Episode 527: Ride, Car, House.

“What is the first thing you remember?”

Ride, Car, House.
A Performance Art Piece in One Act.

Performed live at Stokes’ Parlor on July 3rd, 1968.

527 dark shadows stokes adam house


527 dark shadows adam bed

Bed — like table!

527 dark shadows adam straps

Straps. Barnabas.

527 dark shadows adam open

I… open eyes.

See… Barnabas.

527 dark shadows adam hurt

Dr. Hoffman… hurt! Adam… hya!

527 dark shadows adam ride

Ride. Car. House.

527 dark shadows adam loomis

Willie live there.

527 dark shadows adam room


527 dark shadows adam chain

Chain. Chain to wall.

527 dark shadows adam tear

Willie — bad! Adam tear chain!

527 dark shadows adam run


527 dark shadows adam grab

Adam grab Willie!

527 dark shadows adam shoulder


527 dark shadows adam cane


527 dark shadows adam trauma


527 dark shadows adam shock


527 dark shadows adam interruption

The performance is interrupted by the doorbell; Vicki has come over to speak to Professor Stokes. The artist leaves the stage. Vicki ruins everything.

Tomorrow: This Tawdry Affair.

Dark Shadows bloopers to watch out for:

As Professor Stokes hypnotizes Jeff with his monocle, when he says “Back into time,” someone in the studio coughs.

Nicholas tells Stokes that Cassandra returned to Collinwood yesterday afternoon. It was night-time when she came back to the house in yesterday’s episode.

A shadow crosses the room at the beginning of the closing credits.

The director’s credit for JACK SULLIVAN is partly hanging off the credits roll; you can see the last few letters flap as they go by.

As the credits end, there’s a flicker of special effects flame over the Dan Curtis Productions logo.

Behind the Scenes:

The desk that Adam is sitting at today is a familiar prop from the Old House set. The desk was originally in Roger’s office at the cannery, in the pre-Barnabas days when scenes happened at the cannery. Stokes’ drawing room is actually a redressed version of Roger’s office, plus the fireplace from Matthew Morgan’s cottage.

The green lamp has also made the rounds of Collinsport; it was seen most recently in episode 513, in both the Evans cottage and Tony’s apartment. (Thanks to commenters Laura and Prisoner of the Night for prop-spotting.)

Tomorrow: This Tawdry Affair.

527 dark shadows adam dictionary

Dark Shadows episode guide

— Danny Horn

34 thoughts on “Episode 527: Ride, Car, House.

    1. Which was in Roger’s office at the cannery before that. In fact, the room itself is made from that set. Except the fireplace, which comes from Matthew’s cottage.

      1. Oh my gosh, I love the deep knowledge you guys have on sets and props. I thought I was special with my love for the Ralston-Purina lamp. If somebody wants to make notes on this stuff for me to post in Behind the Scenes, I’d happily give credit to you. This includes back-dating for old posts, if somebody’s into it.

        1. No need for credit–if anything, Google deserves most of the credit. 🙂 The Ralston-Purina lamp is in the very first episode–in fact, as Burke and Vicky enter the lobby of the Collinsport Inn the lamp is the first prop you see, right in the center of the shot. We first see the Petofi box (along with the Ralston-Purina lamp) on a table in Liz’s room during the Phoenix storyline.

          In fact, the desk in Stokes’ apartment might explain why in that one episode Barnabas and Julia didn’t go over there direct from the Old House as they mentioned that they would and then it was just mysteriously not touched upon–THEY might have been able to rush over to the Stokes parlor set for the next scene, but the desk in Barnabas’ drawing room wouldn’t have been able to have been carried there nearly as fast.

          Do you mean notes for this particular post, or just notes for a series of posts to be inserted later? Should I email them to you?

          1. Yeah, I’d appreciate any info you want to write down, from past episodes or future ones. Absolutely feel free to email me. 🙂 I put a note into this episode with the desk info. I credited you as PrisoneroftheNight, but that could be your name if you want.

            I’ve been meaning to put in some notes about the Smith Brothers portrait that you and Laura were talking about a while ago. Now that I’m watching scenes at Stokes’ house, I know the prop that you guys were talking about.

            1. The Smith Brothers portrait–another leftover from Roger’s cannery office, first seen in episode 45 as Roger plays darts while awaiting a visit from “kitten”.

              Spotting the sets and props used and reused in the show is a fun pastime, and the fact that so many sets and props got recycled is owing to the fact that ABC was such a new network at the time, so they had a more limited budget than they would have had with the other more established networks of the time and had to be resourceful.

              For me there are three elements that make the show fun to watch and rewatch: there’s the cast, the stories, and the sets/props, which have a certain definitive charm all their own.

