Show Review: The Woman in the House Across the Street from the Girl in the Window (2022)

a man in shadow tilting his hat with his fingers, very noir; text says 'show review'

I started this one on a whim, feeling in the mood for a mystery. It’s on Netflix, if anyone’s looking for it. I’ve been watching Slow Horses recently (amazing show, it’s on Apple+ if you’re looking) and wanted something similar. Although … that one’s about spies and this one’s a satirical mystery. I didn’t, however, realise straight away that it was satire, and I would actually amend that and say it’s mostly satire, albeit not entirely. There’s a whole lot of genuine drama, angst, fear, etc in this show, so don’t expect to be laughing the whole way through.

[Note/Spoiler: The actual background of the series is, like, some of the darkest shit ever. It’s not a total spoiler to say that the MC is grieving the loss of her daughter, as that’s pretty much told to you at the start, but it’s how her daughter died (later revealed to the audience) and it was so horrific that I was actually in shock. I think it’s supposed to be overtly shocking to play into the satire/black comedy aspect that the show is going for, but it really was so dark and even my partner was like ‘Whaaaaaat?’ So, yeah. Again, not total comedy, lots of really dark and depressing stuff.]

That said, the show as a whole I quite enjoyed and I really do recommend everyone give it a chance, although I’ll admit that I found myself frustrated by a lot of the central characters’ decisions. The MC’s ex-husband especially. He just made so many frustrating choices. I felt truly awful for Anna throughout, the MC, who is struggling with her grief and consumed with spending her days drinking wine and watching her neighbours through her window. A lot of the characters are furious at her, and she doesn’t help her case a lot of the time, but I really did root for her throughout.

When Anna’s new neighbour Neil moves in with his daughter Emma, the pair bond over mutual loss: that of Neil’s wife and Anna’s daughter. But despite the evident vibes between the two, the next morning Anna’s thrown through a loop when she learns that Neil has a girlfriend that he never bothered to mention. Anna quickly distrusts the girlfriend and spends her days obsessing her all the ways the girlfriend could be up to something. And then things take an even worse turn when Anna witnesses the girlfriend’s death. The show then follows her trying to prove that she’s not crazy, didn’t hallucinate the murder, and trying to solve the case when no one believes her. It’s a great role for Kristen Bell, who I first became a fan of whilst watching Veronica Mars. It’s great seeing her back in a mystery-centric show!

It’s a pretty short show and easy to marathon. Some of the episodes are less than twenty-five minutes long, but it’s super intense and incredibly compelling. I watched the whole thing in one sitting. I really liked the friendship between Anna and Sloane, her best friend who stays by her side throughout the whole show. Her other neighbour, Carol, made me laugh multiple times and provided a good amount of humour to lighten the darker moments of the show.

I got spoiled for part of the ending reveal, but not the whole twist, and I will say I had a lot of moments with my mouth open in shock. One of the final twists had me like \o/

Definitely worth a watch for fans of both mysteries and black comedies!

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