One of Netflix's most anticipated winter releases is its adaptation of Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events. It's been 13 years since the last time the children's books were adapted into a movie starring Jim Carrey, which never got its follow-up installments. The Netflix series promises to feel a little more complete, with eight episodes exploring the first few books of the series and progress throughout the 13-part collection as the seasons continue. The story is narrated by Lemony Snicket, which is the pen name of author Daniel Handler. But he's also a character, so fans may be wondering: who is Lemony Snicket on A Series of Unfortunate Events?
In the books, he becomes a sort of character himself as he narrates the story — not with a neutral tone or with sympathy for the heroes, but actually actively dissuading the readers from continuing to read because the events of the tale are so, dare I say, unfortunate. In both the film adaptation and the Netflix version, Lemony Snicket is brought in as his own character, who narrates. Jude Law played him in the 2004 movie, and Patrick Warburton will play him in the Netflix series. You can catch a glimpse of him in the two trailers released by the show.
He tells the story of Violet, Klaus, and baby Sunny Baudelaire, three siblings whose parents have tragically died in a fire and left them a huge fortune. They are placed into the care of a man named Count Olaf, who is eager to usurp the children's fortune for his own gains, forcing them to serve him and live in squalid conditions in the meantime. It's a little Harry Potter-meets-Despicable Me.
As they escape Count Olaf's clutches, they bounce around between other close relations of their parents, discovering that they were all in a secret society, which Count Olaf also has something to do with. Olaf pursues the children after their escape, showing up at inopportune moments wearing disguises that seem to convince the adults around him, but are all too transparent to the children (and, of course, the viewers as well). Violet, Klaus, and Sunny race to solve the mystery of their parents and their strange friends, all while staying out of Count Olaf's grasp and holding onto their fortune until they can land in a safe place.
Daniel Handler, the author behind Lemony Snicket, also wrote the Netflix adaptation and worked closely with production during the series' development. So hopefully, the show will be imbued with the same wry humor and dark touches as the books that fans have come to love.