34

There are cousin Itt and the disembodied hand Thing (I had to look this up, easy to confuse), and they are not human although perhaps human variants or derived from humans. But Gomez, his wife, and kids less clear. Uncle Fester seems to have limited non-human abilities.

The show was based on cartoons which were also related to the Bradbury characters in "The Homecoming," which certainly were actual monsters. The clothing Gomez and his wife wear are sort of antique. Is there any indication in the show that in fact the ostensibly human characters are supernatural?

Note that "The Munsters" seem much closer to the Bradbury characters including the "black sheep" who was human — the human-appearing child in "The Homecoming" is like Marilyn.

I mention their old-fashioned dress because that might imply that the family are themselves much older than they appear. Although this is also a sign that they live isolated lives supported by great wealth which allows Gomez not to work.

NOTE: I was unaware of a cartoon version of the Family but anything from them counts much less. If the cartoon explicitly stated that the Addams were supernatural, okay. But them doing impossible things counts not at all -- all cartoons, Simpsons, etc. have humans doing things that are impossible but it would be wrong to call Simpsons supernatural: they are "Toons" and so of course they are not human. Only the emissary from our world, Frank Grimes was human and he found that out the hard way. (For some reason King of the Hill has human characters, does not use Toon abilities afaik.)

18
  • 14
    They're just creepy and kooky.
    – Adamant
    Dec 7, 2022 at 2:22
  • 8
    In Wednesday, Wednesday has supernatural powers. Dec 7, 2022 at 4:43
  • 7
    are you asking about any particular iteration of the addamses?
    – Tristan
    Dec 7, 2022 at 9:46
  • 7
    He is not "The Thing", just "Thing". Or, occasionally referred to as "Thing T Thing".
    – Chenmunka
    Dec 7, 2022 at 10:19
  • 11
    @releseabe Since you specify the 60s TV show in a comment, you should add that to the question. I have the complete episodes of that series and it's plain that all of them have some powers that could be considered supernatural, but they are sometimes only referred to in dialogue. Regarding Gomez, in the second season a fireman's pole is installed in the living room and Gomez goes up it as well as down. Gomez also pulls lit cigars from his pocket and does other unexplained things.
    – Wastrel
    Dec 7, 2022 at 16:24

8 Answers 8

32

Morticia performs some magic during the series, as does Grandmama Addams, but otherwise Gomez, Morticia, Wednesday, and Pugglsey were never indicated to be anything but eccentric humans.

As noted by AJM, there is one scene where Morticia spontaneously emits smoke with no explanation.

Morticia smoking

14
  • 2
    a little or a lot: she is somewhat supernatural it sounds likes.
    – releseabe
    Dec 7, 2022 at 1:55
  • 9
    @releseabe: The Wednesday series makes more of a commitment on the family being "special", but the original TV series tends now towards "anyone could do these things if they know the right things to do" for what the family does.
    – FuzzyBoots
    Dec 7, 2022 at 2:00
  • 3
    Don't forget Morticia asking a visitor "Do you mind if I smoke?" - and promptly starting to emit smoke from her body. (This was after the visitor - thinking she meant "smoke a cigarette" - had said that of course he didn't mind.) It does suggest that as well as having magical powers, whatever she is she isn't a normal human.
    – AJM
    Dec 7, 2022 at 13:07
  • 4
    It wasn't just once scene, it was a recurring theme for Morticia to say "Do you mind if I smoke"? Dec 7, 2022 at 16:09
  • 2
    @candied_orange: "Give a man a fire and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he'll be warm for the rest of his life."
    – FuzzyBoots
    Dec 8, 2022 at 19:53
31

Morticia

Canonically Morticia is a witch. This has already been mentioned in FuzzyBoots's answer. The connection to witchcraft is never made explicit as far as I remember, though Morticia does magic, and then there is this passage in Season 1, Episode 5 of the original black and white series (MGM made the full episode available in Youtube):

Genealogist: "I've traced Mrs. Addams back to the early colonial days at Salem, Massachusetts. Interesting place, Salem. They burned witches there, you know."
Morticia: "Yes. I'm certainly glad they don't do that today."

Wednesday

Below are some spoilers for recent material on the Addams.

In the 2022 Netflix series Wednesday, both Morticia and Wednesday have visions of past, present and future. Wednesday attempts a séance without success, but at some points she is able to see, communicate and once even physically interact with the spirit of the very first Addams - all through her own powers.

Pubert

In the Addams Family Values movie from 1993, Wednesday tries to decapitate Pubert with a guillotine. Pubert, who is not even one year old at the time, catches the blade with the tips of his finger. This is a display of superhuman strength and agility for his age, and possibly cunning as well.

