Lucy’s house of cards crumbled by the end of the Tell Me Lies season 1 finale. Not only did Stephen and Diana get back together with Stephen not even having the decency to break up with Lucy first, but Lucy responded by getting so drunk that she slept with Evan. It’s not a great time to be Lucy Albright.
HollywoodLife spoke EXCLUSIVELY with Tell Me Lies creator and showrunner Meaghan Oppenheimer about that game-changing finale ending for Stephen, Diana, and Lucy. While Lucy was left shell-shocked, Meaghan said that Lucy “earned that moment” after how she treated Diana. Plus, there was a mention of Drew in 2015 that inevitably prompted the question: what happened to him? Meaghan talked about it all and revealed what season 2 would bring as well.
First and foremost, does Bree know about Evan and Lucy sleeping together? Or does she still not know?
Meaghan Oppenheimer: She does not.
Does anyone else know about what happened?
Meaghan Oppenheimer: In the future years?
Meaghan Oppenheimer: I mean, I think Pippa probably knows.
In the later timeline, Stephen is engaged to Lydia, which is a big deal considering her connection to Lucy. If there is a season 2, would you dive into the origins of that relationship?
Meaghan Oppenheimer: In season 2, we might be more in the adult storyline than we were in season 1, but we will still be primarily focused in the college years. The goal is there’s all these little Easter eggs that are dropped in the 2015 year, like what happened to Drew, how did Lydia and Steven get together… those things are all things that we get to find out in the college years. Whether we will see the entire evolution of how Steven and Lydia became involved in season 2, it probably will be a slower burn, but we will definitely see them begin to interact in season 2.
Speaking of Drew, we hear Evan tell Lucy to give Wrigley a break because it was his brother’s birthday recently. Is Drew dead?
Meaghan Oppenheimer: I can’t say that. He’s had a rough time, though. I will say that.
Is it something that maybe happened recently, or is that something that happened in college?
Meaghan Oppenheimer: It’s something that will more likely unfold in season 2 in the college years.
We have to talk about that epic party moment with Stephen and Diana getting back together and walking down the stairs in front of Lucy. It’s the most 2008 thing ever with “Mr. Brightside” playing. Talk about that moment between the three of them. Diana got the last laugh this time.
Meaghan Oppenheimer: I know. So that moment of them coming down the stairs together is something that is in the book that I just loved. I could visualize it so clearly when I read that scene, so I knew I wanted to keep that in. That was probably one of the biggest set pieces that I kept from the book. It was funny because when we were editing it and when I first got the cut, I was not entirely sure how to make the scene work. Just because in the edit sometimes it’s like, oh, how does this work? We were trying to figure out the music. At first, we were doing more somber music and making it this more emotional moment. And then I said to the editor, “Could you just put ‘Mr. Brightside’ on? Can we just hear what that sounds like?” Because I thought there’d be just something so biting and ironic and kind of nasty in a way. We put it on and automatically we were all like, oh my god, that’s the song. It just made the moment. As awful as it is and devastating for Lucy, there’s a mischievous horror to it that I felt was a little bit appropriate. If you make it too somber it becomes too melodramatic.
I feel like it was a full circle moment after Lucy flaunted her relationship with Stephen in front of Diana at the festival.
Meaghan Oppenheimer: Absolutely. I think that Diana has been underestimated by Lucy consistently throughout the season. She played a very different game than Lucy, but she was always going to win. Also, I think Lucy has sort of made her bed. As much as we care about Lucy and love Lucy, she’s acted like an asshole. She earned that moment a little bit from Diana.
I find Diana’s relationship with Stephen equally fascinating as Stephen and Lucy’s relationship. She keeps going back to this guy when she could easily move on with her life. Why did she want to get back with Stephen? Why does she still want to help him at all? Is it just to get back at Lucy?
Meaghan Oppenheimer: I think it’s a lot of reasons. I think that she genuinely loves him. I think she sees flaws in him and flaws in his life that she does not personally have, so she is able to have a lot of empathy for it. I think she’s also just someone who’s a problem solver. She sees this mess of a person and she’s like, “I can fix him,” which is the kiss of death. So many people have that issue. I’ve certainly had that issue. But also, it’s like, if someone wants your toy, you want the toy even more. It’s so funny to me when I watch The Bachelor, those girls fall for that guy. Like, 90% of them genuinely really end up liking that guy. And I’m like, if you met him at a party with 20 other guys, would you like him? But it’s because everyone’s so focused on that guy, you automatically are like, “I need him to choose me.” I think it’s not the most wonderful of motives, but I think it’s relatable, especially at that age.
Lucy still has Macy’s death secret over Stephen’s head. Why do you think he took that risk knowing what Lucy could do with that secret?
Meaghan Oppenheimer: Because in that scene when she kind of threatens him, he threatens her back and brings up what she did Wrigley, the way she backs down and is immediately terrified… I think he knows there’s no way she’s going to tell on him because it would mean implicating herself as well. She’s really f**ked up, and she’s damaged her friendships for this relationship. She’s betrayed Pippa, and she has a lot to lose.
Diana is also willing to do a lot for Stephen, but do you think Stephen knows that maybe Diana wouldn’t keep this secret as Lucy has?
Meaghan Oppenheimer: That’s a good question. I think he probably hasn’t thought about that unless that was presented as an actual issue. I think he’s so in the moment and what needs to be done right now. I don’t know. I feel like there’s a world in which he could get Diana to keep the secret because he’s just such a master manipulator. I think he would go about it in a different way than he went about it with Lucy because I think Diana is not as easily manipulated or as easily gaslit. But I think he could probably get her to keep the secret too.
We spoke about this weeks ago about how Lucy knowing Stephen’s secret really gave Lucy some currency with him that she didn’t have before. We’ve seen how that backfired on her and how being in this relationship has changed her and made her much more manipulative and damaged her relationships. Between Stephen and Diana and now betraying her friend Bree with Evan, how are these things going to change Lucy in season 2?
Meaghan Oppenheimer: I think we’re going to be encountering a much more vulnerable Lucy. I think she’s been drinking the Kool-Aid and has been under this spell of having Stephen beside her and feeling kind of powerful. I think a lot of her own mistakes will be very clear to her at the beginning of season 2 of how much she has hurt people that actually were good to her. I think we will be finding probably a kinder, softer Lucy because I think she’s a kind person. She has walls up, and she’s a mess sometimes, but I don’t think she’s inherently cruel. I think she became cruel because of Stephen.
We do know that Stephen and Lucy’s relationship does continue for several years. When season 2 would pick up, would Lucy be licking her wounds? Would she be in the angry stage? Where would she stand with her feelings towards Stephen?
Meaghan Oppenheimer: I think that season 2 would need to explore some of Stephen and Lucy’s romantic lives away from each other, or at least part of the time. They wouldn’t be together at the beginning of the season. I think it would be really interesting to see a new love interest come in for Lucy that was messed up and complicated in very different ways and see her try to unlearn some of the behavior that she learned from Stephen and probably fail to unlearn those things. But I do think there will be some rage there, and there will absolutely be some revenge plots that happen at some point.