              I read somewhere that the original Old House drawing room set was bought secondhand from a movie studio and that it was about to be destroyed before the producers of the show found it, but I’ll have to revisit that source to confirm that info.

              1. Do you think other networks had higher budgets? I don’t remember if I’ve ever seen any info on a comparison between DS and other contemporary soaps. My general impression has been that money was tight for everyone, and then DS pushed it further because they did special effects and crazy costume/makeup. But I don’t actually know any facts about it.

                I’d be surprised if the Old House drawing room set is anything special, because it’s not that big, is it? I think the Evans cottage is bigger.

                1. That info about the budgets comes from one of the bonus interviews from the DVDs of the early part of the series. I believe it was one of the writers pointing this out. ABC was only in its second season at that point, so this is why they had to juggle things around.

                  By the way, there are some interesting photos online taken of the West 53rd studio as it appeared in 2013. It is a narrow studio, but extends lengthwise for a full city block, starting at West 53rd and reaching all the way to West 54th. The view of these is from the loading dock entrance on West 54th. The photos can be seen by scrolling to the bottom of the page and they can be enlarged by clicking on them. Also in this link are two recently surfaced (1970) photos of Joan Bennett backstage at Hollywood Squares, one taken with Vincent Price and the other with Paul Lynde.


                  More photos of the West 53rd studio from 2010 are here:


                2. I remember seeing, on an anniversary special or maybe Dvd extra, the

                  amount of thought and detail going into the Collinwood set. It was apparently ground breaking, that tv, let alone daytime tv, made a mansion, foyer, look like it was built of stone. With heavy doors, flagstone floor, the real deal. Except it wasn’t. And the costumes from the period segments, especially Joan Bennetts were gorgeous. So there was some money there.

                  1. Also the Mausoleum looked like marble so I guess they splurged and then scrimped. From.all I have read and seen. Dan Curtis was a big picture guy, grandiose maybe, but with a clear vision to stand apart from everyone else.

                    1. The Petofi box shows up in Davids room also. And I have to tell you, every girl I knew growing up had that box. They were from India, and sometimes had a mother of pearl flower inlayed, on the lid. They came in all sizes, and they were very hippy dippy exotic back then.

                    2. I think the costumes weren’t as expensive as you might think — they were probably rentals, or leftovers from another show. These were New York theater people, and they knew how to lay their hands on a bustle if they needed one.

                      But the foyer and drawing room of Collinwood really are something very special. One of the great things about Dan is that he knew that sometimes you have to make a special effort and really knock people out, because one fantastic central standing set makes up for all of the tiny redressed sets with wobbly walls.

                  2. Most of the jewelry pieces that Joan Bennett wore were actually from her own private collection, so there was that authentic touch.

                    1. I never thought about the rental option, but that does make sense. Joans jewelry magnificent! I guess with the amazing Collinwood set, and to me, some other great details, the shaky walls or styrofoam gravestones didn’t bother me so much. BUT those damn yellow and blue sheets , in the 1700 and 1800 hundreds, just didn’t exsist. Even for rich folk. Silly detail, but not to me.

                3. The interview in question is with producer Robert Costello. According to Costello, Dark Shadows had fewer sets and a smaller budget compared to other soaps of the day, mainly because other soaps would allocate their budgets toward the high-end talent of the cast and because ABC at the time was not a big-budget network with a lot of stations, having just recently broken away from NBC. In terms of scenery, more of the budget went toward props whereas sets themselves were often juggled and redressed creatively as needed, with most of the stories focusing on a relatively small series of regular sets.

                  This particular interview segment with Costello isn’t up on YouTube, but is included in the DVD set Dark Shadows: The Beginning, disc 4 of DVD collection 4. I recently purchased the new 2012 complete deluxe DVD edition, and in this set it is among the bonus features of disc 18.

                  If you’re an enthusiastic completist, I heartily recommend the new DVD set, as it has as a special new bonus feature: a restored and remastered version of episode 211, Barnabas’ arrival, with all the 1967 TV commercials included.

                  1. Yeah, I’ve got the Complete Series set; I love it. I haven’t watched all of the interviews yet, especially in the pre-Barnabas episodes, which I haven’t watched and almost certainly never will. I should go and watch the extras, though.

                    1. I’d be interested in your take on the Laura Collins storyline — mostly because I don’t think we get Barnabas without her. It’s also a very straightforward Good vs. Evil (with good being normal). Vicki even has a brain. In a way, it’s a “What if” in a world where Barnabas never became as popular and changed the course of the series.

                      Somewhat tangentially, I wonder if the series would have gone to color at all if Barnabas hadn’t caught on. Would have seemed a waste to bother on a doomed series.

