Director: Ezra Stone
Writers: Joe Connelly and Bob Mosher
Cast: Fred Gwynne, Yvonne De Carlo, Al Lewis, Pat Priest, Butch Patrick, Ned Romero, Len Lesser, Felix Locher, Richard Jury, and Sally Frei
Composer: Jack Marshall
Air Date: 1/20/1966
During a trip to Buffalo Valley, Herman stops at a rest area and falls asleep. Realizing that the train has left without him, Herman wanders to a nearby Indian village and is mistaken for an ancient spirit. Before long, the tribe arranges for Herman to marry a young, attractive woman of Native American heritage.
By placing the eponymous character in a position of great honor, “Big Heap Herman” will appeal to fans of the absurd, zany situations typical of The Munsters. That being said, Joe Connelly and Bob Mosher’s narrative is a tad light on comedic substance.
While reading a macabre description of Lady Madeline from “The Fall of the House of Usher,” a train passenger encounters Lily—a dead ringer for the ghost of Madeline—and promptly jumps out the window. Lacking any self-awareness whatsoever, Lily assumes that the “poor man” must have passed his station and only just now realized it—a gag that effectively plays off the imperceptive, if not thoroughly oblivious, tendencies for which the Munsters are iconic.
Sometime later, Herman gets up in the middle of the night to pour himself a cup of water. With only a few drops available to him, Herman throws a temper tantrum and destroys every berth on his section of the train. In response to this, all passengers proceed to exit the vehicle in fast motion, allowing for a comically bad special effect.
By going back to look for Herman despite his petulant behavior in the opening scene, several members of the Munster family again display unconditional love for their patriarch.
“Big Heap Herman” is a humorous, albeit slow-moving, episode of The Munsters. Notably, viewers will enjoy any interactions between the Indian leaders and Herman, the face of whom resembles a totem pole carving.
Overall Quality: 7/10
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