This article was originally published on TheFunPost
The Addams Family has become legendary in pop culture, so it's no surprise that people were immediately obsessed when the new Netflix series Wednesday came out. The show is overflowing with hidden Tim Burton-inspired easter eggs, CGI tricks, and fascinating behind-the-scenes details you'd never know until now. As fans eagerly await the second season, it's time to prepare by ensuring you didn't miss any details that may have slipped under your radar. Keep reading to discover all of the creepy and kooky things that will have you binge-watching the series all over again.
The Truth About Wednesday's Black Cat Suit
Wednesday dons a black catsuit during the canoe races, and it's much more symbolic than fans may have picked up on. With all the references to Edgar Allan Poe, it's no surprise that her costume would symbolize Edgar's short story, "The Black Cat." Also, the costume is similar to the black catsuit from Batman Returns, directed by no other than Tim Burton. Now that can't be coincidental but rather an intentional easter egg!
The similarities to other movies Tim Burton worked on are striking! He knows how to work in references only his biggest fans would notice.
The Bloody Dance Scene Was Inspired by a Classic Horror Film
The prom scene featured in Wednesday is iconic for many reasons. The dancing, the costumes, and, of course, the blood that gets dropped all over the dancegoers make it one of the most memorable parts of the entire series. However, there's a specific reason for this creepy and exhilarating episode to feature people covered in blood. If you're a true fan of thrillers and horror movies, you might've caught it.
It's Tim Burton's homage to the horror film Carrie, which has a scene of teens at prom who suddenly become doused in pig's blood.
The Faceless Characters Were Not CGI
You might've learned that all of the students at Nevermore Academy have unique traits that make them werewolves, sirens, or capable of some mysterious supernatural power. This includes the faceless students. Most assumed this was done with special effects or CGI, but in fact, it was actually achieved by the magic skills of the makeup team on set. They used prosthetics and makeup to achieve a flawlessly faceless face!
Now those watching Wednesday at home can know there are real actors under those prosthetic faces! That's something you could've never guessed by just watching.
The Popcorn Bags Are a Nod to a Tim Burton Movie
This easter egg may have been too easy to miss because of the lighting in the scene, but it's time to unveil it for all fans to know. Wednesday Addams and Tyler go on somewhat of a date, watching a movie and eating popcorn. But there's something special about the popcorn bags. They have black and white stripes, just like the famous pinstripe suit from Beetlejuice. Now take a wild guess who the director of that film is!
Beetlejuice was directed by Tim Burton, who also directed episodes in this series. This is a very cool reference that even the biggest Tim Burton fans can easily miss.
Thing Is Not a CGI Hand but Played by an Actual Actor
One of the most beloved characters from The Addams Family is Thing, which happens to be just a severed human hand. Thing has a very important role on Wednesday, acting as her guardian. On-screen, it may appear as if Thing is simply CGI or animation but don't be fooled. An actual actor plays the hand! His name is Victor Dorobantu, and he wore prosthetic hands and a blue chroma-key suit to be edited out easily.
The fact that this was pulled off so effortlessly without an inkling that it could've been a real person is incredibly impressive.
Nevermore Academy's Gargoyles Are Symbolic
While everything in this series seems to be symbolic, specifically, the architecture of Nevermore Academy cannot go unnoticed. It's easy to miss what's happening in the background, but the set designer revealed a huge easter egg. The gargoyles all around the main quad seem to have great significance in the show. He shared that they were designed after the different school groups, like sirens, vampires, and gorgons. But there's also one more secret.
Apparently, the gargoyles also hint at the plot, which is intriguing. Maybe they foreshadow something that's yet to have happened in this season.
Jenna Ortega Had to Learn How to Play the Cello
When it comes to the intricate parts of taking on a new role, like being skilled in playing a specific instrument, most actors rely on special effects and camera angles to create the illusion of playing. However, Jenna Ortega, the actress who played Wednesday Addams, recently unveiled a fascinating detail you'd never know by just watching the series. She actually learned to play the cello to make Wednesday's cello solos as natural as possible.
This takes extreme effort, and fans will respect the dedication to bringing the character Wednesday Addams to life. Now watching those cello scenes will be even more impressive!
This Truck Driver Is a Reference to the Movie 'Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure'
Another Tim Burton Easter egg that cannot be missed! In the first episode of Wednesday, there is a truck driver with the name Martha written on her car. She drops off a hitchhiker by the woods, and that's the last you see of her. But it's eerily similar to the scene in Tim Burton's Pee-wee's Big Adventure, which features a truck driver named Marge who also picked up a hitchhiker!
