I’d like to start this continuation of the Dark Shadows discussion from the old board with a look at some of the new and upcoming Dark Shadows audio stories from Big Finish Productions. There aren’t nearly as many Dark Shadows audio adventures as there are Doctor Who ones, but the Doctor Who series has been around longer. The Dark Shadows audios are a mixed bag. The first release was a full-cast sequel titled “Return to Collinwood”. Later they began to release a series of interconnected sequential stories grouped in short “seasons”. More recently they’ve been going back to the timeline of the original television show and telling interstitial one-shots. As the Dark Shadows series seems to be catching on, Big Finish seems to be ramping up their production schedule. “Curse of the Pharaoh” was released in September, and the next four are set for monthly release beginning in January at a special subscription rate.

CURSE OF THE PHARAOH:

“Curse of the Pharaoh” stars Nancy Barrett (reprising her role as Carolyn Stoddard) and Marie Wallace (perhaps best known as “Eve” on the TV show) in a new role, famed Egyptologist Dr. Gretchen Warwick. The story doesn’t specify, but I assume it takes place shortly after the end of the series original TV series, circa 1970 or so. Both actresses are kind of rusty and sound as old as they are, not as young as they (Caroline, anyway) are supposed to be. Barrett was always a better actress than Wallace, and that remains true. Wallace’s shortcomings are spotlighted in this “dramatic reading” in which she plays other bit parts, most of the male (Bob the bartender at The Blue Whale, Eliot Stokes on the telephone, Carolyn’s father in flashback), which she performs in a gruff kind of storybook voice as if reading aloud to a child. The story itself is a sequel to the unpopular “Leviathan” television storyline. If you’ve never heard a Dark Shadows audio and thinking of trying one out, there are better ones to start with than this.

KEY: OB = Old Board; UR = Un-Reviewed

Return to Collinwood - 169

SEASON ONE:
S1.1 The House of Despair - 1
S1.2 The Book of Temptation - OB
S1.3 The Christmas Presence - OB
S1.4 The Rage Beneath - 7

SEASON TWO: Kingdom of the Dead - 7

DRAMATIC READINGS:

1. Angelique’s Descent-Pt. 1 - OB
2. Angelique’s Descent-Pt. 2 - OB
3. Clothes of Sand - OB
4. The Ghost Walker - OB
5. The Skin Walkers - OB
6. The Path of Fate - OB
7. The Wicked & the Dead - OB
8. Echoes of Insanity - OB
9. Curse of the Pharaoh - 1
10. Final Judgment - 1
11. Blood Dance - 1
12. The Night Whispers - 1
13. London’s Burning - 2
14. The Doll House - 30
15. The Blind Painter - 87
16. The Death Mask - 88
17. The Creeping Fog - 89
18. The Carrion Queen - 89
19. The Poisoned Soul - 96
20. The Lost Girl - 96
21. The Crimson Pearl - 114
22. The Voodoo Amulet - 129
23. The House by the Sea - 170
24. Dress Me in Dark Dreams - 154
25. The Eternal Actress - 162
26. The Fall of House Trask - 163
27. Operation: Victor - 166
28. Speak No Evil - 166
29. The Last Stop - 166
30. Dreaming of the Water - 167
31. The Haunted Refrain - 167
32. A Collinwood Christmas - 167
33. The Phantom Bride - 167
34. Beneath the Veil - 167
35. The Enemy Within - 167
36. The Lucifer Gambit - 167
37. The Flip Side - 167
38. Beyond the Grave - 168
39. Curtain Call - 168
40. The Harvest of Souls - 170
41. The Happier Dead - 168
42. The Carriage Damned - 168
43. The Devil Cat - 168
44. The Darkest Shadow - 173

SEASON THREE: Bloodlust - 170-172, 181

45. Panic - 173
46. The Curse of Shurafa - 173
47. In the Twinkling of an Eye - 173
48. Deliver Us from Evil - 173
49. Tainted Love - 173
50. ...And Red All Over - 175

Echoes of the Past - 176

Blood & Fire - 176

Haunting Memories - 177

Phantom Melodies - 178

Dreams of Long Ago - 178

THE TONY & CASSANDRA MYSTERIES:
The Mystery at Crucifix Heights - 179
The Mystery of La Danse Macabre - 179
The Mystery of Flight 493 - 180
The Mystery of Karmina Sonata - 180

SHADOWS OF THE NIGHT:
Trio - 180
Honeymoon from Hell - 180
Retreat -180
1:53 AM - 180

MAGGIE & QUENTIN - THE LOVERS' REFRAIN:
The Girl Beneath the Water - 180
The Sand That Speaks HIs Name - 180
The Hollow Winds That Beckon
The Paper to the Flame
  

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This is like a Dark Shadows time travel storyline - you, me and Doc Photo all visiting Collinwood at different points in its timeline. I'll think I'll go prevent Bill Malloy's murder and see what it does to the rest of you further on up the timeline.
And that's why a TARDIS console is designed for six users.
That's how I initially watched Dark Shadows my first time through. I started with the introduction of Barnabas, but I also was consulting the 30th anniversary Dark Shadows Almanac, which listed all of the episodes and storylines. Before too long, I was watching three different eras simultaneously, alternating among 1795, 1897 and the present day. When one storyline would finish, I'd move to another. Sometimes I'd watch more than three; it was very random (yet sequential within its randomness).

