Welcome Offbeaters, happy to see your assuredly smiling faces!
Now, we know you’re all totally assuming that the “Offbeat Events” are more shameless plugs about our book launch tomorrow. Well its not! (Excluding the shameless mention/plug right there.) Nope, the offbeat events are a reference to the super exciting release of Netflix’s A Series of Unfortunate Events!
Now, I’m a little bit of a fangirl of this series, so I apologize if I lose handle of myself a bit during this recommendation. I’m also only a few episodes in, so if anyone spoils any cool Netflix features of the series, I will be very troubled. Be warned. Be very warned.
…In lieu of a proper transition, let’s get to the recommendation!
So the new Netflix original series is based off the very popular 13-novel series by Lemony Snicket (real name Daniel Handler) that follows the unfortunate lives of three orphans: Violet, Klaus, and Sunny Baudelaire. This is a bit of an odd entrance into the recommendation, as these books were very well-known and not so offbeat in a non-mainstream way. But trust me, regardless of popularity, with a narrator that regularly insists you should stop reading, eccentric characters, and precocious as hell children, these books are anything but normal. The events that happen to the children and the horrid man chasing them encompasses the grim occurrences in these novels, and it only gets more grim and serious as the books progress.
The series on Netflix stays very close to the text, but a nice thing the series adds is more information into the mysteries that the books kept harshly mysterious. Yet, that’s what I think is the genius of adding an even more omniscient lens to the stories. Though also telling the adults’ sides of things didn’t make sense in a children’s story, this story is likely not aimed at children, but the young adults now who read the series as children. It gives the right splash of zany nostalgia while also informing us more about those mysteries we wish we had known more about way back when.
…Like what the henchpeople of Count Olaf looked like, am I right???
Sorry guys, they’re just so dumbly charming for some reason. Particularly hook-handed man. I don’t know, I’m an awful person.
Either way, in the first season the first four books of the series are encompassed: The Bad Beginning, The Reptile Room, The Wide Window, and The Miserable Mill. By this theory, there should be 3 or 4 seasons planned of the show if they are going to only follow the 13 books. We shall have to see in the future what will happen.
The first season, as far as I’ve seen though, has the perfect mix of whimsy, darkness, foreboding, and dry humor that I always loved in the series as a kid. I never would have expected it, but Patrick Warburten is a perfect deadpan, dismal Lemony Snicket. His character pops in and out of scenes to add transitions and an overall sense of macabre, dread, and incessant bouts of reverse psychology to tell us to leave that never work. I haven’t faq-checked this yet, but I even heard some of his lines (and possibly even all) are directly taken from the text as well, which is pretty fantastic. Just a wonderful Lemony Snicket, the broken-hearted crazy man who follows the Baudelaires to the ends of the earth.
Now after all my milling about, the gist is that this is a clever, offbeat show that (if you are a fan of the books) will give you the perfect sense of nostalgia that manages to still add newness to the tale in its own way. If you loved Snicket as much as me, I recommend you watch the show this second. If you aren’t, I recommend you watch the show this second.
Overview: I recommend you watch the show this second.
I’m watching all of you. With cupcakes. Deviously.
Beware Count Olaf, watch out for incredibly deadly snakes, and stay weird.
(This post is accredited to our communications team member and blog manager, Stephanie Marceau)