The Addams family could be the most unlikely of artistic creations to result in an expanded universe. The family was created accidentally by a cartoonist who was unaware of it. The characters in the stand-alone Charles Addams’s sketches to The New Yorker. Thus, weren’t, at first, an identified family in any way.
They were more often shifting faces. Macabre thoughts from a delightful, charming man who just did happen to decorate his house with medieval crossbows. Furthermore, then marry his third spouse in the pet cemetery nearby.
The cartoons themselves showed the odd balance of mildly friendly atmosphere topped by somewhat-inspiring violence; a smiley Lurch, Gomez and Morticia making boiling oil for Christmas Carolers. The happy family fishing at the beach. Furthermore, terrified swimmers flinging themselves at whatever Gomez has managed to catch.
While the characters are featured in only around 80 of the thousands of works by Addams. They’re his most well-known work. It was his unique blend of the playful. Apart from this, frighteningly adult (echoed in the contemporary Edward Gorey’s. The Gashlycrumb Tinies and other works, but not much else). Obviously, which led to the creation of the eventual TV series, the 1964 series The Addams Family. A TV series, which finally allowed Addams to determine the characters’ names and their connections to one another.
What followed were the eleven major remakes and reconfigurations (not including game titles) from the creepy, kooky band, including the first-panned and then cult-favourite Broadway musical and the nearly 100% Canadian The New Addams Family, which was cancelled after just one season.
Also Read : Wednesday Addams Finds Her Hogwarts On Netflix
Each time, what’s been the determining factor in the success of the family. Thus, is their ability to stick to the pattern of capturing the slightly off-putting feel. Instead, of the studio’s desire to water down the horrific for a skewed audience of kids. Because the idea behind what Addams tried to achieve with his gothic-loving family of outcasts was always evident.
“He was extremely fearful,” Addams biographer Linda Davis said to NPR. She explained that making The Addams Family series “was the most intelligent psychological decision. Because, by exposing his fears and playing them up, they were dispelled.”
This is where the most recent Addams entry that’s on Netflix’s Wednesday comes in on the floor.
The show follows a pattern begun in 1991’s movie. The Addams Family of focusing on the younger siblings. But, Pugsley (Isaac Ordonez) is so buried in the background. That, it’s hard to tell they’ve cast him in the role. In addition, Charles Addams grew up in and was influenced by Westfield, N.J. This is the town in which the actual incidents of The Watcher. A Netflix film that is similarly spooky The Watcher, took place. Yet instead of looking at something familiar and familiar in the film, its scene is a blur.
Follow Wednesday Addams who, played by Jenna Ortega. Whose appearances in Scream and X this year have helped establish her as a franchise horror queen. She’s removed from a regular school. Thus, for attempting to kill one of her classmates with piranhas before being transferred into Nevermore Academy. It’s her home school. Also, the home of all sorts of “outcasts,” which includes sirens, werewolves. Furthermore, one of the more predictable twist-villains of The Incredibles 2.
The fish-out-of-water storyline is responsible for one of the most significant flaws in Wednesday’s story. The setting is able to bring the parents Gomez (Luis Guzman) and Morticia (Catherine Zeta-Jones) into the plot for a moment — especially when Wednesday is battling an unruly mother who causes her to be “nauseous but not in a positive manner.” At the same time, she’s forced to solve a mystery related to their school experience. They’re not part of the story faster than they are.
It also omits the excellent dark Zeta-Jones’ performance, which is one of the series’ best performances, but there are other significant issues with the show.
The problem is that typically the omitted setting places Wednesday in the hands of teenagers with supernatural trappings of their own, which negates the show’s primary purpose since if you go to Hogwarts, nobody will be astonished by your magical wand. Also, as Vulture noted on its listing of top 50 family-friendly TV shows, The Addams family’s “endlessly repeatedly repeated joke (and the insight) is that normal people were the true oddballs.”
This leads to the second issue. While under the aegis of the director/creator Tim Burton (whose The Nightmare Before Christmas and Edward Scissorhands are likely to be the most exemplary illustrations of his style), there’s the Netflix shine to Wednesday that doesn’t serve The Addams Family’s primary goal.
Alongside a group of teenagers with plots that feel like they’ve been pulled right from Descendants, The entire show on the Wednesday episode of Nevermore Academy feels overproduced and often painfully packaged to appeal to a more modern audience. It is a victim of the desire to be modern and sacrifices the authenticity of The Addams’ gothic, spiderwebbed home.
Instead, we’re given 2022 references to 30 Rock that gives the show’s ” How do you do, fellow children?” a run for its money. One time, Wednesday’s roommate even says to her, “Most people live their whole lives pretending that they don’t give Fs, and you never got an F to offer” in the show, which is supposed to make you feel genuinely offbeat.
However, while the teenage drama surrounding her is a bit stale, Wednesday is saved with every minute she spends with her because Ortega’s growth from a character that was initially a single-note support character is the kind of thing the HBO Max’s Scooby-Doo reboot, Velma, would like to be.
In the spotlight is Christina Ricci (who played the character in the remake in the ’90s and firmly established the hilarious delivery Ortega completely nails) as a support role. Ortega has likely become the most iconic Wednesday. While staying true to her typical monotone, she can be equally funny, terrifying and empathetic. Examples:
“You’re like a cockroach,” another person says, seeking to make fun of you. “Please,” she responds, “flattery will get you nowhere.”
The performance (alongside an incredibly bizarre dance Ortega said to CBC News she choreographed herself) is fascinating and complicated and gives Wednesday a reason to exist.
Most of the things are missing from her struggles, especially acting-wise. Fred Armisen’s often-mocked Fester is far too an over-the-top clown. Guzman’s Gomez appears tired, although, at one point in her career, he was awarded the first Raul Julia Award, named after a fellow Puerto Rican who played one of the most well-known versions of Gomez Addams.
Many of the teens are actors who are part of Disney channel shows. Canadian Percy Hynes White -fresh from Chandler Levack’s fantastic I Like Movies — is a standout even though the writing for his character doesn’t do him any favours.
Does Wednesday merit watch? Yes, and if you enjoy this style, you’ll likely be entertained. It’s as if it’s an original piece of art that’s been remade to be sold in a gift shop. It’s a great way to test the storytelling norm and is a joy in a post-Marvel era. However, when you bring to life The Addamses (especially with an ensemble of stars as dazzling as this), you’re bound to be depressed thinking about what could be feasible.
“Who do I want this for?” is a common question you encounter when discussing new series due to how we think about the audience. We need clearly defined types of audiences for children or adults, which is a concept that The Addams Family series has thrown out of the window. That’s the reason it is so unique. If you try to replicate it, you should maintain the fun aspect, but you certainly cannot sacrifice the real dark side — or their criticism of the norm.
You must be fully committed to this to be successful. And unfortunately, Wednesday, except for Ortega, seems to be able to grasp this.