Adult Wednesday Addams
March 11, 2015 7:16 AM   Subscribe

How Wednesday Addams Would React To Catcalling went viral a few weeks ago with its darkly-humorous, sweet-revenge take on the issue. But it's only one episode of Melissa Hunter's "Adult Wednesday Addams" webseries - and season 2 concludes today.

Melissa Hunter is a writer/actor/comedian living in Los Angeles who created & stars in this webseries which imagines the adventures of a grown-up Wednesday Addams in LA. She successfully funded Season 2 through Indiegogo.

Vexxd - Melissa Hunter Q&A: Adult Wednesday Addams (an interview with Hunter after Season 1 aired in 2013)
Released in September 2013, Melissa Hunter brings Wednesday back to life (so to speak) in a 6 part web series, Adult Wednesday Addams. As the name of it suggests, it depicts Wednesday making her way through all those adult things we seem to have to do – apartment hunting, job interviews, online dating and encounters with other people on somewhat of a regular basis...

JF: Do you think Wednesday went through any awkward teenage stages?

MH: I don’t think Wednesday could ever be awkward, no. What is so striking about her character in the movies as a child and pre-teen is how utterly self-possessed she is. She is completely unashamed of who she is and fearless in the face of her antagonists. I think that’s what makes her such an incredible and unique hero. Though I DO think she probably had a couple of crushes in high school and the soft feelings made her uneasy.
If you missed Season 1 (previously on MeFi) here they are, in order.
(Episodes are YouTube videos and average about 3 minutes long each.)

episode 1 - The Apartment Hunt
episode 2 - Job Interview
episode 3 - Internet Date
episode 4 - Dog Walker
episode 5 - One-Night Stand
episode 6 - Planned Parenthood

And here are all the episodes of Season 2 (again, they are YouTube videos, ~3 min. each):

episode 1 - Babysitting
episode 2 - Driver's Ed
episode 3 - Wednesday vs. Catcallers
episode 4 - The Haircut
episode 5 - The Reality Star
episode 6 - The Flea Market
episode 7 - True Love
posted by flex (41 comments total) 93 users marked this as a favorite
I loved Season 1 but I'm terrible about keeping up with webseries like this. Thanks so much for this post!
posted by muddgirl at 7:18 AM on March 11, 2015

I love this. It's so well done. The character really shines with the babysitting one.
posted by odinsdream at 7:18 AM on March 11, 2015

I watched all of the episodes available when I found them. I love how in the Babysitting one, the Driver's Ed one, and the Haircut one that she pulls off being funny & scary but weirdly inspirational all at the same time - the writing and acting is just so well done.
posted by flex at 7:24 AM on March 11, 2015 [3 favorites]

I browsed the links quickly, but couldn't see this addressed: How does she do this, rights-wise?
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 7:32 AM on March 11, 2015 [2 favorites]

So this is basically the best thing ever.
posted by Fizz at 7:43 AM on March 11, 2015 [1 favorite]

There's really fine line you need to strike with the Wednesday character. She's not evil, nor cruel, but she is pitiless. She is not camp or ironic, but neither is she completely sincere. Wednesday is a wry eyebrow.

This nails it.
posted by leotrotsky at 7:51 AM on March 11, 2015 [29 favorites]

Oh, man, I caught the first couple episodes of this back when that was I think all there was yet, and I loved it. So glad it kept going.
posted by cortex at 7:59 AM on March 11, 2015

Yeah, this is awesome. Dog walker was cool!
posted by clavdivs at 8:07 AM on March 11, 2015

Adult Wednesday Adams. SFW
posted by signal at 8:07 AM on March 11, 2015

So completely awesome! Thanks for this.

She's not evil, nor cruel, but she is pitiless.
That's the best summation of her character I've ever seen. And it works because she's pitiless towards herself as well.

When I was younger and people asked me what I wanted to be my reply was "Wednesday Addams. . . or an astronaut." (I drew a picture of me as "Wednesday Addams, Astronaut" and it hung in my locker for years.)

I no longer want to be an astronaut but I still want to be Wednesday Addams, dammit.
posted by barchan at 8:58 AM on March 11, 2015 [10 favorites]

This is one of the best series on YouTube. Well-produced, and exactly as long as the joke requires.
posted by xingcat at 9:05 AM on March 11, 2015 [1 favorite]

I love adult Wednesday Addams. I would like to see her play Thursday Next in a remake of His Girl Friday, perhaps with Tuesday Weld in a supporting role.
posted by ubiquity at 9:19 AM on March 11, 2015 [4 favorites]

I'm already composing the list of people who need to see this. So fantastic!
posted by Measured Out my Life in Coffeespoons at 9:57 AM on March 11, 2015

Loved these--just the right amount of darkness, with nice punchlines. Well done.
posted by kinnakeet at 9:58 AM on March 11, 2015

Holy balls, this is amazing.
posted by mr. digits at 10:12 AM on March 11, 2015

Somewhere Christina Ricci is kicking herself for not having this idea first. Although she's had a respectable career, if you count playing a yellow crayon in a low-budget straight to netflix movie as respectable.
posted by Mr.Encyclopedia at 10:33 AM on March 11, 2015

I met Melissa in a UCB class a couple years ago. Around that time she went as Wednesday for Halloween - I think because she's always been told she looks like Wednesday - and got a huge response, which I believe inspired her to make an entire show around the character.

