughter riffling through her bedroom drawers.

Drawing her gun, Cornell demands that the unknown armed assailant who just entered the room put down the gun. She faces the camera, weapon pointed at the ready, and everything goes black as the sounds of gunshots end the scene.

This could be seen as a “hedging its bets” type scenario where the viewer can believe that Cornell bit the bullet, so to speak, thus giving the show an “easy out.”

Amanda Warner – guilty

Admittedly, the reveal that Amanda killed Kate was a surprise, but only inasmuch that the lawyer was never considered by anyone, including Cornell, to be a suspect. Everyone else in the series was seriously trotted out as a potential murderer, including, to an extent, Danny the NYPD detective searching for his daughter.

It was quite admirable that the writer managed to tie up every little dangling end, except, of course, that final shootout between Cornell and the unknown entity in her bedroom.

Secrets and Lies was, overall, pretty entertaining. If there could be any one complaint, it would be that Lewis’ overly competent cop was too dour. With an expression that resembled a smacked arse, Juliette felt far too grim by half.

This was eventually explained by the reveal of a drug addict daughter and an ex husband who was seriously letting the side down. It is quite possible that those who watched the first season of Secrets and Lies knew why Cornell was so grumpy.

It remains to be seen as to whether this rehash of a one season wonder from the land down under will come back for a third time at bat.  The series is complex enough as a murder mystery that ABC could well greenlight another season.

The final verdict on this crime series is a ‘A’ for effort and capital ‘M’ for mystery.  Check the show out if you have not already done so.


Author: Mike's Film Talk

Former Actor, Former Writer, Former Journalist, USAF Veteran, Former Member Nevada Film Critics Society

One thought on “Secrets and Lies: Season 2 Finale – Surprise (Review)”

  1. I hope to see more Secrets and Lies! Juliette Lewis as Detective Cornell is riveting! I like all the twisted plots, keeps you guessing and on the edge of your seat!


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