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YMMV / The Addams Family

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The franchise as a whole:

  • Acceptable Targets: Politicians, even as far back as the 1964 series. One episode has Gomez considering giving a campaign contribution to a politician promising, among other things, to drain the local swamps. Morticia doesn't understand why, since they both like the swamps, but Gomez explains that that's exactly why - politicians never do what they promise, so if this guy wins the swamps are safe! note 
    • Famously, anyone who enjoys "normal" things, such as pastels, instead of the macabre or goth culture.
  • Adaptation Displacement:
    • Of the original cartoons by the TV series.
    • Also, of the TV series by the movies for even younger audiences.
  • Alternative Character Interpretation: The entire family— are they murderous, or are they just creepy enough to fantasise about murder but not evil enough to actually commit it? A common point of debate is Wednesday's comment in The New Addams Family about whether Pugsley ate the third Addams sibling.note  Some people interpret this as true, while others interpret it as a bluff.
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  • Alternative Joke Interpretation: Gomez tells Debbie that "of course" they have cable. Why would this be obvious? Some viewers see it as a Continuity Nod to the first movie, in which Gomez starts watching Gilligan's Island to cope with being evicted, others think it refers to them watching horror movies and dark documentaries on TV, still others think it refers to their enjoyment of whipping one another, some think it refers to tightrope walking (which seems like something they'd do) and a fifth interpretation is that it refers to Fester experimenting with electrical wires.
  • Awesome Music: The theme song.
    • "The Lurch", a swinging 60s song performed by Ted Cassidy (the original Lurch). It can be seen here.
  • 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 (and weirdly, only one main cast member from Reunion was retained for the New series). 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.
    • A minority of people don't care for the snark and occasionally mean-spirited humor of the 1990s remakes, nor how some if the characters changed (such as Wednesday going from a macabre but warm-hearted Cheerful Child to an expressionless Not Like Other Girls Deadpan Snarker, or how Gomez is suddenly conventionally attractive).
  • Crazy Is Cool:
    • Gomez whenever he has to defend his family.
    • Applies to the whole family in the movies. Place an Addams - any Addams - in mortal danger. They'll not only survive, but beg to do it again.
  • Creepy Awesome: The whole damn family, each member in his or her own unique way.
  • Crosses the Line Twice: Mostly in the original New Yorker cartoons.
  • 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".
  • Fandom Rivalry: With The Munsters, which was less popular than the Addams but generally considered to be the funnier of the two, due to their similar premises and releases.
  • Friendly Fandoms: With The Munsters for also being a creepy but friendly family.
  • Heartwarming in Hindsight: In "Gomez, the Politician," one of the objectives of the Addams Family is to preserve the various swamps in the region. Since then, there has been a significant environmental movement to preserve wetlands with their essential role in preserving animal habitats and water quality being greater understood. With that in mind, there would be a great number of environmental activists who would welcome the Addams' support.
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  • Memetic Mutation: Woe to the poor person who can't snap their fingers if they hear the theme song and can't immediately snap along to it like everyone else does without second thought. In such cases, claps are usually accepted for partial credit.
  • Nightmare Fuel: Thing in most adaptations, if you aren't expecting 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 13th—but especially the son and the uncle.
  • Evil Is Sexy: The mother.
  • Moe: The daughter.
  • Nightmare Fuel: "The Thing", who unlike later adaptations is an actual obscured human peering from some vantage point.

