The Truth About Big Little Lies: Your Monday Night Just Got Way More Enthralling

We decode the secrets behind the star-studded series

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Cancel your evening plans, the second episode of Big Little Lies aired this week on Sky Atlantic – and, spoiler alert, it's worth staying in for.

Based on Liane Moriarty's best-selling novel of the same name, the seven-episode series weaves a complex tale of three suburban mothers who find themselves embroiled in a murder investigation.

Tipped as 'Desperate Housewives on steroids', expect betrayal, bitchy mums (and sexy dads – hello Alexander Skarsgard) and a very frightening finale. Here's everything you need to know about the must-see murder-mystery.

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You know...just casual #CoffeeTalk.. 😮🙊 ☕️ #BigLittleLies tonight. @hbo

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Reese Witherspoon spearhead the series after devouring Liane Moriarty's novel and in turn, passed it on to her friend and fellow Oscar-winner, Nicole Kidman.

The "complete lack of interesting characters for women" on screen implored Reese to take on the project. "I thought women have bigger stories to tell, and if no one is going to develop this material on TV, then I'll do it myself."

Starring an all-star cast calibre including Nicole Kidman, Reese Witherspoon, Shailene Woodley, Zoe Kravitz and Laura Dern – it's refreshing to see a show that spotlights so many big screen actresses on the small screen at once.

The pedigree behind the star-studded lens is just as impressive as those on screen. David E Kelley, the brains and creator of Ally McBeal wrote the scripts for Little Big Lies, while Oscar-nominated director Jean-Marc Vallee, who worked alongside Reese on 2014 movie wild, directed the series. With Reese and Nicole stepping both on and off screen with their roles as executive producers.

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Like Girl on the Train, fans of the book might be slightly irked that the Australian-based novel was relocated to the California beachside city of Monterey. Nicole has explained that "the show's storylines are universal, by Jean-Marc felt passionately that it need to be set in a community near water. And that's almost like a character in the show now.'

On the material, "reading it, I saw myself in different stages of motherhood" says Reese, who is a mum of three herself. "I was a mum when I was 22, like Kane, then I was a mum at 40, like Madeline. I've been divorced. I've been remarried. There are so many aspects that are relative to women's lives."

Mark every Monday in your calendars for the next six weeks folks – your sofa awaits.

Press play to watch the trailer below.

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