Meghan Oppenheimer’s toxic love series, Tell Me Lies, has been popular for a while now. Although the show is pretty traumatic, it still makes us want to keep watching. Starring Grace Van Patten and Jackson White in the lead roles, Tell me lies revolves around a couple that’s anything but good for each other.
Cheating, lying and gaslighting are predominant themes in the series, but it also has a touch of mystery that makes for a good plot twist by the end. The show was seen on Hulu on September 7th, 2022, and was ordered for around ten episodes. Tell Me Lies is originally a TV series adaptation of the book of the same name, authored by Carola Lovering.
Her other notable works include Can’t look away and Too Good to be True. The storyline of the series is overall similar to the book, but certain elements are completely different. A good read, nonetheless. So if you’re looking for a series just like Tell Me Lies, you’re at the right place. Hopefully.
Here’s a list of all shows filled with toxic and emotionally manipulating relationships and mysterious storylines. Some include comedy as well, but all of these shows share certain elements with the Hulu original.
1. Normal People
This show from Ireland is about a young couple, like Lucy and Stephen, who fall for each other shortly after meeting in High school. We see the journey of their relationship through all those years and even after graduating, which is exactly how the Tell Me Lies timeline takes place. It’s filled with just as many intimate scenes, which have received both appreciation and complaints from its viewers.
Both of their lives are filled with trauma and sadness, making Marianne Sheridan (Daisy Edgar-Jones) and Connell Waldron (Paul Mescal) stick together and find solace in each other. Normal People is just as vulnerable as Tell Me Lies but without all the cheating and immature behavior.
The show was originally seen on Hulu on April 26th, 2020. It has around 12 episodes, all available to stream on Hulu. It has a rating of almost 91% on Rotten Tomatoes, so definitely worth a watch if you like Tell Me Lies.
2. Conversations With Friends
This show is inspired by an Irish author, Sally Rooney’s work. The novel was released in 2017 and received much appreciation over the years. It is based on a relationship between four people, developing in unpredictable ways. Ex-lovers turned best friends, Bobbi and Frances, head over to another country for their education. At an event, they meet the famous author Melissa Baines.
Her husband Nick (Joe Alwyn) is a trophy husband and starts developing feelings for Frances, and soon things between them get much deeper. Though Frances knows this relationship is wrong, she still pursues it for some time, a trait that’s seen in Lucy from Tell Me Lies as well.
While Frances and Nick’s lives are tangled up, Bobbi and Melissa get closer too. However, Melissa hurts many people in the process. The story takes us on the journey of these four people, filled with complex feelings of love, friendship, and growth.
3. American Gigolo
This series was brought to us by Showtime and was aired just recently on September 11th, 2022. It features the story of Julian Kaye, who sleeps with a woman but finds her mysteriously stabbed in the morning. Although he doesn’t commit the crime, he is sent to jail for almost 15 years.
The story follows his life after he is released from prison and starts the search for what happened that night. Julian also hopes to reconnect with his past lover, Gretchen Mol, who now seems to be involved in many problems of her own.
The show is filled with layers of mystery, and beneath them all, we see that Julian is just a victim of circumstances. The vibe of the show is much similar to Tell Me Lies, but the overall storyline is different.
American Gigolo can be streamed on Showtime’s Website and Hulu. The show has around eight episodes at present and only one season. If you’re into mystery shows with romance and backstabbing, American Gigolo will suit your tastes.
4. Doctor Foster
In another Thriller/cheating/romance series, Doctor Foster takes us on a rollercoaster ride when Gemma Foster finds out that her perfect life is about to break into pieces. The show was first seen on BBC One in September 2015.
37-year-old Gemma is a doctor and does her best to help her patients, usually. When she finds out that Simon Foster, her husband, is having an affair, she goes deeper into their relationship at the expense of losing her sanity.
Doctor Foster has two seasons, which can be viewed on Stan, Apple TV, and Prime Video. The series is very melodramatic and unrealistic at times, but it shows just how toxic two people can become for each other in a marriage. Suranne Jones has been commended for her work on the show, and Doctor Foster has received various National Television awards for its performances.
