ONLY MURDERS IN THE BUILDING. The creators’ inventiveness seems to be inexhaustible

“Only Murders in the Building” was conceived by Steve Martin and John Hoffman.


10 June 2024

only murders in the building

The clash between the old and the new is a popular theme, often used in the world of film. And since it can be a source of many gags, comedy creators frequently turn to it. In the case of the series “Only Murders in the Building,” experience is embodied by Steve Martin and Martin Short, while youth is represented by Selena Gomez. It also happens that actors once famous, after years of coasting on their careers, accept any proposal that comes their way. Fortunately, in the case of Martin and Short, we don’t have such a situation, as they create roles here equal to their best achievements. And if I add that the series is a mix of comedy and crime, lightly seasoned with drama, one can expect at least an interesting combination.

“Only Murders in the Building” was conceived by Steve Martin and John Hoffman. The plot focuses on three residents of the New York apartment building Arconia, who are fascinated by solving criminal puzzles and eagerly listen to popular true crime podcasts. When a man dies in their building, they decide to join forces and solve the mystery of his death while recording a podcast. The series already has three seasons, and the fourth is set to debut at the end of the summer, with each season containing a separate mystery.

only murders in the building

The greatest strength of the production is its characters. Three completely different personalities, perfectly complementing and cooperating with each other: the aging actor of a single role Charles-Haden Savage (Martin) reminisces about his glory days when he played a detective in a popular series and dreams of still performing, the washed-up Broadway director Oliver Putnam (Short) would like to create a hit show again, and young Mabel Mora is still searching for her place in life. The characters don’t spare each other sarcastic and ironic remarks, but over time a bond of true friendship forms between them. Since we are dealing with a series, the screenwriters have a lot of screen time, and we can learn more about each protagonist – they are not cardboard figures devoid of feelings and flaws. Dramatic threads, although they should theoretically interfere with the entertaining crime-comedy intrigue, work excellently and add an extra advantage. Although the beginning is a bit boring and before we get to know the main characters and the plots start to resonate properly, one might get discouraged, but it’s really worth getting through the first few episodes because it gets better and better.

“Only Murders in the Building” – a smile immediately appears on our face

Basically, the creators serve us a standard plot about amateurs solving criminal cases, but the whole thing is presented so gracefully, and the comedy is so skillfully intertwined with the detective thread and sprinkled with drama, that it’s impossible not to have a good time. The ingenuity of the screenwriters, who keep offering false leads, is impressive. Obvious solutions always turn out to be dead ends, and the resolution of the mystery is surprising and sparkling with brilliance. We also encounter several entirely novel plot devices, such as an episode from the perspective of a deaf person.

only murders in the building

A separate issue is the guest star appearances. Over three seasons, we have seen, among others, Sting, Shirley MacLaine, Cara Delevingne, Michael Rapaport, and Matthew Broderick on screen. They even managed to get the legendary Mel Brooks, and Paul Rudd and Meryl Streep got big roles. Some play themselves, and all these characters are excellently woven into the plot, and when we see them, a smile immediately appears on our face.

The series has quite deservedly gained considerable popularity. The characters are likable, the actors perfectly “feel” their roles, and the on-screen chemistry between the characters (not just the main ones) really sparks. And since the creators’ inventiveness seems to be inexhaustible for now, I am eagerly waiting for the fourth season.

Written by Piotr Zymelka



We're movie lovers who write for other movie lovers!

See other posts from this author >>>