This week, we all saw the highly anticipated release of Wednesday Addams on Netflix. The show was extremely hyped due to the nostalgic elements of the extremely loved film, The Addams Family, and famous director Tim Burton being hired for the show's direction.
Although the series is number one in many countries, is it worth the hype?
WARNING! SPOILER AHEAD
The television series begins with Wednesday causing trouble at her high school with the consequence of her being sent away to a new school that specializes in misfits, Nevermore Academy in this case. While the aesthetic of her new school is more in keeping with the supernatural nature of the show, we can't help but feel that this narrative is a little outdated and overdone.
Every coming-of-age TV show follows a similar plot structure, with the misfit being transferred to a new school and competing with Queen B, in this case, Bianca and her overly friendly and comedic companion portrayed by Enid Sinclair. This has been used in many TV shows and films over the years, from Wild Child, a film about a spoilt child who is sent to boarding school and finds herself, too, and more recently, Winx Club, where the main character Bloom follows a similar character archetype. We can't help but be disappointed by Tim Burton's safe choices for this show; no new ideas were explored here besides recycled concepts.
While the casting of Wednesday Addams, Pugsley, and Uncle Fester can be justified, Morticia and Gomez cannot. In the original films, the casting of both characters was done perfectly, which meant that it would have already been a challenging task to find two people that would fit into the role, that was so perfectly portrayed by Anjelica Huston and Raul Julia. However, it is safe to say that they completely missed the mark in Wednesday Addams.
Morticia Addams is known for her striking features, including her killer cheekbones, her pointed smile, and her low, seductive voice. Gomez is known for his playful and childish nature and undying love for Morticia Addams. In the Wednesday series, the actors were unable to capture the essence of the characters, and we were left with this awkward portrayal of their relationship that seemed more cringe-worthy than passionate—and not in a good way.
Throughout the show, many subplots are rushed or not concluded very well. Bianca, who can only be described as a frenemy to Wednesday, is given her narrative when her mother ambushes her to take her away from the school. While we are given little information about what happened, the narration appears rushed and confused. Ultimately, it is concluded quickly without much conflict, as she asks to wait until the school year ends. This whole exchange seemed a little pointless, leading the audience to question why it was there in the first place.
The character of Xavier as the scorned lover follows a similar sub-power narrative. A seemingly mysterious loner with no real depth. Potentially, his role is limited to his looks and to add a romantic interest for Wednesday. He is seen mysteriously drawing images of the Hyde and conveniently appearing in all the right places. Still, the only real issue in his life seems to be that he may have daddy issues with his celebrity father, who seems too busy for him. His character ends up pretty dull and disappointing.
Through all of this, perhaps the most disappointing thing would be how the show concluded its first season. The mysterious build-up to the show's climax lasted less than 20 minutes. Wednesday Addams spends the entirety of the series trying to find out the meaning behind the picture of her saving the school, only for the real villain to be the only normie teacher in disguise.
SHOCKER! Not really.
The whole lead-up to the end was a little underwhelming; we barely saw Ansel Gates resurrected by his daughter (Marilyn Thornhill) in disguise as Wednesday quickly sent him back to his grave.
Although the show's concept may be nothing new, there were some positives.
The character of Thing completely stole the show. He may not have had real dialogue, but his hand gestures and loving nature toward Wednesday and vice versa contrasted with her hard exterior.
As well as the character of Eugene, who continually supports Wednesday throughout the show and becomes a hero in the end when he stops Laura Gates from hurting Wednesday.
In his words, "Hummers stick together." Their friendship on-screen showed a special bond much like the one she shared with Pugsley.
While this series had its ups and downs, we are excited to see what the future holds. Although no official announcements have been made for a season 2, after the positive reactions to the show, we wouldn't be surprised, as the ending left much more yet to be discovered.
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