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 - 264
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, 264
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, 269

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


GOTHIC PAPERBACK LIBRARY

1. Dark Shadows - p183
2. Victoria Winters - p183
3. Strangers at Collins House - p183
4. The Mystery of Collinwood - p184
5. The Curse of Collinwood - p184
6. Barnabas Collins - p185
7. The Secret of BC - p185
8. The Demon of BC - p185
9. The Foe of BC - p185
10. The Phantom of BC - p185
11. BC vs. the Warlock - p186
12. The Peril of BC - p186
13. BC and the Mysterious Ghost - p187
14. BC and Quentin's Demon - p188
15. BC and the Gypsy Witch - p188
16. B, Q and the Mummy's Curse - p188
17. B, Q and the Avenging Ghost - p242
18. B, Q and the Nightmare Assassin - p244
19. B, Q and the Crystal Coffin
20. B, Q and the Witch's Curse
21. B, Q and the Haunted Cave
22. B, Q and the Frightened Bride
23. B, Q and the Scorpio Curse
24. B, Q and the Serpent
25. B, Q and the Magic Potion
26. B, Q and the Body Snatchers
27. B, Q and Dr. Jekyll's Son
28. B, Q and the Grave Robbers
29. B, Q and the Sea Ghost
30. B, Q and the Mad Magician
31. B, Q and the Hidden Tomb
32. B, Q and the Vampire Beauty
33. House of Dark Shadows - p241

ROB STAEGER: p189

NEWSPAPER STRIPS: p241

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I've finally read the Dark Shadows content in my issue of Famous Monsters of Filmland, and it's a bit underwhelming. The 8-page article is largely a detailed plot synopsis of the first half or so of Night of Dark Shadows -- which will start Kate Jackson, David Selby, Grayson Hall, Lara Parker, and Nancy Barrett from the show (generally as different characters from the show, although Parker plays a witch named Angelique, and Selby's character is named Quentin, although he doesn't seem to be the same guy as in the show). Then there's a little look back at the popularity of the show (director Fritz Lang was apparently a fan, according to Ackerman), and some hype that the séance in the movie will be the most accurate ever put on screen, since it was supervised by "a world-famous authority on psychic phenomena." (Unnamed, of course.)

You can read the article (and see a much better reproduction of the photos than are in the magazine itself) at the Collinsport Historical Society..

Rob Staeger (Grodd Mod) said:

Went to Baltimore Comic Con this weekend, and I walked out with this beauty. I'll report on the contents once I have a chance to read it.

"Selby's character is named Quentin, although he doesn't seem to be the same guy as in the show."

Including the movie, David Selby plays six different characters, all of them named "Quentin Collins." 

Holy cow -- that's insane. Like, even by DCU Batman standards, that's overkill.

I've seen up through episode 709 now.  Barnabas is pretty ensconced in the family intrigue, both by BEING the secret Edith didn't want anyone to know about (but planned to tell Edward before she died), and by telling Quentin he knows he has the will (that their lawyer, played by the former Nicholas!, plans to alter). Now, Jamison also knows that Quentin has the will -- or at least a letter from Edith's coffin -- but he probably won't say anything. 

I'm enjoying Magda and Sandor a lot. And now we've got practical joker Carl in the family! And, of course, Barnabas has to open his yap and tell the new governess she looks just like Josette. That's gonna end well, I'm sure. 

Plus, Barnabas spots Quentin's original I Ching set -- are we going to get time travel within a time travel sequence? This show is bonkers.

Dark Shadows went from being a soap opera with mild Gothic elements to a spookfest where literally any goddamned thing could happen. Eventually, it reached a point where if the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus were fighting a death-duel on Collinwood's front lawn, you'd be  like, "Yeah, OK."

"Barnabas... BEING the secret Edith didn't want anyone to know about..."

"You! You are the secret!"

That's one of the greatest cliffhangers of the show, and you were right on the verge of discovering it when last you posted. It was all I could do to keep my mouth shut. Unfortunately, now that that cat is out of the bag vampire is out of the coffin, we never hear about the "secret" again. Fortunately, there's the mystery of the will to take its place and drive the plot forward. 

"This show is bonkers."

It used to be there were two main plots at most. Generally the plots didn't cross over all that much, and the characters involved in one spent a whole lot of time summarizing the plot for the characters in the other. What makes the 1897 arc so interesting is that there are multiple stories going on simultaneously, and most of the characters are involved in more than one. 

Once again I have to fight the urge to hint about what's to come, but you won't have long to wait. 

"I've seen up through episode 709 now."

You didn't mention it, but in episode 709 Quentin hears a a heart beating which sends him running from the room, which means it's time to update the list of "Dark Shadows Literary & Cinematic Sources". 

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte - (Victoria Winters)

The Crucible by Arthur Miller - (1795, Victoria, Abigail and Trask)

"The Cask of Amontillado" by Edgar Allan Poe - (1795, Barnabas and Trask)

"Dover Beach" by Matthew Arnold - (Roger recites this poem while under Angelique's spell)

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley - (Adam)

The Bride of Frankenstein by Universal Studios - (Eve)

The Bible - (Adam & Eve)

"The Premature Burial" by Edgar Allan Poe - (Elizabeth)

The Wolfman by Universal Studios - (Chris Jennings)

"The Tell-Tale Heart" by Edgar Allan Poe - (Quentin)

We are up to 729 and I am displaying admirable restraint not posting teaser spoilers (if I do say so myself).

Oh yeah, I totally caught the Telltale Heart reference, and thought, welp, there's another one!

I'm in the last day of a pre-Christmas CRUSH of work, so hopefully I'll get back to watching DS soon; next week I'm taking completely off. I think I'm up to episode 711 or so now, and just haven't written anything. But I've loved how Evan and Quentin used Daniel as part of a dark ritual, and brought Angelique back to life... and then how Angelique ABSOLUTELY cuts Evan down to size!

Okay, I've seen up through episode 715 now. A lot has happened!

Barnabas has put the stand-in-for-Joesette moves on Rachel. It's basically his only pickup line. Then Angelique tries to strangle her with a voodoo doll. Barnabas gets an amulet from Magda to protect Rachel from witchcraft.

Judith gets ahold of the will and reads it to the fam. Carl and Edward are left out of it entirely, and Quentin is given a room in perpetuity at Collinwood, but that's it. Judith is in control of everything. 

Rachel wants to know who's hidden away in the north tower (possibly Edward's wife?) and works with Magda to find out. Whoever it is lit Edward's bed on fire the night before. At the cliffhanger, Rachel has finally opened the door...!

Judith really lives it up as mistress of the house. Her boots were made for standing on everyone. 

"A lot has happened!"

That's what I've been trying to tell you!

I've been trying to avoid this, but look for new characters in 716, 725, 727, 729 (or 730) and 731. Also a major plot development in 721 and a new backstory for one of our regulars. 

I've seen up through episode 718 now. Rachel is attacked by Jenny in the tower, who escapes and attacks Judith until Beth calms her down. Rachel goes for a walk to get Barnabas involved (and she kisses him), but when Barnabas goes up to the tower, he's confronted by Angelique, who tells him someone will be staking him soon. (And shows him an open window of a sunny morning, which I'm not sure if it was supposed to be in the future or not.) She also knows about what's going on with Barbabas in the present. She warns him of the dangers of time travel and offers to help him since she's fond of David. 

Then Quentin convinces Jamison to steal Barnabas's cane, figuring that if it's still at the Old House during the day, then Barnabas must be there too.

This show's average IQ rose 5 points when Vicki left, and it rose another 10 once Quentin started talking. 

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