The Munsters

(redirected from Herman Munster)

The Munsters

(pop culture)

The Munsters emerged in 1964 as one of two new situation comedies in the fall television season featuring a cast of “monstrous” characters attempting to live as an otherwise normal family. Included in the Munster family were two vampires, Lily (played by Yvonne De Carlo) and Grandpa (Al Lewis), who in the course of the series was revealed to be none other than Count Dracula. The family was completed by the Frankensteinish Herman (Fred Gwynne) and the children, the wolfish Eddie (Butch Patrick) and the very “normal” Marilyn (Beverly Owens). Herman worked in a mortuary owned by classic horror actor John Carradine. The Munsters ran for two seasons. It gave birth to a comic book from Gold Key that ran for sixteen issues from January 1965 to January 1968. The original cast joined in a movie, Munster! Go Home, released in 1966, in which John Carradine assumed a different role as the family’s butler.

A second movie—The Munsters’ Revenge—was made for television and aired February 27, 1981. It included the major stars—Fred Gwynne, Yvonne De Carlo, and Al Lewis. The series was revived for the 1988 season as The Munsters Today, starring John Shuck (Herman), Lee Meriweather (Lily), and Howard Morton (Grandpa). In spite of bad reviews by fans of the original series, its seventy-two episodes carried it into 1991.

Possibly the most vampiric of all The Munsters shows was the animated sequel Mini-Munsters, which played in 1973 for the Saturday Superstar Movie on ABC. The story concerned a Dracula-like relative sending two teenagers, Igor (a Frankenstein-like monster) and Lucretia (a vampire), to stay with the Munster family.

Originally, The Munsters ran opposite the ABC series The Addams Family. Both were popular in their original format and both have had numerous spin-offs in the form of movies, comic books, and other paraphernalia. The Munsters and the Addams tended to appeal to the same set of fans, and in the 1990s, some fans of the two shows banded together to form The Munsters and Addams Family Fan Club (http://www.geocities.com/tmafc/).

The mid-1990s saw a new wave of Munsters nostalgia. A trading card series, The Munsters Collection, was issued by Kayro-Vue Productions in 1996, and the following year at the annual ComicCon International in San Diego, a new Munsters comic book was launched.

As a result of this new wave of interest there were also two new Munster movies Here Come the Munsters (1995) and The Munsters’s Scary Little Christmas (1996).

A documentary on the show entitled The Munsters—America’s First Family of Fright ran on national television in 2003.

Sources:

Anchors, William E., Jr. “The Munsters.” Epi-log 37 (December 1993): 36–43, 63.

Cox, Stephen. The Munsters: Television’s First Family of Fright. Chicago: Contemporary Books, 1989. 174.

———. The Munsters: A Trip Down Mockingbird Lane. Back Stage Books, 2006. 204 pp.

Jones, Stephen. The Illustrated Vampire Movie Guide. London: Titan Books, 193. 144 pp.

The Munsters. Nos. 1–16. New York: Gold Key Comics, 1965–68.

The Munsters. Nos. 1–4. Bethel, CT: TV Comics, 1997–98.

Peel, John. The Addams Family and Munsters Program Guide. Virgin: London, 1996. 240 pp.

The Munsters and the Addams Family Fan Club see: Vampire Fandom: United States

References in periodicals archive ?
I've written about this house a few times in the past, with the simplest reference being that youngsters in that neighborhood through the 1960s called it the "Munster House" when it had green paint on it and looked, well, like the home Herman Munster lived in on the popular TV series.
If that wasn't bad enough, what about a 6ft 6in Herman Munster of a defender, throwing markers around like rag dolls at corners then having the shameless cheek to hurl himself in the box looking for a penalty?
Ferdinand is an attractively simple hero, the peace-loving slacker, the gentle giant whose appearance leads to him being misunderstood AaAaAeA la Herman Munster and Casper t Friendly Ghost -- but the film muddles that simplicity, enlisting him in heroic feats like organising an escape from the bull training camp, not to mention saddling him with the inevitable daddy issues.
But Scarlett's mum Betty wasn't impressed and thought he looked like Herman Munster from telly's The Addams Family.
Take England great Martin Johnson, a man who was once jokingly asked by his brother to confirm or deny that he had been addressed as "neanderthal, thug, beetle-brow, Herman Munster, the undertaker, meat head, big ape, Judge Dread, forehead master and Monkey Man" at various points of his career.
Surely with the technology available today the pictures could have been digitally enhanced so we could see them clearly instead of a lot of them looking like Herman Munster coming out of a fog.
| HERMAN MUNSTER HEAD RISOTTO (serves 4) INGREDIENTS For the risotto: 100g skinless smoked mackerel, bones removed and flaked; 1tbsp olive oil; onion, finely chopped; 175g arborio or risotto rice; Approx 600ml hot salt-free vegetable stock; 1/2 x 300g can of mushy peas For Herman's features: 100g skinless smoked mackerel fillets, bones removed and cut into 4 pieces; 8 steamed broccoli florets; 4 mini mozzarella balls, halved; 2 black olives, chopped into small pieces METHOD 1.
| HERMAN MUNSTER HEAD RISOTTO (serves 4) INGREDIENTS For the risotto: 100g skinless smoked mackerel, bones removed and flaked; 1tbsp olive oil; 1 onion, finely chopped; 175g arborio or risotto rice; Approx 600ml hot salt-free vegetable stock; 1/2 x 300g can of mushy peas For Herman's features: 100g skinless smoked mackerel fillets, bones removed and cut into 4 pieces; 8 steamed broccoli florets; 4 mini mozzarella balls, halved; 2 black olives, chopped into small pieces 4.
HERMAN MUNSTER HEAD RISOTTO (serves 4) INGREDIENTS For the risotto: 100g skinless smoked mackerel, bones removed and flaked 1tbsp olive oil 1 onion, finely chopped 175g arborio or risotto rice Approx 600ml hot salt-free vegetable stock 1/2 x 300g can of mushy peas For Herman's features: 100g skinless smoked mackerel fillets, bones removed and cut into 4 pieces 8 steamed broccoli florets 4 mini mozzarella balls, halved 2 black olives, chopped into small pieces METHOD 1.
| HERMAN MUNSTER HEAD RISOTTO (serves 4) INGREDIENTS INGREDIENTS For the risotto: 100g skinless smoked mackerel, bones removed and flaked; 1tbsp olive oil; 1 onion, finely chopped; 175g arborio or risotto rice; Approx 600ml hot salt-free vegetable stock; 1/2 x 300g can of mushy peas For Herman's features: 100g skinless smoked mackerel fillets, bones removed and cut into 4 pieces; 8 steamed broccoli florets; 4 mini mozzarella balls, halved; 2 black olives, chopped into small pieces METHOD 1.