Dark Shadows has arrived!

Discussion in 'Cult TV' started by Alexis, Oct 5, 2016.

  1. Daniel Avery

    Daniel Avery Super Moderator Staff Member

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    One of the Todds (Phillip, I think) mentioned the moon landing in dialogue, which was another OMG moment in terms of their recognition of the outside world. That odd music they played at the Blue Whale may very well have been current to 1966 or whatever but how would I know? :)

    I love it all, actually--the whole package of $1.98 budget, rapid-pace filming, the occasional scenery-chewing. I hope I don't come off as critical, because I'm actually kind of in awe of how much they accomplished with so little...and when it's all clicking, this is a totally can't miss show. It must have been so exciting to be part of that wave of popularity.

    The "establishing shots" used in the early months of the series were likely all the network would allow them in terms of budget.
     
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  2. darkshadows38

    darkshadows38 Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    i think i said this in the past, on how they made 3 trips to i forget where the hall or whatever the hell the outside of collinwood is the actual place i mean. the 1st trip was before the show even started production on the pilot. where they shot a slew of different stuff no doubt one trip was when Roger Crashed the Car. that i think was the 2nd trip but i'm just guessing on that. no doubt they spread them throughout the episodes and even reused a lot of them until they decided to scrap it for more story and when you watch that era of the show you like those shots and you miss them when they are gone but than at the same time they aren't needed either. as for the music it does sound 60's absolutely
    and no doubt it was to save money but i didn't say the music was bad.

    i just said i don't think any teenager in the 60's would dance to music like that but than i wasn't around in the 60's so i could be wrong on that too.
     
  3. Don Howard

    Don Howard Soap Chat Fan

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    I liked the black & white shows better than the color. So the solution for me was to switch the set from color to B&W mode while watching from Episode 295 forward.
     
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  4. Alexis

    Alexis Soap Chat Champion

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    Oddly and without fully realising it I returned to watching Dark Shadows exactly a year after I began watching initially. Something about it just really lends itself to watching in the Autumn and Winter so again naturally I just popped in the disc where I left off. I binged last night and again this evening and so I am now on episode 75. It's a show that just cries out to be watched on the long cold dark nights, it gets dark around 6 now and that just feels right. The slow languid pacing and never ending story vibe just feels right when it's cold and dark and there's nothing better to do.

    After what felt like 14700 episodes ago when they hinted at the Josette Ghost character we have finally had our real first vision of her. Well sort off! We have learned about the old house in the woods, the old Collins house. There it lays abandoned, still weirdly filled with antiques and chandeliers and marble fire places and oil paintings. As if! But that just adds to the wonderfulness of it all. Little creepy bowl cut David has been telling Victoria Winters of "My name is Victoria Winters" fame that he hears voices and speaks to ghosts up at the old house and so off they go to find the ghosts only they don't... They leave and then later Josette Collins comes to life and in a special effects shot glides down right out of the painting and then walks around the deserted old mansion. All glowing white and looking exactly like a ghost from a gothic novel.
    God I love Dark Shadows!
     
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  5. Snarky's Ghost

    Snarky's Ghost Soap Chat Oracle

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    Many genre fans have often cited the '60s as the best decade for horror, and DARK SHADOWS, though rambling and unfocused, is a great example of why. Even when it's stupid, it's got that mood goin' on.

    I've often wondered what it might have been like if DARK SHADOWS had been a primetime series shot on high quality 35mm film, so we could enjoy perfect prints and frankly fewer episodes, the storylines more consolidated. But not only was daytime TV much less competitive back then (it would have had a harder time surviving in primetime, let alone enjoy its "adult" feel daytime soaps were permitted then which was a no-no for primetime) somehow the meandering structure and cheapily flickering video look simply was DARK SHADOWS. You had the sense you'd tapped into an alternative frequency, one completely unaware of yet umbilically concurrent to the languid, tumultuous, politicized, late-'60s vibe of the time, with all its angsty tension.

    Like a séance occurring while protests over the Vietnam war rage outside, both realities oblivious to each other.

    It's a kind of dingy (as in dinge, not "ding") ectoplasmic organicity which a high-budgeted primetime show would have missed entirely.



    [​IMG]

    But you can tell it emanates from the same zone which produced the autumnal melancholy of THE GREAT PUMPKIN and the post-apocalyptic paranoia of NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD.
     
