Episode 1010: The Larry Parts

“Undoubtedly, the police will want to question me at the scene of the murder!”

I see you, hiding behind there! Who are you? Come out here so I can see your face! I said, come out of there!

Well, I haven’t got time, for now! Where is Cyrus? Well, I’ve got to get downstairs in the lab! Sabrina, now, this is an emergency! I’ll take full responsibility!

Well, nothing seems disturbed.

A man! I chased a man all the way from the docks! I saw him jump over the fence into the courtyard of Cyrus, and I was sure he’d be here! I don’t know. Can you open it for me?

No, no, no, never mind. He’s probably gotten away by now. I’ll have to call the police. Well, the man I was chasing just committed murder! Yes, I heard somebody calling for help, so I ran to the docks, and when I got there, I found a man who was already dead! No, I’ve never seen him before!  Well, I only got a fleeting glance at him, and — maybe it could be that man who knows Cyrus.

Yes! No, that’s just it, I’m not sure! If I had to swear to it on oath, I don’t know what I’d be able to say.

But what I want to know — I think I’d better go to the police, and tell them that — well, I’ll call them now, and say I think we ought to have a guard on the house all night! Now, listen to me. I suggest that you wait here until Cyrus gets back. Undoubtedly, the police will want to question me at the scene of the murder. But I’ll be back! Hello! Yes, I want to speak to the sheriff! I want to report — a murder!

Well, have you heard from Cyrus? Well, that’s too bad. Well, Sabrina, what’s the matter? Well, you know how far away his mind can be sometimes. What do you mean? Well, so? Well, I don’t think that’s anything to be worried about.

Well, I gave them a full account of everything I saw. That’s all I could do! Yes! Horace Gladstone! Do you know him? Here? Were Cyrus and Gladstone very close? Well, it’s getting more interesting all the time!

Well, I spoke to Gladstone this afternoon, earlier, and, uh — he called me, and he said that he wanted to meet me in front of the Eagle at ten o’clock tonight! Well, I just didn’t know what to say, I told him I would be there, and that’s why I happened to be so close to when this murder took place!

Well, he said he wanted to talk to me about John Yaeger. Well, I don’t know. I’m almost too afraid to speculate. Sabrina, were Cyrus and Gladstone on good terms?

I was just wondering. Well, that’s all that we can do tonight. Now, look, when Cyrus gets back, have him call me right away! Oh, fine.

Next: I go to the movies with a special guest, film critic David Edelstein,
in House of Dark Shadows: Let’s Not Play Insane Games.


Dark Shadows bloopers to watch out for:

It takes Yaeger four tries to hang the picture over the wall safe.

I might be mistaken on this, but when Sabrina follows Larry downstairs, it sounds like she says, “Gary, what’s happening?”

Larry tells Sabrina, “I think I’d better go to the police, and tell them that — well, I’ll call them now, and say that I think we ought to have a guard on the house all night!”

When Larry tells Sabrina that the murdered man is Horace Gladstone, the camera zooms in on her face, going out of focus, and then bobs up and down before settling.

When Larry says, “Well, it’s getting more interesting all the time!” someone in the studio coughs.

Larry tells Sabrina, “I spoke to Gladstone this afternoon, earlier, and he called me, and he wanted to meet me in front of the Eagle, at ten o’clock tonight!” There’s a noticeable pause, and then Sabrina says, “Well?” He continues, “Well, I just didn’t know what to day [sic], I told him I would be there, and that’s why I happened to be so close to where this murder took place!”

In the Old House basement, none of the candles are lit. The two candles behind Yaeger are lit in Monday’s reprise.

Next: I go to the movies with a special guest, film critic David Edelstein,
in House of Dark Shadows: Let’s Not Play Insane Games.

