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Wednesday trailer: 3 delightfully dark moments that have us excited

Luis Guzman, Jenna Ortega and Catherine Zeta-Jones in Wednesday
Luis Guzman, Jenna Ortega and Catherine Zeta-Jones in Wednesday (Image credit: Netflix)

When you combine the spooky Addams Family with the magic of Tim Burton’s imagination, it’s a match made in dark humor heaven. The first trailer for Burton’s Wednesday series at Netflix reveals that the world he’s created for the Addams daughter is deliciously dark and full of mystery and intrigue. 

Until now, we’ve only been able to imagine what Wednesday Addams’ life would look like at the mysterious Nevermore Academy. With the trailer, Burton’s vision for Wednesday’s world comes to life.

Always the outsider, Wednesday Addams (Jenna Ortega) knows exactly who she is — and who she isn’t. In the trailer we see that she’s confident and self-assured in a world where otherness is something that is mocked.

Here are three things from the Wednesday trailer that we’re excited about.

Outsider Wednesday Addams is not afraid to stand up to bullies

High school is hard enough, but it’s even harder when you can’t figure out where you fit. We learn in the trailer that Wednesday has been through eight schools in five years. She stands out among her brightly-dressed peers in her trademark black clothing. 

Wednesday (Jenna Ortega) exacts revenge against the water polo team for bullying her brother, Pugsley. "The only person who gets to torture my brother is me," she says to the bullies. While we don’t know the context of whatever they did to him, the lead bully refers to Wednesday as a "freak" and that says everything about how she’s regarded around Nancy Reagan High School. 

Later in the trailer, her parents Morticia and Gomez (Catherine Zeta-Jones and Luis Guzman) drop her off at Nevermore Academy, telling her it’s where they met and fell in love. Morticia assures her that she’ll be surrounded by people who will understand her and that she might even make friends while she’s there and can be happy.

But upon arrival, Wednesday isn’t sure she belongs there, either, and that’s something to which a lot of people can relate. 

It’s not easy being a teenager, especially when you don’t know where you fit into the complex social strata of high school life. For Wednesday, it looks like Nevermore Academy might be a chance to start over. By the end of the trailer, she admits she might even love it there.

Wednesday likes stabbing, embraces dark humor and blood 

Jenna Ortega as Wednesday Addams in Wednesday

Jenna Ortega as Wednesday Addams in Wednesday (Image credit: Netflix)

When The Addams Family debuted in 1964, the show had to lean heavily on its dark humor so as to connect with the TV audience. It wasn’t scary, per se; horror elements were only used as the setup for jokes and gags. For example, Morticia Addams might chastise Wednesday for not putting away her torture instruments before dinner, but we never see her in action as the torturer. 

Wednesday seems to lean into the horror element in ways that the 1960s show and the 1990s movies never did. In the past, the gag would have stopped with Wednesday holding up bags of piranhas to the water polo team; in the trailer, not only does she release them, we also see the pool of blood that swirls around her tormentor. 

What we love about this moment is that it shows us that Tim Burton isn’t afraid to show a little gore. Wednesday Addams has never minced words about who she is ("I do like stabbing," she admits in the trailer) but until this point onscreen it has always words and no action. 

Tim Burton has always been good at giving actors and their characters the space they need to develop and tell their stories. He’s also a master at embracing dark humor and the macabre. Based on the trailer, we’re hopefully optimistic that Burton gives Ortega’s Wednesday the space not only to realize her full potential but to show what she’s capable of as well. (Yes, that might mean getting a little blood on her hands and that’s ok.)

Wednesday's Nevermore looks like the Hogwarts of the Addams Family 

As soon as we get a glimpse of Nevermore Academy in the trailer, we’re drawn in. It’s like Hogwarts, but darker. Spookier. 

Nevermore Academy might be the home for supernaturally-inclined students but it looks like a magical place unto itself, much like the happily haunted Addams’ family home. What is this place and what are its secrets? The trailer hints at murder and mayhem, but what happened there?

And since supernatural elements are part and parcel of The Addams Family lore, could that mean some of the students aren’t human? Might there be witches and vampires and werewolves and other creatures lurking in the classrooms?

All we really know about Nevermore is that Morticia and Gomez met there; from the look of the place it’s been around long enough to have its own stories to tell. We’d like to think there are lots of tales to be told about former students and present-day students. 

In fact, if Wednesday is successful there could be a whole YA franchise full of dark humor and horror elements developed under Burton’s watchful eye. 

Watch the Wednesday trailer for yourself right here:

We're still waiting on an official release date for Wednesday, but we know that it is coming exclusively to Netflix this fall.

Sarabeth Pollock
Editorial Content Producer

 

Sarabeth joined the Watch to Watch team in May 2022. An avid TV and movie fan, her perennial favorites are The Walking Dead, American Horror Story, true crime documentaries on Netflix and anything from Passionflix. You’ve Got Mail, Ocean's Eleven and Signs are movies that she can watch all day long.  


When she's not working, Sarabeth hosts a podcast dedicated to books and interviews with authors and actors. She’s also very close to realizing her lifelong dream of publishing a novel.