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Wednesday Fans Complain The Character Is A Clichéd 'Mary Sue' In The Show's Early Episodes

With her deadpan wit, gothic wardrobe, and affection for all things macabre, Wednesday Addams is an outcast icon. Popularized by Christina Ricci's portrayal of the character in the "Addams Family" films of the '90s, the teenage nightmare has recently received a modern makeover. Now played by Jenna Ortega in Netflix's "Wednesday," the character sports a fresh new fringe hairstyle, as well as some new priorities compared to her predecessors.

When "Wednesday" opens, Wednesday has just been expelled from Nancy Reagan High School for unleashing piranhas on the water polo team. As a result, she enrolls at a new school called Nevermore Academy. While this Edgar Allan Poe-inspired school for outcasts may seem more her speed, Wednesday nevertheless insists on staying away from the pack and only focusing on her writing, cello playing, and solving a mystery that plagues the academy grounds. However, while Wednesday's many talents may make for entertaining television, what some are characterizing as a lack of realism has soured certain viewers on Wednesday's character in the show's early episodes.

Some Wednesday fans think there are only so many skills one person can have

For a self-described loner, Wednesday Addams seems to participate in plenty of extracurriculars in "Wednesday." Before entering the halls of Nevermore, Wednesday is an accomplished cellist, author, and fencer. She then continues to prove her talents in each of these activities as the series progresses. Certain viewers, however, have criticized Wednesday's competency in her wide variety of interests as presented at the show's outset, describing her as an archetypical "Mary Sue."

For example, in a thread they started on the Netflix subreddit about the first three episodes of "Wednesday," user parasiticfreak wrote, "The all knowing, ever so handy at everything Wednesday Addams, it's like I've seen it all before and it's just so meh."

"I knew before she even touched the bow and arrows that she was going to get a bullseye first shot. Super predictable Mary Sue, for sure," replied user Foreign-Rock2460. User cronchh likewise wrote that the degree to which they found Wednesday to be more of a caricature than a three-dimensional character made the show hard to watch for them. Users on Twitter too, like @makoutsold and @noddinggoth, have described the character as a Mary Sue explicitly.

That said, most of these impressions seem to be based on the start of the series, and have elicited plenty of pushback against this idea that Wednesday fits the so-called Mary Sue archetype.

Fans of Wednesday have argued that Wednesday Addams is not actually a Mary Sue

In response to criticism that Wednesday Addams is a supposed Mary Sue at the start of "Wednesday," a number of users online have countered that Wednesday becomes plenty three-dimensional as the show continues.

For example, in parasiticfreak's Reddit thread criticizing Wednesday based on the first three episodes of the new Netflix show, user buttwhynut countered, "After watching the whole thing, she is far from being a Mary Sue. Instead she's deeply flawed." User AllNotKnowing similarly argued that Wednesday's independence ultimately proves to be a character flaw down the line. On Twitter too, users like @ErinLSnyder have written outright that Wednesday does not, in fact, qualify as a Mary Sue.

As talented as Wednesday is, her character still runs into conflict as "Wednesday" continues past its opening few episodes. Wednesday is constantly challenged, especially when no one believes Rowan (Calum Ross) was murdered. Her biggest hurdle, meanwhile, is her struggle with empathy. Wednesday's true failing, as it turns out, is her inability to connect with those around her. How she progresses through this struggle ultimately becomes one of the show's focal points. While initially the ultimate outsider, then, Wednesday overcomes her internal struggle by accepting people into her life by Season 1's end.