How well do you think you know your floormates? How about everyone in your building? What would you do if one of them died under mysterious circumstances? Any rational person’s first thought would clearly be to start a podcast. Only Murders in the Building explores this reality after Mabel Mora (Selena Gomez), Oliver Putnam (Martin Short), and Charles-Haden Savage (Steve Martin) discover a member of their building, Tim Kono (Julian Cihi) dead. The police quickly determine Kono’s death to be an “open and shut case,” but the girl shadowed by death, failed artist of the theater, and cop-show has-been are set to prove otherwise.
Nothing can prepare viewers for the emotional rollercoaster offered by Hulu’s newest trio. Not only will you sound like a psychopath laughing to yourself in the middle of night while watching each plot unfold, but find yourself trying to beat Mabel, Oliver, and Charles to the murderous punchline as well. Each episode is carefully executed as a masterpiece with the perfect balance of drama, suspense, and comedy. It is impossible to ignore the artistry in the directing and overall show writing of Only Murders in the Building. The unseen brilliance behind the sound and music department of the show, as well as one of the most underrepresented communities, is beautifully portrayed in Episode Seven of Season One, “The Boy From 6B.” The episode is from the perspective of Theo Dimas (James Caverly), a deaf character and actor on the show, whose, for lack of a better word, unique history, will leave you with more questions than answers. And for those of you who are diehard fans of genius directing, director Cherien Dabis, closely assisted by Caverly, positioned each “hearing” character in the frame so that Theo could always read their lips in this entirely silent episode. The workmanship and finesse that went into this episode alone is incredible.
But wait, there’s more! If season one isn’t enough for you, the season two finale aired at the end of August, and it is just as wild of a ride! The stakes are raised in the second season after viewers are left with Season One’s extreme cliffhanger. Season two proves that we have barely met Mabel, Oliver, and Charles in the first season. Being meticulously set up for murder reveals a lot about a person. Each character is elegantly thrust through new personal developments and secrets they probably wished stayed dead. The showrunners explore the deep, disturbing fascination we as a society have created with missing person cases, murder, and even Crime podcasts. The show calls out that we have developed a culture of trauma vulturing that dehumanizes our fellow human beings into sellable stories that are more than high in demand. Despite this unfortunate taste for blood, we so desire in the human condition, you will be dying for more.