Hulu’s done it again, dropping a huge new hit. The streaming platform just dropped its new series, “Only Murder In the Building,” and rave reviews have followed. The series stars Hollywood royalty like Selena Gomez, Steve Martin, and Martin Short, and it’s a masterful blend of mystery, comedy, and suspense. CELEB is taking a look at the new series that has the internet buzzing.
Murder In the Building
It’s a brilliant blend of casting and writing, and “Only Murders” has hit the ground running. With Gomez, Short, and Martin headlining, you knew it was going to be good; turns out, it’s great.
NPR shares, “At first, the actors slot easily, even predictably, into their respective roles: Martin is Charles, a washed-up actor living off the royalties from his old cop show, and Short is Oliver, a flailing theater director who hasn’t had a hit in decades.
Both men are infatuated with a true-crime podcast, and when a mysterious death occurs in their Upper West Side apartment building, they decide to start a true-crime podcast of their own.”
And then there’s Mabel. Slightly suspicious Mabel falls in with the aspiring podcasters. Mabel, played by Gomez, is a perfect foil for the hapless gents, her character offering both a grounding energy and secretive intrigue. Gathering the juggernauts of Short and Martin together, you have the potential for a campy, over-the-top series that doesn’t take itself seriously enough and swings wildly, missing.
However, “Only Murders” is restrained, poised, and perfectly both written and played out by the cast. Per NPR, “As their amateur murder investigation deepens, the twists keep piling up, the herrings get redder and redder, and everyone, even the murder victim, gets a backstory that ties neatly (but not too neatly) into the main plot. Of the eight episodes (out of ten) screened for critics, most feature a moment or two of dreamlike surreality, and instead of throwing off the tone, such passages deftly layer in emotions the characters aren’t yet prepared to express in dialogue.
In the end, Only Murders in the Building isn’t the wacky farce suggested by its stars and plot, and that’s a good thing. It’s more muted, more real, and it’s shrewdly knowing about who its characters are, and what they want. It’s also very funny, which isn’t particularly surprising — but it features grounded, satisfyingly nuanced performances from Martin and Short, which is.”
All-Star Cast and Rave Reviews
Reviews for the first three episodes are already singing the praises of the dynamic trio, and looking forward to everything the series has to offer. Martin, Short, and Gomez bring their unique styles together to create a modern Scooby Do gang that’s also somehow endearing and intriguing; their characters as much a draw to watch the next episodes as the mysteries you hope to see them solve.
Per Vulture, “The premiere of Hulu’s Only Murders in the Building from co-creators Martin and John Hoffman explores secrets, loneliness, and the true-crime craze of the 2010s, all set in an iconic New York City apartment building — the Arconia, meant as a stand-in for the Ansonia — that’s filled with characters straight out of Fran Lebowitz’s brain. The premiere answers every question I had leading up to its release: Will an eccentric group of strangers try to solve a crime, assuming they are experts because they listen to a murder podcast? Will Martin Short make a reference to the hit musical Annie? Will Steve Martin wear a little hat? Does Selena Gomez have a secret bigger than her hair? (An emphatic ‘yes’ to each.)”
As a side note, the entire cast rocked faces made perfect by Gomez’s own beauty line, Rare Beauty.
Shows to Look For on Hulu
Hulu did its typical premiere bonanza and released episodes 1, 2, and 3 at once. And episode 3 had a superstar surprise at the end, in the form of none other than rock legend Sting.
After the massive success of Hulu’s Handmaid’s Tale showed that the streaming giant meant business when it comes to original content, they’ve set a high bar for their own series. But they continue to deliver, show after show, and there’s a lot to look forward to. Episode 4 of “Only Murders” airs on September 7th, so make sure to set your calendars for that.
And there’s a lot else to look forward to. While the beloved Handmaid’s Tale isn’t likely to return until Spring 2022, at least two originals are being released in September that will surely generate some buzz. On September 3rd,The D’Amelio Show will premiere, starring the D’Amelio family. This original series follows the sisters and their family as they go from virtual obsecurity to superstardom, with Charli and Dixie taking over the TikToksphere.
And on September 8th, Wu Tang: An American Saga premieres. Hulu describes the show; “EMMY® NOMINATED Wu-Tang: An American Saga is inspired by ‘The Wu-Tang Manual’ and ‘Tao of Wu’, and based on the true story of the Wu-Tang Clan. Set in early ’90s New York at the height of the crack cocaine epidemic, the show tracks the Clan’s formation, a vision of Bobby Diggs aka The RZA, who strives to unite a dozen young, black men that are torn between music and crime but eventually rise to become the unlikeliest of American success stories.”
It’s a good year for Hulu, with SVOD platforms booming amid the pandemic. It’s tricky to put out new content when you have to work around COVID restrictions, but streaming giants like Netflix and Hulu have perfected the art of gathering safely. It’ll be exciting to see what else they create in the year to come. For now though, go binge episodes 1-3 of “Only Murders In the Building;” it’s worth it.