Review: Liar (S1 E4/6), Monday 2nd October, ITV


We spoke last week how Liar had irrevocably changed from a he said/she said mystery to a noirish vigilante piece. Or at least it had the potential to go down the vigilante route. After the revelation – well, kind of revelation – that Andrew Earlham had indeed drugged and sexually abused Laura Neilson, many were perplexed and frustrated that this key question was answered so early. But these six-part series have a habit of revealing things in the mid-to-back-end, so I was fine with it. I was also fine with the potential of what the series could now become. After this slightly muted episode we going to have to wait until next week until the pace picks up again.

To be honest, this fourth episode felt like a bit of a lull in the series. Laura went up to Edinburgh to investigate Earlham and his past – the death of his ex-wife, Mary, has always been in the background, with plenty of suggestions that there more to her suicide than meets the eye. Laura first visited Mary’s mother, who promptly threw her out and wouldn’t hear anything bad said against her daughter’s ex-husband. Mary’s best friend, however, had more to say (eventually), revealing that she had slept with Earlham just before Mary took her own life. She also said that she had felt drunk out of nowhere during the night in question, and reading Laura’s blog post had recognised the events described therein and ones she experienced.

Also during Laura’s investigative mission in Edinburgh, she got chatting to a guy in a bar. He was keen, she recoiled explaining later that she’s wracked by fear and anxiety – it was an important reminder how sexual abuse can ruin lives and permeate through an entire consciousness. Every day is a battle to survive.

Back down in London Earlham had a new obsession – DI Vanessa Harmon, the investigating policewoman who fronted up to him in last week’s episode. He obviously saw her as a challenge, someone to tame and break. Like an animal marking his territory. He furtively looked at her online, obviously planning his attack and, soon enough, he had broken into her house, drugged her drink and, while she was unconscious, sexually abused her.

This could take Liar into more extreme vigilante territory – we have two survivors of rape, one intent on getting revenge (Laura had procured some GHB from Tom, so who knows what she’s going to do with that), the other trying to muster the courage to expose him; and another woman who may find out in the very near future she has been violated by him. We still have two episodes left, so I’m expecting a few more twists and turns, and this episode definitely felt like a bridge – from one type of drama to the next.

I don’t like Andrew Earlham’s chances in any eventually.

Paul Hirons

For our episode one review go here

Four our episode two review go here

For our episode three review go here

5 Comments Add yours

  1. PKCox says:

    Laura getting the GHB reminds me of a true crime incident in America quite a few years back when a woman cut off her husband’s private after he had passed out from drinking. Can’t remember if she was an abused woman, but that horrific crime has stuck in my mind. I’m sure Laura has bloody revenge in mind.


  2. Carol Ann says:

    I think you’re talking about Lorena Bobbitt, and she was indeed an abused woman.


    1. PKCox says:

      Yes, Carol Ann- that’s the one. Very sad.


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