YMMV / The Addams Family

The franchise as a whole:

  • Adaptation Displacement: Of the original cartoons by the TV series. Also, of the TV series by the movies for even younger audiences.
  • Awesome Music: The theme song.
  • Big-Lipped Alligator Moment: The song, "The Moon and Me", in the musical since it had nothing to do with the plot.
  • Broken Base: The New Addams Family has its fair share of people who like it and people who despise it. It has many detractors because it lacks the famous theme song by Vic Mizzy and many of the episodes are remakes of episodes from the original 1960s show, plus it didn't help that it was made after the widely-panned Addams Family Reunion, which served as a pilot for The New Addams Family. On the other hand, other people enjoy this incarnation because of how much it borrows from the original show and for still retaining the dark humor that has always been important to the franchise.
  • Crazy Awesome: Gomez whenever he has to defend his family.
    • Applies to the whole family in the movies. Place an Addams - any Addams - in mortal danger. He'll not only survive, but beg to do it again.
  • Creepy Awesome: All the Addamses.
  • Crosses the Line Twice: Mostly in the original New Yorker cartoons.
  • Ear Worm:
    • Come on, be honest. What do you remember most about The Addams Family? Lurch's "you rang?" Fester's lighting a lightbulb in his mouth? Thing? Wrong. Anyone who's only ever even heard of The Addams Family will perk up at any mention of that famous "duh-nuh-nuh-nuh * snap snap* ."
    • This, oddly, is what led to the movies getting made - the minds behind it were riding in a car and Tom Sherak's kid started singing the theme song.
    • The New Addams Family theme goes for a more samba beat but is still pretty catchy.
  • Everyone Is Jesus in Purgatory: John Zmirak once explained his tongue-in-cheek theory that the Addams clan represents "(A)n aristocratic, trad-Catholic homeschooling family trapped in a sterile Protestant suburb".
  • Memetic Mutation: It's impossible not to listen to the theme and not go * snap snap * along with it.
  • Nightmare Fuel: Thing in most adaptions, if you aren't expecting him.
  • The Scrappy: The Normanmeyers are considered this to some fans of the 1990s animated series. Luckily for those fans, they inevitably go through some misfortune in every appearance.
  • Tear Jerker: In the musical, the song "Happy/Sad," where Gomez tries to explain his conflicting emotions about Wednesday getting married to her boyfriend. The song will make you want to find your dad, and hug him.

The magazine cartoons:

  • Chaotic Evil: The whole family- pouring boiling oil on Christmas carolers, fondly watching the kids trip the mailman, embracing Friday the thirteenth -but especially the son and the uncle.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: The whole family was this, which gave rise to all the adaptations.
  • Evil Is Sexy: The mother.
  • Moe: The daughter.

The films:

  • Angst? What Angst?: Fester is so torn up about "failing" Debbie that he seems perfectly willing to let her kill him. When the tables are turned, he seems positively gleeful as she's electrocuted into a pile of dust. Could practically count as a Brick Joke or Ironic Echo of Gomez's romantic musing about Morticia in the first movie:
    "I would die for her. I would kill for her. ... Either way, what bliss."
    • It's really a staple of the franchise.
  • Critical Research Failure: Bambi and The Little Mermaid are Disney productions. But Joel mentions "But... It's Disney!" right before The Sound of Music, The Brady Bunch and Annie start playing. None of which are Disney productions.
    • Except that the tape that is announced last and inserted into the machine by the councilor is The Little Mermaid.
  • Darkness-Induced Audience Apathy: For some, the Addams being Darker and Edgier from the 1960s Dom Com (and Truer to the Text of the original comic strip) ends up making them come across as less Dark Is Not Evil and more Obviously Evil. While the films clearly mean to portray the Addams as more honest, friendly, and accepting than the hypocritical, judgmental Stepford Smilers of white suburban America, some feel those same suburbanites have every reason to fear/dislike the Addams since they regularly engage in acts of vandalism, destruction of private and public property (smashing windows with golf balls, stealing stop signs to cause accidents), animal abuse (burying a cat alive), manslaughter, murder, arson, and cannibalism with barely a shrug. While this can be chalked up to the Addams being Obliviously Evil, since they themselves enjoy pain/chaos, are virtually unkillable and regularly resurrect/engage with the dead and thus might not understand that for "normals" death is both easy and final, some viewers find that both groups are pretty unpleasant: Obliviously Evil versus Affably Evil (or Faux Affably Evil), and thus in some cases it's hard to vote for anyone. The movies stick pretty close to the original Charles Addams cartoons which potray them as Affably Evil with a very different approach towards good and evil. The humor comes from most of their enemies acting nice, while being greedy and ruthless which the Addamses appreciate having the aforementioned worldview.
  • Finger Worm: Admit it, you snap your fingers whenever the theme song comes up. Even if you can't.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse:
    • Debbie is the best-remembered thing from the movies, next to the camp subplot's climax in Values.
    • Christina Ricci's hilariously deadpan performance as Wednesday is generally considered the Breakout Character in the films, surprising people to see that she was a relatively normal, cheerful girl in the TV show.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment:
    • Morticia's comments on the fragile state of her family in the second half of Addams Family Values includes the woeful line "My husband is dying." Raul Julia would do just that a little less than a year later. In the movie, he is even seen lying sick in bed feebly singing "Swing low, sweet chariot." What's more, when Gomez is horrified that his son is turning normal, he calls out to God, "Take me!"
    • In 2011, Hurricane Irene struck the east coast of the United States. In the Addams Family film, the book Fester uses at the end is titled Hurricane Irene.
    • Then, of course, there's the scene in the second movie where young Joel Glicker screams in terror at a picture of Michael Jackson. What was originally meant to be a teasing in-jokenote  turned into a case of seriously bad timing when Jackson was accused of child molestation the same year Values was released.
  • Genius Bonus:
    • In Addams Family Values Joel says that he has all the cards in the serial killer trading card series, except for "Jack The Ripper and that Zodiac Guy". Funny because a) No one knows who they were, so there would be no pictures for the card and b) Even the cards of them can't be caught.
    • Also, Debbie says no woman "in her right mind" could love Fester. Dementia, the woman who catches Fester's eye towards the end of the movie, clearly isn't in her right mind.
  • Heartwarming in Hindsight: Fester's return in the first movie, after seeing how distraught everyone is when he leaves them in Values.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • In Addams Family Values, after being irritated by Gomez, a police officer asks him, "Who are you? What are you?" The officer was played by Nathan Lane, who would play Gomez on Broadway almost twenty years later.
    • Pretty much any time Joel and Gary interact with each other, due to their actors, David Krumholtz and Peter MacNichol, co-starring in NUMB3RS.
  • LGBT Fanbase: Addams Family Values has become a cult favorite among gay audiences, thanks largely to Joan Cusack's over-the-top performance as Debbie.
  • Mary Sue: Parodied in The Movie.
    • Festerman is an in-universe example.
  • Nightmare Fuel: In addition to the Thing mention above, the way the Pubert almost dies multiple times in the second movie. Not to mention they hang KNIVES over his crib as a mobile.
  • One-Scene Wonder: Cousin Itt in both movies.
  • Retroactive Recognition: Mercedes McNab (Harmony in the Buffyverse) appeared as a girl scout in the first movie and had the larger role of Amanda in Addams Family Values.
  • Surprisingly Improved Sequel: Addams Family Values was widely considered by critics and fans alike to be superior to the first movie, with more macabre humour and hilarious Rapid-Fire Comedy in effect. Strangely enough, it actually made less than its predecessor (Addams Family made over 191 million worldwide while Values made 48 million), although that could be chalked up to the less-than-stellar reception of the first movie.
  • Tear Jerker: It can be hard to watch Fester get emotionally abused, manipulated, and kept from his family in both movies.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: The whole time Wednesday and Pugsley are at camp, they try to escape so they can save Fester. When they finally get out and make their way home, they end up tied up, just as helpless as the rest of the family, and Pubert ends up saving them.
  • The Woobie: Uncle Fester for the reasons listed under Tear Jerker. Also, in the second film, we can see that the poor guy only wants what his brother and sister-in-law have.
    • Joel Glicker. Unlike Uncle Fester, Wednesday and Pugsley, he doesn't have anyone looking out for him or even a happy home to go to, as his parents are just as big as the insensitive jerks that everyone else at the camp are. Things start to look up for him once he befriends Wednesday, Pugsley and soon the rest of the Addams, but then there is that ending...

