In light of last weekend’s holiday, I had been watching ABC Family’s 13 Nights of Halloween. I always get excited when the Halloween movies come back on TV, especially The Addams Family. It’s always been an October favorite of mine, and I even dressed up as Wednesday last year for the occasion. Everyone knows the famous Addams (the creepy, kooky family with the snapping theme song and a detached hand for a pet), but what I find truly intriguing is the amount of love and life that can be found in a family so fascinated with the dead.
It’s no question that the Addams family is a strange group. You have the dark and mysterious Morticia, who is anything but shy about her sexuality, acting somewhat like a modern vampire. Then there’s Gomez – the male head-of-house who leads his family in their bizarre, occult lifestyle. In the 1991 film, the daughter Wednesday is portrayed as a sinister girl with a fascination with homicide. Uncle Fester is a combination of a mad scientist and a zombie, son Pugsley is diabolical and slightly insane, the butler is a monster resembling the one from Frankenstein, and Grandma is potion-mixing witch. They live in a dark, twisted mansion, complete with a graveyard and swamp.
But here’s the interesting thing – these people, described as “freaks” and “weirdos”, are actually the picture perfect family. If you look at the dynamics of the Addams’, they are as close as a family could be. Gomez and Morticia are open about their undying love (haha, get it – undying) for each other and their family members. It is clear from the cartoon and the motion pictures that they would do anything for their family. In the 1991 film, Gomez is overjoyed at the return of his brother, Uncle Fester, and can finally rest knowing that his family is together and whole again. And yet many “normal” families today are driven apart by rivalry and would much rather see their siblings lost forever in the Bermuda Triangle.
The movies, The Addams Family and The Addams Family Values, are both about how the family sticks together through everything, whether it’s being kicked out of their home and robbed of their estate or tricked by an evil nanny looking to marry Fester for his money and then murder him. Those things would tear most families apart, but the Addams’ love for each other is what keeps them together. The Addams’ are great role models because of how much they care for one another. More parents should be as loving as Gomez and Morticia. More kids should be as concerned for their family’s well being as Wednesday and Pugsley.
So though they love dead things and murders and monsters and the color black, they are more human than any of us. We could all learn a thing or two about family from the Addams’.