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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All right, you guys… Now you’ve done it!

Jeff of Earth-J said:
NOTE: I actually rejected ten jokes lamer than this one before posting!

10 Particularly Lame Barnabas Jokes of the Day:

Did Barnabas always want to be a vampire? No. When he was young he wanted to be a tree surgeon but he couldn’t stand the sight of sap.

When does he go shopping? Only when the stores have giant sales. He buys giants.

What does Barnabas eat for breakfast? Ghost-Toasties.

What did Barnabas buy as a birthday present for his pet octopus. A coat of arms.

Does he have any bad habits? He’s a chain smoker.

What’s his favorite television show? Death Valley Days.

How did Barnabas make Joan of Arc mad? I don’t know, but she sure was burned up.

When Barnabas gets sick, what doctor does he go to? Witch doctor. I don’t kow which doctor, that’s why I asked you.

Why does Barnabas like frogs’ legs? Because he gets a kick out of them.

Why won’t Barnabas tell the story about the bed of nails? Because it hasn’t been made up yet.
Awesome.
The jokes aren’t lame. You just have the wrong answers.

Did Barnabas always want to be a vampire? Yes. It was in his blood.

When does he go shopping? Blüdhaven.

What does Barnabas eat for breakfast? Blood pudding.

What did Barnabas buy as a birthday present for his pet octopus? Its own little coffin. Then he drank its blood.

Does he have any bad habits? He drinks blood.

What’s his favorite television show? Reruns of A Bucket of Blood. He thinks it’s a cooking show.

How did Barnabas make Joan of Arc mad? He drank her blood.

When Barnabas gets sick, what doctor does he go to? One with lots of blood.

Why does Barnabas like frogs’ legs? He eats them fresh, with the blood.

Why won’t Barnabas tell the story about the bed of nails? It makes him drool. And he’s too busy drinking your blood.
Aw, LB, you're a great man.
Thanks Baron. I muffed the second one, so here's a SPECIAL BONUS JOKE. What are Barnabas's favourite lines from Shakespeare? Hamlet 3.3.279-381. But he likes cold too.
Luke Blanchard said:
Thanks Baron. I muffed the second one, so here's a SPECIAL BONUS JOKE. What are Barnabas's favourite lines from Shakespeare? Hamlet 3.3.279-381. But he likes cold too.

What's frightening is that I don't have to go look that up.
Just as well, as it should be 3.2.379-381. He likes Macbeth 2.2. 58-60 too, but the thought of all that seawater makes him thirsty.
Maybe I should post just the questions from now on, because Luke's answers are funnier than the ones in the book.

Luke, you must be Barnabas Collins' blood brother!

DARK SHADOWS PAPERBACKS:

I divide collectible entertainment into two separate and distinct phases: the acquisition phase and the enjoyment phase. Sometimes the enthusiasm of the acquisition phase carries me through the enjoyment phase, but other times the acquisition phase takes so long that my enthusiasm wanes and the enjoyment phase gets postponed. Case in point: Dark Shadows paperbacks. Dan “Marilyn” Ross wrote 32 of them between 1966 and 1972, and I decided to collect them after finding one at random in a used bookstore. The earlier ones are relatively easy to find, but as the popularity of the show declined so did the print runs of the paperbacks, making the later ones much more difficult to locate.

I completed my collection some time ago (with the invaluable help of my wife) and immediately began reading them. I made my way through the first five in short order, stopping just short of the first to feature Barnabas Collins. That’s been some years ago, and now that I’m in the mood to read these paperbacks again, I feel the need to refresh the first five in my mind before moving on. I have a kind of bad habit of always re-starting over at the beginning of big reading projects rather that picking up where I left off the last time, and when Tracy found out my intention she said she’d be “really p*ssed off” if a started over at the beginning again. So, shh… please don’t tell her.

The series of paperbacks starts at the same point as the TV show, but takes a somewhat different direction. Although not impossible, it would be difficult to reconcile the two storylines, so I think it best to treat the paperbacks as an entirely different continuity, a sort of Earth-2 Dark Shadows if you will. The limitations placed upon Dan Ross are fairly obvious. Certain aspects of Dark Shadows (such as Victoria Winters’ past or Burke Devlin’s vendetta) were considered the purview of the television show and were allowed to be mentioned, although not developed, in the paperback book series. Elizabeth, Roger, Carolyn and David all appear in the novels, but nothing (or little) is allowed to happen to them that would be at odds with the TV version. Consequently, Ross introduced his own characters unique to the books.

Beginning soon (maybe later today), I’ll begin looking at each of these paperbacks for as long as the mood lasts.

Barnabas Joke of the Day: Why do they keep Barnabas on the show? Because they’re stuck with him.
Was Barnabas a vampire in the paperbacks?
As far as I know, yes. This website gives an overview of all the books, but I haven't read it in order to avoid spoilers.
Thanks, Jeff.
Barnabas Joke of the Day: Why does Barnabas laugh when he reads the paper? Because he reads only the obituary columns.

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