When I was a kid I used to watch TBS religiously, especially after school, killing time before I had to do homework or eat dinner with the fam. It was this at this time when I started digging on old TV shows due their goofiness and honestly, some of them were just plain fun. One of the shows that ended up growing on me was THE MUNSTERS, a black and white sitcom (laugh track and all) set in a haunted house of tricks featuring Frankenstein, Dracula, a Vampire (of sorts), a Wolfman, and some blonde hottie. Sure it was silly as hell and played for laughs (it was a sitcom after all), but there was something about it that was so damn entertaining that I couldn’t get enough of it. For awhile, anyway. News broke last week that NBC is brining THE MUNSTERS back to network TV (check that shit out HERE), and I for one couldn’t be happier about it!
From the creative mind of Bryan Fuller (dude who created DEAD LIKE ME), the new MUNSTERS will be played straight, depict the origin of the characters, and run an hour in length. No more comedic sitcom with an obnoxious laugh track, but a hardcore show (hardcore for NBC, anyway) about an aging Dracula who creates a Frankenstein-like monster as a husband for his daughter. Later, their son turns out to be a werewolf and their cousin is forced to come live with them. The cousin is considered a freak because she’s blonde, hot, and 100% normal (i.e., not a monster). What the hell is not to love about this idea? If they keep the same theme in the new show, we’ll get a dark Gothic show that doesn’t just feature vampires and werewolves in love-triangle situations or writing in petty diaries or anything silly like that. Played for straight, this could be what fans of classic Universal movie monsters and Hammer films villains have been waiting for!
I hear only two opposing sides to the idea, and both sides are about as flawed as Herman Munster’s well intentions. One argument is that remakes (even TV remakes) are stupid in general, let alone remakes of shows that weren’t all that good in the first place. Yes, I will admit that while I love THE MUNSTERS, not everyone holds this belief and many think the show was campy garbage then and remains to be campy garbage now. To that, I say, this is the only reason why shows should be remade! Remakes should be about bettering the original. If people hate the campy sitcomness of the original show, then a hardcore hour-long drama is the perfect way to handle it! If the idea was to make a black and white sillyfest with fake laughter, I’d agree: a bad idea all around. Why? Because we’ve been there and done that before. But treat the horrific aspects of the neighborhood’s scariest family with all seriousness, and I’m totally in! At least it’s something different.
The other argument is in-line with the first, I suppose, that NBC should focus more on original programming and not retreading on a show from 50 years ago. I don’t disagree with that idea entirely, but come on! See above to see that this isn’t a repeat of the original, but a new take entirely, and for a remake of an old TV show to work, that’s exactly what it has to do. Learn from CHARLIE’S ANGELS: doing the same thing over again doesn’t work: but a new twist? Now you’re talking!
Maybe it’s the booze talking, but the idea of bringing back THE MUNSTERS to TV sounds like an absolutely brilliant plan to me! To be honest, I don’t see why this would seem like a bad idea to anyone and if GRIMM, ONCE UPON A TIME, THE WALKING DEAD, and AMERICAN HORROR STORY mean anything, it’s that horror on TV is hot, so why not get behind THE MUNSTERS? Make grandpa a scary old vampire, make Herman a gothic creature of the undead (think Robert DeNiro’s monster), have Lilith be a hot vampirex, make Eddie to be a brooding high school kid with a hairy night life (TEEN WOLF, baby!), and for f*ck’s sake, have Marilyn be as smokin’ hot as all get out. I hear Amber Heard may be up for the job. Throw this all into one show, turn up the gothic spookiness, and we could be looking at the hottest