Only Murders in the Building fails to find precision

The show has charisma, and is a good brainless watch for mindless enjoyment. However, the Martins’ comedic partnership and nostalgia are not enough to keep this show afloat in the sea of mediocrity this show has found itself in. 

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Timur Markowitz

What Only Murders in the Building brings in charisma, it lacks in good writing.

 Hulu’s new murder mystery/comedy show, Only Murders in the Building, fails to find precision in its writing. Its mixture of genres is excellent; however each of these genres on their own are questionable at best. The comedy delivers increasingly predictable jokes, a majority focusing on the age difference between Selena Gomez and the Martins (Martin Short and Steve Martin). 

     The performances are acceptable, yet the writing fails to be exceptional. The most creative jokes are ones that I have seen before, and as the show continues it gets worse and worse. The dialogue is as subtle as playing AC/DC during Swan Lake, with characters going from regular conversation to long monologues within seconds. 

     Meanwhile, the mystery side of this show is even less bearable. What started off as an interesting story with grounded reveals has become more and more distracted from what the first few episodes were. The first three episodes, the highlight of the show so far, had reveals such as (SPOILER ALERT), Mabel knowing the victim, or Steve Martin’s character having faked a passionate speech. 

     Now, however, the writers have elected for increasingly ridiculous reveals, with the most recent in episode five yet having extremely little set-up to this reveal, being that the victim was…attempting to take down an illegal jewelry seller? 

     A good twist is one that is obvious, despite the audience not figuring it out. When you rewatch, you think: of course! I should have known! With this twist, it makes me suspect the next reveal is the killer is an alien hiding on the moon. 

     Steve Martin and John Hoffman (who co-created the show) cannot seem to figure out how to write an effective mystery, with recent episodes leaving me uninterested despite the early episodes showing promise. Meanwhile, these creators have apparently forgotten how to write comedy, with a majority of jokes being predictable and formulaic, unless you consider a young person not knowing songs by older singers a revolutionary comedic masterpiece. Its redeeming qualities have been limited to the pairing of the Martins, and an eccentric style that is extremely memorable, particularly for a mystery show. 

     The memorable style pairs with the color palette and music extremely well, making it an entertaining watch if nothing else. Additionally, it is a pleasure to see the same dynamic between the Martins after so many years. The show has charisma, and is a good brainless watch for mindless enjoyment. The show has recently been renewed for a second season as well due to popularity. However, the Martins’ comedic partnership and nostalgia are not enough to keep this show afloat in the sea of mediocrity this show has found itself in. 

 

Final Rating: 2.5/5