The circle of life is a good metaphor for "Mockingbird Lane."
It's a remake of 1960s comedy "The Munsters," complete with an odd family made up of supernatural creatures. The tone is tongue-in-cheek, but that's where the kinship ends.
The characters have a vicious streak that breeds a darkness into the lightheartedness of "Mockingbird Lane" (8 p.m. today, WBIR, Channel 10).
Eddie Munster (Mason Cook) is a fledging werewolf whose first hairy transformation terrorizes his fellow scouts on a campout. The event spurs the Munster family to pack up and move to a new neighborhood.
Lily (Portia de Rossi), Eddie's mom, loves her son but has thought of him as "eatable."
Grandpa (Eddie Izzard), also known as "D," is the bleakest of the entire family, reminding granddaughter Marilyn (Charity Wakefield) that he is the one the new neighbors should fear.
Balancing it all out is Herman Munster (Jerry O'Connell), the patriarch who keeps everyone in line. Herman has his own issues: a bum ticker.
The gore is there. When Grandpa repairs Herman's heart, the ripped-open chest is prominent. Grandpa changes into a winged dino-like creature and chomps on a lion's neck.
It's not exactly the kind of warm-and-fuzzy viewing that younger children should see.
If you have fond memories of the original 1960s comedy "The Munsters," you should clean the slate for the remake, which is much more gruesome.
It's less grim than "Grimm," but shares more thematically with that hit.
Lily sums it up when she tells her son: "The thing Grandpa wants you to know about the circle of life is that he happens to be standing outside of it."
Score: 3 stars (out of five)
Terry Morrow may be reached at 865-342-6445 or email@example.com.
© 2012, Knoxville News Sentinel Co.
Want to use this article? Click here for options!