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‘Fool Me Once’ Is An Addictive Netflix Mystery

Premiering on New Year’s Day, the limited series was inspired by Harlan Coben’s New York Times bestselling novel and has continued to gain hours of viewership
Netflix+has+already+announced+two+more+adaptations+of+Coben%E2%80%99s+novels+in+response+to+the+success+of+%E2%80%9CFool+Me+Once.%E2%80%9D
ANDREA RIVAS
Netflix has already announced two more adaptations of Coben’s novels in response to the success of “Fool Me Once.”

Netflix released a limited series “Fool Me Once” which premiered on Jan. 1 and quickly became the most-watched television show in the United States and a top 10 hit in 91 countries. “Fool Me Once” is based on Harlan Coben’s 2016 New York Times bestselling novel “Fool Me Once” and has accumulated an impressive 153 million hours of viewership.

Coben’s work is not new to Netflix, as his novels have frequently been adapted into limited series, some of which include, “Safe” (2018), “The Stranger” (2020) and “Gone for Good” (2021).

The story of “Fool Me Once” revolves around Maya Stern (Michelle Keegan), a former military pilot who has been suspended and is also a widow and a mother. As she tries to deal with the murder of her husband and sister, Maya finds herself on a dangerous path filled with deceit, secrets and murder. She uncovers twisted truths about her family’s past and is forced to confront the consequences of the power and manipulation wielded by her deceased husband’s family, who has a history of being silent deceivers regarding Maya. 

The series stands out from others in the mystery thriller genre due to its unique storyline. “Fool Me Once” is a visual representation of the phrase “Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me” 

Following Maya’s husband’s funeral, the plot begins to unravel itself. Maya notices her husband on the live nanny camera footage set in her daughter’s room, raising questions about her sanity and the certainty of her husband’s death. 

Though Maya’s loved ones are concerned about her well-being after becoming a young widow, they believe that this sighting is all a product of her imagination, born out of grief and sadness. Despite this, Maya is determined to uncover the truth, starting with the first question: is her husband alive?

Fans of the thriller genre are creating videos on the app recommending the series as the next best show to binge-watch — fans are impersonating characters, reacting to the finale and decoding hidden messages while searching for clues in every scene, making it a must-watch for all suspense and thriller fans.

On Jan. 22, Netflix announced that due to the success of the show, two more limited series adaptations based on Coben’s mystery thrillers will be released: “Missing You,” and “Run Away.” These will be the ninth and 10th adaptations of Coben’s novels that Netflix has produced.

“Fool Me Once” has been trending on TikTok. Fans of the thriller genre are creating videos on the app recommending the series as the next best show to binge-watch — fans are impersonating characters, reacting to the finale and decoding hidden messages while searching for clues in every scene, making it a must-watch for all suspense and thriller fans.  

I have always been drawn to thriller and suspense genres as a naturally curious person — similar to Maya — and I always want to uncover what’s hidden behind closed doors and dig deep enough to reveal the truth, even if it’s unsettling. I discovered this show on TikTok, without any prior knowledge of the plot or having seen the trailers. During an eight-hour flight from Spain to the U.S., I decided to watch the show, and as the episodes progressed, my jaw dropped in awe — I couldn’t help but gasp silently on that airplane as the plot thickened, and one lie led to another. 

“Fool Me Once” promises to deliver another unforgettable and captivating tale with an unexpected outcome.

It can be a real challenge to keep an audience entertained for an entire season, but this particular show does it flawlessly. Despite multiple plotlines and loose ends, everything ultimately connects and leads to the same conclusion. The characters in this show are complex, similar to the stories of individuals you may meet outside of the screen. They have secrets, hidden motives and often lie to each other. 

Maya’s true nature is difficult to unravel — it’s like piecing together a puzzle with missing parts; the final image is never fully revealed because there are too many random pieces. The protagonist’s past is drowning in mystery, and her secrets only come to light in the nick of time. She is a strong-willed woman who defies conventional gender roles. Despite being a mother, she is also a military soldier who has served overseas.

Another important character is Detective Kierce (Adeel Akhtar), the lead investigator in Maya’s husband’s case. Equally elusive and mysterious, throughout the show, Kierce’s character seems to be struggling with a serious illness as he experiences random blackouts and physical paralysis. Kierce’s relationship with Maya is intricate, and their conversations often seem as though they are speaking in riddles. 

There are blurred lines hidden behind each word Maya and Kierce share — they both communicate a lot while being cautious not to reveal too much. Although Kierce cares for Maya, he still questions her movements and intentions.

The limited series demonstrates how the same story can be told in different ways, how things are not always as they seem and how the innocent may not be so innocent after all. Sometimes the ones we accuse of wrongdoing might be victims themselves. There are dark parts to the world, and, at times, they can be closer to us than we think.

The success of this show is a testament to the allure of mysteries and thrillers, and “Fool Me Once” promises to deliver another unforgettable and captivating tale with an unexpected outcome.

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About the Contributor
ANDREA RIVAS, Staff Writer

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  • O

    Onahira RivasFeb 9, 2024 at 1:50 am

    OMG after reading this article for sure I want to watch this series!! Great and thank you for the recommendation 🙂

    Reply
  • L

    LuisaFeb 9, 2024 at 12:23 am

    Great analogy of the show!
    Im gonna watch it for sure, you totally convinced me.

    Reply