TV Review: Only Murders In the Building (2021- )

Original Run: August 31st, 2021 – current
Created by: Steve Martin, John Hoffman
Directed by: various
Written by: various
Music by: Siddhartha Khosla
Cast: Steve Martin, Martin Short, Selena Gomez, Aaron Dominguez, Amy Ryan, Tina Fey, Nathan Lane, Sting, Jane Lynch

Rhode Island Ave. Productions, Another Hoffman Story Productions, 40 Share Productions, 20th Television, Disney Platform Distribution, Hulu, 10 Episodes (so far), 26-35 Minutes (per episode)

Review:

When I first saw the trailer for this, I was pretty excited about checking it out. I love Steve Martin and Martin Short, especially together, and from what I’ve seen of Selena Gomez, I’ve been impressed simply because I only really know of her as an ex-Disney child star and a pop artist.

These three come together wonderfully well, though. Martin and Short being paired up was a no-brainer but adding Gomez to the mix was an x-factor. She did a superb job and I really like this trio and hope to see more from them in season two and hopefully beyond. Hell, round up Chevy Chase and go make a Four Amigos movie.

I thought that the murder mystery plot here was well-crafted and had a good amount of layers and twists like a classic film-noir. I can’t quite consider this noir, tonally, but it is very much inspired by some of the great noir works of yesteryear.

The show is well paced, well acted, has characters you’ll love and gets right down to business from the get go. There aren’t any filler episodes and things move briskly, not wasting time on anything unimportant. Even when a character pops up and it feels like some sort of distraction or the show is getting lost on itself, there is always a reason behind it that helps with the overall payoff.

I like the simple visual style of the show but it could’ve probably used a bit more panache. However, things are overproduced these days, to the point of everything being generic and milquetoast. Luckily, there was enough passion behind this project and within its stars, that it stands out.

My only negative was that I knew who the real killer was almost immediately. Granted, that’s not a bad thing, as the story still surprised me.

All in all, not a bad effort and I hope the second season just adds more to this pretty solid foundation. I feel like it’s a show that can actually improve. It was searching for its footing in the early episodes but found it rather quickly.

Rating: 7.5/10

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