Addams Family vs The Munsters

This past weekend the good folks in charge of the TV-Land cable network put together an Addams Family marathon. Back to back to back to back to — you get the picture — back episodes of the early to mid 1960s sitcom.
One evening before the marathon Jen asked me, ‘Why do some people like only The Addams Family and some only like The Munsters? There are few who like both. You should write a column on that.?
Because I am ever the obedient husband, you are now reading a column probing the deep intellectual and philosophical quandaries surrounding and separating two similar, yet very different television shows. (I bet, with a little polishing, I could pitch this as a college course and students would attend. Or I could write a book about it and folks would buy it.)
I’ll be up front, I am a Munsters kind of guy. I liked Herman and Grampa and I liked the cars they drove. I never got into The Addams Family. I was bored with it.
Jen thinks The Munsters are just plain stupid but fawns over The Addams Family.
I went to work and posed the question to all who would answer: ‘The Addams Family or The Munsters?? (I used this sparse-word questioning tactic as not to taint or sway the answers. I wanted people’s first gut responses.) All the female-types answered Addams; all but one of the guys grunted Munsters. (The ‘one? shall remain anonymous as to protect his standing in the Red Blooded American Man Club.)
Men are from Mars. Women are from Venus.
Men like Munsters. Women like Addams.
Had I discovered a great divide among the sexes? Could it be that men and women are actually different from each other — and could it be that that difference could be explained by their preference of either family, Addams or Munster?
After my quick and dirty poll I knew I was missing something. I had a gut feeling there was more to this than met my blue eyes (and by the size of my gut the feeling was pretty big). Interesting . . . the plot had thickened. While some would argue thick plots and those two shows did not go together, I dare to disagree. I am onto something.
I went to the computer and because Al Gore invented the internet, I was able to type in ‘Addams Family vs The Munsters.? In only 0.19 seconds I was able to get some 930 hits.
From this dearth of information I was able to learn this: Both shows aired during the same seasons. The Addams Family, an ABC show, aired from September 18, 1964 to September 2, 1966. There were 64 episodes.
The Munsters, from the good folks at CBS, aired from September 24, 1964 to September 1, 1966. There were 70 episodes plus that movie, Munsters Go Home.
From an Addams Family fan site I found more folks liked Gomez & Morticia Addams than Herman and Lily Munster. Some of the comments I read concluded The Addams Family was ‘better written,? ‘more sophisticated,? and ‘more clever? than The Munsters. And, while I could not tell the sex of the commentators, I guessed most were gals, because more than one said something to the effect, ‘I liked the romance between Gomez and Morticia.?
This would explain why Jen liked The Addams Family more than yours truly. Jen is more clever, more sophisticated and were she a program, would be better written than me. I am not about sophistication. The humor of the sophisticates goes over my head.
Jen also made note of the Addams romance, I think she called it ‘cute.? One of the women in the office I polled mentioned that romance, adding that she only watched The Munsters because her father and brother liked the show.
That’s another reason — maybe the major reason — why guys were/are not into The Addams Family. I contend guys are not into romance when they are watching comedy. Guys are not into romance when they are watching a comedy show about monsters. Guys are into slapstick. Guys are into not having to think about their comedy. Guys just want to laugh. Guys are more visually stimulated and you have to admit the Munsters? cousin Marilyn was more visually appealing than the Addams? cousin Itt.
There you go . . . and now that I have spent all this time researching and writing this column I wish I could have that time back. After reading this, you probably are thinking I should redeem your time back to you.
Too bad.
Which show do you like better and why? E-mail your thoughts to Don,

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