As with most vampires, the years have been good to Lily Munster: in the full length trailer that just dropped for Rob Zombie’s reboot of The Munsters, she looks as pale and as chilling as she did back in the Sixties. Truly, a creature of darkness ready for the grave itself…
…but enough flattery of this incredible beauty icon. Let’s talk about the trailer, shall we?
Concerns abounded when it came out that horror afficionado and heavy metal icon Rob Zombie was going to take a shot at a revival of the classic oddball sitcom The Munsters. Would this be a horror version of the family friendly classic that provided a less subversive monster movie counterpart to The Addams Family? Was Herman going to be tearing a bloody swath across the countryside while Lily and Grandpa devoured victim after victim in a bacchanal of violence and debauchery?
Turns out, the worries were unwarranted. Zombie, a diehard fan of the original series, has appeared to turn this movie into a love letter to the show he grew up on. The movie, which is getting a solid PG rating, is not only giving us a modern take on a television classic, but it promises to provide a wonderful mix of the old and the new. The casting is wonderful, the visuals are as campy as they are vibrant, and we’re not just getting a retelling of the same story: this movie appears to be a prequel.
While the teaser trailer gave us a glimpse of the film through the lens of the classic show intro featuring Herman, Lily, and Grandpa leaving the house in black and white, the full trailer starts in color with a much earlier timeline. We have Herman Munster, a scientific creation on the slab, and a young vampiress in Lily still struggling with an overbearing father. All she wants is to meet the man of her nightmares, someone to make eternity go by just a little bit faster— You know, the usual fairy tale romance.
Enter Herman Munster: not exactly the kind of creature most self respecting vampires would want for their little girl, but a good man who loves Lily absolutely, and is definitely better looking than the Nosferatu Grampa tries to set her up with.
The love story that brought Lily and Herman together looks to be as charming and as wild as anything the original series had to provide. Zombie’s film definitely updates the look and feel of costumes and conceits from the series — Lily leaves the house with a bag for one thing, a working woman rather than a stay at home mother — but doesn’t leave fans wanting for the familiar.
Jeff Daniel Phillips showcases a classic Herman Munster guffaw that would do Fred Gwynne proud, while the veteran character actor Daniel Roebuck offers up a wonderful homage to Al Lewis in his portrayal of Grandpa.
Yvonne De Carlo was a classic beauty with wonderful deadpan delivery in her comic timing, and while Sheri Moon Zombie might be married to the director, she does not hold a single thing back in her portrayal of Lily Munster. She’s every bit the ghastly beauty, and hams it up to high heaven without sacrificing in the quality of her performance.
Some have balked at the over the top nature of the trailer, not to mention cinematic aspects like coloring and presentation. However, whatever flaws may be visible to the hardcore fan in this trailer are far outweighed by the good that’s offered.
This is not, after all, a trailer for The Addams Family, this is The Munsters. In their day, they were quite deliberately camp and over the top with the choice of monsters over the spooky and the macabre. If the show had been colorized rather than black and white, you can rest assured it would be as rich and as cheezy in its outlandish monster make up as Zombie’s film is.
I, for one, am wildly excited to see what else is in store for this movie — and wondering just how Grandpa is going to try and interfere with Lily and Herman getting their ‘deadly ever after’ storybook ending. If you’re as ready as I am for this movie, then don your best cobweb gown and be sure to hit the theater this September for the premiere of Rob Zombie’s The Munsters.
In the opinion of this particular journalist, missing out would be a grave mistake.
Rob Zombie’s The Munsters is expected out sometime in September of 2022.
Liz Carlie (she/her/he/him) is a regular book, TV, and film reviewer for SCIFI.radio and has previously been a guest on ‘The Event Horizon’. In addition to being an active member of the traditional fandom community, she’s also an active participant in online fan culture, pro wrestling journalism, and spreading the gospel of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. She resides in Southern California with her aspiring superhero dog, Junior, enjoying life one hyperfixation at a time.