What’s scarier – a murderous monster or mustering up the courage to ask your crush to the school dance?

A comparison of the series Wednesday, to the early nineties film, The Addams Family.

The new hit show on Netflix, “Wednesday,” follows teenager Wednesday Addams as she navigates her life at a school for misfits.  She has to look out for herself while attempting to fill the shoes of her mother. Unfortunately, as soon as she shows up, strange things start to occur and a mysterious killer goes rampant. She insists on using her wit and knack for detective work to solve this murder mystery. But at what cost? 

Starring actress, Jenna Ortega, brought something new to Wednesday’s character – both stylistically and acting-wise. Something that stood out to a lot of fans was her new bangs. Her character has never sported bangs in any other rendition of the show. However, her iconic jet-black hair and braids had to make a return. Another staple for this new character is that she never blinks! Instead, she puts on a Kubrick stare and keeps eye contact with the camera/characters. Ava Young (12) inputs, “I think her wardrobe is pretty cool. I like how they made it a little bit modernized, like to a certain style, but still kept to the mainly black. I feel like they could have included more of the gothic design because it was mainly just kind of grunge.” 

Many people caught onto the repetition of the word “woe” in every episode title. But what does woe even mean? An article by <cheatsheet.com> explains that the witty episode names come directly from Wednesday’s name. The poem that Morticia Addams claims to derive her daughter’s name from is a nursery rhyme titled, “Monday’s child.” It goes, “Monday’s child is fair of face, Tuesday’s child is full of grace, Wednesday’s child is full of woe…” and so on and so forth. Oxford Languages defines the word woe as, “great sorrow or distress” which works perfectly to describe Wednesday’s unsettling demeanor. 

This concept was the first time we were able to see a show focused on just Wednesday and her idiosyncrasies. One of the most obvious changes from the original 1991 film, The Addams Family, was the age difference between the two Wednesdays. In the original movie, she was around seven years old, and in elementary school. Now, the audience gets to view the exploration of her teenage years. While inherently, it would be safe to assume that Tim Burton would go bolder with the show, it was actually quite tame compared to some parts of the 1991 film. It is targeted to be more of a family-friendly show, assuming the release around the holiday time. When questioned about the directors, Ava Young continues, “I think the original director (Barry Sonnenfeld) definitely did better.” 

A key to the nostalgia of the new series was the return of the loveable character, Thing. In the original, Thing served as sort of a right hand man to Gomez. In the show, we got to see Thing become Wednesday’s partner in crime. The mystery of the mechanics of Thing comes to life when cosmopolitan.com shared, “Netflix released behind-the-scene photos of Victor and Jenna Ortega working on the show, featuring Victor in a “blue screen” body suit covering every inch of his body except for his hand, aka THE STAR. Meanwhile, he also wore a prosthetic severed wrist for good measure.” 

All in all, I would say that “Wednesday” was a great show to binge-watch over Thanksgiving break. Some differences may be more evident to long-time fans of the movie but, I think it is still enjoyable to watch, regardless if you’ve seen the originals or not.