“I will tell you an old gypsy saying. Walk fast, and misfortune 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Lesson six: Timing.
Drat! He’s gotten away again. Well, we’ll get him next time.
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.
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.
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.
— Danny Horn