Gomez

I do not remember a single super human feat from Gomez in any live action media. However, in the 90's cartoon, there was an episode in which he is trying hard to fail at something. He shoots himself from a cannon and manages to knit a sweater during his flight while wearing a helmet two sizes too small. Despite punching a hole through the ground, the only thing he managed to hurt was his own pride.

Fester

Some small spoilers for recent material on the Addams below.

In the Netflix Wednesday series, he claims to have had multiple lobotomies, because they are "like tattoos and you can't get just one", and yet he is still - somewhat - functional. He is also able to produce electricity from his fingertips.

In the 1991 movie, he regains his memory after being electrocuted by a book. This, together with the spoiler above, are references to the original series, in which he claims to be able to produce 110V AC from his body, and proceeds to put his mouth where his money is.

The 1991 Addams movie ends with Fester taking Wednesday and Pugsley to a game of "Wake the Dead". Whether he is actually capable of doing so is left to the audience's imagination, but being the Addams he is, I don't doubt anything at this point.

In the cartoons, he also survived all kinds of hazards that would instantly kill a human. I distinctly remember how he loved to wear a suicide bomber jacket and blow himself up, though he would only get slightly charred from it (and oh boy that joke was horrible and wouldn't fly today).

He is also able to summon gargoyles:

Grandma

I remember her being a witch and making potions here and there, such as in the first movie. Unfortunately I don't have much on her to be able to say anything else.

Lurch

In the Addams Family Reunion movie from 1998, it is stated that Lurch is considered part Addams. This is because his heart came from an Addams, so I had to include him here. He is super strong, and has face of an IT worker (ok this joke is coming from me, not any author nor writer officially involved with the Addams).

Itt

In episode 32, season 1 of the original black and white TV series, Gomez mention that Itt Addams has an IQ score of 320. I simply don't know whether this is meant to be taken with a grain of salt - whether this is true is up to the audience's imagination. If true, however, Itt would be more than 13 standard deviations more intelligent than a regular person. This would make him smarter than anyone who has ever lived in the real world and most every fictional universe, even those with superhero scientists.

Itt is also able to make his gibberish understood sometimes only by his relatives, sometimes by other people as well, but never to the audience.

4
  • 2
    IIRC, Gomez then says, "And that's without his shoes on!" something that amused the first time I heard the episode and even as I type it now.
    – releseabe
    Dec 7, 2022 at 23:25
  • 2
    In the b&w tv series, Gomez has several displays of (near?) super-human speed: leaping up from sitting on the floor, doing backflips, etc.. It's clearly (to modern eyes) just playing the footage back at about double speed, but in-universe is him zipping around.
    – minnmass
    Dec 8, 2022 at 15:03
  • 2
    In the 1991 movie, Fester also is able to light an incandescent lightbulb by putting it in his mouth. Dec 8, 2022 at 22:20
  • 1
    I think the 60s live-action TV Gomez has supernaturally bad luck, but only when money is involved.
    – Izkata
    Dec 9, 2022 at 22:53
23

In the 1991 film Puggsley survives being electrocuted in an electric chair, something Morticia doesn't seem surprised by (she seems unconcerned before the electrocution as well). Even if Wednesday's electric chair is less powerful than those used for executions this definitely seems suggestive of some level of superhuman resistance to electric shocks.

4
  • 10
    And Morticia's eyes glow in the dark. Mine don't do that
    – Valorum
    Dec 7, 2022 at 10:44
  • 3
    In both films there are frequent events that would kill normal people, though often implied just off-screen (to maintain a family-friendly rating and effects budget). Debbie completely fails to kill Fester, for example.
    – OrangeDog
    Dec 7, 2022 at 10:49
  • @OrangeDog Fester would be out of scope for the question, as it is asking about Gomez, Morticia, and the children
    – Tristan
    Dec 7, 2022 at 11:23
  • @Tristan true, but his brother is the one who survives the most, I think Pugsly is second but it's not central to the plot.
    – OrangeDog
    Dec 7, 2022 at 11:39
12

The baby certainly is

In Addams Family Values, not only is baby Pubert born with a full moustache, but he is supernaturally able to survive an explosion which launches him to several thousand feet and the fall back down from that height. He is also clearly aware of what he is doing when he joins the wires to electrocute Debbie, and is not himself electrocuted.

Whilst there may not be clear signs either way for the other children, none of the Addams family seemed surprised by Pubert surviving this. It seems clear that this is normal for Addams children (as also shown by Pugsley surviving Wednesday's electric chair).