Both truck drivers even wear the same red flannel! The resemblance is striking, and there is no denying this must've been done intentionally.
Jenna Ortega Choregraphed Her Own Dance Scene
When Wednesday Addams goes to prom, she is adorned in all black, of course, and shows off her best gothic-inspired dance moves. This scene has stuck out to fans because of how unique and bizarre her dance moves are, but there's one special thing about this scene you'd never expect. Jenna didn't have professional choreographers, and Tim Burton didn't instruct her to dance that way! She came up with the dance all by herself.
Most would expect a big production like this would have multiple choreographers to curate this dance scene perfectly, but this young actress impressed everyone with her own choreography.
Pilgrim World Pays Homage to a Scene From 1993's 'Addams Family Values'
One of the most memorable plotlines from the early 90s film Addams Family Values is when Wednesday burns a summer camp down after being made to play Pocahontas in a Thanksgiving play. Well, the Wednesday series offers a pretty clear callback to this with the theme park Pilgrim World. Like the original character, Wednesday hates pilgrims and vows to cause chaos there. This detail could've been missed if you haven't seen the older Addams Family projects in a while.
Either way, Christina Ricci's Wednesday would be proud to see that Jenna Ortega's Wednesday still carries out the legacy of standing up for what's right.
Characters Snapped in Tune to The Original Addams Family Theme Song
The Addams Family is memorable for its weird characters, spooky theme, and of course, an iconic theme song that features the two-finger snaps. While this new series brings a fresh perspective and unique storyline you've never seen before, some references cannot be missed. For those fans who might be nostalgic for the original film or sitcom, some moments pay homage to the theme song! Throughout the series, cast members can be seen snapping twice.
It's a small gesture that can easily be missed, but a moment worth catching. The snappy clicks really make it feel like an Addams Family project!
Principal Weems Is Modeled After Tippi Hedren in 'The Birds'
Principal Weems was an intimidating character in Wednesday and often came off as evil. But did you know that a character from an iconic horror film entirely inspired her character? The costume designer shared she wanted Principal Weems to resemble Tippi Hedren in the classic, The Birds. This easter egg was sprinkled in there and was far too easy to miss. But the similarities are uncanny, and the costume designer nailed the look.
Thankfully now you know and can impress everyone with your impeccable knowledge of all that went into making this series so special.
Fred Armisen Didn't Wear a Bald Cap To Play Uncle Fester
Any fan of The Addams Family knows another iconic and favorite character is the kooky Uncle Fester. This time around, in the dark spin-off Wednesday, Fred Armisen got to add his flare to the character on-screen. Traditionally, Uncle Fester has always been bald, so a bald cap is needed to capture the essence of this role. However, Fred confessed he wanted it to be authentic and shaved off all of his hair!
When watching his scenes, it's easy to assume he appeared bald with the help of the makeup team, but no, he shaved his hair off in his trailer right before filming!
Jenna Ortega Purposely Avoided Speaking to Christina Ricci
This show became an instant success, and it's no surprise that it could have something to do with the new Wednesday Addams acting right alongside the old Wednesday Addams! Christina Ricci, who plays the only normie teacher at Nevermore, was Wednesday in 1993's Addams Family Values. You would assume Christina Ricci coached Jenna Ortega or prepared her in some way for her role, but they didn't speak about it at all! In fact, Jenna intentionally chose not to discuss Ricci's portrayal of Wednesday so that Ortega's would be completely her own.
This confession may seem odd or surprising, but it's actually a fascinating element that adds so much depth to this show! This adaptation is genuinely unique.
Morticia Recites a Poem That Explains Wednesday's Name
What's the deal with naming your kid after a day of the week? If you didn't catch it, the reason for Wednesday being named Wednesday was revealed at the beginning of the series! She was sent to Nevermore Academy, and while her parents are sitting in the principal's office, Morticia Addams recites a nursery rhyme. "Monday's child is fair of face, Tuesday's child is full of grace, Wednesday's child is full of woe."
This refers to how the original creator of The Addams Family got the idea for this character's name! After all, woe perfectly describes Wednesday's personality.