                4. I had a memory blip about the Old House set–rather than something I read, it was an interview with Alexandra Moltke (one of the extras from DVD Collection 2, Disc 4) who related something that happened to the original set. It turns out that a very “efficient” ABC vice president decided to pay a visit to the warehouse where the sets for the show were stored and see if he could save some money by getting rid of any old sets that didn’t need to be there. He found some sets that he decided were filthy and disgusting and with cobwebs all over them, so he ordered these to be burned–this was the set for the Old House, and this was on a Friday, so the producers had to scramble to have the whole set rebuilt for the show on the following Monday. Moltke relates the story in the clip below.

                  This means that, at some point, we are not seeing the original set for the Old House that they started with. But I suppose it doesn’t matter, as no one can really tell when the newly rebuilt set appears.

                  1. That might explain why some of the most jarring edits are in scenes with Vicki in them. She says she would sometimes get punchy and start laughing for no reason and that she would get into a lot of trouble for this.

        2. My favorite prop to watch out for is the Petofi’s Hand Box. I forget the first episode it appears in, but it’s really early. Like single-digit early.
          The other things I like to look for are the blankets. Everyone knows about the Collinsport Afghan, but there are at least two other blankets that make reoccurring appearances. A yellow/orange afghan, and a grey wool blanket with a white stripe at the ends.

          Also the raggedy Anne dolls

    2. It’s a secretary desk style but the top part is totally different. The Old House desk doesn’t have dividers and the glass is rounded at the top. You can get a good view in episode 349 when Barnabas turns his chair around.
      Stokes’s living room is also Barnabas’s bedroom in 1795. See episode 384.

    1. I know, but it’s hard to blame him. First he really is a reactive child, but more importantly, he got his life force from Barnabas “Plan A is Kill Someone” Collins and he doesn’t have anyone to talk him down from that particular instinct.

  1. One final thought about the costumes, Danny I think you mentioned this in the recaps of 1795 arc, the fact that Louis Edmond and Joel Crothers could show daytime, or even prime time tv”, which side they side they preferred to dress”, to put it politely, is astounding. Mary Tyler Moore couldn’t say she was divorced on tv, 2 years later. Dan Curtis HAD to be giving the finger or in this case, ” the package” to somebody. And it continued through out the whole storyline, Amazing.

    1. What I found ‘interesting’ if you’ve watched the 1841PT story is the style evolution of Morgan Collins (Keith Ptentice). While is early costumes were in the same ‘tradition’ as Louis Edmonds, Joel Crothers and Christopher Pennock, his style evolves into clothing that is well tailored and refined after he becomes head of the household. His long jackets in particular were very fashionable and well cut.

  2. About that famous afghan … one of my FB knitting groups posted a story about the number of crochet ‘granny square’ afghans that show up on TV shows like Taxi, Rosanne, Big Bang Theory, etc. The writer suggested that these homey/homely blankets provide a ‘mini backstory’ for the people who keep them in their houses, because they were most likely made by a grandmother or aunt who was long gone and they represent memories of beloved family members. Since I first remember seeing that famous afghan in the Evans cottage, I think that it was meant to represent Maggie’s deceased mother, who may have made it. But then it starts showing up everywhere …!

  3. And I thought that the Old House was burned and rebuilt for the beginning of 1795.

    Sure WOULD be nice to know when THAT actually happened.

  4. ABC actually spun off from NBC back in the 1940s, but it is true that it was the poorest of the big three commercial TV networks right up through the 1960s.

    ABC was always the little engine that could. Sometimes they would do something to keep up with the other networks – get an expensive show or start broadcasting in color at the same time or even ahead of their competitors. DS was an example of that, although of course they would not have spent more money on it if DS was about to be canceled. ABC did seem to have more game shows than the other nets because game shows are cheap. So are soaps, usually. And so are sitcoms and half-hour programs like “Honey West” as opposed to hour-long shows. Though ABC had both, I am not sure about the ratio.

    I remember an interview with Ann Francis in which she said that if her b/w ABC series, “Honey West” (1965-1966) had come back in the fall of 1966, she was told that it definitely would have been in color. But it was canceled.

    About actors scrounging for costumes and sets for shows their in, I’m reminded of the story about Patrick Bauchau who was on NBC’s “The Pretender” at the same time he had a part in the movie “Twin Falls Idaho” (1999), which was a low budget movie. They wanted to do a scene in a hospital but could not afford a set. So Bauchau said, “We have a hospital set on ‘The Pretender’, and I can get us in there on Sunday when nobody is using it.”

  5. Alexandra Moltke must be pregnant in these episodes. That humongous yellow tent she is wearing in the first acts is swallowing her. She did have the most beautiful, thick brunette hair. Why didn’t the directors ever counsel Roger Davis to use his inside voice when agitated. His almost shrill exclamations are murder on the microphones and my ears !

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