Rob Zombie’s “The Munsters”

Rob Zombie’s “The Munsters”

Picture by Kennedy Starr

If you’re under 30, you probably didn’t grow up watching “The Munsters,” a show detailing the crazy life of any typical family who happens to be Halloween’s biggest fans. The original show aired in 1964 and became the ultimate cult classic. 

“The Munsters” features Frankenstein’s creation, Herman, alongside his vampire wife, Lily; their werewolf son, Eddie; Lily’s father, an older version of Count Dracula who longs for the nights of Transylvania; and their niece, Marilyn, a typical 60s mod girl. By Munster family standards, she was the ugly duckling. 

“The Munsters” were costumed in outfits and makeup inspired by classic horror monsters. Of course, this made them stand out in their “All American” neighborhood, but they remained true to their love of scaring. 

Like any sitcom from the 60s, “The Munsters” had some conventional topics and roles for each family member, but the writers brought a self-aware wit to CBS during its airtime. Herman is often referred to as “head of the house,” but in reality, Lily makes many decisions and often pushes Herman in the right direction. 

In June of this year, one of the biggest rockers, Rob Zombie, released a teaser trailer for his new adaptation of “The Munsters.” He promised to stay true to the show’s original spirit and create something new by depicting the story of Lily and Herman and how the pair fell into the deep scary love that only ghouls can achieve. 

When the full trailer was released, the public had very mixed reactions. Rob Zombie is known for his gory horror that is not as PG-friendly as “The Munsters.” My first reaction was caution. It seemed campy and silly. Done right could be amazing, but done wrong and it could be a disaster! So I was a little worried but kept my hopes high. 

Finally, on September 27, just in time for the spookiest month of the year, “The Munsters” was released on Netflix. Now, I waited for a spell before I watched the movie. I wanted to see how Munster fans would welcome it, but I didn’t want that to impact my experience simultaneously. 

So, I finally sat down and watched it with my family—and it was better than I hoped! While yes, it was silly, and the occasional dad joke Herman bellowed did make me sigh, it kept the goofy spirit of “The Munsters” for which the sitcom was known. And I loved it. It’s one of those casual movies that everyone can sit down and watch while the older family members can still pick up on the adult innuendos while the young creatures enjoy a laugh. I plan on seeing it annually during October.

Rob Zombie’s “The Munsters” is nothing short of fun. A light movie about the love story of television’s favorite family. Zombie brought his comedy and spirit into this movie without taking away the original show’s magic. This Halloween, enjoy the ever-whimsical and curious world of “The Munsters.”