If you were to prevent the death of Bill Malloy (on Vicki's fourth day at Collinwood), you would have likely moved “Burke’s grand revenge” about 40 days earlier, and Roger would have “squirmed for an episode” circa #47 rather than #200. Things would likely be quiet for the next fortnight (or 76 episodes, if you prefer), because the events of those two weeks were driven by the death of Bill Malloy. However, Laura Collins would still return to Collinsport in episode #123, and that series of events would likely play out pretty much as before.

As to what effect Bill Malloy’s presence would have going forward is anybody’s guess.

Second Barnabas Joke of the Day: Why doesn’t Barnabas like victims with coal dust on their bodies? He says they try to give him the coal shoulder.
Baron - If you are going to be messing around with the timeline back there, see what you can do to prevent Dr. Hoffman from coming to Collinwood.

"Whatcha readin"?"

 

"Article about Windcliff Sanitarium."

 

"What about 'em?"

 

"They're interviewin' candidates to be the new head of the place."

 

"What happened to the old head of the place?"

 

"She was run over by a London bus."

 

"In rural Maine?"

#69DRK - 9/29/66:

1)Mrs. Johnson is sort of like "Margaret Hamilton Lite".

 

2)"I believe in signs and omens."

 

3)"I want you for something right now." Go, you fool!

 

4)Cliffhanger: Burke says that anyone at Collinwood is fair game!

#268-270:

Preparing to leap from atop Widows’ Hill, Elizabeth records the date of her death as April 10, 1967, even though the episode was taped in June and aired in July. Still, given that one date, it is now possible to ascertain the exact date of all episodes so far.

Good blooper: a fan is clearly shown blowing the curtains from outside Elizabeth’s second floor bedroom window.

The scene between Jason and Carolyn when Jason finally reveals his true colors is one of my all-time favorites.

BIG Friday cliffhanger as the blackmail plot reaches its climax.

Barnabas Joke of the Day: Does Barnabas play any sports? Well, if we don’t stop him, he’ll have his own National Open.

(Huh?)
Jeff - the episodes you are currently watching may be my favorites so far. I knew Elizabeth wouldn't jump and I knew she would escape Jason somehow, but the question was how - things were very tense.  The ghostly voices of the widows calling to Elizabeth added a nice, old fashioned gothic touch to the proceedings.

#70DRK - 3/15/11:

1)No Slate Guy!  Just the poor slate by itself on the floor!

 

2)Now it's 130 years exactly?

 

3)"In future, Matthew, don't try to kill anyone without checking with me first."

 

4)"Is a ghost a person?"

 

5)It's the Ghost of Harry Caray Josette Collins!

 

6)Cliffhanger: The ghost wanders around and doesn't do much!

Episode #70 represents a major milestone: the first actual appearance of an actual ghost! By this time you have seen only one previous manifestation of the supernatural: the book opening by itself. Apparently the ratings spiked, so Curtis decided to push the envelope. The show was in real danger of being cancelled at this point, but with the introduction of actual supernatural elements, the future direction (and future) of Dark Shadows was assured.

Now it's 130 years exactly?

Since what? Collinwood was built or Josette leaped from Widows’ Hill? I think Collinwood was built in 1830 and Josette committed suicide in 1836.* That would be 130 years exactly. *(Prior to the 1795 retcon, that is.)

Watched episodes #271-272 last night. Wow! Five episodes in a row without Barnabas! (Ah, the “old days” when Barnabas was still a sub-plot.) Episode #271 is the “1949 flashback” episode, and just prior to that would have been the perfect time for Liz to have revealed the circumstances surrounding Paul’s disappearance and vicki’s birth.

Barnabas Joke of the Day: I hear even cats are afraid of Barnabas? That’s true. One cat was so frightened by Barnabas that it had to be sent to a psychologist. It was a sort of Freudy cat.

Barnabas Joke of the Day: I hear even cats are afraid of Barnabas? That’s true. One cat was so frightened by Barnabas that it had to be sent to a psychologist. It was a sort of Freudy cat.

 

That's a long walk just to go over a cliff.

I think since Collinwood was built.  Still, with all the time-shivers that occur later, who knows?

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