3. I'm going to give Hayley McFarland her own bullet point. The young actress has an amazing chemistry with Tim Roth. These two are completely believable as father and daughter and with Emily making strides toward growing up this season, their relationship has been a joy to watch unfold. Emily is both a typical teenager and her father's daughter, making her a handful for even Cal to read. From Cal's stress at teaching his daughter to drive to Emily's ability to force her dad to apologise to Loker when Lightman punches him because Emily kissed him, these two are just plain fun to watch. It doesn't hurt that Emily is clearly Cal's vulnerable point, so much so he puts The Lightman Group at risk again when he compromises a case with the FBI so he doesn't compromise his custody of his daughter. McFarland has a delicate touch, keeping her character sweet and real and yet more than anyone else able to challenge Cal's ability to read faces.
4. The guest stars. Both Tim Roth and Shawn Ryan have said they think their show is somewhat unique in television drama in that guest stars are encouraged to come in and play with the material, allowing for surprises and real use of the actors' potential. That freedom pays off, because the guest stars on Lie To Me consistently find both chemistry and nuance with the regular cast, from Jason Dohring in "Beat The Devil" to Melissa George in her current mini-arc. The next episode will feature several actors from Ryan's previous show, The Shield.
5. Cal and Gillian's relationship. The lead's romantic life is often a problem in episodic drama, because if s/he gets involved with someone in the regular cast, it can throw the entire ensemble off balance. At the same time, if the will they/won't they tension gets stretched out too far, it can kill the interest fans have in the pairing. House, for example, has had huge problems working out this issue, but Lie To Me so far has found a great groove for Cal and Gillian. The actors started out creating a solid friendship for the two characters, with flirtatious undertones based on their as yet not completely revealed history. That friendship allows both characters to get involved with other people while still keeping their own relationship fresh and just a little ambiguous. I love the way the two tease each other, as they try to either breach or shore up their boundaries. And it's clear they care about each other, whether or not they ever try a romance. I can imagine these two spinning their tension across several seasons quite successfully, with the audience both rooting for them and understanding why Gillian in particular is reluctant to commit to a relationship.