The TV series:

  • In Wednesday Leaves Home, the agent dealing with missing children tells the mother of a boy that has run away for the seventh time that locking him in the broom closet won't help, and he could be running away because of her. Sound familiar?
  • Fandom Rivalry: With The Munsters, persisting to this day.
  • Seinfeld Is Unfunny: Many of the TV Family's "weird" affectations (home computing, alternative medicine, being Goth).
  • Values Resonance: In the TV series, Gomez and Morticia were actually excellent parents, openly involved in their children's lives and showing genuine concern and affection for them. In their creepy but cool way, that is.
    • Not to mention, they were among the first TV couples who openly and passionately showed their affection for each other.

The pinball and video games:

  • Awesome Music: The remix of the main theme heard on the title screen of Fester's Quest.
  • Good Bad Bugs: On the pinball machine, entering mansion rooms gives you awards in a fixed order. The thing is that the game is programmed to give awards only up to the 255th room. Entering mansion rooms from the 256th and onwards will instead give massive amounts of points (as it's getting data from code meant for other aspects of the game). That being said, only a handful of people in the world would be good enough to enter that many mansion rooms before a Game Over, and these people only became that good decades after the machine was first released.
  • Most Wonderful Sound: Getting multiball on the pinball machine adaptation. Gomez will say "Now you've done it!" (or, alternately, "It has to warm up... so it can kill you!"), all music and sounds cease...and then a slow, low rumbling sound, getting faster and higher-pitched, until BAM! Multiball!!
    "SHOWTIME!"
  • The Problem with Licensed Games: Played straight with the console versions, though the SNES game for the first film is quite a fun Mario-esque platformer.
    • The Game Boy Color game based on The New Addams Family (released in 2001 and called The New Addams Family Series for some reason) is ugly-looking, complicated, has questionable controls at best, and is quite difficult to play when you have absolutely no idea what you're doing. Once you consult a guide, however (of which there is a whopping total of ONE currently circulating on the Internet... and it's in Spanish), the game can be quite easy and fun, ultimately subverting this trope.
    • Completely inverted with the pinball machine, which went on to become the highest-selling table in history and is widely considered to be one of the best tables ever made.
  • Scrappy Mechanic: "The Power", a magnet located roughly in the center of the playfield which will pulse as certain times (mainly during "Seance/Super Seance" and the multiball modes), flinging the ball in wild and unpredictable directions. Some of these directions include the drain or a ricochet to the drain with nothing the player can do about it. It is so bad that all major competitions, and most minor competitions, where The Addams Family is present will have this magnet physically removed so it never bothers the competitors, with the alternative being players spending inordinate amounts of time holding balls on the flippers waiting for the Power to disable itself temporarily.
  • Suspiciously Similar Song: The main theme of the pinball table bears more than a passing resemblance to the main theme of Pat Lawlor's previous table, Funhouse.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/YMMV/TheAddamsFamily