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Jackie Coogan
John Astin is still everyone's favorite Gomez Addams
John Astin is still everyone's favorite Gomez Addams

After a performance of "The Addams Family," the Broadway musical now playing at the Hippodrome Theatre, a tall, bald, mustachioed man went backstage to greet the cast — the original, the ultimate Gomez Addams, John Astin. Douglas Sills, who portrays the head of the spooky household in the musical, dropped to the floor and did an elaborate kowtow. "You're a hero," Sills said. "Thank you for passing the torch to us." That torch was lit 48 years ago, when the "The Addams Family" series debuted, fleshing out the slightly spooky, thoroughly contented characters created by New Yorker cartoonist Charles Addams. The television series ran only...

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