The Addams Family is one of the most recognizable families in pop culture. They are THE spooky Halloween family. Not a single October goes by where they aren’t present in some capacity – in Halloween movie marathons, at costume shops, and so on. Over the years, the family transformed in many ways. The original Addams Family took shape as a 1960s TV series. Since then, we’ve seen the famous Addams Family movies from the ‘90s, a Broadway musical interpretation, and two animated films. And there doesn’t seem to be an end any time soon. This year’s anticipated Addams Family remake is Tim Burton’s Wednesday, a series soon to be released on Netflix.
The first teaser clip back in June revealed Jenna Ortega as Wednesday Addams but didn’t give up much more. Today, however, we finally get a first look at the new Addams Family. Catherine Zeta-Jones is the iconic and beautiful Morticia, Luis Guzmán is the romantic and slightly more social Gomez, and Isaac Ordonez is little brother Pugsley. It seems Uncle Fester is still missing, but perhaps that’s a secret to be learned later on. The new series focuses on the family’s only daughter, hence the title, and adheres to cartoonist Charles Addams’ original character design. Wednesday dons the signature white collar, Morticia the vampire-esque dress, and Gomez his pin-stripe suit. Pugsley keeps his usual shorts and stripes look.
Tim Burton is an executive producer on the show and directs four episodes which definitely shapes the series’ direction. It was unexpected that he joined the show, however, according to a Vanity Fair interview with Miles Millar and Alfred Gough – the show’s creators. It’s well known that Burton passed on the 1991 film when he heard the pitch, but to Millar and Gough’s surprise, he contacted them three days after reading the first episode of Wednesday, expressing his interest.
“He really loved that you had time to be with Wednesday and explore the character and you didn’t have to, you know, wrap things up in an hour and 45 minutes,” said Gough. In this case, Burton is the force behind keeping the family’s silhouette similar to the original cartoons. The team aims to make the series feel like something new rather than a reboot of something that’s already been done.
The comedy horror series premise is a bit murder-mystery. Murders plague the small town where Wednesday attends Nevermore Academy. But rather than being an issue for Wednesday, it’s quite calming since she finds comfort in death and darkness. This take also differs from others in that Wednesday is now a high school teen rather than a little girl. It follows her growth into independence as she navigates a family that drives her mad with their antithetical enthusiasm and cheerfulness.
The dive into Wednesday’s character provides a new angle on the family that makes the series feel original despite its basis in a well-known story. There’s even a Wednesday Addams Twitter account replying to fans in her voice. Her character is accessible in our world in a way she never was before.
As the family keeps their usual chaos and dark atmosphere, there are new elements at play that make this a refreshing version. Keep an eye out for new clips and trailers as we get closer to the show’s release later this year.
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