The Ugly Americans: The Addams Family and The Munsters

The Ugly Americans: The Addams Family and The Munsters

Subverting sitcom tropes by bringing monsters to modern America.

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What's really interesting to me is that they premiered within a week of each other. Like Antz to A Bugs Life, it seems readily apparent that one studio had early knowledge of what was in development at the other.

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Recommended topical viewing: Adult Wednesday Addams

I always thought of the distinction between the 2 shows as being: The Munsters being creatures acting as humans, while the Addams Family were human beings that acted as creatures. I couldn't pick between them as I adore both shows.

As an aside, there was 1 area where the Munsters were very subversive but it is only in context to the time it aired. Herman and Lily were the first television couple to be shown sharing the same bed.

The first two Addams Family movies may be the greatest comedies of all time (Fiiiiiiight!) They're what I think of when I pray that one of these umpteen reboots we get won't just be tired retreads. Though outside BSG its rare not to be horribly disappointed.

It'd be interesting to see what somebody could do with the Munsters these days. Edgar Wright? Or would that just be a bit too trite?

I remember when The Osbournes were on MTV, Sharon compared her family to the Munsters, saying their elder daughter Aimee would be Marilyn (the "normal" one).
And who doesn't love Fester? Nobody, that's who!
"It means, 'to rot'."

Lurch would win, hands down.

Vagueness in terms of powers and... I guess defining what one is (like, a vampire doesn't necessarily seem as... strong or otherwordly as something very different and undefined and somewhat inexplicable... like, for instance, Delphine Chaneac's character-monster from Splice), and so on and so forth, in tv fiction generally signifies a significantly higher.. er.. power level? Or whatever you'd call it.

Just don't make me choose between Fred Gwynne and John Astin. Never has there been two more ummm, energetic actors.

I seriously loved the Addams Family reruns as a kid. That cheesy finger-snapping theme song XD

The movies were awesome too. I miss Raul Julia. Anyone who can rock Gomez Addams AND Bison has to be great.

I've heard of the Addams Family, but I must confess that this is the first time I've ever heard of The Munsters.

Am I the only ones disappointed that this wasn't about Ugly Americans?

Branindain:
I seriously loved the Addams Family reruns as a kid. That cheesy finger-snapping theme song XD

The movies were awesome too. I miss Raul Julia. Anyone who can rock Gomez Addams AND Bison has to be great.

Rocked Bison whilst dying of Stomach Cancer I might add and by all accounts he had an absolute ball on the set of Street Fighter. A movie of truly terrible proportions... or would be were it not for a cast who obviously "get it" (Well save for Van Damme).

But as an aside, yeah I guess the Adams Family and Munsters were kinda analogous to my own experiences growing up: A goth, pagan mother whom always supported me, an ex-rocker father who wanted to be normal but would still go see Biohazard and Hatebreed, an eldest sister obsessed with wicca, a middle sister who was a manic pixie girl before that was a thing, a younger sister who delighted in the macabre and myself: who literally grew out of goth at age 10 and instead became a metaller and incredibly esoteric. (And now we're all relatively well adjusted and successful).

I guess we saw ourselves as the Adams family and everyone else saw us as the Munsters, which is kinda sad really.

These shows, along with the original Twilight Zone are still on my regular rotation of classic TV shows that I'll binge watch roughly once every year to so.

I know that as a kid I was a much bigger fan of The Munsters. The broader strokes with which the families personalities was painted made them easier to grasp and their storylines were a little more familiar that anything thr Addams Family was putting on the screen.

Plus it was Grandpa Munster who introduced me to Godzilla via the TBS Super Scary Saturdays and I'd be straight up lying if I said Yvonne De Carlo's Lilly Munster wasn't my first "celebrity crush."

These days, if forced to choose I'd probably pick the Addams Family as my favorite of the two largely because as I've gotten older I've been able to appreciate their (slightly) more sedate tone and heavier reliance on situational comedy over physical humor and verbal puns.

I really feel as though the Addams Family is more well remembered thanks to Sonnenfeld's movies being so well timed... they released at a time that most parents currently got to see the two movies in theaters... the best of the TV to movie adaptations at the time... *shrug*

Interesting!
Never saw either, except for the 90's films, which I liked.

Also got the SNES game, which was great! You should add that to the paragraph about their 90's resurgency!

The Gentleman:
Am I the only ones disappointed that this wasn't about Ugly Americans?

I too miss Ugly Americans, and I'm still pissed at Comedy Central for canning that one and giving Drink History another season. Ugly Americans, I think, carries a lot of the same themes as the Addams Family and The Munsters, with the whole "what-is-normal" angle and its own skewed take on the immigrant/minority experience.

Jupiter065:
Recommended topical viewing: Adult Wednesday Addams

where has this show BEEN ALL MY LIFE?! 8D

I vaguely remember seeing an episode or two of the munsters, and rather liked it, and while I don't recall seeing the Addams Family tv series, I loved the movie with Raul Julia and Angelica Huston, as well as the animated series.

 

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