Episode 781: The Hunt

“I will tell you an old gypsy saying. Walk fast, and the Devil will overtake you. Walk slow, and misfortune will catch you!”

How to Not Catch a Vampire, lesson one: In order to not catch a vampire, you have to not think like a vampire.

781 dark shadows trask hunt

Vampire hunting is not for everyone. For example, it’s probably not for you.

You are a middle-aged religious fanatic who bullies children and recently blackmailed somebody into poisoning your wife. You run a bad school and you have bad manners. You’re also single, so why you’re hanging around haunted houses glowering at things I don’t know.

The first thing you’ll notice when you begin your unsuccessful vampire-hunting career is that vampires are pretty good at not being caught. You think you’ve got him trapped in his house just before dawn, but he is made of Chromakey and he can disappear whenever he feels like. That is because he is a vampire and you are you.

781 dark shadows barnabas bookcase

Lesson two: He’s behind the bookcase.

Seriously, dude. He has a secret coffin that is literally five feet away from where you’re currently standing, and you have no idea. You are not the main character of this television show.

781 dark shadows edward telephone

Lesson three: Do not involve the authorities.

The police would only hamper your investigations. Why not go ahead and hamper theirs first? They’ll never see it coming.

781 dark shadows trask magda slap

Lesson four: Beat up on a gypsy.

Gypsies are mouthy and untrustworthy, and almost certainly in league with the Devil. You can smack them in the face and they will probably not plan revenge. P.S. You know the deadly nightshade that the guy used to poison your wife? Guess where that came from? Maybe don’t beat up on gypsies after all.

781 dark shadows trask edward books

Lesson five: Hit the books.

He’s got to be somewhere in that house! Spend the day looking at blueprints until you’ve found all the secret passages where he might possibly be hiding. Obviously, you shouldn’t do this in the house where you believe the vampire is. Go to a different house. The light is better over there anyway.

781 dark shadows trask edward timing

Lesson six: Timing.

Drat! He’s gotten away again. Well, we’ll get him next time.

781 dark shadows trask edward return

Lesson seven: Don’t give up.

Sure, things haven’t gone quite as smoothly as you’d hoped. But now that you’ve found his coffin, he is practically at your mercy. All you have to do is wait for him to return at dawn, and then you can destroy him forever. Just hang out next to the coffin, and wait.

781 dark shadows edward listening

Lesson eight: Don’t sweat the small stuff.

I mean, you don’t have to actually be there yourself, standing next to the coffin all night. Take a break every once in a while. Just make sure that your partner is standing by, ready to pounce as soon as he sees the vampire return to his lair. Remember that the vampire can silently evaporate at will, so you might want to keep eyes on the coffin at all times. Or just wait on the other side of the bookcase and listen, that’s probably just as good.

781 dark shadows charity barnabas seduce

Lesson nine: You are not alone.

Sure, while you’re screwing around with blueprints, the vampire is probably off seducing your teenage daughter, ensnaring her in his impenetrable web of evil. But there’s probably tons of guys who never caught a vampire. George Washington never killed a vampire. Fats Waller probably didn’t either. Frida Kahlo, Ludwig van Beethoven, Marie Curie, Fred Astaire — zero vampire kills. There’s a lot more to life than killing vampires, you know. I don’t know why everybody keeps talking about killing vampires, anyway; it’s not even that big of a deal.

Tomorrow: Don’t Leave Home.

Dark Shadows bloopers to watch out for:

Magda tells Trask, “I will tell you an old gypsy saying. Walk fast, and the Devil will overtake you. Walk slow, and misfortune will catch you!” I’m not sure if that’s a blooper, but she stumbles in the middle of it, and it doesn’t make any sense.

When Trask opens the lid of the coffin, you can see part of the camera in shot on the left side of the frame.

Charity asks Barnabas how she can help him, and he says, “Your father would look for me here, so — at the school.” A moment later, they cut to a camera that isn’t centered on the actors; it has to move quickly to get them both in shot.

Tomorrow: Don’t Leave Home.

781 dark shadows edward trask confused

Dark Shadows episode guide

— Danny Horn

17 thoughts on “Episode 781: The Hunt

  1. “This is your moment, Trask. Make the most of it. We will meet again, and I will deal with you then as I dealt with your ancestor before you.”

    Sure, that’s a swell badass line, and Trask is just an ass, but in the context of this moment, Trask is not in the wrong — Barnabas has killed Carl and he’s snacked on Trask’s daughter.

    Another great Barnabas moment is when he tells Julia that Edward has become his sworn enemy after “learning his secret.” This just paints Edward as having a prejudice against vampires, as opposed to wanting vengeance against the fiend who strangled his brother in cold blood. Did he expect Edward to have him over for tea.

    1. Considering Trask is a serial child abuser and sexual predator who hides behind God to get away with his behavior, I’d take pretty much anyone’s side over his in any dispute.

      1. True, Barnabas has not threatened to kill a child since David Collins in 1967, but he’s far more advanced a sexual predator than Trask — Charity and Beth are both under his control and he’s forced both to act against their own interests and free will.

        1. Even if I didn’t believe that there’s a different standard between someone living under a curse and someone acting as a man of God, there’s still no comparison between Barnabas and Trask. Barnabas is dangerous, short-sighted, and sometimes very stupid. But sometimes he tries to do the right thing. I can’t think of a single instance of Trask doing anything for anyone but himself.

          1. Yes, that’s why Magda who is the closest we have to an audience identification character states her preference for Barnabas over Trask. I also think Trask’s abuse of Magda was to even further distinguish him as the clear villain.

  2. This Trask is a true villain. The 1795 Trask was a religious zealot who, though not a very pleasant man, really didn’t deserve to get bricked up behind a wall. This Trask’s fate though – so, so delicious. I absolutely loved it as a sadistic little seven year old.

  3. I’m tired of the women on this show gettin’ the Hell slapped out of them by MEN.
    I don’t remember this bothering me so much back in 1969 but it bothers me now.

    1. This blog has often illustrated for me how much has changed since 1969. Despite all the things that were wonderful about that time, it was a harsher, more dangerous time in many ways. Definitely harsher for women, gay people, people who weren’t white.
      I never really thought about how dangerous kids toys used to be, until Danny pointed it out. I don’t know anything about today’s toys, but I’m sure they’re not the dangerous fire/chemical hazards that were so exciting when I was a kid.

      If it’s any consolation, the progress has been amazing. Any why not have more women slapping men? Those bastardos!

    2. I’ve always hated almost ANY kind, except in slapstick comedies and all-out melodramas (think Joan Crawford films and things like that). That’s because to me, slapping IS a kind of melodrama, it’s just that people don’t like admitting it. It’s melodrama pretending that it’s drama, so to speak.

  4. “I will tell you an old gypsy saying. Walk fast, and the Devil will overtake you. Walk slow, and misfortune will catch you!”

    Maybe it’s the gypsy version of “You’re damned if you do and you’re damned if you don’t.”

  5. I think Grayson’s reading is the error.

    Emphasis should be on “misFORTUNE,”

    With the pitch going down at the end of the sentence.

    You are doomed by either.

    Might as well retire.

  6. A better line would be, “Walk fast, and the devil will overtake you. Walk slow, and a GYPSY will catch you!!”

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