The witty murder comedy following three neighbors played by Steve Martin, Martin Short, and Selena Gomez, was one of the most-watched original series on Hulu/Disney+ last year. Since then, then there has been an increase in true crime shows and podcasts like The Dropout and Inventing Anna that. While Only Murders in the Building is a bit different from your typical crime shows, it still fits the bracket and brings something more. Something better.
Only Murders in the Building season two follows on from the epic season one cliffhanger which showed Mabel covered in blood leaning over the dead body of Arconia Board President Bunny Folger.
The first two episodes remind you of everything that is so loveable about this series. As we follow the trio around chasing their initial leads to find Bunny’s murderer, we’re reminded of the incredible chemistry Gomez, Martin, and Short have and how it works so perfectly to add electric energy to the show’s storyline.
The snappy but sarcastic humor is something that many shows attempt but few get right. Luckily Only Murders in the Building hits the nail on the head as the humor that runs throughout the show creates an engaging show that is different from everything else on tv.
What’s great about this season is that the trio is not solely investigating a murder in their building as podcast hosts but they’re also doing it as suspects which adds more tension to the series. Especially as Mabel has very little memory of what happened on that frightful night that resulted in Bunny’s death.
The first two episodes, which are focused on Bunny’s expensive missing painting, are set up to allow viewers to go deeper into the backstory of Steve Martin’s character, Charles-Haden Savage. The connection works well to make Charles even more likable as the show uses the character’s journey to find out more about the missing painting to add to Charles’s story.
The way the show intertwines Bunny and Charles’ history makes better use of the show’s supporting characters. But what is really powerful is when the trio reflects on their last interactions with Bunny and they realize “We at Only Murders in the Building did not kill Bunny Folger, but there’s a chance we could have saved her life with a simple act of kindness.” It adds a new depth to the series, something beyond the humor that is what initially attracts viewers to the show. It reminds viewers that sometimes crimes can be small but have a big impact.
The focus on Charles’s connection to the Arconia particularly in the second episode suggests that once again the murderer may be someone close.
By turning them also into suspects the show adds a new depth to all the characters in the show and not just the three leads. Bunny wasn’t really liked in the first season, but the second season attempts to remedy that. Their attempt to humanize her in order to make her more likable in the wake of her death is a great addition to the show.
One thing that cannot be missed about this season is that it seems to be much darker but by no means less engaging. Its attempt to delve even deeper into the backstory of the characters makes for killer tv. It makes it feel like the stakes are higher with this murder.
The only downside in the first two episodes was that Amy Schumer and Cara Delevingne’s addition seems unnecessary. While their addition doesn’t put a damper on the charm of the show, they don’t really add anything.
Schumer who plays herself and moves into Sting’s apartment because she wants to make a TV show based on the building’s murder has no impact on the plot and also seems very rushed. Delevingne’s character seems to have more relevance as she seems to be playing a potential love interest for Mabel but in the first two episodes, it feels very much that both Delevingne and Schumer were added to the show because their big-name talent rather than because they were right for their roles or that the roles were needed.
The show’s attempt to give Mabel a love interest is definitely an aspect to watch as Delevingne’s character definitely appears to have a darker motive. But also Mabel’s focus on having a life away from all the death suggests that we’re also going to see more into her backstory and how she grew up to become the Mabel we see living at the Arconia now.
Fans of Only Murders In The Building will be satisfied with the first two episodes of the second season. As the show manages to keep its charm and promise of a witty murder mystery.
Only Murders In The Building new episodes drop on Hulu on Tuesdays.