5. Cruel Summer
Created by Bert V. Royal, this show is about two very dissimilar teenagers. Kate Wallis, a much-loved and popular girl in high school, gets kidnapped one day with no traces left behind. Jeanette Turner, who was always bullied, covers up the position that Kate once held. She changes herself to become just as popular and loved and even starts a relationship with Kate’s former boyfriend, Jamie Henson.
Things get complicated when Kate is found alive, and she accuses Jeanette of not helping her when she has the chance. This causes widespread hate for Jeanette, who loses everything she has created for herself. Cruel Summer focuses on the same day over a range of years, so it might get confusing.
It also has very sensitive topics such as grooming and violence. As the story unfolds, viewers find both sides wrong as well as right, and it gets harder to choose who to root for. Nonetheless, it’s a good thriller series that does resemble Tell Me Lies in some way. The show was aired on Freeform in April 2021 and had around 10 episodes. You can watch Cruel Summer on Hulu or YouTube TV.
How could You not make it to the list of Toxic Romance shows, with all its psychopathic serial killer glory? Well, You is kind of similar to Tell Me Lies and is another show that is inspired by the book, mostly books by Caroline Kepnes.
The story is about Joe Goldberg, a murderer who falls for an unassuming girl and starts to stalk her life. The first season revolves around Joe’s attempts to make the girl he likes to fall for him and only him, with him killing anyone who gets in the way. The second season of You is much different.
You get better over the seasons, with Joe having a taste of his own medicine in the recent seasons. The first show was aired around September 9th, 2018, and has been around three seasons up until now. The fourth season will be released in a few months, on February 9th, 2023. You are a must-watch for romance thrillers and are available to watch on Netflix.
7. I Know What You Did Last Summer
Another series inspired by the book, This show takes us on a thrilling ride, with young adults not only covering up the accidental murder they commit but also being killed consequently by a mysterious killer who seems to know what happened that one blurry night.
Though the show lacks many romantic elements, it’s just as secretive and puzzling as Tell Me Lies. The show started airing way back in October of 2021. It isn’t completely similar to the book and has many details which were added to make the series much more interesting.
This series has received mixed reviews, with many viewers not liking the number of plot holes the show has. The series stars many new-generation actors, such as Madison Iseman, who is famous for her role in Jumanji’s recent adaptations. The show can be streamed on Amazon, Netflix as well as Hulu.
If you’ve seen the show, Check This Out: I Know What You Did Last Summer Series Ending Explained
Although it’s a Spanish show, Elite has many things that make it similar to Tell Me Lies. It’s based on a group of Young teenagers as well and focuses on their lives as they are transferred to one of the “Better” schools in Spain. Being from a completely different background than those of the school, these three students go through various things as they try to adjust to their life in the new school.
The show is filled with drama, romance, and cheating and stars Itzan Escamilla, Mina El Hammani, and Miguel Herran as the three transfer students. Elite was first seen on television on Netflix, Spain, on October 5th, 2018. It has a total of 6 seasons now, and each of them has around eight episodes. It can be availed at Netflix in various places around the globe.
9. Desperate Housewives
You might be confused as to what a soap drama is doing here, but let me tell you, Desperate Housewives, and Tell Me Lies have a lot more in common than you think. Both of these series feature a mysterious death connected to the people that they thought they could trust. The show is pretty lengthy and focuses on the lives of four women who unknowingly are involved in something much darker.
Desperate Housewives is an old show, which was aired way back in 2004, and lasted for around eight whole seasons. It garnered millions of viewers and became one of the most-watched series of its time. Not to mention the multiple awards it received for its actor’s performances and storyline.
At present, the show can be streamed at Hulu, Disney+ Hotstar, or Prime Video. It involves various storylines and perspectives, with cheating, romance, and failing marriages being some of the themes as well.
10. Big Little Lies
Based on a Book by Liane Moriarty, This show was released as a short series at first. It later became a full-fledged drama and thriller show featuring the lives of moms who all come from different lives. They somehow get involved with a murder in the present, and the show shows us the events that led to this in the past.
This HBO show has received multiple awards and nominations for its acting and storyline. This is expected as Big Little lies stars commendable actors with years of acting careers, including Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, and Shailene Woodley.
