Director: Ezra Stone
Writers: Joe Connelly and Bob Mosher
Cast: Fred Gwynne, Yvonne De Carlo, Al Lewis, Pat Priest, Butch Patrick, Phillip Ober, Pat Harrington Jr., Diana Frothingham, Ralph Smiley, Dennis Cross, and Pat McCaffrie
Composer: Jack Marshall
Air Date: 4/29/1965
Shortly after swallowing one of Grandpa’s “alarm clock pills,” Herman goes to the museum to pick up Marilyn; however, the goofy green giant mistakes an Egyptian sarcophagus for a phone booth and falls asleep inside it. The next morning, museum specialists Thatcher (Pat Harrington Jr.) and Dr. Wilkerson (Philip Ober) are astonished to find the “mummy” in a remarkably well-preserved state.
Operating on the humorous notion that two professional curators would be unable to distinguish Frankenstein’s monster from a 3,000-year-old mummy, this episode will appeal to those who appreciate classic misunderstanding scenarios. Herman fans are therefore advised to view “Mummy Munster” for its clever, albeit silly, tribute to Universal Studios’ original version of The Mummy.
After opening the sarcophagus, reporters and museum caretakers offer their analysis on the “amazing” condition of Ahmenhotep/Herman—a subtle jab at pseudointellectuals who would rather provide bogus commentary than risk appearing ignorant on a given subject. More overt examples of comedy are also present, such as when Lily attempts to claim ownership of Herman only for Thatcher and Dr. Wilkerson to respond in a predictably puzzled manner; likewise, the zany fashion with which museum staff, police officers, and a stuffed gorilla react to an awakened Herman will satisfy audiences who enjoy this show for its intentionally awful special effects.
A one-note gag, the concept of Herman being mistaken for Ahmenhotep IV tends to grow somewhat repetitious over time.
Though played entirely for laughs (according to Herman, “one who fights fire with fire only gets in trouble with Smokey the Bear”), Herman’s decision to not sue a newspaper publication for committing libel (i.e. comparing Herman to Ahmenhotep IV) serves as a testament to the Munsters’ forgiving nature.
By employing a hilarious confusion trope, “Mummy Munster” makes for an outstanding episode of The Munsters. Especially commendable is Joe Connelly and Bob Mosher’s original use of the mummy theme, which allows Herman another opportunity to maintain a visible presence in public without initially scaring off everyone in sight.
Overall Quality: 9/10
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