TV Review: Wednesday (on Netflix)
Now streaming only on Netflix, the much anticipated horror-comedy, Wednesday, has made its debut on the 23rd of November with well known director, Tim Burton, directing the entirety of this series’ first season.
This 8-episode show is based on the iconic Addams Family, created by Charles Addams. It follows the only daughter of the Addams, Wednesday, played by Jenna Ortega throughout her investigation into the secrets of her new school for outcasts, Nevermore Academy.
It features all the elements someone can ask for from a horror comedy targeted towards teens. Satirical humor, a gloomy but beautiful atmosphere, and a story full of entertaining, but predictable, twists. Unfortunately, what this series lacked was a full cast who had both the chemistry and equal acting ability to share a screen. Along with a monster who looked strangely like an ugly snapchat filter.
What really makes a show great is the cast. They have the important job of bringing fictional characters to life and immersing an audience into the narrative. Without a good cast a movie could completely fall apart and become a laughing stock rather than a respected form of media. A great example of this is The Room, which is probably the only drama/romance everyone can agree deserves to be labeled as a comedy with how terrible the whole production was, especially with its horrendous acting.
Wednesday is definitely not as bad as The Room. It includes a line up of very talented actors, like Jenna Ortega and Gwendoline Christie, who plays Nevermore’s principal. Actors like them are what made the show so interesting to watch.
Some of the cast sadly did miss the mark, such as Luis Guzmán, who plays Gomez Addams. He looked great, physically, for the role, but as I saw his portrayal of Gomez, I realized that it felt as if he was cosplaying as Gomez rather than being Gomez. His performance lacked energy and enthusiasm which made him seem out of place and his lines forced. The absence of chemistry between Guzman and his co-star Catherine Zeta-Jones, who played Morticia Addams, didn’t help his already poor execution either.
Along with the acting comes the issue of the CGI. The show featured a beautiful setting and nice wardrobe that really displayed each character’s personality. Filming in such a place that creates such a dark ambience and acquiring clothes that match each character exactly must have cost a pretty penny, which is why I’m assuming the CGI took a hit. The supposedly terrifying monster in the show had a big part in breaking my immersion. Whenever it made an appearance instead of feeling scared I found myself being more puzzled as to why it looked like a zombie from the Plants vs Zombies games. When I was supposed to be gasping because of shock I was instead gasping for air when I couldn’t stop laughing at how strange and unreal it looked.
With the Addams Family being such well known figures in pop culture, I would think the casting would be spot on and the CGI would be great. The lack of chemistry, passable CGI, and good acting from certain people was disappointing.
However, overall the negatives didn’t outweigh the positives. It was honestly a great show with a storyline that kept me on the edge of my seat.
Practically everyone and their pets know or have at least heard of the Addams Family, so I viewed this season with some high expectations. I’m happy to say that they didn’t entirely disappoint me.
In my opinion it was a show worthy of 4 stars. Was it perfect? No. Was it an amazing show? Absolutely. Hopefully if there’s a 2nd season it will be worthy of a full five star review. Until then 4 stars seems like the perfect score for Netflix’s new show Wednesday.