Lemony Snicket Wiki
Lemony Snicket Wiki

"The Penultimate Peril: Part One"
Screen Shot 2019-01-01 at 4.21.26 PM.png
Adapted from: The Penultimate Peril
Main character(s): Violet, Klaus, Sunny
Baudelaire guardian: Dewey Denouement
Main enemy: Count Olaf
Olaf's disguise: Dad, Jacques Snicket
Main setting: Hotel Denouement
Library: Dewey Denouement's Office
Key crew
Writer: Joe Tracz
Director: Barry Sonnenfeld
Producer: Neil Patrick Harris
Release details
Story number: 3a
Season/series: Season 3
Premiere network: Netflix
Release date: January 1, 2019
Format: 55 minutes
←Previous Next→
A Series of Unfortunate Events
"The Grim Grotto: Part Two" "The Penultimate Peril: Part Two"

"The Penultimate Peril: Part One" is the twenty-third episode of Netflix's A Series of Unfortunate Events. It covered the first half of The Penultimate Peril.

Official synopsis

Various parties converge at the Hotel Denouement, where the mysterious "J.S." has called the V.F.D. together -- and things aren't always what they seem.


For Beatrice –
     No one could extinguish my love,
     or your house.


Kit Snicket drives the Baudelaires to the Hotel Denouement, although she is being pursued by what she speculates to be the Man with a Beard but No Hair and Woman with Hair but No Beard in a black car. She tells the children she knows that her brother Jacques Snicket is dead. She gives them a picnic basket with concierge disguises and asks them to find the identity of J.S. which they accept. Kit loses the duo and they arrive at the hotel.

Meanwhile, on a phone at a beach, Olaf shares V.F.D.'s plans with the Man and Woman, but they already know. Fernald steals The Carmelita while Olaf, Esmé Squalor and Carmelita Spats are at the beach, leaving them to take a boat.

Kit warns the Baudelaires that Frank Denouement and Ernest Denouement manage the hotel, but they are lookalike twins and Frank is a Fire-Fighter while Ernest is a Fire-Starter. After the Baudelaires leave, Kit kisses one of the brothers and says, "Send my regards to Frank," leading the audience to think that was Ernest and that Kit is evil. In her taxi, Kit finds Lemony Snicket who she thought was dead. Lemony asks his sister for a ride.

In the hotel, the Baudelaires notice Olaf's group is also there. One of the Denouement brothers orders the Baudelaires to attend to the guests. Rooms 610 (healthcare industry), 332 (financial economics), and the rooftop sunbathing salon. On the elevator, the Baudelaires go to different rooms:

  • Violet goes to the rooftop sunbathing salon and sees Vice Principal Nero, Carmelita and Esmé. As soon as she goes there, Olaf draws on a mustache as part of a disguise and leaves. After Carmelita throws a beach ball (which is oddly heavy, which is important later), Violet is ordered to fetch Carmelita a harpoon gun along with ice cream. Violet overhears Esmé tell Nero that she is watching the skies because bird-watching is in. Esmé asks Nero if he knows who J.S. and he implies it is Jerome Squalor. As Violet leaves, she accidentally calls Carmelita by her name, which she covers it up by saying it's on her boat. Violet meets up with one of the managers who tells Violet that not giving a harpoon gun to a child would be suspicious and implies it is part of a larger plan already looked after. He gives her the gun and the clock rings.
  • Klaus goes to the healthcare room and meets Babs who does not recognize him from before. Babs is supposed to meet her boyfriend at the sauna but she doesn't know where it is. He guides her there where Jerome is, but Jerome can't recognize Klaus due to the steam. Jerome claims he met Babs at a support group for people terrorized by Esmé and fell in love, but it is evident they're faking being a couple. Klaus leaves but overhears Jerome saying they're faking being a couple to help the Baudelaires, which is what J.S. said to him. Jerome implies he's gay for Charles while Babs implies she's lesbian for Mrs. Bass. Klaus re-enters, claiming he received a telegram from J.S. but can't get it until Jerome tells J.S.' full name. Jerome says J.S. is a woman, while Babs thinks J.S. is a sea captain. Olaf enters, interrupting the conversations with red liquid on his suit he claims is blood. Klaus leaves and is ordered by a Denouement to hang flypaper for birds outside the window of 598, claiming it's part of a larger plan. Klaus agrees and the clock rings.
  • Sunny meets Mr. Poe for the financial people who do not recognize her. He tells her he has a meeting in the restaurant in room 954 and he needs someone with secretary experience to come. Larry Your-Waiter is managing the restaurant. Olaf enters with no blood on his suit, meaning this is before Klaus saw him, and he is disguised as Jacques Snicket. Olaf claims he is J.S. and Mr. Poe says he has the index (not the actual book) of a collection of evidence regarding the Baudelaire case which could incriminate Olaf. Sunny enters the kitchen and sees Larry talking to a Denouement brother. The brother asks Sunny to come with him the room 025, the laundry room and put a special lock on the door, and they take the service elevator in the kitchen. Olaf confronts Larry and kills him with the help of Ernest. As Sunny places the lock, the clock rings.

