Review by Sean Boelman
Hulu seemingly wants to dominate the murder mystery comedy genre between its smash hit Only Murders in the Building and the new series Wedding Season. Not to be confused with last month’s Netflix romantic comedy of the same name, this series is the type that could have been a ninety-minute movie.
The show follows a woman who, along with her on-again-off-again lover, gets accused of murdering her new husband and his entire family at her wedding, only to discover that a vicious conspiracy may be afoot. At first glance, the premise seems pretty interesting, but the truth is that the conspiracy being unraveled is so generic and bland that it’s hardly worth watching.
One of the more noticeable issues with the series is its frequent tonal shifts. Sometimes it’s goofy and silly, and others, it’s morbid and dark. But more frustrating is that it is not effective enough at either extreme for it to be effective. It either needed to be funnier or more tense, but what we got is a mish-mash of tones that is largely unsatisfying.
The structure of the show is also confusing, and there is very little reason for it to be as indecipherable as it is. The show attempts to create mystery by only revealing certain information about the story at certain times, making it frustratingly dense. With some streamlining, this could have been a quaint, entertaining ninety-minute rom-com.
Rosa Salazar is typically a very talented actress, and she is obviously giving it her all here, but the scripting is just so bad that even her talents can’t save the show. There is just one shift after another in the character’s arc, and that makes it hard for her to give a consistent performance. Gavin Drea is given a much more straightforward character, but he just comes across as too serious and straight-faced.
There is also a pretty significant issue with the character development in the series. Although Drea’s character is likable enough, Salazar’s repeatedly does some horrible backstabbing, and yet we are expected to sympathize with her every step of the way? She’s not someone that is easy to root for, and the series barely plays with this dynamic.
From a stylistic standpoint, the series is largely bland. It’s a bright and saturated romantic comedy for most of it, and yet it absolutely fails to form any sort of juxtaposition with the darker elements of the story. And the only burst of personality the show has is using a couple cover versions of popular songs (primarily tunes you’d hear on a wedding DJ’s playlist) to close out the episodes.
Wedding Season is a massive disappointment considering what it could have been. By no means is it unwatchable, but it also isn’t worth the six hours of your life it demands.
Wedding Season streams on Hulu beginning September 8. Seven out of eight episodes reviewed.