Netflix’s Wednesday: 7 Things In The Show That Honor The Addams’

Netflix’s Wednesday has quickly become a popular adaptation in the extensive Addams Family franchise. The series follows Wednesday Addams as she attends Nevermore Academy and solves a series of mysterious murders in the local town of Jericho. Though far from having perfect representation, Wednesday marks a key change in the franchise by making the Addams family canonically Latinx for the first time.

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The family ancestry of the Addams has always been murky, with Gomez being played varyingly by white and Latino actors over the years. The other Addamses, including his children, have usually been portrayed as white. Despite the original television adaptation describing the family as having Castilian Spanish heritage, Wednesday sets itself apart by representing the Addams as a family of Mexican descent.


1/7 Día De Los Muertos

Wednesday Addams and Thing from the 2022 series

In the sixth episode of Wednesday, the eldest Addams child and her friends Enid and Tyler stumble across a secret family altar in the abandoned Gates mansion. When Enid makes a remark about the creepiness of the altar, Wednesday mentions that she and her family keep theirs in the living room so that they can celebrate Día De Los Muertos year round. Though this line is more of a comedic one, it does highlight the centrality of the Addams’ Mexican heritage within the show.

Translating to Day of the Dead, Día De Los Muertos is a Mexican celebration honoring the souls of deceased family relatives. It involves leaving offerings for these relatives to guide their spirits back into family homes and celebrating their lives with color and joy. Though the color and joy aspect may not be entirely keeping with the Addams aesthetic, the celebration of death and finding light in the darker things certainly is.

2/7 Mexican Music

Wednesday Addams working on her novel in her dorm room

Throughout the series, Wednesday is seen listening to a variety of music as she writes her novel on her typewriter. Though viewers with a keen musical ear will realize that many of these songs are Latin in origin or have Latin influences. One of the earliest songs featured in this way is a cover of “La Llorona” by Chavela Vargas, who was a pioneer of Latin American music in the 1960s. This song is also a reference to the Mexican folk tale of the same name, in which the spirit of La Llorona weeps as she wanders along riverbanks searching for her drowned children.

Another song that Wednesday listens to as she writes is a cover of “Gnossienne No. 1” by Dominik Luke Johnson. Though neither the song nor the artist are Latin American, the style of the cover is certainly in keeping with popular Latin music. Classical guitar is a defining instrument within Latin music, and the cover showcased within the series is a classical guitar cover. Given Wednesday’s Mexican ancestry, it’s unsurprising she would prefer music that features the classical guitar.

3/7 Ancestral Ties

Goody Addams and Wednesday Addams near Crackstone's Crypt

A large element of the series is Wednesday’s connection with her ancestor Goody Addams, who helps guide her visions of the past. In the third episode of the series, it is revealed that Goody Addams and her family were in Jericho before the Pilgrims stole their land. Goody is heard to say that her and her people previously lived in harmony with the native folk.

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This would indicate that while Goody Addams and her family were aligned with the Indigenous Native Americans, they were not necessarily from there themselves. It is possible that Wednesday seeks to connect the Addams family to Indigenous Mexican populations of land now under US control. However, the historical timeline and location of the show remain rather unclear.

4/7 Speaking Spanglish

Morticia and Gomez Addams sing to each other in the car as they drop Wednesday to Nevermore

The Addams are known for being well-versed in several languages. Morticia and Gomez, in particular, often work Italian and French phrases into their long adoration of one another. However, the use of the Spanish language within Wednesday is a clear signal of the Addams’ Latinx heritage.

Anyone within a mixed-heritage household will know that the blending of languages is a common occurrence, especially when it comes to pet names for family members. With their Mexican ancestry made clear, it’s no wonder that phrases such as “mi cariño”, “querida mía”, and “my little tormenta” are scattered throughout the show.

5/7 Latinx Actors

Gomez, Morticia and Pugsley in Wednesday

In any new show, it’s important to have the right actors to represent the characters they play faithfully. In the case of Wednesday, this meant casting the iconic Addamses with Latinx actors. Though it’s not the first time that Gomez has been played by a Latinx actor, it is a first for many of the other characters in the show.

RELATED: Wednesday Blooper Reel Shows Hilarious Moments With Jenna Ortega

Luis Guzmán takes over the role of Gomez, following in the footsteps of fellow Puerto Rican icon Raúl Juliá. Jenna Ortega, a Mexican American and Puerto Rican actress, is the first Latina to land the role of Wednesday. Her brother, Pugsley, is played by Isaac Ordonez, who is of Mexican ancestry. The role of Uncle Fester is helmed by Fred Armisen, a Venezuelan actor and comedian.

6/7 Anti-colonialist Mindset

Wednesday Addams in the Weathervane cafe in the new Netflix series

The most prominent theme in Wednesday is the unfair divide between normative society and those it deems as outcasts. Within the narrative, this theme is played out between the Pilgrim-descendant citizens of Jericho and the supernatural families of Nevermore. Though it isn’t the first time an Addams has faced a Pilgrim foe, Wednesday is clear in its defense of accurate Indigenous histories rather than whitewashed ones.

Wednesday regularly describes the early Pilgrims of Jericho for what they were, cruel religious fanatics who would wipe out anyone who wasn’t like them. Her ancestor, Goody Addams, also stood up to these Pilgrims and condemned them for stealing Indigenous land. These anti-colonialist actions and values are an integral part of Wednesday Addams’ Latina identity and a great representation of a socially conscious protagonist.

7/7 Family Day Feast

Gomez and Morticia Addams at the Nevermore Family Day Feast

In the fifth episode of the series, Nevermore hosts a Parents Weekend for all the students and their families. Part of the festivities of the weekend involves a large feast of various foods. The school appears to have provided foods relevant the various subgroups of Outcasts. The spread includes red meat for the werewolves, seafood for the sirens, and a surprisingly large array of mushrooms.

When audiences see Wednesday and her family partaking in the feast, fans with a keen eye will notice that Gomez’ plate is filled with what appears to be some kind of vegetarian tacos. Though it may not be the most notable inclusion, it is nice to see this small culinary nod to the Addams’ Latinx heritage.

Wednesday is available now on Netflix.

MORE: Netflix’s Wednesday: The Best Quotes, Ranked

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