This mystery and dark comedy show can be streamed on Hulu, Apple TV, Disney+ Hotstar (India), and its original provider, HBO Max. The show has been rated highly by critics and is addictive. Season 2 also stars the legendary actress Meryl Streep, so it’s worth a watch, even if it’s not completely similar to Tell Me Lies’ romance side.
11. The Affair
With Dominic West and Ruth Wilson in lead roles, The Affair is an award-winning series that was first seen on television back on October 12th, 2014. This series is unique, as it utilizes an effect called the Rashomon effect.
It means that a single scene is shown from the perspective of various characters, which adds both depth as well as a contradiction. Focusing on the characters Noah and Alison, The Affair is about two married couples whose lives start to change irreversibly after getting tangled up at a Diner where Alison works as a waitress.
The Affair deals with cheating and unreciprocated feelings. The main characters are older, but the way their relationship proceeds is just as seen in Tell Me Lies. Jail, Divorce, children, the show includes everything. With the addition of the Rashomon effect, The Affair certainly has a darker yet more interesting tone to it. The Affair can currently be viewed on Hulu, Showtime, or Apple TV.
12. Dirty John
Christopher Goffard released a podcast in 2018 inspired by a real-life person, John Meehan. When John’s story came to light, it was revealed that he was a serial manipulator and had a history of abusive behavior. He later died after being fatally wounded by his Step Daughter, Terra Newell.
This podcast served as the main inspiration for the show and was released by Bravo later that year (2018). As of now, it has two seasons, each focusing on different people.
The first season concerns itself with John Meehan’s story, while the second one talks about a similar case. John Meehan shows qualities much similar to Stephen from Tell Me Lies. Dirty John is available to stream on Netflix and Vudu.
13. The Summer I Turned Pretty
This show is more of a Rom-com, but considering the way the characters interact and the nature of relationships that form, it’s similar to Tell Me Lies, without the cheating and murder mystery.
This series was so well received that it led to the books that served as inspiration becoming top-selling books soon after its release. The show revolves around the life of Isabel Conklin (Belly) and the relationships she develops while on vacation with her brother and mom at a beach.
This series was first seen on Prime Video on June 17th, 2022, with the season consisting of around 7 episodes. There are hopes for a second season, but the date hasn’t been confirmed yet.
14. Gossip Girl
Cecily Von Ziegesar is well known as the author behind the book Gossip Girl, a show that still is popular, with a huge amount of fan followers. Gossip Girl is just as toxic as Tell Me Lies, although its storyline follows a much different route.
This show is about a group of rich teenagers who become victims to a mysterious blogger who seems to be always keeping an eye on whatever they do. With scandals, toxic loves, and teenage drama, Gossip Girl is the perfect source for all these elements. The main leads are Blake Lively, Leighton Meester, and Penn Badgley.
Blair Waldorf, Gossip Girls (Credits: The CW) Gossip Girl can be streamed on Netflix, Stan, and Prime Video. A new spin-off set to be in a different timeline but starring characters in the same situation premiered last year and is currently releasing its second season (December 1st).
15. Love & Anarchy
This is a Swedish series by Netflix and follows the story of Sofie and Max, who end up meeting by coincidence when Max is hired as a temporary IT guy at the company Sofie works at. Although their relationship starts playfully, with them assigning each other simple tasks to win something, this little game of theirs leads to them developing feelings for each other throughout the two seasons.
Love & Anarchy is the name of the book Sofie works on in the show, for which she always receives sarcastic comments from her husband. Now with Max in her life, Sofie finds joy once again but is held back due to social norms. The tasks they start giving each other become much more impacting and irreversible. The show is available to watch on Netflix.
16. Scenes From A Marriage
Hagai Levi’s miniseries, Scenes From A Marriage, is rather warmer than Tell Me Lies, but it similarly focuses on a deteriorating relationship between two people that just can’t seem to let go of each other. Portraying Jessica Chastain and Oscar Isaac in the lead roles, Scenes from a Marriage is a true representation of what most marriages are like in modern times.
Both of these actors complement each other well, and this chemistry makes the show much more interesting. The show is tormenting and emotional yet drags us into watching it more just to know how it ends.
It may seem more intense than reality at times and even difficult to understand, but as the show ends, the emotions we’re left with make the show worth watching. At present, the show can be streamed on HBO Max, Hotstar, and Hulu.
