Season 2 of Netflix’s A Series of Unfortunate Events debuted on March 30th, and we dove right in to see if the show was able to keep up with the awesome first season. So did it live up to the standards set in place, or did they drown in the expectations from the fans of the source material? Let’s take a look.
A Series of Unfortunate Events Season 2 picks right back up where Season 1 left off, at Prufrock Preparatory School. This is the fifth entry into Lemony Snicket’s tale of the Baudelaire Orphans, which continues their sad journey into more bad luck and misfortune.
The thing I loved about the first season of A Series of Unfortunate Events was that Netflix was somehow able to recreate the imaginary world that I had in my head while reading the books as a child. It’s almost eerie how accurate the sets and characters matched up with the way I used to picture them in my head.
Once again, Neil Patrick Harris steals the show as the evil Count Olaf as he continues to torment the Baudelaire Orphans all while wearing various disguises that somehow fool everyone in their disturbingly clueless world. The witty nature of the show is so good that I can’t help but think that some of the jokes will be lost on a younger audience.
In such a ridiculously naive world that the story is set in, it only makes sense to play off that fact. At times the show becomes self aware and there’s even a sly reference to How I Met Your Mother by Count Olaf.
Malina Weissman, Louis Hynes and Presley Smith, who play Violet, Klaus and Sunny Baudelaire respectively, are so good in their roles that it seems like they are the only characters that you actually take seriously. Now, that’s not to take away from the supporting cast, as the various actors who play Count Olaf’s acting troupe, aka his henchmen, are so over-the-top, it actually works for the campy nature of the show.
Season 2 adds series regular Lucy Punch as the demented Esme Squalor, who may or may not be Count Olaf’s love interest. That was never made too clear.
Patrick Warburton returns to his role as author Lemony Snicket, who is actually a fictional character and the pen name for the man who actually wrote the story, Daniel Handler.
Snicket, as he mentions at the beginning of every chapter of the Baudelaire story, is investigating the events of the poor orphan’s lives. He shows up in small asides, where he stops the momentum of the story, and allows us a chance to breathe in between a fast-talking dialogue and the dark horrors that are to come. This was a common factor in the books and it translates over to the screen very well!
Speaking of those dark horrors, A Series of Unfortunate Events may seem like it’s directed at small children, but they tell you upfront that the story of the Baudelaire Orphans is not a happy one. The show itself is a comedy, but you’re brought back to the harsh reality of the situation the orphans are in when something very upsetting inevitably happens in each chapter.
Netflix’s A Series of Unfortunate Events Season 2 covers books 5-9 of the Baudelaire Saga. Each chapter is as upsetting as the one before, but you can’t help but continue to watch as the Baudelaire orphan’s continue on a path of deceit and even death. The season leaves you off worse than you began, but in a frustratingly good way. I’m not going to give any spoilers, but we already know there are 13 books in Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events, so that can only mean that this great show will end with the upcoming 3rd Season.
I cannot wait to see how Netflix goes about finishing the sad saga. That being said, I am very frustrated that we have to wait so long until that happens!
I highly recommend A Series of Unfortunate Events on Netflix to fans of the book series and those who enjoy witty comedies. And if you can’t wait for Season 3, you can always get the entire book series here!