Secrets & Lies (Australian TV series)

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Secrets & Lies
Police detective
Psychological thriller
Created byStephen M. Irwin
Written byStephen M. Irwin
Lucas Taylor
Kylie Needham
Directed byKate Dennis
Peter Salmon
StarringMartin Henderson
Anthony Hayes
Diana Glenn
Adrienne Pickering
Philippa Coulthard
Piper Morrissey
Damon Gameau
Hunter Stratton Boland
Country of originAustralia
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons1
No. of episodes6
ProducersTracey Robertson
Leigh McGrath
Production locationsAshgrove, Brisbane, Australia
Running time48 minutes
Production companyHoodlum Entertainment[1]
Original release
NetworkNetwork Ten
Release3 March (2014-03-03) –
7 April 2014 (2014-04-07)
Secrets and Lies (US)

Secrets & Lies is an Australian drama television series that first screened on Network Ten on 3 March 2014, and was subsequently aired in other countries.


The series follows the story of a family man who finds the body of a young boy and quickly becomes the prime suspect in his murder. Not content to let the police do their work, and becoming increasingly frustrated at being questioned repeatedly, he decides to try to find the real killer as his marriage, his kids, his reputation, and his sanity are all at stake; a decision exacerbates his life.[clarification needed][2]



Recurring and guest[edit]


No. in
No. in
Title Directed by Written by Original air date Australian viewers
11"Episode 1"Kate DennisStephen M. Irwin3 March 2014 (2014-03-03)0.404[3]
Ben Gundelach's life is turned upside down when he discovers the body of four-year-old Thom Murnane in the woods near his home. Ben finds himself struggling with his home and professional lives when the case receives national attention and the media portray him as guilty before the police even rule the death as suspicious.
22"Episode 2"Kate DennisStephen M. Irwin & Lucas Taylor10 March 2014 (2014-03-10)0.365[4]
Ben struggles to prove his innocence when the police identify the murder weapon as a flashlight the same as one he owns but cannot find. As he tries to help Jess Murnane deal with her son's death, he comes to the horrifying realisation that his own daughter might have been involved.
33"Episode 3"Kate DennisLucas Taylor, Kylie Needham & Stephen M. Irwin17 March 2014 (2014-03-17)0.317[5]
When the media circus lose interest in Thom Murnane's case, and the police investigation moves away from him, Ben hopes his life can return to normal – but the revelation that he was Thom's biological father brings tensions in the Gundelach home to a head. When the only other suspect has an alibi, Ben finds a key piece of evidence that could prove him innocent – and makes a mistake that could seal his guilt.
44"Episode 4"Peter SalmonLucas Taylor, Kylie Needham & Stephen M. Irwin24 March 2014 (2014-03-24)0.278[6]
Now in possession of the murder weapon, Ben tries to return to a normal life until he can safely get rid of it. By chance, he stumbles onto evidence of a sexual predator living on his street, and, finally convinced that he knows who killed Thom, he takes the opportunity to dispose of the weapon. But, in his haste, his wife catches him getting rid of the evidence.
55"Episode 5"Peter SalmonStephen M. Irwin & Lucas Taylor31 March 2014 (2014-03-31)0.316[7]
When Christy uses Tasha and Eva to hold their relationship hostage, Ben turns to Jess for comfort. But the relationship turns sour when Ben finds evidence implicating her in Thom's death.
66"Episode 6"Peter SalmonStephen M. Irwin & Lucas Taylor7 April 2014 (2014-04-07)0.413[8]
Eva disappears without warning, and in desperation, Ben accuses Jess of taking her. Jess responds by accusing him of sexual assault. He is detained, but set free again after the police find the blue jacket in Jess' house. The next morning, he walks into Eva's cabin, where he finds the final piece of evidence to identify the killer: Eva. In the interview room with Cornielle, Eva displays a cold emotionless front indicative of a sociopath as it is revealed, through a series of flashbacks, that she overheard her parents arguing about Ben's affair with Jess. Fearing it would tear them apart (and her father would leave – a common obsession she displayed throughout the series), Eva planned to drown Thom in a river in the hopes that Jess would leave their street for good; when it rained and Thom wanted to go home she couldn't get him to the river and instead used the torch to kill him. She revealed that her attempts to hide the evidence wasn't to frame her father but to frame Jess. Back in the interview room she says "sorry" explaining none of this would've happened if she had got him to the river. Christy (who is now seen to have been in the room) blurts out crying; Ben watches from behind the mirror as his little girl is charged with her own half-brother's murder, then he's driven home by Cornielle who tells him to take care. Ben stands in the kitchen staring at a photo of himself and Eva when Tasha takes his hand and the two hug.


The series first screened on Network Ten on 3 March 2014.