This is another Netflix series that revolves around infidelity and past romances, a recurring theme in Tell Me Lies. The story is about Billie Connelly, a housewife married to a good man who’s also well off. Although her life seems to be going well, she misses her past fling with Brad, who was now the owner of a Record label.
He comes back into her life, and Billie, played by Sarah Shahi, gets involved with him once again, although she has two children with the good Husband, Cooper. The show is filled with intimate scenes, at times even becoming unnecessary, but the storyline is okay and somewhat similar to Tell Me Lies.
The show was first seen on television in June 2021 and was later announced to be having a 2nd season, whose premiere date hasn’t come out yet. It is currently able to be streamed on Netflix.
18. Heartbreak High
This is an Australian show that focuses on the lives of Amerie Wadia and her friends, who become involved in various problems in their high school, Hartley High. Amerie sprays a map showing all the sexual relationships that have been happening in the school, and after she is revealed to be the creator of the hallway art, she and all the students, with their names on the wall, are made to attend special classes.
This causes her to be hated by everyone else in the school. That, coupled with the fact that her best friend stopped talking to her, makes Amerie feel the lowest. The show is inspired by a similar show that used to air back in 1994.
Heartbreak High was first seen on Netflix on September 14th, 2022. It has around 8 episodes only and can be streamed online on Netflix currently.
Young Relationships filled with mystery and drama. That’s what Riverdale and Tell Me Lies Have in common. What they don’t share is the supernatural elements that Riverdale focuses on. Although they both also share a mysterious murder that they unravel as the series unfolds, Riverdale is mostly about Archie, Betty, Veronica, and Jughead and how their relationships change over time.
Riverdale is taken up from the classic Archie comics and is mostly targeted towards a younger audience, just like the previous show, Heartbreak High. However, Heartbreak High has much more mature content. It remains of the most popular shows, with Lili Reinhart and Camila Mendes gaining tremendous fame after the series started airing on The CW.
Riverdale was seen on The CW on January 26th, 2017, and has had around 6 seasons up until now. The episodes range from 13 in the first season to 22 in the more recent ones. Riverdale can be viewed on Netflix and HBO Max.
Also Read: 10 Riverdale Facts That You May Not Know
20. Thirteen Reasons Why
Created based on Jay Asher’s similarly titled book, Thirteen Reasons Why is another well-known teenage drama series filled with various themes, including toxic relationships and death. This show has gained a lot of controversy for the way it chooses to portray sensitive issues like suicide, violence, and sexual abuse. It has a lot of emotional impacts and is not suitable for those who are emotionally unstable.
The characters play their roles well, and the story is good and sheds light on various issues that need awareness. Katherine Langford, who plays the main character, Hannah Baker, has received multiple awards for her performance on the show, along with Dylan Minnette.
Dylan plays the role of Clay, the person who finds Hannah’s suicide tapes and plays them. These tapes each tell a reason for what led to Hannah’s demise. The show was first seen on Netflix in 2017 and had around four seasons. All seasons except the fourth one consist of around 13 episodes each.
21. Fleishman Is In Trouble
This show, created by Taffy Brodesser-Akner, is centered around a doctor called Toby Fleishman, who is in his 40s and rediscovers life after ending his marriage with Rachel. Toby wakes up one day to find both his kids, Hanna and Solly, at his house. Since he and his wife were divorced, they took turns staying with the children. It was supposed to be Rachel’s turn, but she dropped the kids at Toby’s and disappeared.
Having no choice, Toby, who was dating new women each day, has to now go on a search for his wife. His old friends Libby and Seth show up in his life as well, adding more complexity to it. The show explores an as wide range of topics and mostly focuses on the love that has lost its charm.
The actors are all skilled at what they do, but being directed by the actual writer of the book made them work much harder to portray each character truly. Fleishman in Trouble first started airing earlier this month, on November 17th, 2022. It’s still ongoing at present and has been ordered for around 8 episodes this season. The show can be streamed on Hulu or FX Networks.
22. The Vampire Diaries
This classic teenage romance/ thriller fits right into the genre Tell Me Lies belongs to, but without the supernatural side of it. The Vampire Diaries is still relevant as the time it first started airing on The CW. Even though The CW has tons of other Vampire series, They haven’t managed to surpass what The Vampire Diaries created.
