The much anticipated arrival of the Netflix series, “A Series of Unfortunate Events” (ASOUE), based off of Daniel Handler’s book series of the same name, will now feature a more expansive plot and story world that may give fans of the franchise long-awaited answers.
Back in 2014, Deadline reported Netflix’s announcement to make a new live-action adaptation of the popular books. News of the series was met with excitement and speculation – even spawning a fan-made “Is this real?” teaser trailer of the show.
But how would the new T.V. show stack up to 2004’s film version? The movie covered the first three books of the series, and starred the hilarious over-the-top acts of Jim Carrey as Count Olaf, and Meryl Streep as the cowardly Aunt Josephine.
The novels themselves are as intriguing as they are enigmatic, and for most readers, the movie was a chance at answering their greatest unfinished mysteries. However, with the hope of any sequels waning as the years passed, it seemed that most unsolved plot-points would remain as such. Then entered Netflix – with not only a new interpretation of the series, but with once again, a big name to star as Count Olaf: Neil Patrick Harris.
According to Parent Herald, fans can be hopeful for new answers and plot expansions, this time, because ASOUE author, Daniel Handler will be at work behind the scenes. Most readers will know that the in-book-universe author “Lemony Snicket” is Handler’s pen name – one he used to write his persona into the books from time to time, Snicket’s siblings playing more frequent and visible parts.
Snicket always brought a letter to the back of each book, warning every possible reader to simply put the book down – this tale is too sad for even the bravest at heart. “This won’t have a happy ending” became engrained into the readers’ heads.
The series centers on the wealthy and intelligent Baudelaire children – who soon, become the Baudelaire orphans – Violet, Klaus, and Sunny. After their parents are killed in a mysterious fire, they are sent off to live with their unknown “relative,” Count Olaf – who is anything but family. The series’ duration has the orphans fleeing from one “home” to the next, the Count in constant pursuit of them and their family’s fortune. All the while, the orphans work to solve the greatest mystery: who were their parents and why were they not what they seemed?
Unbelievable inventions, brilliant plans, zany disguises, and murderous theatre troupes follow – but what do most find the series lacking? Closure. Though we are not promised a “happy ending,” it feels as though one with enough answers would suffice. But with Handler now at the series’ helm with Netflix, ASOUE might have a way to put an end to all the conjecture for good.
What is VFD? And The Sugar Bowl? Who exactly killed Mr. and Mrs. Baudelaire? Where are the children now? So many questions, only 13 books. TV Tropes has created a whole list of “Headscratchers” for the series – and it goes on and on. ASOUE thrives off living in a story world where the setting, the characters, and the storytelling rules are all allowed to be bent and then some. That is part of the wackiness and the ridiculousness readers have come to know and love about the series – but for television, plots and answers are crucial.
However, Cindy Holland, VP Original Content at Netflix, is confident in this new adaptation. She told Deadline: “The world created by Lemony Snicket is unique, darkly funny and relatable. We can’t wait to bring it to life for Netflix members.”
Parent Herald reports that filming began in April 2016, and has just ended this August. Netflix will cover the first four books of the series, spanning eight episodes for the first season. No word yet whether a second season is being planned, but if “VFD” is still a mystery by the eighth episode, we can bet the fans will riot for more.
Check back in 2017, for Netflix’s “A Series of Unfortunate Events” premiere!