Am I Supposed To Take The Woman In The House Seriously?
It's clearly satire, but it's also kinda scary.
The Woman in the House Across the Street from the Girl in the Window is unlike any other TV show. Seeing that comically long title might have you thinking the Netflix series is a hilarious spoof of the various murder mystery psycho-thrillers that have been in vogue in the past decade. But strangely, the show takes itself way to seriously to be a proper spoof, yet it also includes too many absurd jokes to be a full-blown thriller. So, how scary is The Woman in the House, really? The mishmash of genres can totally throw off viewers, especially those who frighten easily.
The Woman in the House revolves around a murder mystery, so there is a fair amount of blood and stabbing, but it never gets too gory. There is a particularly brutal, drawn-out fight in the final episode, but up until then, the murder stuff is relatively brief and not graphic. The show leans into horror elements quite a bit, but it’s more suspenseful than actually scary. And you can rest assured there are no monsters or supernatural elements involved, if that’s what gives you the creeps. TBH, if you could handle similar psychological thrillers like Gone Girl, The Girl on the Train, and of course, The Woman in the Window, then The Woman in the House will be no problem at all.
What’s actually frightening about The Woman in the House is its genre confusion. The series flip-flops between tones at a shocking speed, going from dark comedy to psychological thriller to horror to rom-com to mystery at a breakneck pace. It becomes impossible to keep up, leaving you unsure whether you’re supposed to be laughing or gasping at each new scene.
The show was obviously meant to satirize the hyper-specific “unreliable narrator witnesses a murder” trope, but it fails to keep a healthy distance from its own subject matter and strangely becomes the thing it’s supposed to be parodying. In taking itself too seriously, The Woman in the House paradoxically makes it impossible for any viewer to take it seriously at all.
So, whether you’re looking for a laugh-out-loud comedy or a gripping thriller, don’t set your hopes too high when going into The Woman in the House, because the show falls somewhere in the middle. Instead, pour yourself a massive glass of wine and don’t take it too seriously — there are still enough weird, campy moments to make you giggle, even if you’re not sure if you should be laughing.