Quirky director Tim Burton finally gets a chance to visit the world of cartoonist Charles Addams's fictional family, The Addams Family, in Wednesday from Netflix. Rising scream queen Jenna Ortega steps into the titular role of a gothic teenage girl and the only daughter of Gomez and Morticia. Burton directs four series episodes, and it's the brainchild of veteran showrunners Alfred Gough and Miles Millar.
The showrunners want to present a sleuthing, supernaturally-infused mystery that traces Wednesday Addams' years at Nevermore Academy as a transfer student. While there, she attempts to master her emerging psychic ability and stop a monstrous killing spree that has terrorized the town. Wednesday must also figure out the murder mystery that caught her parents up 25 years ago, all while trying to navigate her new and very tangled relationships.
For the most part, the show did pull me in from the first episode. Following lively performances in Scream and X from earlier this year, Ortega delivers another strong genre performance. I remember Christina Ricci making Wednesday a fun character in the Addams family movies of the nineties. Ortega provides the character with deadpan charm and stares, thus making the character a riveting protagonist.
Granted, we have Luis Guzmán as Gomez Addams and Catherine Zeta-Jones as Morticia Addams, but without Ortega steering the ship, the show wouldn't be as fun. Alfred Gough and Miles Millar started on Smallville, so the show has some high school antics. I wasn't too put off by them, but I feel some viewers will.
Nevertheless, the series has enough dark humor moments to earn my recommendation.
Final Grade: B
Wednesday is available to stream this Wednesday, November 22, on Netflix.