One Of Us Is Lying is the newest Netflix (Peacock in the US) show that primarily revolves around teen drama in a thriller series that is actually quite deep. That said, the series was an adaptation of the book written by Karen McManus. In that regard, let’s look at some of the key differences between the show and the book.
1. Detention Scene
Both the series and the book start off in episode 1 with the detention scene that involves Simon and the soon-to-be Bayview Four. All of the details regarding what happened in both the series and the book are quite the same, as they were brought into detention for odd reasons.
However, the biggest difference between the detention scene in the series and the one in the book is that the one overseeing the detention in the book was MR. Avery instead of MS. Avery. That means that they changed the gender of the teacher from male to female.
The change in gender doesn’t look like a big deal because it didn’t contribute much to the story of the series. However, in the book, Mr. Avery’s hatred for technology was certainly shown well enough such that it would make the readers understand why both Bronwyn and Addy were sent to detention.
2. Avery’s Role
We now have to return once again to Avery even though the character isn’t very important in the series and the book. However, her role in the series was much bigger than that of in the book. In the book, Mr. Avery didn’t have a bigger role than the one that sent the students to detention, and the only reason why he did send some of the students to detention was the fact that he hated technology.
Meanwhile, in the series, Ms. Avery had a role to play in the events that led to Simon’s death. The series showed how Ms. Avery helped Vanessa get an. Simon knew about this and used the information to blackmail Ms. Avery into sending the Bayview Four to detention for petty reasons.
While Ms. Avery certainly wasn’t aware of what Simon was planning, the fact that she was dragged into the plan certainly isn’t in the book.
3. Maeve’s Character
Maeve Rojas is Bronwyn Rojas’ little sister who spent much of her childhood getting treatment for cancer. While she did survive, she didn’t have the same kind of normal childhood that Bronwyn experienced, and that led her to become an outcast of some sort in the series, as she became a goth-like character who secretly hung out with Simon and Janae.
However, in the book, Maeve was portrayed as a girl-next-door kind of character that isn’t even close to the way she was portrayed in the series. She never hung out with Simon and Janae in the book. Meanwhile, Simon actually posted something bad about her on the About That app, and that led to Maeve’s involvement in the story.
4. Missing Characters
In the series, there weren’t a lot of characters introduced, as there were only a few supporting characters that we regularly saw alongside the Bayview Four. However, this was not the case in the book.
The book described Addy as having a big sister named Ashton. Because their mother wasn’t exactly the best when it came to motherly advice, Ashton served as Addy’s confidant. And that sister-sister relationship was missing in the series.
Another huge character that was missing in the show is Luis, who is one of Cooper’s friends. Luis doesn’t have any important roles in the One Of Us Is Lying Book, but he does play a bigger role in the sequel novel One Of Us Is Next. If the show wouldn’t cast Luis in the adaptation of One Of Us Is Next, that means that they’d have to alter some aspects of the plot.
5. Janae Was Aware Of The Plan
Both the series and the book described Janae as quite possibly the only friend that Simon had, and that was true to some extent. However, there are differences in how they were able to tell Janae’s story, and that has a connection with Simon’s overall personality differences in both versions of the story.
Janae was aware of Simon’s plan of putting the peanut oil to kill himself the entire time, and the fact that she knew that he was getting too deep with his hatred towards the members of the Bayview High community became a huge concern for her. She didn’t want to be part of Simon’s plan but was forced by Jake to go along with it because he blackmailed her with an edited recording.
6. The Manner Of Cooper’s Outing
It wasn’t a secret in the series that Cooper is gay and that his brother and girlfriend knew about his sexuality. Meanwhile, none of the members of the Bayview community knew about his sexuality except for a select few.
However, in the book, he was outed by the police as they basically announced to the world that he was gay while they were investigating the matter. Prior to that, no one knew that Cooper was gay except for his lover. Neither his brother nor his girlfriend knew about it.
Outing Cooper had huge repercussions on his life because college scouts stopped calling him. Meanwhile, hecklers began showing up to his baseball game to throw homosexual slurs at him.
7. Kris Had A Bigger Role On The Show
Speaking of Cooper’s sexuality, the series showed that he had a secret lover named Kris, who was going to college in a nearby school. While he is only a supporting character on the show, his role was bigger than that of in the book.
Kris was almost never mentioned in the book, as it was only near the end of the book that he became more relevant. The series’ showrunner must’ve wanted us to see more of the dynamic between Cooper and Kris to make the show more inclusive.
8. Bronwyn And Nate’s Relationship
Bronwyn and Nate are a thing both in the series and the book. However, the manner in which their relationship developed was quite different. The book version of their relationship happened steadily and was more fleshed out.
However, in the series, Bronwyn had a boyfriend named Evan, who she had to break up with later in the series due to the events surrounding her involvement with the Bayview Four. She eventually developed a thing for Nate after the breakup.
Meanwhile, in the book, Bronwyn and Nate start communicating and seeing each other almost instantly after Simon’s death. Their relationship was developed in the book from start to finish.
9. Simon’s Personality
Simon was the moderator of the About That app in both the series and the book. However, he was much more of a tragic character in the book compared to his asshole personality in the show version.
In the series, Simon’s motives for starting the About That app and blackmailing people regarding their secrets was more in line with his bitterness regarding the hypocrisy of high school students and how he was just simply a jerk.
However, in the book, he was an outcast who hated everyone in the school because he felt like he didn’t belong. He actually wanted to kill himself, and that led to him succeeding when he pulled off his own suicide by putting the peanut oil in the water he was drinking.
10. Jake’s Involvement
Jake, Addy’s boyfriend, played a big role in both the show and the book, as he wanted to get revenge on Addy for cheating on him. However, there are differences regarding his involvement in the plan about Simon’s allergic reaction.
In the series, Jake was the mastermind because he convinced Simon to go along with his plan so that he could make Addy’s life a living hell. However, when he found out about Simon recording their Xbox conversations, he decided to take away the EpiPens in the nurse’s office so that Simon wouldn’t end up getting saved.
However, in the book, Simon simply asks Jake to help him out. But Jake didn’t know about Simon wanting to kill himself. Of course, in the book, Jake wasn’t killed but was simply arrested.