The live-action 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."
  • Audience-Coloring Adaptation:
    • Despite the popularity of the television series and various other media, much of what people know about The Addams Family comes from the first two 1990s films. It got to the point where the 2019 animated movie was criticized by some for the Family having an overall grotesque appearance (as opposed to the live-action version's more attractive and handsome features), when in fact they were drawing from Charles Addams' original character designs.
    • Wednesday's signature Deadpan Snarker personality originated in these movies; prior to this she was usually portrayed as a younger Cheerful Child. The latter personality trait has popped up on occasion since, however.
  • Critical Research Failure: Bambi and The Little Mermaid (1989) are Disney productions. But Joel mentions "But... It's Disney!" right before The Sound of Music, The Brady Bunch and Annie, none of which are Disney productions, start playing. The tape that is announced last and inserted into the machine by the counselor is The Little Mermaid (1989), though. Every home video release of Values has since borne the disclaimer "Some of the music has been changed for this release", so it's possible the original theatrical version actually did feature Disney music in that scene, and Paramount simply couldn't work out a deal with the Mouse House for home entertainment releases.
    • When the Addams kids head for Camp Chippewa, Wednesday claims that "Chippewa" means "orphan". In actuality, it's named after the real life Native American tribe called the Ojibwe.
  • Crosses the Line Twice: In Family Values, after the summer camp has been set alight, Wednesday has advanced on the bound and restrained Amanda with the implication she's going to burn her at the stake, and the two gagged camp counsellors are being roasted over a fire, with the distinct possibility the Loser kids are going to eat them — cut to Wednesday being canoed across the lake by Joel, complete with romantic music.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse: Debbie is the best-remembered thing from the movies, next to the camp subplot's climax in Values.
  • Fair for Its Day: In the years since Values came out, having white, upper-middle-class children dress up as Native Americans (complete with war bonnets and paint) became more openly acknowledged as culturally offensive. However, the film is also one of the few mainstream works to acknowledge the whitewashed narrative surrounding Thanksgiving and calls out the hypocrisy and ignorance of the general public.
  • "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." Raúl Juliá 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. Then comes the woman who catches Fester's eye towards the end of the movie. Her name? Dementia. And she 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.
    • Also in Values, Joel mentions how they're gonna watch Disney movies, and the very first thing we hear is The Sound of Music, which isn't Disney at all... or at least wasn't, before Disney bought Fox.
  • It Was His Sled: Gordon Craven in the first movie is an amnesiac Fester Addams who was brainwashed by Mrs. Craven into believing he was her son. It's especially telling when the TV promos for the film on FreeForm's 31 Days of Halloween Marathon give it away. The popularity of the sequel probably doesn't help.
  • LGBT Fanbase: Addams Family Values has become a cult favorite among queer audiences, thanks largely to Joan Cusack's over-the-top performance as Debbie. Additionally, Gomez and Morticia accepting "Normal" Pubert, and continuing to love him even though they didn't understand or like his change in looks and personality, resonated with queer viewers.
  • Memetic Mutation: Debbie's "Ballerina Barbie" monologue saw a surge in popularity when A.J. LoCascio (the voice of Prince Lotor in Voltron: Legendary Defender) read the scene in said character's voice.
    • For those in America who don't exactly connect with Thanksgiving due to its questionably sanitized origins (or just because it's a fun scene), the camp riot scene in Family Values gets shared across social media around that time.
  • Moral Event Horizon: Debbie in Addams Family Values crossed it by killing her parents and burning down their house as a little girl over a Barbie doll.
  • Nightmare Fuel: In addition to the Thing mention above, the way the Pubert almost dies multiple times in the second movie.
  • One-Scene Wonder:
    • Cousin Itt in both movies.
    • Nathan Lane as the police desk sergeant who's irritated and bewildered by Gomez's ranting.
    • Mercedes McNabb's performance as an agonizingly chipper Girl Scout in the first film was so well-received that she got an expanded role in the sequel.
  • 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.
    • Values came out before David Krumholtz, Peter MacNicol, Christine Baranski, and even Nathan Lane had their various breakthrough roles (though a few people would've likely recognized MacNicol from Ghostbusters II).
    • Jerry Messing, who played Pugsley in Addams Family Reunion, would years later become internet-famous when a photograph of him in a trilby was used as the "tips fedora" image macro.
    • Reunion also featured Haylie Duff as Gina, years before she appeared in Lizzie McGuire or Napoleon Dynamite.
  • "Seinfeld" Is Unfunny: The "inverted nuclear family" has been done many, many times since the show aired and the 90s films revived it, and it's no longer a very novel concept. Similarly, while the Addams themselves (particularly from the remakes) are still popular, their famous "normal people scare me" type of personalities have been made fun of more in the late 2010s where it's seen more as edgy andcringy behavior of people trying to compensate for not fitting in well.
  • Signature Scene:
    • The Mamushka in the first film.
    • Wednesday, Pugsley and all the other outcasts ransacking the camp and Debbie's Motive Rant and death in the sequel.
  • Special Effect Failure: While most of the effects work holds up some of the compositing used to create Thing hasn't survived the transition to HD very well. A few shots, such as him searching the swamp for Wednesday after she goes missing, have visible artifacts that mean he doesn't quite blend with the background properly.
  • 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.
  • 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 and just as helpless as the rest of the family, and Pubert ends up saving them.
  • Tough Act to Follow: Raúl Juliá as Gomez. Aside from perhaps John Astin, he's generally considered to be the best Gomez. Every actor to play Gomez after Juliá has been compared to him and found wanting by fans, including much beloved actors such as Tim Curry and Nathan Lane.
  • Values Resonance:
    • Wednesday's speech about the suffering the Native Americans have gone through gets lauded even today as a shining example of someone going against whitewashing history and presenting the truth.
    • Gomez and Morticia accepting "Normal" Pubert even though they don't understand or like the changes they saw, because they want him to be happy and healthy, can still resonate with viewers who face disapproval, bigotry, and ostracization from their family over things out of their control (gender identity, romantic/sexual orientation, disability, illness).
  • 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 much insensitive jerks as 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...
  • What an Idiot!: Rather than move to get their kids off the stage when the pageant goes off-script, resulting in very real and dangerous pyrotechnics, most of the parents sit in either Deer in the Headlights mode or leave because they feel this play isn't a tasteful subject. Joel's parents have the excuse that he knocks them down from behind, but everyone else doesn't.

