Wednesday, the new Netflix series we devoured
Tired of the Christmas soaps that have been replayed over and over again for weeks and years (we don’t really get tired of them, you must admit. )? This weekend, however, was the time for some of us to ignore these films with their predictable storylines from the very beginning. Netflix was able to offer us some “different” content with its new, gently scary series : Wednesday. A spin-off of The Addams Family released on Wednesday 23rd November.
This first season has eight episodes, and even if the end invites us to imagine a potential sequel, the series Wednesday has a beginning, a middle and an end. It makes sense, but this pattern seems all too rare these days (think of the House of the Dragon series, we don’t know the ending and we won’t get it for more than a year, god that’s pumping). The makers of Wednesday have imagined the first season of the series as an eight-hour film, and for that I say thank you!
Discover the trailer :
Wednesday, known to all for her sternness, sarcasm and penchant for torture, is expelled from yet another school. No ‘normal’ school seems to resist her morbid practices. Morticia and Gomez, her parents, decide to enrol her in Nevermore Academy, a special school where they themselves have studied. The students there are all as marginal as each other: gorgon, werewolf, mermaid, etc. The troubled teenager, far from being impressed, promises herself that she won’t last long. But her plans to escape quickly fade when strange murders and disappearances terrorise the town and the school. Mecredi Addams (played by the promising young Jenna Ortega) investigates the case in her own way and seems to be strangely connected to it, all the while incurring the wrath of the people she meets.
The original Addams Family
The Addams Family has existed since 1938 and was created by cartoonist Charles Addams. First published in the American magazine The New Yorker, the Addams Family is today the most gloomy family in pop culture. Since its creation, it has been the basis of various productions: series, TV films, movies, musicals, video games, etc.
In this modern version, it is no longer the Addams Family that is of interest, but the sinister teenager, Wednesday. This spin-off, or spin-off series, is created by Alfred Gough and Miles Millar and we owe the direction of a few episodes to Tim Burton, the master of romantic horror. Fans will quickly rediscover his strange universe (a little watered down by Netflix) intertwined with the haunting music of Danny Elfman.
Tim Burton‘s relationship with The Addams Family is not new. Indeed, he was offered the directing of the 1991 film The Addams Family. However, Burton was too busy directing Batman: The Challenge to take it on. But it was only a postponement and Tim Burton is now directing his first series, Wednesday.
What do you think?
Let’s not compare the series to the previous films, let’s take it as a production that stands on its own, otherwise we are bound to be disappointed.
The series is enjoyable and really gripping! The Netflix/Burton mix, and all the commonplaces that make up Teen productions, works! Predictable without being predictable, we let ourselves be carried away by the rhythm of the investigation and by the main character’s scathing lines.
Wednesday, the anti-hero figure, is truly endearing. We feel compassion for this teenager, described in the previous century as mean and naturally appalling. In the series, we understand that her meanness is more of a barrier quickly forged to protect herself.
The creators have managed to make the story modern and the choice of cast is to be commended. The interpreter of Wednesday, Jenna Ortega, is simply…fascinating. She embodies the character to perfection: in her expressions, her intonations, but also in her involvement in the creation of the superb choreography of the ball scene (see below).
We also see Christina Ricci, the actress who played Wednesday in the Barry Sonnenfeld films of the 1990s. She takes on the role of Marilyn Thornhill, one of the normal (non-powered and not a monster either) dormitory supervisors and botany teacher. Not to mention Catherine Zeta-Jones as Morticia!
So, a word of advice: tonight or next weekend, with your family or on your own, put on your best Pilou Pilou socks, pour yourself a nice hot chocolate, let your fat cat settle on your legs, turn off the lights and binge-watch Wednesday!