A Series of Unfortunate Events (2017)

Beautifully-shot & fittingly murky, with a novel-like feel & new series territory. Even if this Olaf isn’t quite Jim Carrey-level, Netflix’s ASOUE entertains. 7.1/10.

Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events follows the tragic tale of three orphans — Violet, Klaus, and Sunny Baudelaire — who are investigating their parents’ mysterious death. The siblings are saddled with an evil guardian named Count Olaf (portrayed by award-winning actor Neil Patrick Harris), who will do whatever it takes to get his hands on the Baudelaire’s inheritance. Violet, Klaus, and Sunny must outsmart Olaf at every turn, foiling devious plans and disguises. The series is based on the best-selling series of books by Lemony Snickey (aka Daniel Handler).

*Possible spoilers ahead*

Season 1 – 8/10

Review: With a fresh novel-like feel and breathtaking cinematography & set design, Netflix’s take on Lemony Snicket’s series is grand and artful, even if slightly weighed down by a Count Olaf who isn’t quite Jim Carrey level. 8/10.

Pros: Phenomenal cinematography and world-building – just a feast for the eyes to look at some of the beautifully and impeccably detail-minded shots, NPH not bad as Count Olaf (just not nearly as good as Carrey) and the writers give him a little better treatment making him more menacing than Carrey was allowed to be, great actors for Klaus and Sunny Beaudelaire that are admittedly better than the movie version’s, reaches far deeper into the ASOUE mythology being a netflix series with near unlimited funding and budget as well as potential having more episodes and seasons than a movie can fit, adds a nice auteur-style motif with Patrick Warburton’s Lemony Snickett’s narration

Cons: NPH not nearly as good as Count Olaf as Jim Carrey – Carrey more personality, energy, and even menace-mixed-with-comedy and in relation NPH looks almost asleep, Count Olaf’s rogue gallery reduced to comic relief, not funny, and make Olaf seem weaker like he needs people them to do anything/friends as a villain

Official CLC Score: 8/10

Season 2 – 6/10

Review: Expanding the series’ adaptation to the big screen, S2 of Netflix’s ASOUE has serious problems like a goofier Olaf, more childish tone, flawed first half, and Esmé, but has enough shocks and a good ending to keep it afloat. 6/10.

Pros: Great opening as it gets straight to the storytelling with a good opening episode at Prufrock Preparatory Academy exploring new territory no past movies or shows have xplored in this book series, same stunning cinematography and set design especially with Prufrock which looks almost Hogwarts-like and is especially impressive on a TV budget, same great novel-like feel with narration by Baldwin and plenty of narrative tricks and wordplay, once again carried by its acting with stellar and snappy performances even if they’re sometimes given problematic scripts in episodes, further explores the mystery behind what really happened to the Beaudelaires in mostly satisfying fashion, really picks up in the 2nd half after a dismal first half/first 2 chapters with a phenomenal final 2 chapters starting with the VFD storyline in the desert, plenty of shocks and wonder as it really gets its legs in the 2nd half, absolutely INCREDIBLE final chapter with a wild opening scene revealing what the VFD was and bringing the series full-tilt as well as a crazy cliffhanger ending

Cons: NPH’s Count Olaf has gotten worse – soo goofy and less scary than S1 with bad childish jokes and un-funny followers espeially Esmé who is one of the most annoying characters I’ve ever seen in TV, serious tonal inconsistency devolving from an intriguing mystery drama in the first season and beginning of S1 to a bad childish joke-filled slog for the entire first half of the season with things like cake-sniffer (new most annoying word on the planet) and fart jokes, side characters and subplots just simply not as interesting as S1’s like Carmelita, Esme, and even the Librarian until the end, etc.

Official CLC Score: 6/10