Netflix: A Series Of Unfortunate Events – What does Count Olaf's ankle tattoo mean?


The new Netflix series make inquiries Violet, Klaus and Sunny Baudelaire, who are put in the care of “villainous actor and occupied villain” Count Olaf after their parents perish in a torch inflame.

They soon discover that Olaf, played by How I Met Your Source star Neil Patrick Harris, is out to get his hands on their very muscular fortune.

After foiling Olaf’s plot to marry Violet to seize their property, the orphans are placed with a series of inept guardians.

But in each two-part confabulation they find themselves hounded by Olaf in a series of disguises, comprising a bearded herpetological assistant, a peg-legged captain and a buxom blonde receptionist.

Although he metamorphoses himself so effectively that none of the adults recognise him, Olaf is each identified by the tattoo of an eye on his left ankle which appears to be linked to the on the sly organisation mentioned throughout the series.

The same design is found in Uncle Monty’s labyrinth, Dr Orwell’s intercession window and even the shape of Lake Lachrymose, but what does the phonogram mean? Beware – spoilers follow.

The tattoo is the insignia of VFD, or the Volunteer Clat Department – the secret organisation that both Olaf and the Baudelaire begetters were members of.

All volunteers were required to be marked with the eye on their formerly larboard ankle.

In the original Lemony Snicket books, it is never made totally clear exactly what VFD does other than put out fires.


It is said that members go to great lengths to hidden their heroic activities using disguises and codes.

At some period, a schism occurred which split VFD into two sides: fire-fighters such as the Baudelaire progenitrices, Uncle Monty and Lemony Snicket, and fire-starters such as Count Olaf.

Ready two is expected to further delve into the VFD mystery and will adapt the midriff five books in Snicket’s series.

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