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Core points of Gamers

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Core points of Gamers

Netflix’s Wednesday TV Review


A pair of gothic icons find themselves trapped in a generic supernatural teen drama on the Netflix series. Wednesday. Both director Tim Burton and the addams family Wednesday Addams get lost in this plot-heavy series set in a boarding school for “outcasts.” It’s a little Gossip Girl and a little Harry Potteralong with decades of forgettable CW series, tied together mostly by Jenna Ortega’s flawless performance as the lead character.


Wednesday is still distinctive, but almost everything else about Wednesday could fit into a series that has nothing to do with the addams familyY. There was a lot of anticipation surrounding the casting of Luis Guzm├ín and Catherine Zeta-Jones as Wednesday’s parents, Gomez and Morticia, but they only appear in two of WednesdayFred Armisen’s eight episodes make only one appearance as Uncle Fester. The Addams with the most screen presence outside of Wednesday is the Thing, the disembodied hand who becomes Wednesday’s trusted companion as he investigates strange occurrences at Nevermore Rural Academy.

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An essential part of the appeal of the Addams Family, whether in the 1960s TV series, director Barry Sonnenfeld’s 1990s movies, or recent animated films, is the way they stick together, presenting a united front against the world. Wednesday it separates them almost immediately, as 15-year-old Wednesday is expelled from her last school after releasing piranhas into the pool. Her parents decide to send her to Nevermore, an enclave in Vermont where Gomez and Morticia met when they were students. Wednesday she resents being expected to follow in her parents’ footsteps, and she feels no more comfortable among Nevermore’s weirdos than she does in a mainstream school.

While the Addamses were always known for being “creepy, wacky, mysterious, and creepy,” they’ve usually existed in an enhanced version of the real world. Wednesday He changes all that, making Nevermore home to vampires, werewolves, mermaids, and other supernatural creatures and giving Wednesday psychic visions that allow him to see into the future. Those visions put her right in the middle of an investigation into mysterious monster attacks that have been occurring near Nevermore and the adjacent city of Jericho.

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Wednesday Addams backed by her Nevermore bandmates

The general supernatural mystery in Wednesday is mildly attractive at best, and creators Alfred Gough and Miles Millar (smallville, The Shannara Chronicles) limit comedy to occasional one-liners that Ortega delivers with perfectly withering deadpan. Rising Scream Queen (X2022 Scream) is a worthy successor to ’90s Wednesday portrait painter Christina Ricci. Ricci appears here in a mostly nondescript role as Marilyn Thornhill, the only “normal” teacher at Nevermore. Gwendoline Christie, as Nevermore director Larissa Weems, gets the flashier adult role, positioned as an adversary for Wednesday.

Burton, whose goth-cute aesthetic fits perfectly with Sonnenfeld’s films, directs the first four episodes, but his impact is so small that the switch to different directors is almost impossible to discern. Wednesday is better than Burton’s previous take on a YA-style story about a school for misfits, 2016’s terrible Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, but it is equally generic, apart from the presence of Ortega. Burton’s regular collaborators Danny Elfman and Colleen Atwood serve as composers and costume designers respectively for the first episode, giving it some of Burton’s signature ornate style, but they share credits with others in later episodes and the style is it becomes less distinctive.

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The genius of cartoonist Charles Addams’ original conception of Wednesday is evident in the largely bland supporting cast of fellow Nevermore students and other teens, including a couple of potential love interests for Wednesday. Emma Myers makes the strongest impression as Wednesday’s preternaturally cheerful roommate Enid, an unusually optimistic werewolf who is having trouble with her lycanthropic transformations. The subplots about Wednesday’s classmates mostly feel like filler, padding out the episodes to drag the lackluster mystery through to the end.

There are occasional references to the past. addams family productions, including a double snap to open a secret passageway and one of Wednesday’s suitors asking “Did you call?” as Addams’ butler Lurch when she summons him. Jericho is home to the colonial-themed attraction Pilgrim World, which offers an opportunity on Wednesday to make some dark observations about American history, like in Sonnenfeld’s most memorable scene. Addams Family Values. However, these superficial touches do not replace the appearances of the main members of the Addams Family, and come off as superficial fan service.

For all the characters’ emphasis on the idea that Nevermore students are weird, Wednesday it’s disappointingly conventional. There’s nothing off about the familiar rhythms of serialized mystery or the relationships between the teens in Nevermore. The weirdest moment Burton delivers is a bit of a throwaway at a school dance when Wednesday finally lets loose and moves to the music in a sort of throwback style. It has nothing to do with plot or worldbuilding, but it’s elegant and tongue-in-cheek, as Wednesday’s stone-faced expression contrasts with her fluid dance moves. That’s the kind of morbid nonsense that a addams family adaptation must be filled with.

The eight-episode first season of Wednesday premieres Wednesday, November 23 on Netflix.



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