Netflix Review: Wednesday presents a delightfully twisted mystery



Wednesday (Jenna Ortega) holds an umbrella in the rain, wearing her Nevermore Academy uniform.

by Izzy Manning, Editor

Wednesday Addams is a beloved character who fans have been begging to see more of for decades. Finally, Wednesday Addams has received her own special Netflix series, directed by the famous Tim Burton.

“Wednesday,” released on November 23, follows the Addams family’s daughter as she attends Nevermore Academy, a school for outcasts and magical entities. It also happens to be the very same place her parents met and fell in love. But Wednesday soon discovers her parents seem to have a dark history with the school.

Wednesday originally attended Nancy Reagan High School, but after discovering that a group of boys were bullying her younger brother, Pugsley, she ruined their swim practice by releasing a swarm of violent piranhas into the pool. Most of the boys made it out unharmed, but one was severely injured which, of course, led to Wednesday’s expulsion.

At first, Wednesday was resistant to attending Nevermore, claiming that no school had ever been able to hold her and that this one would be no different. She devised an escape plan, but by the end of her first week there, she discovers a homicidal beast. Eager to figure out the hidden mystery of the monster, Wednesday decides to stay at Nevermore.

This series has a large ensemble of characters, but some of the most prominent are Wednesday, Enid, Tyler, Xavier, Bianca and Thing.

Wednesday, obviously, is the Addams family daughter. In this series, she retains her iconic appearance: black braided pigtails (with the new addition of bangs) and a dark color palette. Instead of the typical purple and black Nevermore uniforms, Wednesday has a gray-and-black uniform made for her, claiming that she is allergic to color.

In this modern adaptation of “The Addams Family,” Wednesday possesses a vast array of skills, such as writing, playing the cello and fencing. She is also facing the problem of sudden psychic visions that have been plaguing her for the past few months.

Enid Sinclair is Wednesday’s roommate. She is a werewolf incapable of transforming and is also extremely bright, cheery and colorful, making her a great contrast to Wednesday. The two bicker a lot in one another’s presence but are also able to work and ban together when they need to. Most of the tension comes from Wednesday as Enid attempts to befriend her.

From the show’s first trailer release, many fans began to ship, promote the relationship between, Wednesday and Enid by calling them ‘Wenclair’. In the show, Wednesday and Enid’s relationship has been portrayed as platonic with both girls having male love interests; however, actors Jenna Ortega (Wednesday) and Emma Myers (Enid) have joked about their characters’ relationship in interviews. 

“’You know what I always say: And they were roommates,’” Myers says, referencing the popular LGBTQ+ meme.”

During the show’s premiere, Ortega said, “People want to see powerful women with powerful women.”

Tyler Galpin is a regular human–or a normie, as attendees of Nevermore say–who works as a barista at a coffee shop in Jericho, which the city of the show’s location. He befriends Wednesday after she fixes his coffee machine, and additionally agrees to help her escape Nevermore and Jericho before she changes her mind. Though the plan was unsuccessful, Tyler still remains present throughout the series.

Xavier Thorpe is one of Wednesday’s classmates. Coincidentally, Xavier and Wednesday met a long while back at a mutual family-friend’s funeral. Xavier is an artist who has the ability to bring his drawings to life. However, this is not always completely within his control, leading him to bring some dangerous things to life.

Bianca Barclay is another one of Wednesday’s classmates at Nevermore. Bianca is referred to by Wednesday as the self-appointed queen bee of the school. She is also a siren, so she struggles to form close relationships with people, since her friends never know if their bond with her is genuine or a result of her siren song.

The last main “character” is Thing, a sentient hand who is a close friend of the Addams family. In this series, Wednesday’s mom and dad sent Thing to look after Wednesday at Nevermore, and it ends up being a big help and companion to Wednesday as she ventures to solve the mystery of the homicidal beast.

The show also does fantastic job at highlighting America’s issues of oppression through the pilgrims and settlement of Jericho.

Jericho’s founding father is Joseph Crackstone, who is widely praised for his past work. The town dedicates a statue to him at the town’s harvest festival. There is even a theme park in Jericho named Pilgrim World that is based heavily off of Crackstone’s history.

Jericho itself is a big tribute to Crackstone, but as Wednesday continues to have her psychic visions, she sees images of the past that reveal Crackstone’s oppressive and brutally violent ways used to shape present-day Jericho.

Crackstone’s discriminatory beliefs influence the residents of modern day Jericho; they hold a hatred toward Nevermore’s members, thinking of them as dangerous outcasts, despite Nevermore Academy being an integral part of Jericho’s functioning.

Obviously, the werewolves, sirens and other outcasts of Nevermore who face prejudice from the residents of Jericho do not exist in real life. Yet, the exclusionary behaviors shown toward them in the series can be used as a metaphor for the hardships that real marginalized groups endure. The fact that Jericho could not function without their “outcasts” solidifies that analogy.

Additionally, the series’ themes of oppression dating back to America’s settlers could not be more on the nose. It seems intentional that “Wednesday” was released the day before Thanksgiving.

In the series, Wednesday even discovers a direct connection to Crackstone. One of her relatives, Goody Addams, was ordered to be burned at the stake by Crackstone for being an outcast. Goody escaped but without the rest of her family, and all the other outcasts were murdered.

Wednesday knows that Jericho’s brutal history and her relatives’ pasts connect to the current mysteries of Nevermore, but she still has a lot to learn. Who or what is the monster that continues to kill Jericho and Nevermore’s residents? Who at the Nevermore Academy can be trusted? And what is her own parents’ dark history with the school?

Anyone who wants to unravel the mysteries of Jericho and Nevermore with Wednesday Addams herself can stream the series on Netflix.