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2018
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  6. darkshadows38

    darkshadows38 Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    there was something i printed from online where it was called you know you watch too much dark shadows when you and it had a long list. but one of them was if you are doing Seance's i dunno the spelling sorry about that. to answer questions you want answered or something like that, much like they do in this show. he he
     
  7. darkshadows38

    darkshadows38 Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    having said that i found on blu-ray.com that it had seasons 1-5 of the original show that you can get for pre-order seasons 1-5 ? i'm sorry the show never was a season show it was a damn soap opera for god's sake. anyways having also said that is this true? or just something to amuse me? cause to my knowledge the episodes that are in awful condition can't be fixed and if they did do that they'd get rid of audio and maybe some scenes and fans would than can get pissed. shit they more or less no they pretty much said that on the dvd releases well on certain volumes anyways.

    but than i heard doctor who would never got to blu-ray at all cause of the fact it wasn't shot on film well other than Spearhead from Space and apparently not only were they wrong but so was i as well cause we got season 12 out this past June.
     
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2018
  8. Alexis

    Alexis Soap Chat Champion

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    Well, like clock work, I started watching again last night. The beginning of October is just right, it's Dark Shadows time. My viewing of the show was cut short last winter as a lot of personal stuff just got in the way and I didn't have time for much procrastinating at Collinwood.
    Now it's cold and dark and I'm gonna get cosy with my tea and fruit shorties and continue on....
     
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  9. Alexis

    Alexis Soap Chat Champion

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    It's funny that I'm actually watching episodes that aired early October 1966. Over 50 years later.
     
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  10. Alexis

    Alexis Soap Chat Champion

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    Well having no laptop and hence no Netflix has enforced a Dark Shadows binge. I’m now 140 something episodes in. It’s gotten a whole lot more paranormal. We now have actual ghosts every now and then and I’m in the middle of a weird storyline. little creepy David’s mother Laura Collins has turned up, well I think she’s his mother but I’m not quite sure. You see she’s apparently a Phoenix or some such shit and there’s all kinds of weird firey going on. It’s all crazy and over the top but it is also just all so well structured and tight. It’s very well written nonsense.

    Dark Shadows seems really to be an alternate universe Peyton Place. They are night and day. So different, yet weirdly similar.

    Both set in New England coastal towns. The big house on the hill. The cliffs and the bluff. The wealthy family and normal townsfolk. And all the dark secrets and intrigues.

    I’m really tearing through it now. I’m so glad that not so bright Mathew has gone. Scared to death by the ghosts of the three sisters up at the old house while he had Victoria Wintera held captive. Mathew was very annoying. The actor apparently returns later as different characters.

    Anyways... it’s all delicious and dark and cosy right now and I’m loving it. With spooky self painting portraits and ghosts and dreamy coincidences abound.
     
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  11. Alexis

    Alexis Soap Chat Champion

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    Also loving the announcer over the end credits talking about up coming ABC shows like Peyton Place, Bewitched, That Girl and others.
     
  12. darkshadows38

    darkshadows38 Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    Thayer David is his name and yes he comes back as many different characters, and one of them is a not so bright character. however not all of them are that way, he played the most characters out of all of them. the guy was a brilliant truly brilliant actor. and there's one actor coming up soon that i dunno if you are up to it yet. but you will somehow notice right away who it is... i wonder what show he later joined ? hmmm.... i wonder.... he he. anyways, the announcements do stop at some point but i can't tell you when cause i never pay much attention. anyways,

    the Laura story line yea Diana Mulliany or whatever is her last name many praise her on her acting, but honestly i never thought she was very good. now don't get me wrong there are parts where she is decent. but than there's some that she's not. but to be fair there are a lot of bad acting in the show but she's not the worst by far. Nancy Barrett for one is good but when she played scared she was awful. same thing with Grayson Hall she was brilliant in the role but when they would want her to be scared or terrified she was really bad.

    and part of it isn't their fault. they would grade the actors on how over the top they'd get and when they'd want to do it again they'd have to on purpose mess up a light Jonathon Frid used to swear if a take he did he thought was lousy. but you couldn't do any of that well that often since it was so damn expensive for them to shoot it again in those days.

    my favorite actor of the whole show is David Selby though he's boring fantastic when he comes onto the show. he came in the show in (1968) at the behest of Jonathon Frid who was carrying the show and he had so much Dialog to do that it was really hard for him to remember it and so to take some of the weight off his shoulders he asked for another character to be created so he could relax a bit more and i'm guessing focus more on his lines and his performance.

