The 'evilution' of Charles Addams's singularly eccentric family began long before the television and film interpretations made them icons of American popular culture. Addams first created Morticia, Lurch, and The Thing in a cartoon published in a 1938 issue of the New Yorker--though he hadn't named them at the time, or even conceived of a family unit. (When he did name the deadly matriarch, he was inspired by the Yellow Pages listing for 'Morticians.') Other characters were born and developed in a multitude of Addams's cartoons over the next twenty-six years, before the cheerfully creepy clan debuted on ABC television in 1964 and later on the big screen, twice, in 1991 and 1993.
The Addams Family: An Evilution is the first book to trace The Addams Family history, presenting more than 200 cartoons created by Charles Addams (American, 1912-1988) throughout his prolific career; many have never been published before. Text by H. Kevin Miserocchi, director of the Tee and Charles Addams Foundation, offers a revealing chronology of each character's evolution (for instance, did you know that Addams originally named Pugsley 'Pubert'?), while Addams's own incisive character descriptions, originally penned for the benefit of the television show producers, introduce each chapter. As the presence of the Family continues to permeate generation after generation, and in celebration of the Broadway musical debuting in 2010, this book reminds us where these oddly lovable characters came from and, in doing so, offers a lasting tribute to one of America's greatest humorists. A phenomenon of rare proportion, The Addams Family is the manifestation of one artist's dark but irresistible wit, expressed with an uncommonly deft hand.
224 pages with more than 200 cartoons (approximately 50 are published here for the first time), many in color. Ten chapters explore each Addams Family character, as well as their mansion (a 'House To Die For'). Size: 8 x 10 inches. Smyth-sewn casebound book with jacket.
- Amazon Sales Rank: #33652 in Books
- Published on: 2010-03-31
- Original language: English
- Number of items: 1
- Binding: Hardcover
- 224 pages
A fine study
This volume looks at Morticia, Gomez, Uncle Fester, Lurch and the rest of the recurring characters that Charles Addams used in his single-panel cartoons primarily appearing in the New Yorker. This book gives us some idea of the artist's character development and thoughts about this rogues gallery and the book includes some previously unpublished material. Although much of this material was previously published in Addams' collections it is still worth it to me, as someone who admires his work, to have this all in one place along with previously unseen material.
Addams Family wow
this is a great book of the Addams Family drawings, that the tv show was based on. it collects most of the drawings of the characters as they evolved in print. it is a wow of a book. Lurch for instance started out bearded, and Mortishia didn't wear any shoes early on. Uncle Fester always was drawn to look like Charles Addams himself. Seeing the personalities written down by Charles Addams is nice, i have not seen that before in any of his books. the older Chas Addams art books always have some pages of the Family as well as just odd ball drawings. but this book is all Addams Family.
Sophisticated view of the dark side
Chuck Addams, as he was known to friends, shares with us his joy in the wierdness present in daily life. His cartoons aren't violent, just pregnant with ideas that nudge along your own imagination. PoIsed to greet Christmas carollers by pouring boiling oil from the manse's roof, one cartoon prompts a chuckle from it's perverse perspective alone. You aren't drawn to ponder the ugly effect of an actual cascade of boiling oil on the people below. I like this innocennce in Addams' work. His characters are twisted, yet credible exaggerations of somewhat 'normal' wife, father, kids, and family monster in the attic. Many cartoons tease you, appearing straightforward until close examination finds the funny small detail that makes the whole scene a kick.
Among my favorites are the boy's report card detailing his teacher's warning that his anti-social behavior seems deliberately devious and malicious, prompting Morticia to proudly pat him on the head. Another shows the arrival of two animal carrier cages at the mansion, with Morticia exclaiming, "The children are back from camp, dear."
This book appreciates Addams's work, and made me laugh and think. That is a home run.