She's very driven and very funny so it seemed inevitable she'd blow up. Really cool to see it happening.
posted by joechip at 10:34 AM on March 11, 2015 [3 favorites]

I also wondered about the rights and licensing, too. Maybe it's some loophole? That character name isn't protected in some way?
posted by odinsdream at 10:44 AM on March 11, 2015

Rights for the characters appear to be owned by the Tee and Charles Addams Foundation. She's pretty clearly referencing Christina Ricci's performance in the Addams Family movie, but I don't know if a specifc portrayal is protected. Copyright law is weird.
posted by muddgirl at 10:51 AM on March 11, 2015

Satire and parody are a pretty nebulous region that is not protected by copyright. This really seems like it comes closer to creating new work featuring an established character, but it's definitely satiric so ...

It's likely that if lawyers got on this she would have to shut it down, but some companies are cool with derivative work and fan art, which is why there are so many Star Wars thingies about. Maybe the people who own the rights just like what she's doing with the character and figure she's helping keep the property contemporary.
posted by maxsparber at 11:35 AM on March 11, 2015 [1 favorite]

Why are we assuming she didn't get the proper license?
posted by muddgirl at 11:40 AM on March 11, 2015

posted by allthinky at 11:42 AM on March 11, 2015

Because there doesn't seem to be a licensing notice on the YouTube page or on the videos, which you would typically see.
posted by maxsparber at 11:45 AM on March 11, 2015 [1 favorite]

If I owned the Addams Family copyrights I would just let this slide because damn this stokes a renewed sense of love for the whole intellectual property.
posted by Theta States at 11:51 AM on March 11, 2015 [8 favorites]

posted by beefetish at 11:59 AM on March 11, 2015

If I were monopoly-king of all things Addams Family, I would grant all rights to Hunter in perpetuity. She's a better steward of them than I could ever be.
posted by rum-soaked space hobo at 12:05 PM on March 11, 2015 [1 favorite]

I'm actually hoping she gets a deal to do some full-length movies out of this.
posted by odinsdream at 1:06 PM on March 11, 2015

If I owned the copyright I'd shut it down and sue her. I think that's legally part of owning a copyright actually, you have to be a dick to anyone who does anything new and fun with it that you don't make money off of. Copyright law is weird.
posted by DynamiteToast at 1:34 PM on March 11, 2015

I love the concept and the writing, but sadly the actress has not successfully mastered the Christina Ricci deadpan.
posted by yeolcoatl at 1:35 PM on March 11, 2015 [1 favorite]

My lay understanding is that compulsive dick-being is a component of trademark enforcement, not copyright enforcement. That is, a trademark as a special owned-word or owned-logotype can be seen to decay into public use if it is not vigorously defended. (Even at that, I gather there's a difference in practice between what's needed to connote a basic defense of a trademark and what happens in practice when conservative corporate lawyers get involved. But corporate lawyers gonna lawyer, and I certainly have zero expertise there.)

You own a copyright on a work if you own a copyright on a work, and that can't decay until the statute finally legal decays, at which point the work is public domain.
posted by cortex at 2:05 PM on March 11, 2015 [6 favorites]

I want to like this. I've watched a few episodes before this latest. But it's too heavy-handed and forced and just doesn't work for me. Oh well.
posted by doctor tough love at 2:06 PM on March 11, 2015

I thought April Ludgate was the modern day Wednesday Addams.
posted by valkane at 5:29 PM on March 11, 2015 [2 favorites]

To echo what cortex and DynamiteToast are saying, no, you don't have to constantly enforce a copyright- unlike trademarks, a copyright does not decay. So the lawsuit will only come at the critical moment when the infringement appears to be turning a profit. Copyright infringement litigation is a business, and there's no point in suing someone without the pockets to pay damages.
posted by LeRoienJaune at 7:36 PM on March 11, 2015

I love it. I want SO MUCH MORE!
Does she do parties?
posted by QueerAngel28 at 7:56 PM on March 11, 2015

cortex, DynamiteToast, LeRoienJaune, and now me.

So many people have gotten trademarks and copyrights mixed up that I've largely given up correcting people about it.

But another thing about it is, when a copyright lawsuit does come, the argument for parody will end up being made in court. You're still going to be out of pocket for the lawyers. It's yet another way the legal system in the US screws over people who aren't rich.
posted by JHarris at 7:56 PM on March 11, 2015

Concerning the current conversation, crowdfunding for starting or handling some kind of legal matter is the next logical step and whether or not it turns out to be legal, it's only a matter of time before somebody tries it.
posted by BiggerJ at 9:53 PM on March 11, 2015

There's really fine line you need to strike with the Wednesday character. She's not evil, nor cruel, but she is pitiless

This clip of April Ludgate pretty much sums up what I imagine grown up Wednesday Addams would have been like. April and Wednesday are really very similar, in lots of ways.
posted by Jon Mitchell at 11:07 PM on March 11, 2015

LeRoienJaune: Then explain the cease-and-desists against the Metroid and FInal Fantasy VII fanfilm crowdfunding campaigns.
posted by BiggerJ at 4:09 AM on March 12, 2015

LeRoienJaune: Then explain the cease-and-desists against the Metroid and FInal Fantasy VII fanfilm crowdfunding campaigns.

Sometimes people are just assholes?
posted by Theta States at 6:21 AM on March 12, 2015 [1 favorite]

I can't wait to binge on all of these soon!

And I'm sure her work is not puerile nor under-dramatized. I also doubt it lacks any sense of structure, character, or the Aristotelian unities. These things are important.
posted by the matching mole at 10:59 AM on March 12, 2015

Wow, the new ones have gotten even better. The writing is tightened up and there's a lot more jokes compressed in. She's got to be getting offers for longer stuff.
posted by odinsdream at 7:47 AM on April 2, 2015 [1 favorite]

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