Wednesday, June 13, 2012

The Munsters

For a while now I've been watching The Munsters on Netflix and a few things stand out to me, the most obvious being how did they manage to make 70 episodes, all with virtually the same plot.  The are a family of monsters who think they are a completely normal, average American family and at some point someone sees them, gets scared, and leaves a human shaped hole in the wall, jumps out a window, has his toupee fly up to the ceiling, or some such nonsense.  I'm into season 2 now and it's clear that the writers realized that the premise was wearing a little thin after 40 or so episodes and are trying to branch out a bit, but not enough.  It's just a little hard to believe that they could see people every day and still fail to realize that they were the unusual ones.  Or that people in the areas they frequent wouldn't become accustomed to them at some point.  At any rate, I'm sure that's why the series didn't last longer than it did, although it's entirely possible that the cast was tired of the make up and costumes as well. 

I also have a very hard time coming to grips with the fact that Herman Munster is a Frankenstein monster, his wife Lily is a vampire, but somehow their son Eddie is a werewolf.  That makes no sense, did the writers have no concept of genetics or monster mythology?  Maybe I've been unduly influenced by the Underworld movies, but aren't werewolves and vampires supposed to be enemies?  Competing species, so to speak, much like lions and hyenas compete for the same territory an prey?  Although you sometimes see a dog nursing a tiger cub, so the only way it makes sense is if Eddie is adopted.  Nothing in the show suggests he's adopted, though, so I'm left to assume that he's the byproduct of one of Grandpa Munster's experiments.  And nothing is really explained regarding why Marilyn, niece of Herman and Lily, is not a monster.  When vampires procreate, is it just a crap shoot as to what type of monster or human the offspring are?  That's something that needs to be fleshed out when they remake the series. 

Yes, a Munsters remake is already in the works.  Because of the limited story arcs in the original, I think that it would be more suited to a one off movie, but maybe that's why I'm not in Hollywood. The remake is supposed to air beginning in 2013, and I think casting Herman is going to be pivotal to the success or failure of the show. Fred Gwynne really made the show, playing Herman as an overgrown child - easily excited and amused, and throwing a temper tantrum when things go badly.  My initial thought was that Vince Vaughn would make a good Herman Munster, but the more I think about it, the more I think Brad Garrett, best known for his role as Ray's brother in Everybody Loves Raymond, is perfect.  Come to think of it, were he still alive, I think Ray's father on the show, Peter Boyle would make a perfect Grandpa Munster.  Maybe Everybody Loves Raymond was really a remake of The Munsters if they were really a normal family.  But I digress.  Unfortunately Jerry O'Connell has been cast as Herman.  Jerry is a fine actor, but he's no Brad Garrett, so I'm a little disappointed.  I do find this odd because I've been watching episodes of Sliders concurrently, and had I not been doing so would not have noticed the Munster house appearing in an episode.  Portia de Rossi has been cast as Lily, according to this article, which I think is perfect.  She's a brilliant comedic actress and maybe they just wanted someone with 'de' in her name as a nod to Yvonne de Carlo who originally portrayed Lily.

Well, I was originally going somewhere with this, but have gotten distracted and lost my train of thought, so I'll shut up for now.  I reserve the right to return and edit this at a later date if it comes back to me though.
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