‘The Munsters’: All the Changes to Expect From Rob Zombie’s Netflix Reboot

by Craig Garrett

Rob Zombie is a diehard The Munsters fan, but his Netflix reboot is expected to switch a few things up from the classic series. When it was announced that Zombie would be writing and directing an official Munsters project, many fans were concerned. Zombie is a director who has always been known for excessive gore and brutality. However, the new reboot is officially rated PG. A new trailer for the film (and eventual blu-ray release) dropped recently. Though it seems to capture the tone of the 60s series, there are clearly some major changes.

When the entire trailer was revealed, it became clear that the picture would be a prequel, as it shows Lily approaching Herman Munster and asking him out on a date. While rebooting these classic characters, Rob Zombie wants to tell the tale of their budding romance. It’s a fresh take on the material, plus it lends itself for future installments as the family grows. However, some fans feel like the trailer raises some red flags.

Chiefly among the fan concerns is one of the biggest changes. Of course, the classic The Munsters was shot in black and white. It’s an iconic choice that harkens back to the characters’ Universal Monster roots. However, Zombie’s reboot is in full, neon color. It remains to be seen if what we saw in the trailer will be the final look of the film. However, the colors are garish and seem to need some leveling. Some fans feel the overly saturated colors give it a cheap look.

Other changes The Munsters fans can expect in the film reboot

Before stills and teasers began to appear, the Munster family’s design was a major point of contention. The characters have a very distinct, iconic look. Zombie’s track record of violent cinema looming over the production, however, turned out to be a non-issue for fans of the original TV series. The appearances of each Munster haven’t altered much, although certain aspects of the characters have been modified.

The new Grandpa, played by Daniel Roebuck, sports a bushy handlebar mustache in contrast to the previous Grandpa, who was clean-shaven. Sheri Moon seems to look most similar to Lily Munster among the other cast. The role of Herman Munster has been taken up by Jeff Daniel Phillips, who was in Zombie’s recent 3 from Hell with Moon. Herman looks mostly the same as expected, except for very apparent dark circles under his eyes. Phillip’s voice is also no match for the original Herman actor, the legendary Fred Gwynne.

Perhaps the biggest change up in The Munsters reboot is simply because it’s a prequel. It appears that the film won’t feature Munster family members Eddie and Marilyn. Since the film takes place during the courtship of Herman and Lily, this makes sense. Their werewolf son Eddie won’t be in the picture for some years to come. Meanwhile, Marilyn is Lily’s niece. It’s unlikely she would live with the couple until they’re married and established.

However, their absence means other minor characters might be upgraded. The trailers have shown smaller characters like Uncle Gil (based on The Creature from the Black Lagoon) getting a spotlight. Seeing previously unsung Munsters characters get more screentime may be a treat for long-time fans.