    Roger Davies though i just watched a movie he did called "Ruby' from (1977) with the great Piper Laurie and it was pretty good actually once Davies showed up. it was awful until than but he brought life to the film and gave it the jolt it needed and he was really good in it. it's just a shame he wasn't introduced into the film earlier.
     
  13. Alexis

    Alexis Soap Chat Champion

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    Well what with the holidays and everything else going on I haven't gotten around to posting here for a while. I have made it to the colour episodes and some time before that Barnabas Collins arrived. And then the show just goes bat shit crazy, and I love it. A real life/dead vampire stalking about in a cape with a cane. There are crypts, all dark and strewn with cobwebs. The ghost of a little girl named Sarah playing around the old house with David and unseen by anyone else but Maggie Evans who everyone thought was dead too. It's fabulous!

    Jonathan Frid is great as Barnabas. The Alexis Colby of Dark Shadows. Coming in out of nowhere and chewing all the scenery up, and stealing all the dialogue. He's charming and menacing all at the same time. His voice is calming and gentle and yet also sinister depending on who he's speaking too. Then we have another new cast member, Grayson Hall as Dr. Julia Hoffman. And oh my is she something. She's giving off demented alcoholic maniac vibes even though none of that is what her character really is. She's a very, umm, animated actress. When the scene calls for her to be afraid, or in peril, or even just slightly bewildered. She launches into the most fantastic displays of hysterical theatrics. It's a sight to behold. And her voice, almost Witchy crackles and crackles as she screams.

    What I haven't mentioned is that everyone thought Maggie was dead because Barnabas seduced her and somehow put her in a vampiric trance and kidnapped her. Making her believe she was his former love Josette Collins. He recreated her French style bedroom up at the old house and kept her there like some kind of living doll. Obviously for his not able to be shown on 1960s TV debauchery. But like why else would her want her there.
    Then after weeks which felt like years she escapes and that's how we find ourselves with Dr, Julia Hoffman! She is the doctor trying to work out what happened to Maggie. Hoffman then finds out about Barnabas and discovers what he really is. Then lays a trap for him, thinking he will come kill her. She then tells him she can help him find a cure for his Vampiric ways. Some crap about it being a blood disorder she can help fix. It is absolutely bonkers, and absolutely wonderful.

    I have only just got back to watching after a good few weeks, so I think that's about all for now. It's so exciting to see the episodes in colour, and I got a new TV for Christmas too so I can see it all in all its glory.
     
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  14. Alexis

    Alexis Soap Chat Champion

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    Also the exterior shot they use for the Evans' cottage really reminds me of the one used on Peyton Place for the MacKenzie house. I cant find a picture of the MacKenzie one.
    [​IMG]

    And Joe Haskell is a real treat to look at in colour.
    [​IMG]
     
  15. Alexis

    Alexis Soap Chat Champion

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    The new Collinwood terrace/garden set is really gorgeous. It reminds me of the old Hammer films. All old stone work, urns and trailing ivy. There's even a big flowing fountain right in the foreground. It really looks go good, with that big gothic window behind it. I cant find a picture to do it justice. Only this one, which is tiny.
    [​IMG]
     
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  16. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson drilling for soap

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    Oooh, he's pretty!
     
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  17. darkshadows38

    darkshadows38 Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    yep and it's hard to believe he was gay in real life. having said that, when you come upon the last episode with Sharon Smyth who played Sarah i would say when it is but that would be a spoiler. she left the show only cause she was growing and i think was too tall at some point since she was playing a ghost. also one thing you may have missed or forgot about? right before we meet Julia there's an episode before where Dr. Woodard say his old friend Dr. Jules Hoffman. is that a mistake? uh no it's not actually nor is it a flub either not this time. it's cause it was going to be originally be a male doctor but than Dan Curtis Met Grayson and was convinced to use her.

    it's way too early for you meet my favorite character of the entire series as he doesn't enter the show until (1968) you are only in i think summer of (1967) or is it early fall of that year i forget offhand. i'll have to look it up on my DS book episode guide. i'm glad you are still watching and loving it, bear in mind you now in the era of the show where some episodes do and will pop up in black and white. and the reason for that is the color episodes for that one are lost. and the shit i forget term is called but the black and white's are the only one that still exist for certain episodes, than there's only episode during the last year. near the show's run and in fact in the last story arc the show had. only one episode is missing and that's it just one.

    i can live with that don't you think? how about you?
     
