After three weeks of nail-biting drama and two weeks of slightly less tense, but fun, twist and turns, Liar concluded on ITV this week with a bleak finale.
Serial rapist Andrew Earlham (Ioan Gruffudd) is dead. The sweeping closing shots of the Liar marshes honed in on the corpse of the slimy villain with what appeared to be a slit throat.
It feels like justice of sorts, but after everything that he’s done and all the terrible crimes he’s committed, viewers may feel slightly robbed of the opportunity to have the vile cocky man brought down to earth.
Before his corpse was revealed, there was still a chance for Liar’s writers to throw in a couple of last minute twists including a not-very-convincing undercover copper and Andrew sinking even lower by tying up his son in his web of lies.
After the gripping opening premise of the show and the big reveal in week three, it was impossible not to feel slightly underwhelmed by the ending.
However, after the cat and mouse or the early episodes and the slightly more unlikely goings-on of episodes 4 and 5, it was at least pleasing to have a sense of resolution to the series. Even if there was clearly a deliberate thread left for viewers to pull at for series 2.
1. How did Andrew die?
Had he slit his own throat in the marshes? Somehow we doubt it as Andrew doesn’t seem the type. With so many victims – he raped at least 17 women – there are a lot of possible suspects.
Nessa (Shelley Conn) wasn’t answering her phone at the end, so did she track him down? Or maybe her partner Jennifer (Jill Halfpenny) hunted him down and finished him off army style.
Could his own son have killed him? Laura’s (Joanne Froggatt) new love interest Ian? Or maybe someone from his past in Scotland. Hopefully, the question will remain open-ended and we’ll never know for sure what happened in his final moments.
2. Did the finale match the build-up?
Some viewers grew tired of the show’s slightly more unlikely twists in recent episodes, but in a year of terrible TV endings (we’re talking about you, Doctor Foster, Trust Me and The Replacement) at least Liar had an intense sense of resolution.
The final moments for Laura as she handed over the evidence to the police was cathartic for viewers. We had watched Froggatt’s incredible performance as Laura went through so many stages of grief, pain and determination, so the glimmer of justice and victory at the end was almost joyous.
3. Will there be a series 2?
The nature of Andrew’s death leaves a possible route to series 2, but would viewers really care about the hunt for his killer?
It seems more likely a second series will follow a similar format with a different cast and a non-rape storyline. The Williams brothers are great writers when it comes to mysteries and dramatic twists, so a full six episodes that leaves us guessing about a guilty party sounds like a hit formula.
4. The worst TV coppers of 2017 award goes to…
They failed to achieve anything in the first five episodes other than clear Andrew’s name, so it shouldn’t have come as a surprise that when it came to sending an undercover cop to entrap the surgeon, it would end up in disaster.
It didn’t take long for Andrew to spot her not-so-cunning plan. How long does it take to syringe out some liquid from a wine glass? And why do it in front of a giant mirror?
5. A happy ending for Laura?
Good old Ian (Kieran Bew) returned for a brief cameo and drink with Laura this week. After their awkward meeting in Edinburgh, there second date went a lot more smoothly.
If there is no series 2, we’d like to imagine Ian and Laura settling down for a cheesy happy ever after.
Catch up on Liar on BT TV via the ITV Hub app.