Review: Big Little Lies – “Kill Me”

As the waves crash along the coast of the Monterey Peninsula, the ugly truth starts to inch closer and closer into the light. And with every new obstacle, the “Monterey five” feel the walls closing in on them, in their personal lives and regarding their secret.

On their way home after a failed attempt at a group couple’s therapy session, Madeline (Reese Witherspoon) questions Ed (Adam Scott) and his lack of drive in saving their marriage. Ed finally reveals how he feels, saying that since they first met, he has simply been a safe significant other; that Madeline chose safe and secure instead of any sort of lust toward him. Madeline acknowledges this and vows that while she is flawed, infidelity will never be one of those flaws in the future. While Ed seems to accept this, along with an emotional hug from young Chloe (Darby Camp) later in the evening, Ed finds himself alone at a bar with a drink in his hand… and a visit from Tori (Sarah Sokolovic).

Renata (Laura Dern) continues to face the inconveniences of bankruptcy. Perturbed after losing her featured interview with a popular women’s magazine, she attempts to assist Celeste (Nicole Kidman) with her current legal issue with her mother-in-law Mary Louise (Meryl Streep). Things do not go as planned as Mary Louise continues with her blunt analysis of Renata.

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Jane (Shailene Woodley) attempts to take things to the next level with Corey (Douglas Smith). Yet, the trauma she’s lived with still deeply affects her, making Jane break down in tears as Corey comforts her. Additionally—thanks to an altercation in school where Max and Josh’s defense of Ziggy against a bully ends up putting the child in the hospital with a busted lip—Jane and Celeste have some free time together with their boys, and Ziggy reveals to Jane that the bully called his father a rapist.

Celeste attempts to remain civil in meetings with Mary Louise and her attorney. However, when Mary Louise offers a temporary join custody scenario (Celeste having the boys during the week, Mary Louise having them on weekends), Celeste explodes, setting up a court case between the two. When the five meet up together, Celeste reveals she is going to court, and that the case may implicate the five of them in the death of Perry (Alexander Skarsgård). When Madeline asks how, Renata explains that once they are on the witness stand defending Celeste, the attorney can ask them any questions he chooses—including the events of that night—creating a perjury trap.

Bonnie (Zoë Kravitz) continues to care for her mother Elizabeth (Crystal Fox), who is slowly recovering from her stroke. However, during the care, Bonnie is plagued with memories of the abusive environment her mother created and how her father did not protect her. When Elizabeth awakens and decides to speak, she asks one thing of her daughter: “kill me.” Taken a back, Bonnie leaves the hospital and makes another stroll toward the Carmel-By-The-Sea Police Department, continuing her internal battle of what to do with her secret. However, Bonnie is stunned to see someone quickly exiting the police department and entering his vehicle: Jane’s boyfriend Corey.

With two episodes left in this character-driven, twist-filled drama’s second season, the fates of the “Monterey five” hang in the balance. While Celeste fights for her children in court, the truth regarding Perry’s death may soon be revealed—possibly with assistance from a significant other’s good samaritan actions.

Big Little Lies airs Sunday nights on HBO and is available for streaming on HBO Go and HBO Now.

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