The Baudelaires rest in the lobby. The mysterious J.S. who invited V.F.D is revealed to be Justice Strauss, who has been gathering information to incriminate Olaf. When the Baudelaires compare their stories, they determine there must be a third Denouement brother, and discover Dewey Denouement, who manages the sub-sub-library under the hotel filled with V.F.D. information.

Dewey dies from his harpoon wound.

Returning to the hotel, they are confronted by Olaf with a harpoon gun, but the children protect Dewey and trick Olaf into breaking up with Esmé. A deterred Olaf surrenders the gun to the Baudelaires, but they inadvertently drop it when Mr. Poe suddenly appears, causing it to go off and impale Dewey. Lemony Snicket, prompted by his sister Kit, arrives and meets the Baudelaires.



Guest starring




to be added


Story notes

to be added

Filming locations

to be added

Production errors

  • During the scene in which Justice Strauss arrives, the clock shows 10 o'clock. However, it only rings eight times instead of ten.

Deviations from the novel

  • The Baudelaires wear green concierge outfits instead of red ones. Their outfits also don't have sunglasses.

    What the uniforms could have looked like

  • Kit doesn't wear a dress.
  • Klaus can define "flaneurs" on his own in the show. In the book, Kit defined it for him.
  • The enemy taxi was following them much earlier, and Kit seems extremely certain that it is one.
  • The Baudelaires changed to the disguises much earlier than in the book.
  • Violet and Klaus remember staying at the Hotel Denoument instead of just the Hotel Preludio (which was alluded to but not called out).
  • Sunny says "Signal V.F.D." instead of "Sugar bowl" in the recap.
  • Kit seems confident that they can end this, instead of distraught that it will all go wrong.
  • We find out that Fernald and Fiona double crossed Olaf from a note the former gave to Carmelita, instead of Olaf seeing it for himself. They also saved Phil and the Snow Scouts.
  • The Baudelaires already trust Kit, unlike in the book where they were sort of debating it.
  • Frank and Ernest were not outside the hotel in the book when Kit talked about them.
  • The Baudelaires didn't take anything out of Kit's car.
  • When Kit was about to leave, Dewey appeared to talk to her. Nothing of the sort happened in the book.
  • The signage on the Hotel Denouement can't be read correctly in the pond.
  • Olaf, Esmé, and Carmelita are still in disguise to hide from V.F.D., even though in the book they weren't. He doesn't recognize the Baudelaires at first, mainly because Violet says that villainous guests treat hotel staff like they are invisible.
  • One of the managers called the Baudelaires out by last name (it was possibly Dewey).
  • The three adventures change:
    • Violet's adventure on the roof is different:
      • Geraldine Julienne is not featured.
      • Esmé isn't wearing Vision Furthering Devices, she uses a spyglass to watch the skies. Her outfit is (for obvious reasons) not as skimpy as the one in the book (giant leaves of lettuce).
      • Carmelita's outfit hardly has any blue in it.
      • Geraldine is not on the roof because she is not in the show. Nero is on the roof, however. Due to this, he leads the Esmé Squalor Fan Club instead of her. Anything Geraldine was meant to say goes to Nero.
      • Violet pretends to be a part of the fan club, which was not mentioned in the book.
      • Nero says that Esmé should know who J.S. is, but is interrupted by Carmelita screaming for Violet before he can finish.
      • Esmé calls Carmelita her daughter (in the book she was quick to dismiss it). Violet did not call the latter out by name. 
    • Klaus's adventure is different too:
      • He finds Babs behind the door. In the book, she was presumed to be dead, and it was Charles and Sir he was assisting, but in the show, the latter ran off and the former is looking for him.
      • The sauna was on another floor in the book instead of down the hall.
      • Jerome is already here. In the book, he arrived in a taxi with Justice Strauss.
        • He is pretending to date Babs so they can find the Baudelaires.
        • Jerome is interested in Charles. 
        • Babs in interested in Mrs. Bass.
        • The Denouement that Klaus encounters has him hang the flypaper outside the window of room 598 instead of the sauna.
      • Klaus eavesdrops outside the sauna instead of in it.
      • Jerome thinks J.S. is a woman (maybe Justice Strauss or Jacquelyn) and Babs thinks he is a sea captain (probably Julio Sham (the person Count Olaf posed as, he is only mentioned in certain books) as she said "he")
      • Olaf comes to interrupt the adventure.
    • Here's how Sunny's adventure varies:
