I’ve talked about this in many previous posts and now it’s finally here. I’ve watched the Netflix series and compiled my opinions and you’re about to read them.
I want to say I loved it from the start but it took me at least the first half of the first episode to really get into it, from there I loved it except for two little things.
First let me tell you why I think I was slow to loving it. The introduction into anything can sometimes be long-winded. The word long-winded here means Patrick Warburton who has the perfect narrators voice is narrating a lot and making you think “wow is he really going to explain everything”. Well he did, now you might be thinking, that’s what Lemony Snicket does in the book. That is true and it is very effective but it felt a little odd in video form, but I came round to it once the introductions were made. However, I did ask my parents if they wanted to watch it with me and after the first 5 minutes they gave up saying “is he going to talk throughout all the episodes?” and then they stopped watching.
The two little things that I disliked (one very little, the other not so much) was (1) Mr. Poe’s cough and (2) seeing as though I have not finished reading all the books, I assumed at the end of episode one that ‘Father’ and ‘Mother’ were the Baudelaire parents and a massive spoiler was just served on a plate to me. A theory which I had tossed around in my head whilst reading the books – that is, that the Baudelaire parents or at least one remains alive. But by the end of episode seven I realised I fell for a red herring!
Besides those three little factors I think this adaptation will be particularly successful with those who have read at least some of the books. It is one of the most aligned adaptations I’ve seen in a while. It follows the book almost to a ‘T’ and when it doesn’t it is setting up background story for future events. That was probably my favourite part of watching each episode – identifying scenes. Like Snicket standing in the tunnel at the bottom of the Ersatz Elevator or hearing many different forms of the acronym V.F.D. and I’m sure there are allusions which I missed along the way because I haven’t read up to that point but I’m excited for the next season already.
So if you’ve read the series and loved its ‘step-by-step’ style of writing then know you’ll love the Netflix version.There’s an odd mix of thrill and humour which feels very wrong at times and that’s exactly Count Olaf! There are little nods to social topics, Neil Patrick Harris looks down the barrel of the camera and states that “streaming services are much better than going to the movies” which were fun little easter eggs.
If you can stop telling yourself and anybody around you that the actor who plays Klaus (Louis Hynes) looks a lot like Charlie Puth and actually watch the screen then you’ll love this version.
If you enjoy amazing sets and backdrops then you’ll love this version.
If you were slightly disappointed that the movie adaptation didn’t continue then you’ll love this version.
I give it a 9/10 at this stage because I can feel and see that everything was done to do the books justice and portray all the details Snicket wrote. I cannot wait for more, clearly I can otherwise I would be doing nothing for the rest of the year, but figuratively I cannot wait for more.
“Look away, look away”
– Lemony Snicket