It aired in the Republic of Ireland on RTÉ TWO HD from 30 March 2014,[9] and in Canada on the CBC in July 2014.[10] It premiered in the Netherlands on RTL 4 on 24 August 2014.[11] Started in the UK on 23 September 2014 on Channel 5 and in France from 26 January to 2 February 2015 on France2.[12]

It has also aired on SVT (Sweden), TV2 (Norway), Vitaya (Belgium), as well as Netflix in both Canada and the U.S.[13]


Secrets and Lies has been acclaimed by critics and audiences. Denette Wilford of The Huffington Post has stated: "As for Secrets & Lies, so much great stuff is happening on this show – the writing, the directing and the acting; it manages to be completely authentic without trying too hard. It's riveting stuff, from the whodunit aspect to the family crap the Gundelachs are facing, which everyone can relate to."[14] Lucy Mangan from The Guardian wrote in a review of the series; "Yes, we have seen its like before, in Broadchurch, but the opener more than holds its own against ITV's surprise hit."[15] Many other critics have praised the performances, writing and direction of the series.

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Nominee Result
2015 AACTA Awards Best Telefeature or Mini Series Secrets & Lies Nominated
Best Guest or Supporting Actress in a Television Drama Piper Morrissey Nominated
Logie Awards[16] Most Outstanding Actor Martin Henderson Nominated
Golden Nymph Awards[17] Best Miniseries Secrets & Lies Nominated
Best Actor in a Miniseries Anthony Hayes Won

U.S. version[edit]

On 4 February 2014, the production company behind this version announced that a US version with the same title was in the works for ABC and would be co-produced with ABC Studios with a series penalty if the project is held back or not greenlighted by the network. The series premiered in the U.S. on 1 March 2015. Ryan Phillippe stars in this adaptation.[18] On May 7, 2015, the series was renewed for a second season which was later premiered on September 25, 2016.[19][20]


  1. ^ Blundell, Graeme (1 March 2014). "Big city bruisers in Fat Tony and Secrets & Lies". The Australian. News Ltd. Retrieved 12 May 2014.
  2. ^ "Martin Henderson to star in Secrets and Lies for TEN". TV Tonight. 19 May 2013. Retrieved 12 May 2014.
  3. ^ "Secrets & Lies flops in TV ratings". Retrieved 4 March 2014.
  4. ^ "Secrets & Lies wins just 365,000, MKR regains the lead". Retrieved 12 March 2014.
  5. ^ "TEN fails to build audience for Secrets & Lies". 17 March 2014. Retrieved 18 March 2014.
  6. ^ "Secrets and Lies drops to 278,000". 24 March 2014. Retrieved 25 March 2014.
  7. ^ "MKR top show with 1.659m but Love Child and The Block win night for Nine". 31 March 2014. Retrieved 1 April 2014.
  8. ^ "Love Child and Secrets & Lies finales". Retrieved 8 April 2014.
  9. ^ "Secrets and Lies – RTÉ Drama". RTÉ.ie. Retrieved 12 May 2014.
  10. ^ "CBC Media Centre - CBC - Secrets & Lies". CBC. 15 April 2015. Retrieved 4 May 2015.
  11. ^ "Complete Australische dramaserie 'Secrets & Lies' in drie avonden te zien bij RTL 4 - RTL Pressroom". RTL Pressroom. Retrieved 4 May 2015.
  12. ^ "Secrets and Lies : tout sur l'émission, news et vidéos en replay - France 2". France2. Retrieved 4 May 2015.
  13. ^ Knox, David (7 March 2015). "France picks up Secrets and Lies". TV Tonight. Retrieved 7 March 2015.
  14. ^ "'Secrets & Lies' Review: The Latest Suburban Whodunit Will Stun You". The Huffington Post. 4 July 2014. Retrieved 4 May 2015.
  15. ^ Lucy Mangan (24 September 2014). "The Driver; Secrets and Lies review – gripping drama that leaves you rigid with unrelieved tension". the Guardian. Retrieved 4 May 2015.
  16. ^ Willis, Charlotte (22 March 2015). "Here's the full List of 2015 Logies nominations". Retrieved 2 April 2015.
  17. ^ Adato, Michael (15 June 2015). "Australians Frances O'Connor and Anthony Hayes win top acting awards at Monte Carlo TV Festival". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 15 November 2016.
  18. ^ "Ryan Phillippe Poised To Play The Lead In ABC Drama ‘Secrets & Lies’" from Deadline (4 February 2014)
  19. ^ Nellie Andreeva (8 May 2015). "'American Crime', 'Castle' 'S.H.I.E.L.D.', 'Agent Carter', 'Galavant', 'Secrets & Lies', 'Nashville' Among ABC Renewals - Deadline". Deadline. Retrieved 31 July 2015.
  20. ^ Stanhope, Kate (28 June 2016). "ABC Announces Fall Premiere Dates". Retrieved 1 July 2016.

External links[edit]