Dark Shadows episode guide

— Danny Horn

35 thoughts on “Episode 1010: The Larry Parts

  1. Even though production had problems with Don Briscoe at least they had a little respect for him by not recasting the Chris character with someone else. They made that error before… with not so successful results in my opinion. I don;t count Mark Allen (the original Sam Evans) or Janes Hall (the first Willie Loomis) because those actors weren’t around long enough to put their stamp on those characters. Nothing against Anthony George but he didn’t have that ex-con toughness that Mitchell Ryan gave Burke Devlin. The same with Dana Elcar as Sheriff Patterson. Elcar just had the “sheriff” persona. I also think that Robert Gerringer personified Dr Woodard the best.

    1. Nothing against Anthony George but he didn’t have that ex-con toughness that Mitchell Ryan gave Burke Devlin.

      Which is weird, because Tony George played dark, brooding tough guys for years as a guest star on countless TV shows. I saw him just the other night as a Greek-American gangster on an episode of 77 Sunset Strip, and that character made Burke Devlin look like a pussycat.

      1. I agree with you and Anthony George did bring that “brooding” quality to a point. His Burke though had the feeling of someone who let others do his dirty work for him. I could imagine Mitchell Ryan in a fistfight though

        1. Yeah. Sometimes I wonder if maybe he didn’t know a lot about the character’s past, saw that the scripts mostly called for being romantic and paternalistic with Vicky, and made a choice not to play Burke as a tough guy.

    2. Actually, I want to give it up for Mark Allen, who was around long enough to “be” the character, in the way that Mitch did Devlin. Don’t know why he left the show, but I don’t think it was acid. And I suppose Barrett got Ford in.

      Ford was good then, but he wore down.

      George wasn’t bad to start, but in the same test of time, ruined Devlin.
      And Ryan screwed up plenty, with real great bloopers. Loved that!

      And while Karlen was great from scene one, James Hall had what I don’t remember any other character had.

      The ability to be a goosebumps-generating-genuinely-creepy asshole.

      All the time. Yaeger came close, especially in the Buffy Beatdown.
      But the Yaeger character just pissed me off.

      James Hall didn’t seem like he was acting.
      More like he was playing himself.
      Goosebumps.
      I’ve known guys like him.
      And what I remember best is the way they frame their words before the bar fight.
      Or what they say to the girls who haven’t run away before they approach rape mode.

      Oh, Carolyn, just pull hard.

      1. No, James Hall wasn’t playing himself. In his autobiography William Eggleston and Me, he tells of how his Willie Loomis portrayal was scaring his younger nieces and nephews back home in Tupelo. Their teachers would let them out of school early so that they could get home and see him on TV. It wasn’t the James Hall they knew and loved back home.

        Before Dark Shadows, James Hall was a rising star in New York theater, distinguishing himself in a play based on Flannery O’Connor’s short story The Displaced Person, which ran for 18 performances at American Place Theatre (Theatre at St. Clement’s Church) between December 29, 1966 and January 14, 1967. James Hall’s role was — make sure you’re sitting down now, or don’t have a mouth full of coffee — that of a Bible salesman. The role won him such renown that he was written up with glowing reviews all over the New York media, including a front page feature in a Sunday edition of The New York Times. No doubt it was this exposure that brought him to the attention of the producers of Dark Shadows, who were always fond of plucking talent from the New York theater scene.

        James Hall very nearly became a major movie star, through his auditions for the part of Joe Buck in Midnight Cowboy. The final auditions had come down to him and one other actor, Jon Voight. John Schlesinger knew and greatly admired Hall’s work, but ultimately he wanted a big height difference between the Joe Buck character and the one Dustin Hoffman played, who is only five foot seven. Jon Voight is six foot five and James Hall is five foot nine.

        Dark Shadows was James Hall’s first job in television, and it was quite a transition from a theater stage to live on tape with a teleprompter. Hall’s fourth episode, 204, required three takes, and so, based on limited financial resources, Dan Curtis had to make a snap decision. If you’ll notice, John Karlen is exactly the same height and build as James Hall when he takes over as Willie Loomis, and early on affects the same mannerisms. John Karlen may have been able to translate his theatrical talents to live television, but it’s clear that from the start James Hall had the right look and attitude, and ultimately made Willie Loomis.

      2. No, James Hall wasn’t playing himself. In his autobiography, he tells of how his Willie Loomis portrayal was scaring his younger nieces and nephews back home in Tupelo. Their teachers would let them out of school early so that they could get home and see him on TV. It wasn’t the James Hall they knew and loved back home.

        Before Dark Shadows, James Hall was a rising star in New York theater, distinguishing himself in a play based on Flannery O’Connor’s short story The Displaced Person, which ran for 18 performances at American Place Theatre (Theatre at St. Clement’s Church) between December 29, 1966 and January 14, 1967. James Hall’s role was — make sure you’re sitting down now, or don’t have a mouth full of coffee — that of a Bible salesman. The role won him such renown that he was written up with glowing reviews all over the New York media, including a front page feature in a Sunday edition of The New York Times. No doubt it was this exposure that brought him to the attention of the producers of Dark Shadows, who were always fond of plucking talent from the New York theater scene.

        James Hall very nearly became a major movie star, through his auditions for the part of Joe Buck in Midnight Cowboy. The final auditions had come down to him and one other actor, Jon Voight. John Schlesinger knew and greatly admired Hall’s work, but ultimately he wanted a big height difference between the Joe Buck character and the one Dustin Hoffman played, who is only five foot seven. Jon Voight is six foot five and James Hall is five foot nine.

        Dark Shadows was James Hall’s first job in television, and it was quite a transition from a theater stage to live on tape with a teleprompter. Hall’s fourth episode, 204, required three takes, and so, based on limited financial resources, Dan Curtis had to make a snap decision. If you’ll notice, John Karlen is exactly the same height and build as James Hall when he takes over as Willie Loomis, and early on affects the same mannerisms. John Karlen may have been able to translate his theatrical talents to live television, but it’s clear that from the start James Hall had the right look and attitude, and ultimately made Willie Loomis.

        1. And soon, Karlen became a sympathetic character with a loveable quality, which may have been in the show bible from the start. Turning from ahole to likeable would be quite a trick for Hall, and he would have pulled it off, and THAT would have been something to glue me to the TV. Unlike Jeb Hawkes.

          Would have been nice to do it with Yaeger fusing with Cyrus somehow.

          Hall is a grown Michael Maitland. Just trashier.

          1. By “show bible”, if you mean the outline by Art Wallace, Shadows on the Wall, then no — because the original story outline didn’t even have a Willie Loomis character, just the Jason McGuire prototype by the name of Walt Cummins. The Willie Loomis character came later, with the introduction of the Jason McGuire/blackmail storyline, probably created by Ron Sproat since he wrote the episode where Willie is introduced. Very likely Willie was brought on to be a sidekick to Jason, so that the viewer would have a better idea of what sort of schemes Jason had cooking, and to more clearly illustrate the real Jason McGuire behind the ingratiating facade of charm.

            But you’re comments on James Hall are very interesting, because he certainly made quite an impression on DS fandom, and there have been numerous discussions on what the actor was really like, whether he was Willie Loomis in real life or merely “too good” as an actor.

  2. Appearance-wise, the “actor” who plays Larry Chase kind of reminds me of a cross between John Lasell and Peter Sellers (it’s those period black horn rimmed glasses!). Like Dr. Guthrie he intends to battle the hostile forces in his midst, but in the end he is about as effective as Inspector Clouseau.

    1. Larry Chase also doesn’t think with his brain like many men in general but more prominently in the Collinsport of Earth-2. Not to discount Lara Parker’s sexual attractiveness but it seems there were slim pickins in the parallel time village Angelique had virtually the entire male populace panting after her

    2. Looks to me like Larry Chase may be wearing the same pumpkin orange shirt which David Selby wore in episode 1014. Perhaps the wardrobe department had to let him borrow a shirt from Quentin’s rack? Waste not, want not, I guess … I remember well those orange shirts, worn in combination with a brown necktie, as shown here on Larry Chase. Orange shirt and brown necktie were quite the popular combination for the well dressed man in 1970 — and not just for Thanksgiving or on Halloween.

      1. I’m embarrassed to say as a nearly 13 year old getting permission to pick out my own clothes I was one of those buying the orange/brown combo…but worse.My shirt was a milk chocolate brown with a long color and I had orange, yellow, an brown striped bell bottoms. Months later, because David Collins/Henesy and I were almost exactly the same age I was inspired to by a sweater at Ohrbachs that I saw him wear on the show.

        1. “Everybody wants to wear Quentin’s shirts!”

          These are very important questions: (1) Would it make difference if David Selby forgot to apply Arrid Extra Dry or Right Guard before wearing the orange shirt? (2) Would the wardrobe department be required to launder the orange shirt worn by Ken McEwen (Larry Chase) in Episode #1010 before David Selby (Quentin) wore the shirt again a few days later to tape Episode # 1014?

          1. (2) Would the wardrobe department be required to launder the orange shirt worn by Ken McEwen (Larry Chase) in Episode #1010 before David Selby (Quentin) wore the shirt again a few days later to tape Episode # 1014?

            I’m guessing yes. The original Star Trek shirts (1966) were laundered after every day’s shooting and were notorious for shrinking. Eventually they changed the fabric since they couldn’t very well stop washing the costumes. Studio lights are hot (and it might have been part of the actors union agreement).

              1. Which undoubtedly would have inspired 16 Magazine to include a David Smellme scratch ‘n sniff sampler in the very next issue.

                1. How amusing! However, upon further careful consideration of the bounds of propriety circa 1970, I would venture that most magazine publishers would have deemed a David Smellby scratch-n-sniff unquestionably in very bad taste at that time and therefore unacceptable for publication. For better or for worse, quite the opposite would be true today in 2017.

                  Your “scratch-n-sniff” reference now brings the discussion dangerously close to John Waters’ territory. His movie “Polyester” (1981) was filmed in “Odorama.” Which meant that theaters showing the film would distribute “Scratch-n-Sniff” cards containing 10 various odors to the moviegoers, who would scratch-n-sniff a different smell each time a number from 1 to 10 would flash on the screen. I shall say no more, but leave the rest to your olfactory imagination! 🙂

    3. Prisoner, I keep thinking the same thing whenever I see his photo here. “Gee, I don’t remember there being a parallel time Dr. Guthrie.”

  3. In preparation for the HoDS post (and because I was Jonesing hard for the cast) I just finished watching the film. For the moment I will only say that I did NOT remember it; I’m thinking that I must have fallen asleep when I watched it on the Late Late Show all those years ago.

    So I will await the review as the vampire awaits the dusk…mooooohahaha!

  4. ” His movie “Polyester” (1981) was filmed in “Odorama.” Which meant that theaters showing the film would distribute “Scratch-n-Sniff” cards containing 10 various odors to the moviegoers”

    I still have my “Polyester” Odorama card from 1981. Every five years or so I scratch the odors and they still stink… er, work.

    James Hall as Willie Loomis seems like the template for Bo Hopkins’ performance in “American Graffiti.” A DS friend and I often refer to Hall as Willie as being a member of the ‘Phay-rose” gang from American Graffiti. (That’s meant as praise, btw.)

    I enjoy the Larry Chase character, partly because he looks like he’s on the wrong soap opera. I imagine he was intended to be a character on General Hospital, but stepped onto the wrong set by mistake. Once he was on DS, he decided to stay instead of stepping back into the hallway and looking for the door to GH.

    1. When I close my eyes and concentrate, I can still feel and smell the lovely, soft sweater David Selby was wearing when he hugged me at the 2012 Fest. So very soft. sigh

  5. I am flabbergasted but fascinated to learn that James Hall wrote an autobiography! What is the name of this book and how does one obtain it?

    1. It’s called William Eggleston and Me, published in 2013. I got my copy through Amazon, I believe through Book Depository US, through which I’ve purchased numerous Dark Shadows related books. Lots of typos throughout, but written by the man himself. He was friends with Eggleston before the latter became famous for his work as the godfather of color photography.

      https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51DILX7CN2L.SX331_BO1,204,203,200.jpg

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