Writing a murder mystery is a balancing act. This goes especially true for series that features long-form storytelling and a mystery that has to be wrapped up in eight, ten, or more episodes. The mystery can’t just dig itself deeper and deeper into a hole. It has to reveal things, but also needs hold onto the suspense until the season is over. This means that questions have to arise while answers are also being given. It’s a delicate process that cannot lean too far in one direction or the other. Fortunately, Wednesday does this perfectly.
Episode 3 highlighted how the students of Nevermore interact with the normies of the town. They all went to volunteer at various places in an attempt to, hopefully, foster better relations with the townsfolk. After discovering she had a vision of the town’s founder, Wednesday (Jenna Ortega) orchestrated a means to volunteer at Pilgrim World. She spent the bulk of the episode investigating how this well revered pilgrim (William Houston) set ablaze the townsfolk that didn’t go along with his plan. He also had it out for Wednesday’s ancestor, Goody Adams, also played by Ortega.
Although the mystery of the monster killing people in the woods deepens this episode, another aspect of the mystery is fleshed out. Wednesday discovers she has more of a connection to the school and the town then she first believed. The plot is rich and filled with suspense as well as mystery. What’s even more impressive is that the show’s writing manages to accomplish this while also giving Wednesday plenty of great one-liners and moments to shine on her own. Ortega’s acting is also on point as she seamlessly steps into this role that had been pioneered by so many.
Wednesday is streaming on Netflix.