      • She finds Mr. Poe behind her door. In the book, he finds them much later after Dewey is shot. In the book, it was Nero, Mrs. Bass, and Mr. Remora she was supposed to encounter, but the first was already on the roof for Violet's adventure, the second was arrested, and the third was not present at all.
        • He doesn't recognize her.
      • Larry is in the kitchen instead of Hal.
      • Olaf also interrupts this adventure, posing as Jacques. He also seems to finally to recognize Sunny.
      • Poe brings out all he knows on the siblings' case, including something hidden. He has been contacted by two J.S.'s.
      • Ernest also intercepts this. He drops Larry into a simmering pot of curry.
  • None of the Baudelaires are asked if they are who they say they are; instead, they call out the names of the people who they are assisting by mistake, having to cover it up by saying they saw it on something they owned. They are also asked if they can be trusted by their respective managers (Violet > Frank, Klaus > Ernest, Sunny > Dewey).
  • Klaus figures out that the sugar bowl may fall in the laundry room instead of Sunny.
  • Lemony actually meets up with Kit. In the book, he doesn't get the chance.
  • Dewey finds the Baudelaires after they get to the sub-basement instead of before. In the book, Dewey descends from a rope in the lobby.
  • The siblings realized for themselves that the Denouements were triplets and not twins instead of Dewey having to tell them.
  • In the TV series, the Baudelaires trust Dewey incredibly easily. In the book, they are far more suspicious and only follow him after he claims he knows the Baudelaire father.
  • Dewey takes them through a passageway in the V.F.D. tunnel first instead of straight outside (By now, this is when Jerome and Justice Strauss appear, but they were introduced earlier). While walking through the VFD tunnel with the Baudelaires, he comments that his library collects information gathered by every V.F.D. agent, scholar, researcher, inventor, scientist, explorer, cartographer, poet, journalist, naturalist, herpetologist, optometrist, receptionist, chef, waiter, taxi driver, sea captain, film director, ballerina, children's book author, and mountaineer.
  • Dewey wishes for them to stay at the Hotel, but in the book, he does not say he wants them to take over his library.
  • When Olaf, Esmé and Carmelita show up, this encounter is different:
    • Most of the villains are not here, according to Dewey saying they would arrive late (in the book they were already here). Carmelita now mentions wanting to learn how spit instead of at the roof when Violet was tending to her.
    • In the book, Justice Strauss asked why Frank did not stop Violet from taking the gun, to which she replied that he might have tried. In the show, he didn't try, he told her to do her job.
    • Esmé notes that they have not yet shot the crow, even though by this point in the book two of them were already shot down.
    • Since Hugo, Collette, and Kevin were (most likely) killed by the Man and Woman, they are not here to report what was going on after Carmelita would have shot the crows.
    • Dewey says that the container (Sugar Bowl) belongs to Esmé and not what it contains, instead of simply saying "Not anymore."
    • Olaf doesn't knock Carmelita to the floor when he takes away the harpoon gun. He also breaks up with Esmé instead of just firing her (then she quits and mutual agreement) much earlier than when it happens in the book.
    • Violet and Klaus mention that it's Esmé's fault that Olaf is not rich and that they are not dead.
    • The two siblings drop the gun because Mr. Poe calls out and not because it was heavy. The latter also says "Good God, that man's been shot!" instead of simply "Baudelaires!" and only the siblings, Olaf, and Poe are outside since Esmé and Carmelita left and none of the others that were present in the book are alive or around.
    • The children do not grab Dewey in time or call out to him before he falls in.
  • If Lemony is the man in the taxi in the book, it's not clear.


  • The stone Lemony threw into the pond at the start of the episode is the one Violet used to test her invention in the very first episode. It reappears when Count Olaf threatens Carmelita with it in exchange for the note from Fernald.

Behind the scenes

  • The creators were excited to reveal Charles as Jerome's new partner and depict an explicit and healthy same-sex relationship, but due to filming difficulties, Charles could not appear and he was replaced with Babs, forcing a rewrite.[1]

Deleted Scene (Original Sauna Scene)

Due to Rhys Darby being stuck in Fiji due to a typhoon and unable to make production, the original sauna scene had to be replaced. The original version was released by Joe Tracz, and can be seen below.[1]

Home video releases

DVD releases

to be added

Blu-ray releases

to be added


External links