The TV series:

  • Accidental Innuendo: “We do not go around whacking people in this house!” (This might also qualify as Have a Gay Old Time)
  • Fandom Rivalry: With fans of The Munsters, persisting to this day.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • 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?
    • In "Morticia the Writer", Morticia decides to pen children's stories to help fill the void of good material she sees in the school reading Wednesday and Pugsley got assigned. Her first title is "Cinderella the Teenage Delinquent". Years later, subversive fairy tales are becoming increasingly common, making Morticia seem ahead of the curve rather than simply off-kilter.
    • Politicians who have promised to "drain the swamp"—usually figuratively—include Ronald Reagan, Nancy Pelosi, and Donald Trump.note 
  • "Seinfeld" Is Unfunny: Many of the TV Family's "weird" affectations (home computing, alternative medicine, being Goth).
  • Society Marches On: The TV show version of the family seem a lot more "normal" and healthy by modern standards than the stock 60's sitcom characters they spend screentime with.
  • Values Dissonance: In Cousin Itt and the Vocational Counselor, Cousin Itt expresses a desire to be a stewardess. The family proceed to tell him that he can't be a stewardess since Itt is male. When Cousin Itt protests about it being unfair, Morticia replies a little coldly that "it is not unfair". Years later the word "stewardess" is no longer used, having been replaced with "flight attendant" and men are allowed to work as such.note 
  • 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. Plus, Gomez is every bit as involved in the kids' upbringing as his wife, during a time when many would've seen childrearing as being mainly (if not entirely) the mother's job.
    • Not only were they were among the first TV couples who openly and passionately showed their affection for each other, they always functioned as a team, with one never keeping secrets or vocally resenting the other in any way. It's also completely egalitarian; any important decisions about the children, they make together. They both show complete respect to each other at all times, and even when they disagree, they always try to hear the other one out and reach a solution they both can agree upon. Even today, few dom-coms depict married couples as being in anything but love/hate relationships, making Gomez and Morticia's marriage the most idealistic ever depicted on television!
    • The very first episode has the Addams express an aversion to formal schooling for their children, preferring their children to learn things like art, music, and spider-breeding at home. With the ongoing debate about schools as standardized testing factories as well as art subjects often being overlooked or the first to get cut when it comes to funding, this is more relevant than ever.

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!!
  • 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) looks ugly, is 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.
    • Fester's Quest, though fairly ambitious, is a prime example of poorly-designed NES games: most notably, its weapon system, which is practically designed to get on your nerves in some way. For much of the game, you either have a strong weapon with an attack pattern so erratic it misses half the time and becomes downright unusable in close quarters, or a weapon that shoots straight but deals the damage of a popgun. And you can often accidentally pick up powerups that will turn one into the other.
    • 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.

The Musical:

  • Angst? What Angst?: Mal takes being molested by a squid pretty well. Not only is he not upset about it, he’s happy about it because it made him realize his love for Alice.
  • Ass Pull: In the Broadway version, Mal gets raped by the Addams’ family squid, which somehow brings out his love for Alice and redeems him. There’s no explanation for this.
    • Also in the Broadway version, many people found it rather unlikely that a woman so effortlessly confident and collected as Morticia would become so overwhelmed by the idea of growing old.
  • Audience-Alienating Premise:
    • Gomez and Morticia are one of the most beloved power couples of all time. This show has them spend nearly the entire show feuding with each other, with Morticia being Demoted to Extra in favor of her husband and turned into a colossal bitch.
    • The musical takes Wednesday Addams, a character who’s popular for being the exact opposite of the typical teenage girl, and makes her entire character arc wanting to be normal. The fact that her Love Interest who causes this is generally regarded as being a boring character makes it even worse.
    • There’s also the matter of Pugsley, Lurch, Grandma, Thing, and Coussin Itt either being downplayed or completely absent in favor of new, fairly uninteresting characters.
  • Base-Breaking Character: None of the following characters can really be considered The Scrappy in this version, but there’s still a lot of people who don’t like their Adaptational Personality Change:
    • In both the Broadway and licensed version, Morticia manages to come across as wildly different compared to her usual self, with her dry delivery being the only part of her character still in tact. The Broadway version adds a plot where she starts to feel gel conscious about her age, causing her to ignore her family and wallow in her misery for most of the show, a change that’s extremely different from a character who’s usually so self confident. The licensed version changes it so that she has her trademark confidence back, but now she’s taken a huge level in jerkass, acting in a rude and cruel behavior towards almost every other character. Morticia is usually cold on the surface but warm inside, but this version is the closest thing the show has to a villain due to her constantly antagonizing her family, not helping them with any of their problems, and almost leaving them at the end for incredibly petty reasons, something she’s never truly called out on. Also, ignoring characterization issues, many don’t like how she’s blatantly secondary to Gomez In terms of prominence in this version, as the two are typically completely equal co-leads.
    • The whole plot is actually based around Wednesday’s Adaptational Personality Change, as she tries to forego her usual identity in order to be normal and get together with her Love Interest. While the transformation never fully occurs (in fact it feels somewhat forgotten about later) the musical version of Wednesday’s arc is to become the antithesis of her popular self, all in the name of her forgettable boyfriend.
    • Grandma Addams’ personality in this version is pretty much just “aren’t old people so wacky?”, resulting in some serious Cringe Comedy.
    • Much like his mother, Pugsley also Took a Level in Jerkass, acting like a spoiled brat who’s selfish actions endanger everyone else’s happiness. But due to this inadvertently helping the others, he not only gets away with it, but is commended for it.
    • More downplayed when it comes Gomez and Fester, who’s versions here feel more in line than the other family members, and are seen as two of the stinger characters. However, the Flanderization of Gomez’s Latin nationality and Fester’s obsession with love are seen as somewhat out there choices. And as mentioned above, some didn’t like Gomez’s noticeable province over Morticia.
    • In terms of new characters, some people like Lucas because he genuinely loves Wednesday and is willing to be crazy for her, while others find him to be boring and without personality. The fact that he causes a beloved character to try and change everything about herself also didn’t endear him to some audience members, even though he himself doesn’t try to influence her into this.
  • Big-Lipped Alligator Moment: Fester's song "The Moon and Me" since it had nothing to do with the plot.
  • Broken Base: “In the Arms” and it’s removal from the current version. Some people are glad it’s gone as the plot being solved by Mal getting molested felt completely asinine. Others felt that the removal of the song robs Mal of his big moment which many would argue is one of the show’s best numbers. Most will agree though that while his redemption and reprise of “Crazier Than You” makes more sense from a narrative perspective, the execution is much less interesting and generic compared to the unexpected and out there nature of the original.
    • The show as a whole caused a Broken Base between people who found it to be a fun, light hearted story, and others who thought it was derivative of other works and made the titular family look Out of Character.
  • Cargo Ship: A subplot in the musical is him being in love with the moon.
  • Cliché Storm: A major criticism of the show is that it’s a standard telling of the Slobs vs. Snobs story borrowing heavily from other more popular shows like You Can't Take It with You and La Cage aux folles.
  • Creator's Pet: In all other versions they’re co-leads, but here, Gomez’s role is noticeably bigger than Morticia’s in terms of acting and singing. In addition that, in the original Broadway version, Morticia is too overcome with her sudden fear of aging to help anyone else, with Gomez ultimately solving every other character’s problems. The new version changed this so Morticia no longer has a midlife crisis and Mal and Alice’s marriage is saved by Fester, Wednesday, and Lucas. However, now a new problem occurs where Gomez is portrayed in a much more positive light, being his usual devoted husband and father while Morticia antagonizes him and Wednesday throughout the show over their secret, is extremely disapproving of Wednesday’s romance and engagement, and nearly abandons her entire family for extremely petty reasons, all while blaming everything in Gomez. This turns it around somewhat in that Gomez is a Creator's Pet in terms of the size of his role and his likability remaining intact, while Morticia is a Creator's Pet in terms of never getting called out on her actions while Gomez is for his much more minor offenses and forced to apologize, something Morticia never does.