It revolves around the lives of Elena, a young teenage girl who just moved into a new town, and two brothers, Damon and Stefan. Both of the brothers end up falling for Elena, but things get much more complicated when Elena discovers the fact that they’re vampires, and somehow, she is also involved in the history of the place.
Although most people might’ve already seen it, it still deserves a place on the list. The overall theme of a new girl moving in and a boy falling for her is a shared storyline between Tell Me Lies and The Vampire Diaries. The show has around 8 seasons, with two spin-offs (The Originals and Legacies). It can be viewed online on streaming platforms such as Prime Video and Netflix.
23. Nine Perfect Strangers
This is another show by the author Liane Moriarty, the writer behind Big Little Lies. Aside from having inspired by the same author, both shows also share a cast member, Nicole Kidman. Nicole plays the role of some sort of leader in this series. Nine strangers are invited for a retreat at a spa in California. A novelist, a teacher, a social media influencer, and many others are included in the bunch.
What they thought was going to be a normal retreat turned out to be much more than they first assumed. What’s more creepy is the fact that these nine strangers were not randomly selected but were selected after a thorough examination of their lives.
They do find therapy and solace, but it brings along various other mysteries at the Tranquillum House. The show was first seen on Hulu on August 18th, 2021, and only has around eight episodes. Nine Perfect Strangers can be streamed on Hulu, Prime Video, and Apple TV.
Written and created by Tom Edge, Lovesick is a story about three friends, Dylan Witter, Evelyn Douglas, and Luke Curran. Dylan is not that much of a romantic person but gets involved in many sexual relationships. This comes back to bite him as he later reportedly contracts Chlamydia, a venereal disease.
It doesn’t have many symptoms, so now he has to inform all the women he has slept with to get themselves checked. With a very witty play on words, this show was formerly called Scrotal Recall. Each episode’s usually a flashback where Dylan recalls a certain time in his life.
One of his roommates also ends up having a crush on him, but it doesn’t work out, and she later becomes engaged to someone else. Lovesick was first taken up for airing by Channel 4, UK, and has around three seasons. At present, the show can be streamed on Netflix, Vudu, or Amazon.
25. Pretty Little Liars
This is another show with a huge fanbase, even in the present times. Created by Ina Marlene King, Pretty Little Liars is much similar to desperate housewives, other than the fact that instead of married women, the story is about a group of teens. The most popular girl at school disappears one day, and her group of friends slowly starts to become distant.
They are later reminded of their past friends and relationships after a year when they suddenly start receiving threats to reveal what they’ve done from someone calling themselves “A.” Both Tell Me Lies and Pretty Little Liars focus on a group of friends being tangled up in a mystery. It also has toxic relationships but focuses more on the friend group.
Pretty Little Liars was first aired on Freeform in 2010 and ran for about seven seasons. The show has led to many spin-offs, with the most recent one being the Original Sin Spin-Off by HBO. The Pretty Little Liars series is available to watch on Netflix, Prime Video, Stan (Australia), or HBO Max.
Issa Rae and Larry Wilmore’s brainchild, Insecure, is an award-winning series that aired from 2016 to 2021. The show revolves around two friends who navigate through life being African-American in California. Although it’s very light-hearted compared to Tell Me Lies, both the shows have similar themes around relationships and struggles, and Insecure takes those serious elements and turns them into comedy.
The show is inspired by Issa’s other popular show but is not completely based on it. Along with relationship issues, we also experience racial and other social problems. Overall, Insecure is the show if you’re looking for an escape from something toxic but crave that Lucy finding herself, moving to college vibe. Insecure is available to watch on Binge (Australia), Hulu, YouTube TV, Hotstar (India), and HBO Max.
27. Love life
Love Life is made by Sam Boyd and is quite similar to Tell Me Lies in that they both deal with young women searching for love and facing heartbreaks. Love Life doesn’t have any thriller elements, but it’s a beautiful journey of Darby, the main character, from her first yet temporary love to a lasting and final love.