Weathervane Cafe Is Filled With Easter Eggs
Jericho’s Weathervane Cafe, where Tyler works, appears as a regular cafe at first glance. But some weird things are going on in the background that may have slipped under your radar. The cafe walls are decorated with weathervanes that are Tim Burton-inspired easter eggs. They all represent imagery from Burton’s past movies. And it can be seen only in brief moments! One of the weathervanes appears to be Willy Wonka’s hat from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.
Another weathervane is scissors and a pin which could be alluding to Edward Scissorhands. As well as another that looks like a headless horseman, obviously from Burton's Sleepy Hollow.
Wednesday's Dance Scene Was Inspired by the 80's Goth Scene
It's impressive that Jenna Ortega choreographed the iconic dance scene for her character Wednesday. But do you know how she came up with those dance moves? Each move was actually intentional, but you might've just thought she was creepily flailing around. Jenna actually did thorough research to prepare for this scene. She shared that watching archival footage of goths dancing in the 80s is what helped her ace this dance sequence.
She also credited musicians like Siouxsie Sioux and Lene Lovich as her inspiration for this uncomfortable-looking dance! Who would've known that she didn't have a professional choreographer?
George Burcea Is the Shortest Actor to Play Lurch at 6'3
The character Lurch serves as a butler to the Addams Family and heavily resembles Frankenstein, so traditionally the actors who played him are incredibly tall! From the show in the 60s to the film and series in the 90s, the actors have been around 6'6 to 7 feet tall. But a cool detail that's remained unknown until now is that George is the shortest actor ever to play the role of Lurch!
Despite this fact, George still measures in at 6'3! He is definitely still tall enough to tower over the rest of his costars.
Jenna Used the Kubrick Stare for Her Character Wednesday
You may have watched the show and noticed something creepy about Wednesday's demeanor, but you might not have noticed that she hardly blinks! However, this wasn't intended for her character. Jenna Ortega and Tim Burton decided that she would use the Kubrick stare (head tilted downward and eyes peering upward) but never said she should refrain from blinking at all! Apparently, she didn't realize that she kept filming scenes without blinking, so this quirk actually came about accidentally.
Some people may not have even noticed how she hardly blinked, but now if you go back and watch the series again, it's all you can pay attention to!
Edgar Allan Poe Is Referenced All Throughout the Series
Edgar Allan Poe was a famous poet known for his eerie and dark work. So it's no surprise that he would be referenced in this spooky series out of all poets. Several easter eggs throughout the show are incredibly clever once you realize them! The word 'nevermore' is used in one of his most famous poems, 'The Raven,' and happens to be the name of Wednesday's school. But that's not all.
Ravens are seen all over the campus, and the principal even has one on her desk! Also, a reference you can't miss, the canoe coincidentally called the Poe Cup.
Emma Myers Went to Werewolf Bootcamp to Play the Role of Enid
Emma Myers plays the spunky young girl turn werewolf, Enid Sinclair. This breakout role for her might've looked all fun and games on-screen, but some serious behind-the-scenes work was being done. Could you have ever guessed she had to attend a boot camp dedicated to transforming her into a werewolf? She admitted it was super weird and spent hours crawling on the floor and growling with a few other guys.
It's fascinating to know that her preparation for nailing this role was as extensive as it was! Now she'll have those werewolf skills for life.
Principal Weems’ Shrunken Head Is Actually a Beetlejuice Reference
Principal Weems' office is full of references to other Addams Family adaptations and even some Tim Burton films. Maybe you noticed the glass jar with a shrunken head inside it sitting on Principal Weemss desk. This is an easter egg about the movie Beetlejuice! There's a scene in Beetlejuice in which a man has a shriveled head that looks pretty identical to the one sitting on display in her office.
It's no surprise that this show is riddled with references and easter eggs, but they're hard to notice because of how clever and subtle they are most of the time.
Dr. Valerie Kinbott's Stuffed Mice Collection Is an Homage to Iconic Film Characters
Wednesday Addams' therapist Dr. Valerie Kinbott reveals a closet full of stuffed mice which is quite disturbing. But what's the significance of this? Well, bet you didn't notice what the mice wore when they appeared on screen! They are actually all dressed in outfits inspired by other movies that Tim Burton has done. One costume, in particular, is the black and white pinstripe suit from Beetlejuice, while another mouse can be seen in a costume from Dumbo.
This is such a small detail that it's easy to miss, but now you've discovered yet another callback to Tim Burton's movies.