  • Critical Dissonance: The musical was absolutely torn apart by critics, but the brand name recognition helped it do better with audiences, with it now being a very popular choice amongst high school productions. To put it simply, in the long run the show was a critical failure but a commercial success.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse: Unlike the other family members, Lurch is pretty much the same as he’s always been, and despite being mute for almost the entire show, he gets his fair share of laughs throughout. The fact that he is a rare example of a bass in musical theatre also helps.
    • Of the new characters, Alice is the most popular. Like her son, she comes across as genuinely nice and accepting of the Addams Family, but unlike him, she has a more defined arc and character, and gets to sing the show’s darkest number, ironically making the Addams feel uncomfortable for once.
  • Ethnic Scrappy: While Gomez himself isn’t a scrappy in this version, some didn’t care for the stereotypical playing up of his of his Latin origins which noticeably downplays his relation to his monster side, which takes away from his mysterious nature.
    • The idea of Gomez being Spanish isn’t new, as his name has Latin connotations, he constantly acts as a Latin Lover, and he was famously played by Raúl Juliá in the movies. However, unlike prior portrayals, this one is much more explicit with Gomez speaking in a highly exaggerated accent and repeatedly mentioning his family members who all have stereotypically over the top Hispanic names. It wouldn’t be so bad if Gomez was actually played by Latino actors, but after the very white Nathan Lane originated the role, he’s commonly portrayed by white men.
  • Fridge Logic: As noted, Gomez’s Spanish heritage is much, much more pronounced here than in any other version. Despite this, he’s the only member of his family, both living and deceased who shows any sign of Latin origins.
    • The only reason the Beinekes don’t leave at the end of Act 1 is due to Fester and the ancestors causing a storm, but as soon as act 2 starts, everything’s cleared up. So why didn’t Mal try to leave?
    • Despite singing and dancing with them at the beginning, all the Addams except for Fester seem completely oblivious about the ancestors surrounding them.
  • The Scrappy: Mal isn’t particularly popular due to being a Jerkass buzzkill for most of the show. In the original version, he gets to have a big number where he reforms himself and pledges his love to his wife, but the whole thing is undercut by his redemption happening due to a blatant Ass Pull. The current version removed it, but that ends up robbing the character of his only major solo, with his replacement song being an underwhelming reprise.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks!: Wednesday wants to be normal, Morticia is a bad wife and mother, Gomez is a weird mix between a Latino stereotype and Nathan Lane, Pugsley is a selfish brat, Grandma is a walking wacky old person cliche, and Fester is obsessed with love.
    • In terms of the licensed retooling, the most controversial change was the removal of “In the Arms” as it leaves Mal without a major solo, with his replacement number being a much more generic reprise. However, as noted above, many thought that the original song was problematic.
      • Not only is Mal’s solo taken away, but so is the original version of “Let’s Not Talk About Love”, which is second most significant number, effectively taking away most of the character’s music.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character:
    • Morticia’s role as the strong and loving family matriarch is downplayed in favor of Gomez. If the show really wanted to go in the direction it did, it might’ve worked better if their roles were somewhat swapped. Morticia being more self composed would likely take the idea of her daughter getting married better than Gomez who’s somewhat of a Manchild. Meanwhile, Morticia’s numbers are more flashy and showy then Gomez’s, while he gets to sing the much more somber and calm “Happy/Sad”. An argument could easily be made that big production numbers are more in character for someone as hyperactive as Gomez while a bittersweet ballad is more fitting for someone who’s calm and cool like Morticia.
    • While they’re still present, Pugsley, Lurch, and Grandma are all Demoted to Extra in favor of the Beinekes. At least they get to appear though, with Thing only making a quick cameo and Cousin Itt being completely absent (although some productions stick him in anyway).
  • Unintentionally Sympathetic: Mal in the Broadway version. Yes he’s an ass, but he also gets raped by a squid, which is Played for Laughs and treated as a solution for his Jerkass behavior.
  • Values Dissonance: As noted above, the original Broadway version has Mal getting raped which is Played for Laughs. Yes it’s a squid, but still, given how sexual abuse and harassment are taken much more seriously, it’s likely that the show would never attempt to have the main conflict solved by a character getting molested.
  • WTH, Casting Agency?: Nathan Lane as Gomez. Many people said he didn’t have the look and feel of the character compared to John Astin and Raúl Juliá. The team behind the show defended the casting by noting that this version was inspired by the original comic, a claim that falls flat when its extremely clear that this version has essentially the same personality as those two, with the only differences being that Gomez is now more of a typical Lane-esque Deadpan Snarker.

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