Show Review: Wednesday (Season 1)
Review by: Megan Lee
Creator: Alfred Gough and Miles Millar
Wednesday Addams, the dark and twisted daughter of the Addams family, has been made a stereotypical juvenile. By putting Wednesday in the seat of a “regular” teenager, Netflix has taken the classic Addams family story and directed toward a younger teenage audience
Wednesday enrolled in Nevermore, a school for outcasts, after being expelled from her previous school. She is forced into sharing a dorm with Enid Sinclair, a bright girl who is the complete opposite of Wednesday. As she furthers her involvement in Nevermore, we see Wednesday placed in a seemingly odd position with two boys, Xavier Thorpe and Tyler Galpin. Through the drama, Wednesday tasks herself with solving a series of murders taking place near the school.
Jenna Ortega portrays Wednesday in such a unique light. Her ability to hold the distinct sarcasm and spunk of the character makes this one of her most realistic performances yet. At age 20, the young actress is knowledgeable about the gravity of her job. She even choreographed the now-viral dance number that takes place in episode four. Jenna Ortega is the real reason the show is so successful.
Wednesday goes through many obstacles in the eight episodes, however, the most striking is her newfound friendship with her roommate Enid. Writers use their friendship to address that Wednesday is capable of more than just her haunting exterior. Her snarky attitude gives Enid some trouble, but seeing the two grow more fond of each other adds much-needed warmth to the show.
While Wednesday’s new found relationships add a needed depth to her character, the writers have taken stereotyping teenage drama too far by involving a basic love triangle plotline. We see Wednesday struggle with the decision between Tyler and Xavier. While both exaggerate their affection toward her, Wednesday refuses to accept her newfound interest in either of them and forces both to believe she is not interested. Even though the portrayal of the basic “love triangle” trope can be perceived as more interesting with Wednesday’s dark personality, the plot is overused and the storyline is too predictable. It does not take much for viewers to see how the plot will unfold, and it makes the ending boring.
Netflix’s adaptation of Wednesday is a unique take on the familiar story, but by involving her in teenage cliches, the classic character was stripped of her original spirit.