Director: Ezra Stone
Writers: James Allardice and Tom Adair
Cast: Fred Gwynne, Yvonne De Carlo, Al Lewis, Pat Priest, Butch Patrick, Don Edmonds, Dick Wilson, Dave Willock, Jackie Coogan Jr., Jan Barthel, and Roger Perry
Composer: Jack Marshall
Air Date: 11/18/1965
Having frightened away Marliyn’s new love interest, Herman and Grandpa decide to turn a frog into a prince (Grandpa even selects a “nearsighted” frog to avoid offending him with Marilyn’s appearance). Predictably, the experiment results in failure; however, Herman and Grandpa confuse Ted Bradley (Roger Perry)—a handsome, charming man—for the now escaped frog.
“A Man for Marilyn” is an amusing, if predictable, episode of The Munsters. Notably, a strong emphasis on confusion humor compensates for the one-note (albeit hilarious) gag at the core of this offering.
Upon arriving at 1313 Mockingbird Lane, Ted Bradley assumes that Marilyn—now trapped in her bedroom due to a doorknob mishap—is being held captive by an assortment of hideous, malevolent creatures. Herman and Grandpa, on the other hand, mistake Ted for the myopic amphibian upon which they had experimented in a prior scene, prompting them to lock their young guest in a dungeon—a move that only serves to confirm Ted’s suspicion. The above scenario will no doubt appeal to fans of misunderstanding comedy, especially when coupled with Ted’s terrified responses to Herman and Grandpa, who, though normally courteous, speak to their prisoner as if addressing a pet frog.
(Spoilers beyond this point)
While investigating Ted’s fantastic tale of abduction, Officers Al (Dick Wilson) and Harry (Dave Willock) pay a visit to the Munsters. Believing themselves to be victims of an elaborate college prank, Al and Harry make a gracious and complimentary exit from Grandpa’s laboratory—an unlikely reaction from two policemen whose time had just been wasted.
By going to extraordinary lengths to find (or create) a husband for Marilyn, Herman and Grandpa demonstrate a selfless love that would hardly be expected of Frankenstein’s monster and Count Dracula, respectively. It should be noted, however, that Herman expresses relief over finally “unloading” Marilyn, casting doubt on the benevolent nature of his intentions.
Though somewhat tired at this point in the series, the running joke featured most prominently in The Munsters (i.e. Herman and Grandpa scaring off one of Marilyn’s potential suitors, only to later blame the “ugliness” of their niece) is given a fresh and unique twist in “A Man for Marilyn.” Fans of absurd, kooky situations are therefore advised to view this episode.
Overall Quality: 9/10
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