The Munsters Are Getting A Dark Reboot Series From Horror Icon James Wan

Six decades or so ago, television was dominated by "wholesome" (see: white, heteronormative, and Christian) American family sitcoms, with shows like "Leave It to Beaver," "The Andy Griffith Show," and "Father Knows Best" serving as not only entertainment but as a model guide for viewers to emulate their own "perfect family." Assimilation was the key to an idyllic existence, but that doesn't make for an exciting TV lineup. Each network had its standard American family show, but in an attempt to motivate viewers not to touch that dial, they started diversifying what a family looked like.

No, that diversity did not come in the form of families of non-white races ("Good Times" wouldn't launch until 1974), but it did come with magical beings like "I Dream of Jeannie" and "Bewitched," or monstrously weird like "The Addams Family" and "The Munsters." Both "The Addams Family" and "The Munsters" are so beloved that the shows have been reimagined and reinterpreted countless times over the last 60 years, and there doesn't seem to be any signs of stopping.

Netflix's hit series "Wednesday" introduced everyone's favorite goth teen to a new generation, and last year saw the release of Rob Zombie's "The Munsters," a movie that critics and fans alike were way too hard on and I'll gladly die on the hill that his garish love letter to the series was good, actually. But the disappointing performance of Zombie's "The Munsters" can't keep a good monster down; according to Deadline, the friendly residents of 1313 Mockingbird Lane are returning to the small screen in a darker reimagining produced by horror maestro James Wan.

The grim fun of The Munsters

Universal Studio Group's UCP is developing the series under the title "1313," which Deadline reports is a horror series playing on the Universal Monsterverse and will be a "darker reimagining of the 1964 classic sitcom 'The Munsters.'" James Wan, Ingrid Bisu, and Lindsey Anderson Beer are developing the series for UCP, with the latter serving as showrunner. Beer most recently wrote and directed the prequel film "Pet Sematary: Bloodlines" and previously wrote and executive produced the Netflix teen comedy "Sierra Burgess Is a Loser." No plot or other comparison details have been made available, so what the "darker reimagining" entails is still up for debate. Given Wan's track record, "1313" could go the way of the first "Saw" film, the "Insidious" series, or the "Conjuring" Universe by following a solid, legitimately terrifying framework.

Or, in the direction I personally am hoping for, "1313" could be a dark horror-comedy film like "M3GAN" or "Malignant." Bisu is also co-executive producing the series, and considering she executive produced and was a co-story writer on "Malignant," I firmly believe the Wan/Bisu creative collaboration is one of the best in the horror biz. (They're also married, so clearly they like working together too.) Beer is a really inspiring choice for a showrunner, as her filmography is pretty damn varied. At its heart, "The Munsters" has always been about subverting expectations, so I'm not ready to write off "1313" as some unnecessary gritty reboot. The relentless cruelty lobbied at Zombie's take on "The Munsters" showed that audiences today clearly don't want an authentic adaptation, so maybe taking a wild swing in the opposite direction will be what it takes to get viewers back on board with America's favorite freaky TV family.