Tim Burton Didn't Actually Direct All of the Episodes
Tim Burton is already heavily associated with this series and did direct it, after all. But if fans pay close attention, they'll learn that he really only directed the first four episodes! Apparently, he loved the idea that the new Wednesday series was completely original and something people had never seen before! But because of its filming in Romania and scheduling conflicts, he couldn't make it out there to finish the whole series.
However, Tim Burton has been incredibly involved in all aspects regardless of other directors joining and is hoping to come back for another season.
The Set Was Full of Optical Illusions
In order to successfully capture this mysterious world, a ton of work was put in by every department to ensure these dark and creepy characters were as believable as possible. By the looks of it, you'd think Lurch was gigantic, and even though he was tall, the production team actually had a few tricks up their sleeves to create an illusion that made it incredibly convincing that he was a giant.
They built two cars for the scenes with the Addams Family, one of them built in a special way that would make the family appear small and Lurch huge!
The Hyde Monster Is Related to Other Tim Burton Movies
Tim Burton’s style is unique and recognizable in any project he works on. Much of Wednesday’s overall theme and design can be attributed to his master skills! That even includes the creation of the horrifying monster known as the Hyde. Its bug eyes, gigantic head, and overall distinct appearance are incredibly similar to creature designs in past Tim Burton films. Beetlejuice and Pee-wee’s Big Adventure feature scary faces that look much like the Hyde!
The Hyde looks almost identical to the scary snake monster in Beetlejuice, which is another cool reference to Tim Burton's magical touch on everything in the Wednesday series.
Old-School Fans Know Why Wednesday's Archery Skills Are No Surprise
Another hidden gem in this show that references prior movies is Wednesday's connection to bows and arrows! While Wednesday seems to be effortlessly skilled at archery in this new series, it should actually come as no surprise for serious fans! The film Addams Family Values also features Wednesday partaking in some archery with her brother! So this impressive skill is not brand new but rather right on par for Wednesday's character.
This series really hit the target by nailing Wednesday's character and tying in references from older variations. The perfect way to bring some nostalgia to older fans and gain new ones!
Tim Burton Directed the Hand Acting
There is no doubt that Tim Burton's influence on this series seeped into every detail. Including the directing of a hand! It might sound bizarre because how can you direct a hand? Who knew hand acting was even a thing? But here's another insight look into how genius this show is! You would've never expected that Tim Burton actually had to direct each exact movement the hand made in every scene!
If anyone can make a hand feel like a character full of emotions, it's the work of Tim Burton and the talented actor Victor!
Jenna Tested Positive for COVID During the Most Iconic Scene
The filming of Wednesday took place between September 2021 and March 2022, when the Covid-19 pandemic was still in full effect. Of course, by watching the show, you'd have no idea what was happening behind the scenes! Although the cast and crew had to wear masks when not in front of the camera, Jenna Ortega wasn't too lucky. She tested positive and had Covid when she shot the viral dance scene.
Apparently, she found out the test was positive after filming the scene and could not do a second take. Thankfully she did it perfectly the first time, despite fully being sick.
Wednesday’s Dance Dress Is Similar To a Dress From a Tim Burton Classic
During the dance scene, Wednesday shows up in a killer ruffled black dress that, compared to her peers, immediately makes her stick out. While many viewers may be distracted in this scene by her kooky dance moves, the dress actually serves as a reference to another Tim Burton movie! It's insanely similar to the ruffled dress that Winona Ryder's creepy character Lydia Deetz wore in Beetlejuice. The easter eggs dropped throughout the series, pointing to Burton's other work, are undeniable.
While Wednesday's black dress is meant to be a stark contrast against the other dancegoer's mostly white outfits, it's also a cool way to tie in inspiration from other spooky films.
Victor Dorobantu’s Hand Was Captured on Camera From Every Angle
The mastermind behind the treasured hand, Thing, is played by the skilled Victor Dorobantu. No matter how many times you watched this series, you'd never guess that Thing is played by an actual person and not made entirely of CGI effects. Along with wearing a chroma key suit to act as a green screen so only his hand would be captured in every scene, he had to do some pretty bizarre things. One was having his hand filmed at every possible angle by dozens of cameras!
Not many people get to say they're known for their hand-acting! And with the help of all these cameras, they could bring his hand to life on screen.
The Wednesday Actress Had to Take Lessons in Several Things to Nail Her Role
Jenna Ortega had to take on an impressive amount of work to prepare for her portrayal of Wednesday Addams. But by just watching the show, you'd never know everything she had to learn. Along with taking up the cello for the solo scenes, she took lessons in fencing, archery, canoeing, and German. No stunt doubles, voiceovers, or even camera tricks were used to achieve those skills. This impressive actress did it all herself!
