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Wednesday - A Murder of Woes

episode 1.8

USA 2022
produced by
Carmen Pepelea, Miles Millar (executive, showrunner), Alfred Gough (executive, showrunner), Kayla Alpert (executive), Gail Berman (executive), Tim Burton (executive), Jonathan Glickman (executive), Tommy Harper (executive), Kevin Lafferty (executive), Kevin Miserocchi (executive), Andrew Mittman (executive), Steve Stark (executive) for Millar Gough Ink, Tim Burton Productions, Toluca Pictures, 1.21 Pictures, Glickmania, Tee and Charles Addams Foundation/MGM, Netflix
directed by James Marshall
starring Jenna Ortega, Gwendoline Christie, Riki Lindhome, Jamie McShane, Hunter Doohan, Percy Hynes White, Emma Myers, Joy Sunday, Moosa Mostafa, Georgie Farmer, Naomi J. Ogawa, Christina Ricci, Johnna Dias-Watson, Oliver Watson, Daniel Himschoot, Victor Dorobantu, Rina Mahoney, Georgia Goodman, Luyanda Unati Lewis-Nyawo, William Houston, Cezar Grumazescu, George Burcea, Chloe Cate, Michael Okele
written and developed for television by Alfred Gough, Miles Millar, based on characters created by Charles Addams, music by Chris Bacon, visual effects by Rocket Science VFX

TV-series
Wednesday, The Addams Family

review by
Mike Haberfelner

Being convinced that Tyler (Hunter Doohan) is the monster - dubbed Hyde since last episode -, Wednesday (Jenna Ortega) and a few friends led by queen bee Bianca (Joy Sunday) lure him into a trap, chain him to a chair ... but when Wednesday wants to torture him, her friends back away, and before you know it the sheriff (Jamie McShane), incidently Tyler's father, arrives to put an end to this. Tyler doesn't press charges against Wednesday, so there isn't really a case, but she's expelled from her school, and principal Veems (Gwendoline Christie) insists to drive her to the train station in person. However, on their way to the station, they stop by the hospital where Wednesday visits her beekeeping friend Eugene (Moosa Mostafa), who has been mauled by the monster several episodes ago, and who now gives her the final clue to solve the puzzle. So not long after, Wednesday shows up at her dorm mother Marilyn's (Christina Ricci), Tyler in tow, claiming he has just confessed everything to her and accusing Marilyn of being the one behide the monster, as she's a descendant of city founder Crackstone (William Houston) and has a personal vendetta against Wednesday as her ancestor has killed Crackstone, and a more general vendetta against Nevermore Academy and all of its abnormal students. Marilyn confesses to everything and then orders Tyler to turn into Hyde - but he instead turns into principal Veems, a shapeshifter, who now asks Marilyn to give herself up, but instead Marilyn kills the principal. Soon, Marilyn's plans become apparent, she wants to revive Crackstone and burn down the school. And she gets pretty far with her plans, but in a finale that also includes Wednesday's roommate Enid (Emma Myers) finally turning into a werewolf and fighting Tyler/Hyde to a standstill and Wednesday taking an arrow meant for Xavier (Percy Hynes White), everything ends happily.

 

The finale of this episode (and the series) of course is fittingly grand and features some very nice setpieces, but the path that leads to it regrettably less so, as it pretty much brings the so far treaded out story to a hurried ending, simply pulling out the culprit out of a hat rather than working towards it, thus deriving everything that led to it of much meaning. And even the finale is a bit too clichéed, with scenes like Enid finally making good as a werewolf and Wednesday taking an arrow for Xavier really being the tip of the iceberg. And exactly that's what destroyed especially the later episodes of the series, as despite of all the odd things going on, it tried too hard to be just another high school mystery drama, with any verve and humour that still shone through in the earlier episodes gone, replaced by increasingly tired genre mainstays, and even Jenna Ortega's still powerful performance couldn't overcome the pointlessness of much of it. In all, a good premise but ultilmately wasted opportunity.

 

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review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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In times of uncertainty of a possible zombie outbreak, a woman has to decide between two men - only one of them's one of the undead.

 

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special appearances by
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directed by
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written by
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produced by
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now streaming at

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