Netflix’s new original series “Wednesday,” directed by Tim Burton, was released on Nov. 23. This eight-episode series offers a fresh take on “The Addams Family” TV and film adaptations that have been produced over the past 58 years. Less than two weeks later, the gothic style shown on screen has permeated youth fashion.
Wednesday Addams, once played by deadpan Christina Ricci in the ’90s, has received a makeover. This time around, 20-year-old Jenna Ortega embodies a stoic Wednesday through gothic attire and a deeply sullen stare. Despite her peers, the character’s color palette does not stray from black and white, yet still captivates her audience. Crisp white shirts, layers of black tulle, and two braids are a small glimpse into Wednesday’s world. Now, Gen Z is channeling their new anti-heroine heroine with a revival of gothic attire.
Oscar-winning costume designer Colleen Atwood, whose credits include Sleepy Hollow and Edward Scissorhands, upheld the tradition of Wednesday in the latest series yet thoughtfully modernized her in a way that is relatable to our youth. Clothing resale app Depop reported a 1000% increase in searches for Wednesday-inspired outfits since the beginning of November. Atwood said, “I felt she should be part of today’s world. I wanted it to be a stylish contemporary look with which the audience would connect. I didn’t want her to be this odd person always draped in black.” Wednesday’s sharp-witted perspective on identity politics directly correlated to the strong-minded youth today.
Even before the release of Wednesday, major fashion brands such as Prada, Gucci, Simone Rocha, Thom Browne, and Rick Owens have championed this dark gothic aesthetic through white shirts and layering of black charcoal materials. Once rooted in the extensive likeness of the Addams Family, a style aesthetic has moved off the screen and met the masses. The ghoulish origins of Wednesday’s look are now more accessible through this re-imagination.