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Patrick Warburton Breaks the Fourth Wall in Netflix’s Teaser for Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events

I was so busy feeling sad about Patrick Warburton missing out on Amazon’s reboot of The Tick (which is still great, by the way, even without him in the lead) that I had almost forgotten the reason why he couldn’t do that project: he was too busy starring as Lemony Snicket in Netflix’s adaptation of A Series of Unfortunate Events.

Their brand-new trailer for the upcoming show stars Warburton as a stand-in for the author, using his classic delightful deadpan to break the fourth wall and give the viewer a miniature tour of the Unfortunate Events set. It’s all very meta, since of course Warburton is actually in-character as the author even as he gives this tour–and, by the way, “Lemony Snicket” isn’t even the real name of the books’ author anyway, it’s a pen name for author Daniel Handler, and also the name of the fictional character that Handler uses as an authorial stand-in within his works.

The metaphor tail just keeps on going. Within this trailer, Warburton’s Snicket tells us all that the entire cast and crew for Unfortunate Events has been laid out with a bad case of melancholia and ennui, thereby preventing them all from working on the show, ’cause it’s all just too depressing. Except for one cast-member, who seems to be immune to this… at which point the characteristic strains of one Neil Patrick Harris can be heard in the background.

Recall that NPH will be playing the TV show’s antagonist, Count Olaf, so it makes sense that he would be in a great mood compared to his colleagues… assuming he’s going off the deep end and getting creepily into character, as this trailer suggests.

This trailer does a great job showing off the sense of humor of the series in just a minute and a half, all without showing a single scene from the upcoming show. Pretty clever! Netflix’s adaptation of Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events hits the internet on Friday the 13th of January, 2017.

(via Netflix)

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Maddy Myers, journalist and arts critic, has written for the Boston Phoenix, Paste Magazine, MIT Technology Review, and tons more. She is a host on a videogame podcast called Isometric (relay.fm/isometric), and she plays the keytar in a band called the Robot Knights (robotknights.com).