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  18. darkshadows38

    darkshadows38 Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    another trivia bit, the reason we lose the 2nd Dr. Woodard who is my favorite one is really cause of the strike that was going on at the time and he refused to i think cross it and was fired. the Original Burke Devilin also was fired from the show Mitch Ryan sadly was/is an alcoholic and though he's been sober for like nearly 50 years by now. he was still drinking during this DS days. and he came to work late far to many times from binges and i think he showed up drunk as well but my memory could be wrong on that one. and they just grew tired of it.

    what's really amazing is that the show was doing so badly in the ratings that it was about to be Cancelled in fact when they upon realizing this created Barnabas and he was Originally going to be in a few episodes and than promplty killed off. but he was such a surprise hit for them that he stayed on, when you don't seen certain actors for so long like during the show's run, you don't see Willie for one for quite awhile and that was only cause he wanted time off the show to go and do plays, a lot of them did that actually when they were able to.

    another Trivia bit is that David Henensy or however ya spell his last name? would sneak off and smoke in Joan Bennet's dressing room cause it would disguise it what with all the perfume she wore. she also was a pretty classy lady helping the stage hands set up the set and was i think the last one to leave as well. i think she was the 1st one there too... the paintings they had on the show were being worked on as the show was being taped as well. the Barnabas portrait was orignally painted without a face and i think it was the producer

    Robert Costello in fact i just looked this up and i was right it is Robert Costello but the face was left blank as the actor which of course turned out to be Jonathon Frid. just a few bits of Trivia.
     
  19. Alexis

    Alexis Soap Chat Champion

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    It's kind of weird that the new Burke Devlin doesn't even annoy me. I mean the recast works. Clearly I can tell it's a different actor, but both actors possess similar qualities. Mitchel Ryan and Anthony George both have that kind of rugged manly attractiveness. It just feels like they are the same person.

    Back in for another binge tonight. I'm just amazed that all these episodes survived, somehow. I'm loving all these new "outdoors" sets. The garden, the woods and the graveyard. I've read that the studio they used was a converted lumber mill. Very narrow, so I'm guessing it was just jam packed with sets. There are so many! The set designer really did an amazing job, considering the restraints of the time and the limited budget. It's all so atmospheric.
     
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  20. darkshadows38

    darkshadows38 Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    it has since been torn down as of either last year or the year before i forget which. for years though it was the same studio that Montel Williams used for his show when it used to be on back in the day if i recall. cool eh? but sadly i think to hazard a guess nobody used it since his show ended and well they tore it down grr.


    yeah i also am amazed that all but one episode even still survived! it's the only soap from that era that has them all but that one episode. all the other ones have some still around but DS is the only one that has them all and the missing one is one of the last episodes too.. i forget the number but it's in i think (1971) i think ? what they used to do as you may already know is just tape over it and use the tape again for the next episode. how some episodes survived for other soaps is anyone's guess just pure luck maybe? or they had staff that took a slew of them home maybe? that's how some of the Doctor who episodes survived some of the staff took them home for themselves instead of getting rid of them.

    so we can thank those staffers for certain episodes and prolly certain serials as well. anyways, to take a guess on why it survived maybe we can thank Dan Curtis i mean the show was his production company after all and he saved them for himself. it also baffles me that they for years only played a certain amount of episodes but never played the early ones and for years would always start with Barnabas entering the show.

    and it wasn't until i think it was to hazard a guess cause i can't honestly remember where The Sci-Fi Channel and damn do i miss that channel ya know back when it was a damn good channel and i would watch it for hours. anyways, i think it wasn't until (1998) when i became a fan of the Original show i became a fan in (1991) when the reboot was around as i watched it 1st run and was i pissed that it got cancelled due to the war. anyways, i put in episode #45 this morning to watch but than i was about halfway through it when i said to myself i have no idea what's going on.

    so i said screw it and i put in Beginning's Volume #1 in i had been on Disc #2 Volume #2. so i put the Pilot on and so far i've watched i think the first 2 episodes of the show.
    the early years are a lot different for me than the later years cause i can get into certain storylines pretty fast but the early ones i know a lot less actually.
     

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