• Network: FOX
  • Series Premiere Date: Jan 21, 2009
Season #: 1, 2, 3

Generally favorable reviews - based on 24 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 24
  2. Negative: 1 out of 24

Where To Watch

Stream On

Critic Reviews

  1. 90
    Lie to Me seems an unusually meaty, thoughtful and thought-provoking crime drama--another police procedural, yes, but one with a dramatic and mesmerizing difference. The strength of the premise combined with first-class production make this easily one of the season's best new shows.
  2. 80
    OK, fine, so maybe the pilot does wrap up with your typical teary-eyed confession. Otherwise, though, Lie to Me is as thoroughly entertaining and charming as its fine-looking cast of characters.
  3. Roth's Lightman is not nearly the curmudgeon Dr. House (Hugh Laurie) is, nor is he as entertaining, but Lie to Me has the makings of a fine procedural for viewers who can't seem to get enough of this type of series.
  4. 80
    Roth makes for a tartly witty hero, the mysteries are intricately plotted, and the show makes the most of the weird dynamics of an office where the boss can ferret out everybody's secrets.
  5. Based on the first episode, the team seems to work about two cases at a time, and while neither of tonight's feels wildly creative--one warns of the downside to an intense religious upbringing, the other catches an elected official in an ethics scandal--both are engagingly told, with humor and little twists.
  6. There is an appealing cheekiness to the show’s insistence on dressing up hunch work as the purview of serious science.
  7. Reviewed by: James Poniewozik
    Lie to Me's pilot is brisk anthropological fun.
  8. 75
    The show's gimmick does extend beyond reading expressions--they analyze voices and psychoanalyze answers--and the show does have its amusing moments. What it doesn't have is any sense of surprise, and once the novelty factor wears off, you just wonder whether there's enough here to sustain a series.
  9. Lie to Me comes out of the box strong, and it's especially encouraging that the cases at hand and the science used in the first hour is compelling enough that Roth's character (based on Paul Ekman, a real-life expert on lying and microexpressions, among other things) can evolve more slowly.
  10. 75
    This [is a] crisply shot, well-paced drama: It could venture into the darker and knottier realms of morality, as “House” did in its first few seasons.
  11. He's Washington, D.C., consultant Cal Lightman, helping authorities solve crimes and suss out liars by reading their facial gestures and demeanor cues. As science, this is a slim reed indeed, but it can make stories go around.
  12. 70
    Lie to Me, based on the real-life lie-detection work of Dr. Paul Ekman, doesn't extend much beyond its genre's borders. But if you're fascinated by the poker-game elements of crime-solving and a man obsessed with "tells," you may connect with this show.
  13. The Fox drama from the Imagine TV stable is fortunate to have a guy with the talents of Tim Roth as a trump card. But even apart from him, the writing and the concept are sufficiently developed from the get-go to prove an instantly intriguing entry that has the major benefit of following "American Idol" and should hold on to a good portion of that audience.
  14. Roth is a fine actor and a welcome presence on the small screen, and he manages to integrate a catalog of amazing facts into a character. But the show will be better for giving him more to do than bust liars, then explain how he did it.
  15. Lie to Me is derivative yet well crafted, predictable yet ever-so-slightly novel.
  16. I’d be lying if I said I thought Lie to Me won’t get old fast.
  17. 50
    I found Fox's Lie to Me, about a brilliant deception expert, to be predictable, standard fare.
  18. 50
    Lie to Me isn't terrible. From what I've seen so far, it's like "The DaVinci Code," in that it's something full of riveting information unfortunately wrapped around a dopey story and characters who should be in love with each other but aren't.
  19. 50
    Lie to Me offers well-designed (and repeatedly, very white) interiors, utterly formulaic scripting, and familiar characters.
  20. If Lie to Me wants to elevate itself above all the other shows like it, it not only needs to beef up the quality of its mysteries, but to spend more time focusing on these unexpected downsides of the power to live a life of absolute truths.
  21. The show is slack and often phony and stuffed with TV clichés, but the science is wildly fun, and I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s a big hit.
  22. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    There surely have been worse hours on primetime, but seldom has there been one more predictable--not in the resolution of the cases, necessarily, but in every beat surrounding them.
  23. I bought into Ekman's ideas so immediately that I found myself looking at my watch as Lightman and company tried to persuade others. In the TV critic business, this is known as Not a Good Sign.
  24. 38
    Unless creators can shift Mr. Orange's deception detective into an area viewers won't see coming every week, Lie to Me's science gimmick is sure to wane thin soon into its short first season, a truth that doesn't bode well for a series renewal.
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 178 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 6 out of 178
  1. LindaM
    Aug 1, 2009
    Tim Roth is an amazing actor, one of the best in the business! I love this show, it's far superior to most. I have watched every episode Tim Roth is an amazing actor, one of the best in the business! I love this show, it's far superior to most. I have watched every episode and the reruns. Now I find myself trying to read everyone's body language and facial expressions! Full Review »
  2. Jul 28, 2012
    I found the show boring , the plot was not at all interesting and I did not like some of the actors.... Also the plot repeats it self after aI found the show boring , the plot was not at all interesting and I did not like some of the actors.... Also the plot repeats it self after a few episodes... Full Review »
  3. Jun 4, 2012
    I'd prefer to watch this "Recycled" materal instead of NCIS or CSI any day. Lie to Me is by far THE best drama series i've ever watched in my life.