The Woman in the House Across the Street From the Girl in the Window
The first thing viewers will notice about Netflix’s latest mystery miniseries is its comically long title. The Woman in the House Across the Street From the Girl in the Window gives the impression of being a legitimate thriller (its title isn’t dissimilar from Netflix’s own The Woman in the Window) but is just ridiculous enough to let audiences know that it will be having some fun along the way. And that is precisely what this show delivers within the first four of its eight episodes. There’s a genuine mystery at hand, but also a full commitment to poking fun at genre tropes and clichés while it’s being solved. At the midway point, it’s impossible to tell whether the answer will be a surprising reveal or a punchline – or, as is most likely, a mix of the two. Either way, viewers will want to stick around to find out which one it is.
Starring Kristen Bell (who also co-produced the show alongside Will Ferrell), the show centres around Anna. She’s been left traumatised by the death of her daughter, resulting in a severe drinking problem and fear of the rain. When a handsome new neighbour (Tom Riley) moves into the house across the street with his daughter, Anna becomes infatuated with them. However, her world falls apart all over again when she believes she witnesses a murder in that house. But when nobody believes her, she decides to play detective herself.
The biggest question at this juncture is: did Anna witness a murder or was the event a result of her overactive imagination combined with pills and alcohol? The tight script offers plausible explanations for both sides as the plot gradually thickens. What distinguishes this series, though, is its streak of macabre humour. It plays everything with straight-faced sincerity insofar as viewers may forget they’re watching a comedy. And then moments like the daughter’s death (a moment so uniquely ludicrous that it shouldn’t be spoiled) come along and remind them what this show is. Moreover, Bell is phenomenal, and thanks to her committed performance everything lands as intended.
The Woman in the House Across the Street From the Girl in the Window is a refreshing spin on a genre that’s become so ubiquitous recently. It succeeds as both a gripping mystery and delightfully dark comedy. It just works.
The Woman in the House Across the Street From the Girl in the Window is released on Netflix on 28th January 2022.
Watch the trailer for The Woman in the House Across the Street From the Girl in the Window here: