Steve Lightfoot worked with Bryan Fuller in Hannibal. And six years after that controversial cult favourite, he’s branching out on his own with Behind Her Eyes. He keeps the title of a novel he’s adapting into a miniseries about three characters.
The first character that the viewers get to see is Louise Barnsley (Simona Brown). She’s a Black woman who meets a tall dark stranger at a bar. That stranger ends up being a psychiatrist, David Ferguson (Tom Bateman), who is her boss.
This show separates itself from Hannibal in how characters get too close to a psychiatrist. Louise and David’s sexual tension isn’t enough her. She also, not on purpose, befriends David’s wife Adele (Eve Hewson), who makes psychological revelations.
This tense office romance is unlike the comedies that are on Netflix. Another way that this show separates itself from tense office romances is that it mixes up where that romance takes place. Key scenes take place in Louise’s empty apartment.
Louise’s son Adam (Tyler Howitt) leaves for a trip to France with her ex, making David’s presence in the apartment acceptable. As she gets closer to both David and Adele, she struggling with choosing to either trust one or the other.
Louise isn’t the only person playing the guessing game here, as Behind Her Eyes invites its viewer to guess along with her. Other things that might attract viewers are moments of complex characterization as well as the occassional tasteful sex scene.
As good as some scenes in this new miniseries are, others can do some work. There are times when the romance between Louise and David feel off. David’s caginess doesn’t feel like a good excuse for the distance between them.
The miniseries has Louise and David having strong feeling for each other in a short amount of time. These volatile shifts are going to make some viewers ask why they’re still sticking with each other even if they hurt each other.
There’s a lot of screentime dedicated to Adele and her back story. To be fair, Hewson fleshes out a character who’s mysterious in two different parts of her strange life. But it feels like there’s too much attention on her.
Lastly, there’s Adele’s superhuman abilities and the miniseries problematically connects those with class, race, and sexual identities. But it gets over that hump to offer a watchable series that keeps its viewers guessing who’s good and bad until the very end.
- Rated: TV-MA
- Genre: Drama, Mystery, Thriller
- Release Date: 2/17/2021
- Directed by: Erik Richter Strand
- Starring: Eve Hewson, Simona Brown, Tom Bateman
- Produced by: Eliza Mellor
- Written by: Angela LaManna, Steve Lightfoot
- Studio: Left Bank Pictures, Sony Pictures Television
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