The first season of “Only Murders in the Building,” starring Selena Gomez as Mabel, Steve Martin as Charles Haden-Savage, and Martin Short as Oliver Putnam, brings both suspense and comedy together as the trio attempt to solve a murder mystery in their building.
Inspired by Cinda Canning’s work on a true-crime podcast, the trio takes their podcasting aspiration one step further with the murder of their neighbor: Tim Kono.
The trio gets together to investigate the mystery of Tim Kono’s murder.
Steve Martin, Martin Short, and Selena Gomez in Only Murders in the Building
Former TV star Charles Haden-Savage, retired theater producer Oliver Putnam and a young woman named Mabel bond together as they tune into their shared favorite crime podcast “All Is Not OK in Oklahoma with Cinda Canning.”
A fire alarm goes off just as the podcast enters its best part, prompting everyone to evacuate.
They discover that Tim Kono (Julian Cihi) has been murdered, with whom the trio had a brief encounter with Tim in the elevator right before he died.
Oliver comes up with the idea of making their own true-crime podcast so he can earn from it and avoid eviction, and Oliver and Mabel agree to it.
In each episode of Only Murders in the Building Season 1, the trio focuses on finding possible suspects in the case of Tim Kono. Oliver and Charles even suspect Mabel to be the killer at one point!
Turns out Tim wasn’t Arconia’s most popular resident. Charles, Oliver, and Mabel are astonished when the other residents of Arconia appear relieved after Tim’s death because they could now turn their fireplaces on (they were earlier not allowed to do so because Tim had asthma).
With the success of the Only Murders in the Building podcast, danger also increases for our three mystery solvers.
Mabel, Oliver, and Charles have run-ins, new evidence, and twists coming to light, prompting them to eventually rule out Howard (Michael Cyril Creighton) and the legendary musician Sting, as likely suspects.
In the meantime, Oliver asks his old friend and fellow Arconia resident Teddy Dimas (Nathan Lane) to sponsor the podcast. It’s an underhanded way for Oliver to pay his rent in order to avoid being evicted from the Arconia.
Mabel and Oliver however soon learn that Teddy and his son Theo (James Caverly) steal jewelry from dead bodies and are horrified by the discovery, causing them to suspect Teddy as the final killer.
It turns out that Tim had witnessed Theo accidentally push Mabel’s friend Zoe (Olivia Reis) off of Arconia, leading to her death as Zoe had figured out the secret behind the Dimas family’s side hustle.
Teddy had threatened Tim to keep his mouth shut and not to reveal the truth to law enforcement, or else he would kill him.
In the meantime, Charles had been enjoying a budding romance with the bassoonist, Jan (Amy Ryan). Jan lived at the Arconia as well. She had a knack for saying the right thing at the right time and was gentle with Charles.
As the podcast seemingly comes to an end, Charles, Oliver, and Mabel declare Teddy to be the perpetrator. It looks like all will be well – until Charles discovers Jan stabbed in her apartment.
However, the case isn’t as simple as it seems…the trio discovers, to their horror, that Teddy and Theo weren’t in the Arconia the night Tim was murdered.
After another investigation in Tim’s apartment, they find a bassoon cleaner in his “toy” stash.
It was Jan all along.
The pieces come together to reveal the full story – Jan was in a relationship with Tim. When she discovered Tim’s large emerald ring in his apartment, she was furious that he was seeing another woman.
What she didn’t know was that it was purchased by Tim off the black market as proof that the Dimases were responsible for the death of Zoe.
Tim was tricked into drinking a poisoned cocktail by Jan, which killed him, after which she stole the ring for herself. The ring is found in Jan’s apartment, confirming Oliver and Mabel’s theory, but not before Charles has been poisoned by Jan, although not fatally.
However, Charles manages to record her confession before he fell victim to the same muscle paralysis Jan used on Tim, in a brilliant move. Jan is arrested by the police as the three thwart her from completing her final nefarious plan to gas the entire Arconia using the fireplaces.
Just as everything seems to end well with celebrations on solving the notorious case – Mabel is found next to Bunny Folger’s dead body, covered in blood. She is arrested with handcuffs and the trio is taken away for interrogation.
Season 1 of Only Murders in the Building ends with this cliffhanger ending. Who killed Bunny and why? Why was Bunny found in Mabel’s apartment? Why was Mabel covered in blood?
These questions will be answered in season 2 of Only Murders in the Building, premiering on 28th June 2022, on Hulu.
About Only Murders in the Building
Only Murders in the Building is an American crime-comedy television series created by Steve Martin and John Hoffman. Season 1 of the series premiered in August 2021, and season 2 was released on 28th June 2022.
The series follows Charles, Oliver, and Mabel, a trio of true-crime-obsessed strangers and wannabe investigators who are brought together when they are framed for a murder that takes place in their building.
The series stars Steve Martin, Martin Short, and Selena Gomez as the main cast. The Hulu original has been renewed for Season 3.