“You will live, as I live — as one of the damned!”
Fall 1968 is a rough time for the Dark Shadows writers, because they’re stuck with a convoluted storyline that just won’t unconvolute. So they’ve embarked on the Great 1968 Wrap-Up, where they shed all of the characters, actors and plotlines that are surplus to requirements, which is practically all of them.
In this time of turbulent change, we turn to the old traditions for comfort. I mean the really old traditions, like dressing up in animal skins and making blood offerings to Asmodeus.
Continue reading Episode 632: The Owl, the Raven and the Bat
“Your friend? But you told me he tried to kill you.”
Today’s episode kicks off with an interesting milestone — it’s the first time Barnabas Collins kills somebody. There was that business with the cows early on, and lately he’s been snacking on the locals, but those have all been off-screen and apparently non-fatal. After three months, this is the first bona fide vampire kill, and happily, it’s a character that everybody in the audience wanted dead anyway.
Now, technically we don’t see the actual murder on screen. A hand grabs Jason’s throat, and then there’s the opening titles. When we come back, Jason is dead on the floor.
So we don’t see the specific moment when Barnabas actually chokes the life out of the dude. But that’s probably for the best, because it’s the middle of July, it’s 3:30 in the afternoon, and there are children watching. Suddenly, this dull soap opera has transformed into a daily half-hour horror movie, so they’re still feeling their way around, tone-wise.
Continue reading Episode 276: Crime Scenes
“In the name of sanity, what’s going on in Maggie Evans’ blood?”
Good news: As a special treat today, we’re going to leave Collinsport and travel a hundred miles away, to a private sanitarium called either Windcliff or Wyndcliffe. (Or possibly Wyndcliff. We never see it written down, and nobody can agree on how to spell it. Someone asked the writers once, and they said they didn’t care.)
Even more good news: Maggie is now under the care of Dr. Julia Hoffman, who’s shining a penlight in her eyes and pretending to hypnotize her.
“Concentrate on the light,” she says. “Raise your right hand.” Maggie starts to move her left hand, and the doctor corrects her: “Your right hand. Raise your right hand.”
Maggie raises her right hand. “Very good,” the doctor says. “Lower your right hand.”
Which begs the question: Why doesn’t Maggie know which is her right hand? Also, what kind of voodoo medical care is this supposed to be?
Continue reading Episode 265: Doctor Strange