The Munsters star Butch Patrick leaned into Beaver Cleaver while he was creating the infamous Eddie Munster.
In August, the actor chatted with Remind Magazine and shared memories of his classic TV days. The spooky comedy was a breakout role for Patrick. At the time of casting, he was 11 and determined to give Eddie just the right touch. He was, after all, the second person to land the part. In the pilot, Happy Derman starred as the tiny werewolf. But the creators didn’t think he resonated with their audience. So, Patrick walked into the role with a different approach.
“It was just me being me,” Patrick continued. “I could do dialogue well and was a quick study. I felt like an equal cast member, which was unusual because, in a lot of other series, the kids were secondary and wouldn’t get meaty parts written for them. This was different.”
‘The Munsters’ Star Grew Up Watching ‘Leave it to Beaver’
However, it wasn’t really just Patrick being Patrick. The actor grew up with Leave It to Beaver. The TV series began in 1957, when Patrick was 4. It aired through 1963, so Leave It to Beaver was fresh in his mind when he stepped into his new role.
“Leave It to Beaver is one of the key ingredients of the success of The Munsters,” he shared. “That was the first sitcom about life from a kid’s point of view and was very well done. Those same people were behind The Munsters, but instead of it being Wally and the Beaver, it is just Eddie as the only kid, which was OK with me.”
Unfortunately, it would be decades before The Munsters earned its due credit. Thanks to low ratings, it only ran for two seasons. Today, the series is considered classic TV gold. During his interview, Patrick credited the actors’ on-screen chemistry and top-of-the-line production quality for its eventual fame.
“The show was shot like the monsters were originally shot,” Patrick said, referring to the original Universal monsters. “They had the same Mitchell camera and approached the lighting and angles very much like the old Dracula and Wolf Man movies. When you add the great set dressing, there isn’t a weak link in how the show looked.”
You can judge for yourself, though. Both seasons of The Munsters are available to stream on Peacock.
- Jack Hogan, ‘Combat!’ Star, Dead at 94
- Frank Wycheck, Former Tennessee Titans Star, Dead at 52
- John Wayne’s Failing Health Nearly Caused His Final Film to be Canceled
- WWE Legend Bill Goldberg Smashes Fan in Tom Brady Jersey With Spear at Falcons Game
- Alana ‘Honey Boo Boo’ Thompson Pens Tribute to Sister Anna ‘Chickadee’ Cardwell