Arguably my favorite childhood show! The mid-70s was a great time to be a monster fan. Lots of reruns of the classic Universal monsters movies, lots of magazines (Famous Monsters!), comics, toys, and cartoons about them as well. I was 9 when the Monster Squad aired and I was completely thrilled and terrified at the same time! They looked pretty frightening to me, even the dorky Frank character. Just like a few years earlier with the Batman show (made by the same producer; which I saw in reruns), I thought it was pretty realistic--goofy at times (the Tickler? Really?), but realistic nontheless. I loved the whole concept of reformed monsters working for a very Dick Grayson-esque (Robin), clean cut leader who believed in the goodness of the American way of life. I was so idealistic that even the undead could be good!
I'd like to draw a distinction here between the monster genre and the horror genre. These are related, but very different. Monsters can be good (Godzilla, the Hulk) or bad based on their situation. Monsters are really about being an outcast or about the mistakes of uncontrolled science--a wide range of stories there. But horror is about sustaining a certain emotion (fear) at all costs (logical plot not required), and often utilizes unhealthy images of gore. I would have no problem showing a young child these schlocky monster movies, but would never let him/her see Freddy Kruger or any of that.
1976 was like having Halloween every single week!
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