Marketing does a lot for a show. Had I never seen the promotional materials for Big Little Lies, I would not have taken an interest in it. Had I not been told the two words "seven episodes" and seen it as an easier indulgence, I wouldn't have watched everything in a row for reviewing purposes.
"Is it any good? All my friends with HBO say so!" Follower culture. These days, you never know anymore when something is good because everyone has to claim it's good. Roll your eyes, hate it, and post on Snapchat how you're binge watching.
My answer: sort of. Saying whatever must be said about the negatives first, the show is too slow paced. How long do we have to hear about the child attacking another child at school storyline? On other shows, the top storyline is material like Quantico's discovering the culprit. Big Little Lies' opening episode isn't exactly exciting. And how the whole season, your brain is told, is going to be about a bunch of small beachside community moms talking about little things that only matter to them? Reese Witherspoon's lead being the same one she plays in every movie? Hit the snooze button. I'm sleeping in. The show takes too long to develop any plot lines. Go take a shower, style your hair, and you won't have missed much.
When it's good, it's out of this universe good for Gone Girl fans. The writing is very strong and what the series could have been if reduced to three or four tightly written, explosive episodes. Introducing the storylines about the hidden wife abuser and the young single mom out for revenge with her pistol? Amazing. You really wish we had less screen time on Madeline (Reese Witherspoon) and the whole show being about Celeste (Nicole Kidman) and Jane (Shailene Woodley). Jane should be the main role.
Witherspoon has talked about her goals as a producer to give the show a second season. The waiting around during each episode for something to happen is agony. When it does happen, you want more and put up with the boredom until something else happens. Note to producers. If a second season happens, please go for it. This season played out too safely.