While Wednesday doesn't say how Ms. Thornhill knew the Nightshades' snapping code to get into the library, her sinister plan hints at how she found out. Wednesday Addams discovers an Edgar Allen Poe statue with a series of riddles written on a book in Wednesday season 1, episode 2. Wednesday solves the problem and realises it says "snap twice" - a reference to The Addams Family's iconic theme song - which opens a chamber to the Nightshades Library. Nevermore's normie teacher Marilyn Thornhill, A.K.A. Laurel Gates, uses the code to enter the library in Wednesday episode 3 despite only being known by past and current members of the student society.
Laurel had likely been spying on the outcast students and discovering their secret entrances to the library for over a year before Wednesday Addams arrived. She could also have come across Poe's statue and solved the riddle, which is how Wednesday gained access to the private location. On the other hand, through the Gates family's mission, Wednesday's "Ms. Thornhill" may have already known about Nevermore's secret society and library containing valuable documents. The Nightshades Library provided Christina Ricci's Wednesday character with the information she required to resurrect Joseph Crackstone, allowing her to be aware of the library's access point and snapping code prior to her arrival.
Wednesday's Indication of Thornhill's True Identity
Thornhill's mysterious knowledge of the Nightshades snapping code, despite being a normie, was a major red flag that she wasn't who she claimed to be. The season one finale on Wednesday revealed that Marilyn Thornhill was actually Laurel Gates, Garrett Gates' sister and a descendant of Joseph Crackstone, who vowed to rid the world of outcasts. Along with the snapping code, Ms. Thornhill's secret identity was revealed by the theme she chose for the Rave'N dance. Thornhill was on the dance committee, and she wanted this year's theme to be "relevant," so she cleverly chose "extinction," which she related to the climate crisis rather than her true mission of extinguishing Nevermore Academy's outcasts, according to Enid.
Throughout Wednesday season 1, there were also inconsistencies in Thornhill's story, such as how she told Mayor Walker she ordered a "daily matcha latte" at the Weathervane, but when she "met" Tyler, he recited her order as a "double cappuccino." Finally, Christina Ricci has made a name for herself playing sinister characters, beginning with Wednesday Addams in the 1990s film series The Addams Family, so it seemed inevitable that her character in Tim Burton's TV show would include a shocking twist. The former Wednesday Addams serving as the main antagonist for the new Wednesday Addams was too poetic for the Netflix series to pass up, and it certainly paid off in the finale.
Why Was Snapping Twice So Important On Wednesday?
There are numerous tributes and callbacks to previous Addams Family projects scattered throughout Wednesday season 1, with the double snapping being the most important to the story. Snapping twice is famously associated with The Addams Family sitcom's theme song from the 1960s, and because Wednesday doesn't reuse the iconic tune, Netflix's show found another way to incorporate its famous finger-snapping. The Nightshades' code was more than just a clever way to show Christina Ricci snapping twice; it was crucial in expanding on the family's history at Nevermore Academy and giving the double snap a functional purpose in Wednesday's murder mystery.