It's A Wonder Fred Gwynne Could Even Walk In His Munsters Costume

If you are an actor in Hollywood, the chances that you have worn an uncomfortable costume are high. From itchy materials to bulky additions, actors still wear clothes they might not be the most comfortable in the world. This, of course, is not the fault of the costume designers; sometimes, a character requires a specific article of clothing or full costume that just cannot be made more comfortably.

Such was the case for the costume that Fred Gwynne, the actor that played the iconic Herman in "The Munsters," wore during the show's two-season run. Universal Television cast him as this comedic take on Frankenstein's monster largely due to his intimidating 6'5" stature, which was utilized frequently in comedic ways. From his brute strength causing a baseball to knock down a sign to him entering his doctor's house by kicking down the door, Gwynne's physical comedy chops were second to none on the show.

However, it seemed to have taken a lot of work. While exact behind-the-scenes information is unclear, it should come as no surprise that Gwynne underwent an uncomfortable costuming process. If you thought your morning routine was tedious, be thankful you don't have to go through this!

Under the spotlight and in front of the air conditioner

Gwynne wore padding to make him look bulkier, which caused him to frequently swelter. Because of this discomfort, he allegedly had to regularly call for cuts in order for him to cool off. In "The Munsters: A Trip Down Mockingbird Lane," actor Ted Eccles (who guest-starred in an episode of the show as Wilbur Ramsey) described just how easily Gwynne got overheated in his suit:

"Between takes, it was tough because if you rehearsed a scene with Fred, you then had to wait about five minutes from rehearsal until they actually did a take. And he was good for two or three takes before he had to be cooled back down. If it was tough to cool Fred down inside, I can imagine what it would have been like outside."

Gwynne's makeup also was affected by this intense overheating. Eccles said in the book that the famous headpiece that made up Herman's head would "come loose" if Gwynne was sweating too hard, claiming that reapplying it would take an hour. One can only assume, as well, that the face paint applied to him would also have to be touched up, if not completely redone.

At the end of the day, Gwynne and the rest of the "Munsters" crew were able to keep going with shooting while preventing a major disaster on set. If you want to marvel at how Gwynne was able to even stand upright underneath his intense padding, headpiece, and prosthetics, "The Munsters" is available to stream in its entirety on Peacock.