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NBC Renames 'Munsters' To 'Mockingbird Lane'

Drama reboot will try to distance itself from its comedy past

It will be a tough sell to get audiences to accept Herman Munster and his family in a drama setting. But NBC hopes it can help by giving the show a new name.

That's right, the reboot of "The Munsters" won't be called "The Munsters." Instead, it will be known as "Mockingbird Lane," a reference to the street the Munsters lived on in the classic television series, according to TV Line.

Bryan Fuller, who brought audiences "Pushing Daisies" and "Dead Like Me," is working to bring "Mockingbird Lane" to television, and has even connected with famed director Bryan Singer to helm the pilot. Singer has been a huge proponent of the series, and is making this his first television directorial appearance since "Football Wives" in 2007 and "House, M.D." in 2004.

Having a new name could both hurt and help the show. First, by calling it "Mockingbird Lane," the show won't have to worry too much about blowback from audiences who can only associate "The Munsters" with a comedy. At the same time, however, NBC is giving up what would be instant name recognition for the show by using a name different than the one audiences are most familiar with.

But then again, that name recognition doesn't always work. NBC has tried reboots in the past with almost no effect, including "Knight Rider" and "Wonder Woman," both of which are popular titles among audiences. Even its most recent effort, "The Firm," crashed and burned very quickly, pulling in smaller numbers than the show it was replacing, the now-cancelled "Prime Suspect."

Maybe this is the right move for NBC. A lot of the references to this reboot was mocking, since there is little belief that such an iconic comedy can be rebooted as a drama. This way, it can prove that this production is far different from the 1960s comedy, and will then hope that audiences -- and critics -- will give it a chance.

"Mockingbird Lane" is still in the pilot stage, and NBC will announce its fall lineup, and if this will be picked up to series, in the late spring.

About the Author

Michael Hinman is the founder and editor-in-chief for Airlock Alpha and the entire GenreNexus. He owns Nexus Media Group Inc., the parent corporation of the GenreNexus and is a veteran print journalist. He lives in Tampa, Fla.
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