The scene where Wednesday is dressed as a pilgrim and speaks German is perfectly executed because Jenna prepared for the role and learned to actually speak the language; what a star.
The Actors Who Played Thing Are Both Magicians
A random and fascinating fact that seems coincidental but is somewhat intentional is that the actors who played Thing happened to be magicians! That's right, Victor, who brought the lovable hand to life on Wednesday, is a magician as well as Christopher, who played the creepy hand in the films from the 90s! It seems the only people who are clever enough to transform a hand into a life-like character are those who practice magic!
It's pretty hard to make a severed hand seem like a person with thoughts and a personality, so a bit of magic never hurts.
Every Detail of The Character's Looks and Costumes Were Intentional
Wednesday Addams is known from other productions only to wear the same iconic outfit, but this series is different. If you didn't realize before, her character in this adaptation got to explore her fashion sense more and wear costumes not traditionally seen on Wednesday. The costume designers shared that every part of the costumes was intentional and unique. From the colors, fabrics, and outfits in every scene, they had to match their character perfectly.
They worked to bring the wardrobes to life with so many details that cannot go unnoticed, giving an all-new meaning to each character.
Not All Scenes Were Filmed Outside in Romania
The cast and crew spent almost a year living and filming Wednesday in Romania! Although the show was set to take place in Vermont, United States, they actually spent their time all over this Eastern European country. Most of the scenes appeared to be outside with gorgeous spooky architecture, but they actually filmed most of the show inside a studio. Rather than film in a real castle, they built a set to replicate one.
Apparently, it was much cheaper to film in a studio than try to capture all of the scenes outside in an actual castle.
Thora Birch Was Supposed to Have Christina Ricci's Role
It only makes sense that actress Christina Ricci has a role in Wednesday, considering she was the former Wednesday Addams, but it wasn't supposed to be this way. The truth is she wasn't a part of the original cast, and the actress Thora Birch was supposed to play the main antagonist. Thora even filmed half of the season before pulling out of the production. But now it's hard to imagine anyone else in that role but Christina.
In a full-circle moment, it's only right the original Wednesday Addams has a part in the new Wednesday. Though she wasn't the first choice, she played the role perfectly.
Despite Being a Hand, a Ton of Work Went Into Perfecting This Character
Usually, characters are people with entire bodies, but that's what makes Thing so fascinating: a whole character played by a hand! Tim Burton really put his signature look on this prosthetic by having it appear beat-up and on the brink of death, full of stitches and scars. However, the actor behind the hand worked super hard to make it appear emotional, lovable, and full of personality. Who knew hand gestures could convey so much?
The process of bringing Thing to life is fascinating. Special effects to ensure the prosthetic looked gory while the actor had to ensure his hand movements were convincing and loving!
An Actor Wore a CGI Suit and Stilts to Play the Hyde Monster
The making of Wednesday relied less on CGI than people expected because of all the amazing special effects throughout the series. However, the Hyde monster, of course, needed CGI, but what you didn't know was that a real human had to act as the monster to help bring it to life! Someone had to actually stand on stilts while wearing a CGI suit and act like the monster during the Hyde scenes!
Only after filming was the monster then animated and edited in; who would've known an actor helped bring that monster to life?
Jenna Had to Make Dietary Sacrifices for the Role
There was so much happening behind the scenes to create this show that another hidden fact you'd have no idea about is Jenna's diet! It seems irrelevant, right? But most of the filming for this show took place in Romania, which means the cast and crew's entire environment would change. Before traveling there, Jenna said she was a vegan, but due to the lack of vegan food options, she had no other choice but to make a sacrifice.
She became a pescatarian because there was no other way. She couldn't drop the role of Wednesday and leave the country, so new diet it was!
Christina Ricci Played Wednesday in the 90s
Despite the Wednesday series being full of amazing actors, there is one true homage to previous Addams Family projects. Some may not have known that the only actor in this season who had any prior connection to Addams Family is Christina Ricci. In the 90s, Christina played the creepy role of Wednesday in The Addams Family and Addams Family Values. She really paved the way for Jenna's character and even made a comeback in this series as the counselor.
Discovering this remarkable behind-the-scenes fact makes the series all the more impressive and well thought out. Who knows, maybe another season will feature more original cast members?