During spring break, Netflix rolled out their second season of A Series of Unfortunate Events, and I could not be more pleased.
The series is an adaptation of a collection of novels originally written by Lemony Snicket that tells the tale of three orphans (Violet, Klaus, and Sunny Baudelaire) who recently lost their parents in a fire and now live their lives continuously escaping the grasps of Count Olaf– a man who wants the children’s locked fortune and ultimately, their death.
In season one, the children travel from home to home– each either owned by Count Olaf pretending to be some relative or family friend or controlled by him in some way shape or form. In season two, the plot thickens. The children learn that their parents’ death may not have been quite as random as they previously thought. They learn that there is some other driving force surrounding every random, unfortunate event that has happened to them since their parents’ death. They learn that they are involved in something much greater than themselves, and to find answers, they need to figure out what that is.
As a child, I loved these books because of their quirkiness. It was really unlike anything else, and now in the TV adaptation, I appreciate the same quirkiness playing out live before my eyes. The show is narrated by Lemony Snicket himself (Patrick Warburton) in the same sarcastic yet matter of fact way it is written in the book– something I am very glad was translated.
Count Olaf is played by Neil Patrick Harris, and even if I had never heard of the books or knew anything about the plot, you could probably find me watching the show for that reason alone. Besides the fact that he is simply Neil Patrick Harris, he portrays his character perfectly. He is dubbed as evil, and his intentions most certainly are. That being said, his personality is far from malicious. He is incredibly quirky and illogical– likely the only reason he has yet to capture the children.
Each episode is incredibly unique (although the same theme runs throughout), and the setting and characters are entirely different, and this is what makes the show so interesting to watch. The children find themselves in countless settings and homes ranging from a house on the edge of a cliff to a home that also plays house to an extensive greenhouse/reptilian sanctuary to an obscure orphanage. And although they are in entirely different environments, somehow, each new character seems to have the same personality. This may seem tiresome, but it is entirely the opposite.
While A Series of Unfortunate Events is certainly on the more childish side of Netflix Originals, it is most definitely entertaining. As I continue to watch some of my favorite childhood novels come to life, I cannot help but smile. The adaptation is done in a fashion that mimics the books to a T, and I couldn’t be happier about it. And while it’s no drama such as Grey’s Anatomy or This Is Us, it offers a refreshing amount of humor to such an interesting storyline that I can’t help but get sucked into for hours upon end.