Freeform’s The Watchful Eye took me by surprise. When I began watching the series, I thought it was going to be one of those “damn the man” series, but it’s so much more. The series goes from a “heist” series to a ghost story and murder mystery with a dash of Illuminati.


Elena Santos, a young woman with a complicated past, maneuvers her way into working as a live-in nanny for an affluent family in Manhattan. She quickly learns that everyone in the mysterious building has deadly secrets and ulterior motives. What they don’t know, however, is that Elena has some shocking secrets of her own.

Official The Watchful Eye Synopsis

In The Watchful Eye, we meet Elena Santos (Mariel Molino). She’s a scrappy young woman with secrets of her own. She’s currently living with her NYPD Officier Boyfriend, Scott (Jon-Michael Ecker). The two have hatched a plan to find and steal a family treasure from the 1%-er families that have wronged them, the Winthrop/Wards.

Elena immerses herself into their world by becoming the nanny to a widower, Matthew Ward (Warren Christie). While sneaking around, albeit terribly she’s constantly getting caught, she learns that there’s so much more to this family’s dark past than meets the eye. Now, not only is she in danger, she has a ghost haunting her hoping to bring light to their terrible secrets.


No murder mystery would be complete without a fun band of characters. Amy Acker (Angel) plays Tory Ayres, sister to the deceased. She’s a raging bitch, but has good reason. She knows what these families do and she needs to keep her family safe. 

Aliya Royale (The Walking Dead: The World Beyond) plays Ginny Welles, another nanny in the building. She is Elena’s best friend, but Ginny is suspicious of her every move. Matthew Ward (Warren Christie) is the widower whose wife recently unlived herself…or did she? Is he truly a good person, or has he been corrupted by the family’s power and promise of success?

Kelly Bishop (Gilmore Girls) is Mrs. Ivy, the richest and nosiest neighbor in the building. She knows all the comings and goings of everyone and expects Elena to keep her abreast of her nanny situation.


While not all the twists and turns of The Watchful Eye are that hard to guess I found myself invested in Elena’s journey. I enjoyed watching her be a bad snoop while getting herself into tough situations. I also enjoyed seeing the puzzle pieces snapping into place. They were smart and fun to watch. And, there were definitely a few times when I found myself shocked and surprised.

Is this series perfect? Absolutely not. However, it’s definitely a fun ride with multiple interesting characters. If Young Adult mysteries are your vibe, then this series will not disappoint.

The Watchful Eye comes to Freeform on January 30, 2023, at 9 pm with a two-episode premiere. Then, will air weekly at 10 p.m. subsequently, arriving the next day on Hulu.