On My Mind // The Addams Family


NAHS Theatre department’s in-school spring performance

Amber Songster, Reporter

From the original 1938 cartoon panel in the New Yorker to the 1991 big success movie that pulled in over $191 million at the worldwide box office, The Addams Family has seen its fair share of success and failure.

In 1938, freelance cartoonist Charles Addams brought the Addams family to life through a cartoon panel published in the New Yorker. The inspiration for Morticia Addams was his first wife, whose appearance is much comparable to the anomalous matriarch. Another interesting fact is the cartoon originally starred Gomez, Morticia, and Lurch, the other characters would be developed over time.

The Addams Family has been adapted into several different versions over the past 80 years but is most recognized by the television series that aired from 1964 to 1966. Prior to watching NAHS’s spring performance, I had never watched an episode or any adaptation with the exception of passing time watching bits and pieces at my grandfather’s house – but never enough to actually understand.

Despite watching the high school version a couple of times, I never understood the hand peeking out from the curtain at the beginning of the play. While doing research for this story I found out it was not a coincidence and that it actually related to the other adaptations. Known as “Thing Addams”, the hand is supposed to represent a creature that is so hideous that humans could only tolerate seeing its hand. Another joke I missed was cousin Itt, who walked across the stage after intermission.

Overall, NAHS Theatre’s performance was definitely entertaining, so much that I went back and saw it twice, partly because I wanted to see the difference between the casting on the assigned days. If I were to pick a favorite part it would definitely be the beginning where the sing “When You’re an Addams.” The choreography was also amazing, very comical. My second favorite part was when Wednesday Addams sang, “Pulled.” Honestly, she didn’t necessarily need to mic, she would have still killed it without.