CHARLES ADDAMS DOCUMENTARY
Known for his dark humor and macabre cartoon characters,
Charles Samuel "Chas" Addams was the creator of the First
Family of Halloween, The Addams Family. He drew more than
1,300 cartoons over the course of his life, with more than 200 of
the Addams Family.
Television producer David Levy
approached Addams with an offer to create a series based on
his "Addams Family" cartoons. The Family were distinct characters, but
without any real personality, so Addams gave them names and
personal characteristics for the actors to use in The Addams Family
television series (1964).
Below are the original
descriptions he gave for the main members of the Addams
Addams: "Husband to Morticia, if indeed they are married
at all... a crafty schemer, but also a jolly man in his
own way... though sometimes misguided... sentimental and
often puckish - optimistic, he is in full enthusiasm for
his dreadful plots... is sometimes seen in a rather
formal dressing gown... the only one who smokes."
Addams: "The real head of the family... low-voiced,
incisive and subtle, smiles are rare... ruined beauty...
contemptuous and original and with fierce family
loyalty... even in disposition, muted, witty, sometimes
deadly... given to low-keyed rhapsodies about her garden
of deadly nightshade, henbane and dwarf's hair..."
Addams: "Child of woe is wane and delicate... sensitive
and on the quiet side, she loves the picnics and outings
to the underground caverns... a solemn child, prim in
dress and, on the whole, pretty lost... secretive and
imaginative, poetic, seems underprivileged and given to
occasional tantrums... has six toes on one foot..."
Addams: "An energetic monster of a boy... blond red
hair, popped blue eyes and a dedicated troublemaker, in
other words the kid next door... genius in his own way,
he makes toy guillotines, full-size racks, threatens to
poison his sister, can turn himself into a Mr. Hyde with
an ordinary chemical set... his voice is hoarse... is
sometimes allowed an occasional cigar."
Addams: "Uncle Fester is incorrigible and except for the
good nature of the family and the ignorance of the
police, would ordinarily be under lock and key... the
eyes are pig-like and deeply embedded... he likes to
fish, but usually employs dynamite... he keeps falcons
on the roof which he uses for hunting... his one
costume, summer and winter is a black great coat with an
enormous collar... he is fat with pudgy little hands and
Addams: "This disrespectful old hag is the mother of
Gomez... she willingly helps with the dishes, cheats at
solitaire and is roughly dishonest... the complexion is
dark, the hair is white and frizzy and uncombed... she
has a light beard and a large mole... foolishly
good-natured... fumbling, weak character... is easily
"This towering mute has been shambling around the house
forever... He is not a very good butler but a faithful
one... One eye is opaque, the scanty hair is damply
clinging to his narrow flat head... generally the family
regards him as something of a joke."
This short, twelve minute long documentary about Charles
Addams, the cartoonist who created the macabre characters of
the Addams Family was released in 2006 as a featurette on
The Addams Family: Volume 1 DVD set. If you are fan of the
show and/or the cartoons, this is a must watch.
Mad About the Addams Family
This thirteen minute long mini-documentary is part of the
bonus features on the The Addams Family: Volume 2 DVD set.
It includes many interesting facts such as Charles Addams’
original concepts and thoughts about the show from a wide
range of fans, actors, and television scholars.