3
8

In the original black-and-white series episode Fester's Punctured Romance, Fester is described by young Wednesday as using "a spray-on preservative". The toiletries and cosmetics saleswoman tries correcting Wednesday, saying surely it must be a spray-on deodorant. Wednesday insists that it's preservative. The saleswoman suggests that this is "to keep young", and Wednesday replies, "no, just to keep."

In a separate episode Uncle Fester's Illness, we learn that Fester's tongue is usually green, that his temperature is freezing cold, and that he finds glass and mercury thermometers to be both tasty and restorative.

→ From these two episodes, I think we can conclude that Uncle Fester is probably supposed to be some variety of undead.

2
  • 1
    Nice find. Makes me think whether he is even a human undead too.
    – Marvel Boy
    Dec 7, 2022 at 22:11
  • 1
    @MarvelBoy — We've had the B&W Addams Family series on regular rotation for a while, first watching straight through and then just as background noise. Re-watching has been fun -- as a kid, I had no understanding of quite how subversive the show was for its time. And it's aged surprisingly well. Dec 8, 2022 at 16:15
7

This is probably not considered canon, but in the novelization The Addams Family (1965) by Jack Sharkey there are some supernatural or nonhuman aspects to the Addams family.

For example, Gomez talks like he has lived in the area since the Spanish conquistadores. In one scene Gomez counts off six items on the fingers of one hand.

In one chapter Uncle Fester is drafted into the US army, despite having previously served in the Continental army. He writes on the form that he was born in 1630 or something (I forget the exact year). When it is pointed out that must be a mistake since it would make him over 300 years old Fester changes the birth year - by adding BC to it.

3
  • I have great respect for novelizations and I see no reason if Sharkey was authorized to write this (it is not fan fiction or something) that this is not canon. I also like that my suspicion based upon clothing is confirmed. Whereas humans can learn to cast spells, humans do not live 500 years (although with magic they could...) BTW, there are Greenland sharks that have been alive since the 1500 perhaps, can you believe it? Just maybe exceptional Bowhead whales also -- even more cool since they are intelligent.
    – releseabe
    Dec 7, 2022 at 23:31
  • 1
    "In one scene Gomez counts off six items on the fingers of one hand." Some people do have an extra finger. Though I'm guessing the point here is that he didn't have one until he needed to count the six items?
    – AJM
    Dec 9, 2022 at 9:19
  • @AJM It is just a throwaway line that Gomez counts six items on the fingers of one hand. And some people naturally do have six fingers per hand, but that is rare and many people would assume that a six fingered persons must be an alien or a supernatural being. Dec 15, 2022 at 21:34
3

Quote, Gomez:

We danced the Mamushka while Nero fiddled, we danced the Mamushka at Waterloo. We danced the Mamushka for Jack the Ripper, and now, Fester Addams, this Mamushka is for you.

- The Addams Family (1991 movie)

This might mean that their "tribe" danced the Mamushka two thousand years ago, but if it doesn't that would give him (and "them") at least superhuman longevity.

4
  • 12
    I don't see any evidence that this isn't the collective "we" (e.g. people who dance the Mamushka)
    – Valorum
    Dec 7, 2022 at 12:58
  • 1
    The appearance of Gomez and Fester as teens on film suggests either a very bizarre aging pattern, or they were certainly born in the 20th century.
    – chepner
    Dec 7, 2022 at 14:03
  • 7
    This quote was definitely referring to the Addams clan when using "we", not to Gomez and Fester specifically. The previous sentence, "The Mamushka, ha-ha! Taught to us by our Cossack cousins, the Mamushka has been an Addams Family tradition since God knows when." makes that clearer. Dec 7, 2022 at 14:41
  • @Valorum I don't have evidence, either, and the context provided by Michael Richardson's does hint that this is a collective "we", but back when I watched the movie (in German---the translation might differ), it felt like this was intentionally ambiguous. Dec 8, 2022 at 9:39
3

In the Super Nintendo video game Addams Family Values (1994), which is based on the 1993 movie, you play as Uncle Fester. Your main weapon to fight enemies are the electric bolts that Uncle Fester can fire out of his hand.

At the end of the game,

when you finally find the kidnapped baby Pubert, he seems to display superhuman strength, as the ground is shaking when he jumps on the floor. Not only that, he jumps a circle around Debbie, the kidnapper, breaking the wooden floor and dropping her.

1
  • 1
    Just as cartoons don't really add to canon, a video game does not also.
    – releseabe
    Dec 8, 2022 at 10:10

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.