Hotel Denouement fire (possibly)
Sir (Most likely, confirmed in TV series)
- "You have to understand, he had a very terrible childhood."
- —Charles explaining Sir's selfish attitude to the Baudelaire orphans
Charles is a rather passive man with a penchant for being indecisive, and although he became friends with the Baudelaire children in The Miserable Mill, his lack of help left the three siblings in perilous situations at the lumber mill, in which they were forced to fend for themselves.
In the TV series, Charles was hypnotized by Georgina Orwell to dislike the Baudelaires and get rid of them, although it is unknown how successful this hypnotism was, and if he was hypnotized in other ways.
Hoping to get Charles out of the way and blame this "accident" on the Baudelaire orphans so that they wind up in the care of "Shirley", Charles is tied to a log and is almost sawed to death by Orwell, having been grabbed by Foreman Flacutono in the middle of the night. Fortunately, Charles is rescued by the Baudelaires at the last second, with only a small cut on his foot.
After the Baudelaires left the mill, Charles, like Justice Strauss, began to do research about the Baudelaire orphans as well as their family, and because of this, became a member of V.F.D. In The Penultimate Peril, Kit says soon after she meets the Baudelaires, "I've scarcely looked at these maps, poems, and blueprints that Charles sent me." This is evidence that Charles is a volunteer and later confirms it himself.
Sir and Charles relationship
It is thought by some readers that Charles is in a relationship with his boss and partner, Sir:
- Some moments in The Miserable Mill in combination with their chat in The Penultimate Peril have suggestive lines
- In The Penultimate Peril, they share a room when they travel together to the Hotel Denoument, share a relaxing sauna together there, and when the hotel is set on fire, they are holding hands as they attempt to escape.
- In The Beatrice Letters, Lemony Snicket tells Beatrice Baudelaire that he will love her until "C realizes that S is not worthy of his love," confirming suspicions of the relationship.
- They are mentioned to be partners—the lack of mention of them being business partners is unusual, and suggests they may be romantic partners.
The TV series adaptation made this relationship more explicit, referring to their partnership as one made possible by a more progressive culture and high court decisions, a reference to real-life cases such as Obergefell v. Hodges, or perhaps Lawrence v. Texas, and at one point Charles attempts to kiss Sir but Sir does not notice.
At the end of Episode 8, Violet asks what Charles plans on doing next. Charles responds that he plans on searching for Sir even though he's not a good person. He tells the Baudelaires, "Some day you will learn that some things aren't always black and white."
When asked about LGBT characters in his novels, Daniel Handler specifically mentioned Sir and Charles despite there being no prior mention:
- "I grew up in an environment of queerness of every stripe, and I'd like to believe my work reflects such a world, even if the romantic and sexual lives and preferences of many of my characters are not explicit, as they aren't in life. (After all, we don't know what Sir and Charles do when we're not around, as we don't know, and thank goodness, with many friends; my new forthcoming YA novel has already ruffled the feathers of both queer and straight readers for scenes portraying certain flexibilities.)"
- —Daniel Handler
In another interview, when Daniel was asked about who is LGBT in A Series of Unfortunate Events, he replied he wanted to leave it up to speculation, but said, "More than you probably think, as in real life."(25:00)
- He is portrayed by Rhys Darby in the TV series.
- Charles' duties involve ironing Sir's shirts, cooking him omelettes, and making him milkshakes.
- Charles is not Charles Snicket because Charles (of TMM) and Kit Snicket exist in the same time, and Charles Snicket is supposed to be the grandfather of Kit. It is probably merely a naming coincidence.