The show takes us through various interactions that Darby has, the different kinds of men she meets, her emotional well-being as well her friendships with other people. Love Life is a good show, and the second season focuses on someone else. Each season supposedly deals with the life of a new person.
28. Outer Banks
Just as thrilling as Tell Me Lies, Outer Banks is a show about a group of teenagers, each from different social backgrounds, uniting to find a treasure that the father of one of the members leaves behind. John B is the head of the Pogues, the not-so-well-off side of Outer Banks. Those who are richer are referred to as Krooks.
John B finds out that his dad is missing, but as they search for him, they find out that he might have $400 million worth of gold hidden somewhere. In hopes of becoming rich and becoming powerful in the Outer Banks, the teenagers set out on the journey to find the treasure. John B falls in love with Sarah Cameron, one of the Pogues.
Outer Banks was first aired on Netflix in April 2020. The second season began filming after COVID-19 restrictions were lifted and premiered around July 2021. Each season has about 10 Episodes. Outer Banks is filled with love, drama, and mystery and shows something bigger at play. At present, the show is available to stream on Netflix.
Tell Me Lies and Euphoria are much similar, as they both contain several toxic relationships. The show was created by Sam Levinson, the man behind other series like The Wizard of Lies and a new upcoming series featuring The Weeknd called The Idol. Euphoria is about a group of teenagers from East Highland who struggle to cope with relationships, drugs, and abuse.
The show has received backlash for its portrayal of teenagers, but it remains one of the most-watched shows on HBO. Zendaya plays the role of rehabilitated drug user on the show, and her incredible acting has landed her and many others various awards.
The show was first released on HBO on June 16th, 2019. The first season has around eight episodes and a few special episodes. The second season was aired earlier this year in January. Euphoria can be streamed on Binge (Australia), Crave (Canada), Hotstar (India), HBO Max, and Hulu.
30. The Sex Lives Of College Girls
A group of young friends is now in college, ready to discover their lives while they stay here until graduation. This line could apply to both The Sex Lives of College girls and Tell Me Lies. Though this might be more of a comedy-themed series, this show by Mindy Kaling aims to explore what life’s like for young adults of modern times.
The series presents nothing we haven’t seen before, but whatever it portrays, it does so in a very entertaining and engrossing way. It keeps us guessing what these unpredictable girls may just end up doing next.
The show was first aired on November 18th, 2021. It is currently releasing new episodes for its second installment and has around ten episodes in both seasons. The show is available to watch on HBO Max, Apple TV, and Binge.
31. Lies In Plain Sight
Although this is a movie, Lies In Plain Sight deals with thrilling and dramatic experiences in many similar ways to Tell Me Lies. The story is about Sofia Delgado, a blind woman who has to uncover the mystery behind her cousin Eva’s death.
Although it just seems like a suicide at first, Sofia realizes that there are hidden truths concerning Eva’s boyfriend and mom. The story has received much appreciation for its realistic adaptation and storyline. Being blind may make the mystery harder to solve for Sofia, but it certainly does not stop her from pursuing the truth.
32. Love Me
This Australian series is about siblings and their fathers, who face a sudden change in their lives that causes them to explore various feelings of love, separation, and sadness. Clara, Glen, and Aaron face a hard time in their lives when their mother, who is disabled, passes away. This loss creates a different environment for these siblings, who all go on their separate emotional journeys and eventually come back to each other.
Love Me is based on modern love and everything that comes with it. The series was first aired on December 26th, 2021. At present, there’s no news of any additions, but season 1 has around 6 episodes only, making it a very short series. Love Me can be streamed on Hulu and Binge.
Based on a Dutch show, Betrayal is a single-season show focusing on the life of Sara Hanley, a successful photographer who is not satisfied with her life with her husband. He also seems to not care much about her and often misunderstands her. This causes Sara to find solace in Jack, a person she coincidentally meets at one of the events with her husband.
They soon realize just how much they work well together, but Sara keeps her distance, knowing she is married and wants to stay with her husband. Things get much more complicated when Jack becomes the attorney who would be against Sara’s husband in a murder case. Now Sara has to choose whose side she wants to be at.
Betrayal used to air way back in September 2013. It has only one season with a total of 13 episodes. At present, this TV series can be streamed on Vudu, Disney+, and ABC, the original place where betrayal was streamed.