Cruel Summer

Cruel Summer stars Olivia Holt (right) and Chiara Aurelia

‘Cruel Summer’ stars Olivia Holt (right) and Chiara Aurelia | Bill Matlock/Freeform via Getty Images

Cruel Summer is an American teen thriller series that premiered on Freeform in April 2021. The TV show is set in the 1990s in the fictional Texas town of Skylin, where an outgoing, adored high schooler, Kate Wallis, suddenly goes missing. Strangely, another teen, the shy and nerdy Jeanette Turner, takes over as the most popular girl. But when Kate resurfaces a year later, claiming Jeannette witnessed her abduction but didn’t report it, drama ensues as the mystery unravels. Which teen is telling the truth?

Each episode takes place over three summers in 1993, 1994, and 1995 and alternates between Kate’s and Jeanette’s points of view.


  • Cast: Chiara Aurelia, Olivia Holt, Froy Gutierrez, Harley Quinn Smith
  • Creator: Bert V. Royal
  • Genres: Drama, teen drama, crime, mystery, thriller
  • Original release: 2021
  • Seasons: 1
  • Episodes: 10
  • Network/Streaming: Freeform, Hulu
  • Behind the scenes: Co-stars Chiara Aurelia and Olivia Holt, who play Jeanette and Kate, didn’t have scenes together until the end of Season 1
  • Fun fact: Showrunner Tia Napolitano also worked on Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal
  • Shows like Cruel Summer: I Know What You Did Last Summer, Pretty Little Liars, Riverdale, Yellowjackets

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Visit the Cruel Summer page on the Freeform website.

Read more about Cruel Summer, including the cast, behind-the-scenes information, and new episodes: