Deadly attacks and deception fill the screen in ‘Fool Me Once’

Feb. 14, 2024

By Jason Oliveira
Staff Writer

In the eight-episode limited thriller series “Fool Me Once,” protagonist Maya Stern (Michelle Keegan) struggles with the constant presence of death. 

Her life has been marred by tragedy: the loss of friends in the army, the death of her sister, Claire Walker (Natalie Anderson), and the harrowing experience of witnessing her husband and father of her child, Joe Burkett (Richard Armitage), being fatally shot.

The show is based on the 2016 Harlan Coben best-seller by the same name, and it is one of the eight gripping shows on Netflix adapted from the author’s works. While Coben’s book is set in New Jersey, the Netflix adaptation takes place in the fictional town of Winherst in the United Kingdom. According to the entertainment news website The Direct, Harlan Coben’s team changed the setting to create a richer viewing experience that encompasses British sensibilities.

Assigned to Joe’s murder, Detective Sgt. Sami Kierce (Adeel Akhtar) repeatedly questions Maya, hoping to find Joe’s killer. 

“Fool Me Once” weaves a web of suspense, captivating viewers with its unpredictable twists and turns.

Kierce grows increasingly baffled by the circumstances of Joe’s murder because of the lack of witnesses and footage. Sami’s suspicions lead him down a path where family discord and financial gain come into focus, adding layers of complexity to the investigation.

Meanwhile, Joe’s mother Judith Burkett (Joanna Lumley), who is a psychiatrist, tries to manipulate Maya, who boldly confronts her nanny Izabella Godek (Natalia Kostrzewa) after she finds troubling footage on her nanny cam. 

What sets “Fool Me Once” apart from other shows in the same genre is its unique storytelling approach. Flashbacks and well-crafted scenes not only propel the plot forward but provide insight into the characters’ motivations, allowing viewers to step into Maya’s world. 

The show’s believability is a testament to the exceptional performances by the cast, led by Keegan in her compelling portrayal of Maya, who inspires viewers through her dedication to being an exceptional mother in the face of so much trauma.

“Fool Me Once” weaves a web of suspense, captivating viewers with its unpredictable twists and turns. The multifaceted plot will keep viewers guessing right up to the last episode, and just when they think they have unraveled the truth, another layer of deception is exposed. 

This binge-worthy show combines a riveting plot, intriguing characters and stellar performances. 

Ultimately, “Fool Me Once” proves itself to be more than just an entertaining series. It is a thought-provoking exploration of good and evil that leaves viewers enthralled and introspective.

Whether you are a fan of thrillers or simply enjoy a show that holds your attention, this Netflix series is for you.

bookmark icon