The scene “The Beat Goes On” from episode 302 of “Only Murders in the Building” show, from left, Charles (Steve Martin), Mabel (Selena Gomez) and Will (Ryan Broussard). Patrick Harbron photo/Hulu

We’re back with season 3 of “Only Murders in the Building,” the hugely popular American mystery comedy-drama television series created by Steve Martin and John Hoffman.

It may eventually turn out to be the “Barbie” of TV.

Maybe it’s just climate change, but it’s incredibly better.

If you’re joined at the hip with the millions of fans of this show, as this reviewer is becoming, or you’ve been vacationing in Crete, you already know the 10-episode first season premiered on Hulu, in August 2021.

The plot, for newcomers, follows three strangers who populate the scary Arconia apartments known to us as the habitat of Steve Martin (looking older), Martin Short, (getting more manic each segment) and Selena Gomez, as lovely as ever.

This trio share an interest in true crime “podcasts” and team up to investigate deaths in the apartment building where they all abide.


The first two seasons were packed with awards, Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Comedy Series and for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series, for Martin and Short.

Now we find ourselves once again trapped inside this weird, crazy brick palace, sharing the weird elevators and the shadowy labyrinth of mysteries behind the wall’s peepholes.


While auditioning in the last five minutes of Oliver’s play, “Death Rattle,” a struggling actor named Loretta Durkin, whom we’ve just watched in the first five touching minutes flashback as a child (child not listed), appears.

You will be stunned as we were to see the most award-winning actor in the stratosphere walk in.

You already know? Of course you do, it’s the fabulous Meryl Streep. Who told you? Of course they did, so here she is.


We’ve had a pocket full of stars, but this one will lock you in. Clutch your pearls.

Loretta (Streep) tosses the script and runs through the part flawlessly; Oliver is enraptured and stuttering. It’s almost the best part of the show, and we’re only 10 minutes in to it.

This leads to a table read where the cast and crew, who will decorate this season like a Christmas tree full of glittering ornaments, sit down and knock down one another in the next electric 15 minutes.

The leading actor, a famous movie star Ben Glenroy (Paul Rudd, stepping out of “nice guy” to capture the obnoxious cad, arrives late and in a 10-minute power scene, scares the grease paint off our faces and that’s all we can tell you now.

And as we move hilariously through the cast, we reunite with the regulars who “survived” the first two seasons, backed up hilariously by people like Sarah Jessica Parker’s husband, Matthew Broderick, of all people, and the talents of actors like Don Darryl Rivera as “Bobo” (watch out for Bobo) and that wonderful comic Mainer, Andrea Martin, as Steve’s sweetie, “Joy.”

I will tell you this. This segment is the best of all we’ve seen since these “Murders” started. Maybe it’s just Meryl Streep’s historic magic that lifted the others out of the long haul. It certainly worked on me.

“Only Murders in the Building” streams on Hulu.

J.P. Devine of Waterville is a former stage and screen actor.

Comments are not available on this story.