The theme song of A Series of Unfortunate Events begs its viewers to "look away." "There’s nothing but horror and inconvenience on the way," the song continues. That may be mostly true, but in the final moments of the third and final season of the series, set to drop on Netflix on Jan. 1, perhaps the most pessimistic character of them all discovers that life isn’t always filled with horror and tragedy. In fact, Lemony Snicket’s happy ending in the television series shows that A Series of Unfortunate Events isn’t always so, well, unfortunate.
The final few minutes of the finale bring about another tragedy for Lemony Snicket. Having washed up on The Island with Kit Snicket and the dead body of Count Olaf, the Baudelaires are suddenly faced with a new challenge— assisting Kit through her difficult labor. Not only is Kit giving birth, but she’s also dying from the poisonous mushroom Medusoid Mycelium. She was unable to eat the special apples that would serve as the antidote, as they are dangerous to unborn children. Kit survives just long enough to give her daughter a kiss, name her after Beatrice Baudelaire, and ask the Baudelaire siblings to care for her. With Kit’s death, Lemony is left the only surviving member of the Snicket family. Another orphan, if you will.
Wait! I can practically hear you yelling through my computer screen. I thought you said Lemony Snicket gets a happy ending? As with everything in A Series of Unfortunate Events, nothing good happens without first a dose of misery. In the final moments his narration, the Baudelaire’s story becomes Lemony’s own, as he receives a note in his hotel room from a relative looking to share a root beer float. He arrives at the soda shop to meet face to face with his niece, Beatrice herself, who has sought out her uncle in order to share with him her story, and that of the Baudelaires, who have raised her.
When she learns that Lemony already knows the story of what has happened to them up until the Baudelaires left The Island, Beatrice begins to fill her uncle in on what’s happened since, picking up where his narration has left off. And so the story of the Baudelaires ends with a new one being told.
It’s certainly a much cheerier ending than the ambiguous one given to Lemony in the novels, though in The End, the final book in the series, it is hinted at that Lemony might be in touch with his niece. But to see him sharing a root beer float with a member of his family, from whom he had been separated for so long, was a touching addition to a series that, at its heart, is about the lengths family will go for one another. The Baudelaires and the Quagmires braved fires, murder attempts, vicious birds, and Count Olaf himself in order to protect each other and keep their families’ legacies alive. It was nice to see Lemony achieve a piece of that familial love for himself.
The story of the Baudelaire orphans may be over for now, but something tells me the tale of Lemony and Beatrice, named for the woman he loved so much, is just beginning.
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