Jenna Ortega Takes on Iconic Role in Netflix’s Wednesday


Xavier Collin/Image Press Agency/ABACAPRESS.COM

American actress Jenna Ortega wearing Versace arrives at the World Premiere Of Netflix’s ‘Wednesday’ Season 1 held at the Hollywood American Legion Post 43 at Hollywood Legion Theater on November 16, 2022 in Hollywood, Los Angeles, CA, USA. Photo by Xavier Collin/Image Press Agency/ABACAPRESS.COM )

Ava Bearskin, Editor-in-Chief

Netflix’s “Wednesday” dropped on November 23, 2022. The show was nostalgic for many as it follows the character Wednesday Addams who was originally shown in the Addams Family.
The Addams Family was originally a series of cartoons by Charles Addams. In the 60s, the characters were taken to the screen in a two season long show by ABC. Later, in the 90s, two movies titled “The Addams Family” and “Addams Family Values” came out. It was then adapted again into a tv-show and a musical. Recently, two animated adaptations were released. The latest adaptation being Netflix’s show, “Wednesday.”
This show follows Wednesday Addams, eldest daughter of Morticia and Gomez Addams, as she journeys to a school for misfits because of her violent behavior in public school. Once she settles into the school (with much retaliation from Wednesday), she finds a mystery to solve. While a monster looms in the woods outside Nevermore Academy, killing students, Wednesday is also working on mastering her inherited psychic abilities.
Wednesday lacks social skills and struggles to form relationships with those at the school who reach out to her as she generally doesn’t care to know anyone. On top of all of that, a 25-year-old mystery involving her parents emerges and she takes it upon herself to solve it.
Jenna Ortega stars as Wednesday Addams. She is known for some of her other roles in “You,” “Jane the Virgin,” “Richie Rich,” and “The Babysitter: Killer Queen.”
According to What to Watch, Ortega was excited to portray Wednesday as an angsty teenager rather than the child she is in other Addams family productions. The character mostly had one liners in previous shows and movies. Ortega shared that she is excited to be able to play this character and dive deeper into Wednesday’s character.
Ortega does a great job portraying teenage Wednesday. Her ability to stay completely still without blinking for long scenes is uncanny, yet impressive.
Starting in episode one, Wednesday’s dramatically angsty one-liners make an impression and show exactly who Wednesday is. When she arrives at Nevermore Academy, she stumbles upon a secret society that she is immediately invited to join because of her parents’ high standing with the school. Her response to the invitation is, “I’m not interested in participating in tribal adolescent clichés.”
While Wednesday does eventually warm up to her peers, her wit is one of the best parts of the show.
One part fans were particularly excited about was the return of Christina Ricci as a teacher at Nevermore Academy. She played Wednesday Addams in the 1991 “The Addams Family” and it was really exciting to see her have a role in the new show. She had a fun charismatic character who had a dark side as well. After seeing her in the first episode, a cameo seemed like the route the writers were taking, but a full on role was even cooler.

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While the plot line had quite a few twists and turns, the end reveal was quite predictable. While this big reveal wasn’t really a surprise, the journey there was where the show really shined. Wednesday’s side quests, like solving the mystery that involved her parents at the school, working through psychic messages overtaking her, and her friend almost getting murdered allowed the show’s let-down ending slide.
Wednesday’s roommate and eventual best friend, Enid (played by Emma Myers), was light-hearted comic relief. Creating a character to be Wednesday’s foil makes for an almost funny pairing in a friendship. Enid loves color and rainbows and is almost never seen without a smile on her face. She is the optimism to Wednesday’s pessimism.
While it drives Wednesday crazy at first, she eventually comes to realize that Enid is what she needs in her life for balance. Whether this type of friendship would actually work in real life is up for debate, this trope works very well in this show.
A few boys show their interest in Wednesday throughout the eight episode season. Wednesday is very unaware of what to do with their affections. Wednesday’s initial rejections are comical, she ends up dating Tyler (played by Hunter Doohan) who later ends things in a rather deceptive way. Wednesday’s love interests added to the teenage drama aspects of this show but overall did not add much to the show. Both Tyler and Xavier were selfish and unlikeable characters. Neither truly understood and accepted Wednesday as Enid did.
Although a lack of romance for Wednesday would’ve taken away from it’s teenage drama classification, it would have been more on character for Wednesday to shoo away any distractions from her case and her work.
Overall, the show was enjoyable to watch, scoring a 71% on Rotten Tomatoes with an audience rating of 86%. Although a bit more screen time for the iconic Morticia and Gomez as well as Uncle Fester would have been fun and nostalgic, it was nice for Wednesday to take the lead, of course with her trusty sidekick Hand.
According to Cosmopolitan, Wednesday is already renewed for season two. While who will be returning for season two has not been confirmed yet, Netflix will be renewing the show and are currently on the lookout for more writers.