Big Little Lies 2
In the second season of "Big Little Lies," Meryl Streep joins the cast to discover who murdered her son. (Image via HBO)
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Big Little Lies 2

Will the women’s shared secret bring them together or tear them apart?

It’s been over two years since the first season of “Big Little Lies” wrapped up, and if you’re anything like me, you’ve been waiting in anticipation for the next season to premiere. Luckily, you won’t have to wait much longer, as the debut episode of Season 2 airs June 9 on HBO. The next season promises more intensity, lying and mystery than ever before, and will feature seven drama-packed episodes.

The main cast, Reese Witherspoon, Shailene Woodley, Nicole Kidman, Zoe Kravitz and Laura Dern, will all return for the second season. The stars of the show had been pushed together from different walks of life and embroiled in a series of tragic events, and the second season will focus on the aftermath of these events, including the lying, cover-ups and manipulation that go along with a murder in a town of elite people.

The women of Monterey, California, are the wealthiest of the wealthy, but behind their designer sunglasses and perfectly manicured nails, they each hold a host of dark secrets. They struggle with their marriages, their children and their social statuses. In Monterey, there is no room for the women to mess up, even with so many issues hidden behind closed doors.

To add to the cast of esteemed actresses is Meryl Streep, who joins the show as Kidman’s mother-in-law and mother of the deceased Perry, who was played by Alexander Skarsgård. She is seen in the trailer talking to Kidman, saying, “You don’t believe my son just slipped…my son is dead and I want answers.” Her character is sure to be a highlight of the second season, adding drama to the season and making things especially tough for Kidman’s character.

Although the first season of the show was widely successful, there was initial doubt about the making of a second. Since the series was based on Liane Moriarty’s novel of the same name, the source material was completely covered in the first season of the show. Directors of the show saw the last episode of the first season as “the perfect ending,” and there were not many reasons to consider a second season. Because all of the actresses in the show were so prominent in the industry, they each had other projects to work on and had only signed a one-year deal.

Thankfully, the actresses were on board with the second season, and the show also hired a new director, who could devote more time to completing the season. Although the second season of “Big Little Lies” will no longer follow the plotline of the original novel, judging by the trailer, the additional drama and new characters will only add to the show.

Directors and actresses of the show went to author Moriarty to see if she could “draw more life out of the characters,” in order to continue the storyline; fortunately, she agreed and wrote a novella to help shape the second season. It is unclear whether the novella will be published after the second season airs, but if it is as popular as the first season was, I wouldn’t be surprised.

The first season won many awards for its performances, including the Golden Globes for best miniseries or television film, best actress-miniseries or television film (awarded to Kidman), best supporting actress-miniseries or television film (awarded to Dern) and best supporting actor-miniseries or television film (awarded to Skarsgård). The show also won many awards at the Primetime Emmy Awards, including outstanding limited series, outstanding lead actress and outstanding director. The show and its cast were nominated for, and won, titles for many other awards.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, most of the stars of the show will receive a “significant salary bump” for the second season. It was reported that Kidman and Witherspoon will make around $1 million for each episode, a huge leap from what they made per episode in the first season (around $300,000). Supporting actresses will also see an increase in salary.

The second season of “Big Little Lies” will “explore the malignancy of lies, the durability of friendships, the fragility of marriage and, of course, the vicious ferocity of sound parenting. Relationships will fray, loyalties will erode … the potential for emotional and bodily injury shall loom,” according to HBO. The show has been so popular, especially with female audiences, because it all of its main stars are women and it is focused on issues that women face. The men are mainly used as props for the storyline (for example, the murder), and, for the most part, audiences only see things from the women’s perspectives.

The mothers of Monterey are not necessarily all likable. Most of them are wealthy and spoiled, representing stereotypes of upper-class motherhood. However, each character is distinctly unique and has a strong personality; they are interesting and multi-dimensional, and each actress plays her role superbly.

As of now, there is no third season set, and the creator has said that there isn’t likely to be one. It’s worth keeping in mind, however, that that’s exactly what was said about the second season, so anything is possible. Either way, enjoy the second season while you can, because it could be the last one.

If you need a little catching up to do, season one is still available to watch on HBO. As each season is only seven episodes long, “Big Little Lies” is engaging and makes for the perfect summer binge-watch.

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