The Return of Lemony Snicket

A Series of Unfortunate Events

This is great news!  Netflix is going to turn Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events into 13-part TV series!  The unhappy adventures of the orphaned siblings Violet, Klaus, and Sunny Baudelaire, and their sinister uncle Count Olaf, are getting a new interpretation.

“I can’t believe it,” Snicket said. “After years of providing top-quality entertainment on demand, Netflix is risking its reputation and its success by associating itself with my dismaying and upsetting books.”

The books were written for children, but were packed with literary allusions that would only resonate with adults.  One of the characters was named Esme Squalor, f’rinstance, and the orphans’ herpetologist uncle once warned them that the deadly Virginia wolfsnake should never ever ever be allowed near a typewriter.  It’s also unlikely that many middle school readers would associate the names “Klaus” and “Sunny” with the sensational von Bülow murder case in the 1980s.

The first few books of A Series of Unfortunate Events are wonderful.  The series lost steam as it progressed—you can see from the above image that the volumes got thicker with time—and a lot of plots were left unresolved at the end.  A 2004 film based on the first three books and starring Jim Carrey and Meryl Streep was something of a disappointment.  Nonetheless, the series sold 60 million copies worldwide.

No news yet on when the shows will launch, and no casting news so far.  I’ve got high hopes for this one!


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