Halloween with the New Addams Family (1977)

A lot of what makes Addams Family such a fun series is the darkly comic and sinister tone and great sense of Goth that comes with it. It’s not often I say this but watching the rare 1977 movie is kind of a chore to sit through, and you can sense it’s not a good movie at all once you gander at the grainy video and lack of production quality. This attempt at a series revival is a “feature length” television movie that is supposed to set off the new Addams Family. For some reason this is a reboot with the entire cast from the original series all over again, right down to an adult Wednesday and Pugsley. “Halloween with the Addams Family” isn’t just abysmal, but it’s boring, and painfully silly.

And I say that as someone very aware of the characters Cousin Itt and Thing. The premise for the TV movie is so bizarre bordering on stupid. In it, Gomez has a chance to become a high ranking member of a club and is called away to the ceremony. Just his luck for Halloween, his brother Pancho has arrived to spend time with the family. Pancho looks exactly like Gomez and even has a lust for Morticia. He spends most of his time hitting on her, and she does very little to fend him off, which we’re supposed to find cute or funny. But it makes Morticia look awful. Gomez is then called away on a trip to be awarded the high position, but it’s really a plot by a group of criminals to steal the Addams fortune.

This gives Jon Astin the excuse to stay out of the movie at a good portion, with the awkward pairing of Pancho and Morticia running the house. Meanwhile, Lurch is looking for a girlfriend, Gomez and Morticia have two children named Morticia Jr. and Pugsley Jr. with the actual Pugsley and Morticia visiting from out of town (Huh?), and there’s even a weird musical number in the finale where the family sings about the joy of Halloween. Much of the movie is unfocused and meanders back and forth, with the criminal plot taking a back seat to Pancho trying to seduce Morticia repeatedly. It’s not at all a mystery why “Halloween with the Addams Family” has never been on DVD. Even with the original cast, the production is phoned in, and it should only be sought out for morbid curiosity or hardcore fans of the series.