Hulu’s “Only Murders in the Building” started great but is declining

Only Murders in the Building is a comedy, mystery, and thrilling tv series about three strangers who come together to solve murders in their apartment building while documenting their journey through their podcast called “Only Murders in the Building.” There are currently three seasons available to watch on Hulu. I thoroughly enjoyed the first two seasons of the show, directed by John Hoffman, but found the third season to be chaotic.

I loved season one as there was so much suspense with a touch of humorous jokes. In addition, there were several guest stars including Tina Fey and Sting. Season one came out in August 2021 and introduces the three main characters in the show, Charles Haden-Savage (played by Steve Martin), Mabel Mora (Selena Gomez), and Oliver Putnam (Martin Short) in their apartment building called the Arconia. Charles is a former tv actor, Oliver is a struggling stage director, and Mabel is an apartment renovator who doesn’t know what she wants to do in her life. Through the first few episodes, Charles, Oliver, and Mabel find that they all have a common interest in listening to true crime podcasts. When there is a sudden death in the Arconia, the three come together to solve the murder. Season one ends with a big cliffhanger that leaves you on your toes wanting more. The show kept the viewers in the unknown as everytime you thought you knew who the murderer was, there was a plot twist and it made you rethink your judgment.

In addition, there is a lot of joy in watching season one because there is an intergenerational demographic. For example, Charles and Oliver are quite older than Mabel and you wouldn’t think these three characters would become friends. In reality they do become friends and end up finding out that they share commonalities and they all form a strong friendship. This emphasized the fact that just because somebody is older than you or is from a different generation than you, you can become friends where you are able to learn and grow from each other. 

I really enjoyed season two as it was very action packed and left me on the edge of my seat because I never knew what was going to happen next. Some of the guest stars for this season included Cara Delevingne and Amy Schumer. Season two came out in June 2022 and starts with another murder in the Arconia that the trio is trying to solve while also being in the middle of it. Throughout the season, we learn more about the personal lives of Charles, Mabel, and Oliver, which I found added a really great touch to the show because it made me feel like I understood the characters better. What made this season different from season one was the fact that the trio was caught in the middle of the murder as they were seen as persons of interest, which also made the season gut wrenching because it made me question the integrity of all the characters.

I thought season three was unfocused and chaotic. Some guest stars for this season include Meryl Streep and Jesse Williams. Season three released in August 2023 and follows yet another murder that the trio is trying to solve. I didn’t feel as invested in this murder as I was in the previous seasons because there was too much conflict between the trio and the murder. This created tension within the show and made the season all about the trio rather than solving the murder. 

Seasons one through three are currently streaming on Hulu. On October 3, 2023, Only Murders in the Building was renewed for season four. Overall, seasons one and two are great and I highly recommend watching them. I don’t recommend watching season three as it can be disorganized.

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