The Baudelaire orphans begin this final televised adaption of their troubles rolling down a mountain in a carnival trailer. Using her patently inventive mind, Violet tasks Klaus to use an oar to brake the wheels of the trailer while she strings together enough Caligari Carnival banners to make a drag chute, which slows the trailer down enough for them to exit, albeit at the edge of a cliff.

Count Olaf assumes, not unreasonably, that the two oldest Baudelaires have died. He then comes to a fork in the road. He turns left, choosing to drive up Mount Fraught and away from the Valley of the Four Draughts where the VFD Headquarters is located. The count had planned to burn down Headquarters, but he was thwarted by his girlfriend, Esme Squalor, and his own general incompetence, a word which here means “inability to plan ahead long enough to study a map.”

Meanwhile, some new faces enter the picture, although some are attached to hands that have previously before been shown retrieving sugar bowls. The hand and the face both belong to Kit Snicket, the younger sister of the author Lemony Snicket, who tries to escape with the sugar bowl from Mount Fraught, only to run into some faces familiar to her, but new to television aficionados: the unmistakable Man With a Beard but No Hair and the Woman with Hair But No Beard. The Beard and the Hair demand the sugar bowl, but Kit escapes via hang glider, is pursued by eagles, and then plunges into an icy river after which she reveals her pregnancy to the audience.

After fighting about which trail would better help them rescue Sunny from Olaf and his henchmen, Violet and Klaus Baudelaire find a third option and head off into the woods when a cloud of snow gnats forces them off the beaten path, a phrase which here means, “the direction Count Olaf has obviously gone.” They seek refuge from the snow gnats in cave, where they meet a troop of Snow Scouts led by nominally by Scoutmaster Brucie (who’s more Accommodating than her book counterpart), really by Camelita Spats. Carmelita’s troop consists entirely of kids with wealthy, living parents, expect for one mysterious boy in a fencing mask. This masked boy waits until the Snow Scouts are all sleeping, and then leads them through a tunnel to the VFD headquarters.

Kevin, Hugo, and Colette – the ambidextrous, hunch-backed, and contortionist carnival freaks – continue to be made fun of by the other henchmen employed Count Olaf. They seek shelter out in the woods, where Count Olaf sends them as a way of hazing them, a word which here means, “a form of bullying, requiring of humiliating acts as a way of initiating into a group.” In the woods, they meet Kit, who warns them to run, and then the Beard and the Hair, who apparently kill them.

The Hook-Handed Man and Olaf’s other henchmen have a much easier time accepting Sunny, whom they employ as a cook for the group. Sunny makes use of the random ingredients that Olaf has in the trunk of his car to patch together some meals that everyone but Olaf and Esme love. The Hook, who locked Sunny in a cage two seasons ago, appears remorse and frequent chats with the youngest Baudelaire orphan, who learns of Olaf’s intention to burn down VFD headquarters. Then, the Beard and the Hair arrive and reveal two things: they’re Olaf’s mentor figures, and they’ve already torched headquarters.

The two elder Baudelaires, having reached the end of the shaft they’ve been climbing, released this, and soon learned the identity of the fire survivor, when their travelling companion removed his fencing mask and revealed himself to be Quigley Quagmire.


Photo courtesy of Netflix.