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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Jeff of Earth-J said:
I figured you'd like these.

Me, I would have guessed Bat Masterson. :P

Awesome.
Multiple sources describe Barnabas as a “175 year old vampire.” He was let out of his coffin in 1967, which means he was born in 1792. The 1795 storyline contradicts that, but according to the original backstory (Jeremiah built Collinwood in 1830 and Josette leapt to her death in 1834), Barnabas would have been 42 years old when Josette died. Jonathan Frid was 42 years old when he took the part.
The Chiller Channel is showing 11 episodes of the 1991 series 11/23-24. There are 5 episodes Tuesday and 6 on Wednesday.
Thanks, Tim. That's the enire series and it's pretty good; too bad it didn't catch on.

I've been off the board for a week or so, so I'd like to review before I continue.

DAY "ZERO" [#1-4]: Vicki arrives at Collinwood.
DAY ONE [#5-20]: Roger has a car accident.
DAY TWO [#21-37]: Accident investigated and party responsible revealed.
DAY THREE [#38-47]: Malloy snoops around, sets a meeting, goes missing.
DAY FOUR [#48-52]: Vicki and Carolyn see a body in the water.
DAY FIVE: [#53-66]: Malloy’s body is recovered and the investigation begins.
DAY SIX [#67-70]: Josette’s ghost first appears; first Old House.

DAY SEVEN [#71-78]:

Bill Malloy’s death is declared accidental by the coroner. Walking along the beach, Vicki finds the pen that puts Roger at the scene of Malloy’s death. At the Blue Whale, Maggie Evans flirts with Joe Haskell.

Barnabas Joke of the Day: What films does Barnabas like? His favorite films are noose reels.
Jeff of Earth-J said:
What films does Barnabas like? His favorite films are noose reels.

HAW! HAW! HAW!
DAY EIGHT [#79-87]:

Elizabeth interviews Bill Malloy’s housekeeper, Mrs. Johnson, for a similar position at Collinwood, unaware that she will be spying for Burke Devlin. At the inn, Joe confides in Maggie that things aren’t going well between him and Carolyn. Maggie invites him to dinner that night at her house and he accepts. Later, Carolyn tries to make a date with him, but he declines. After that, she learns he had a date with Maggie. Roger sees that Vicki has the pen and palms it, but David gets the blame. In revenge, David lures Vicki to a remote room in the closed off wing, locks her in and leaves her there. While trapped in the room, Vicki sees the ghost of Bill Malloy who warns her to leave Collinwood because she is in danger. Something David said clues Roger in to where Vicki might be. He searches for her and finds her, but before he rescues her he pretends to be a ghost and warns her to leave, unaware that a real ghost has already done so. Episode #87 features the first appearance of the hidden panel in the drawing room.

Barnabas Joke of the Day: Who writes his dialogue for Dark Shadows? A staff of ghost writers.
Dark Shadows, from America's Best Comics (1957-58).
Thanks, Luke. I've seen those covers before (in a book of dark Shadows collectables). those 1957-8 comic books obviously pre-date the 1966show, but they're kinda neat nonetheless.

DAY NINE [#88-91]:

Roger and Elizabeth investigate the room in which David locked Vicki and find a piece of wet seaweed. Later, Vicki takes Carolyn there, but the seaweed, evidence of her having seen a ghost, is gone. They do find an old “Garner & Garner” ledger sheet with the name “B. Hanscomb” written on it. She takes it to pursue the link with the painting in Sam Evan’s house. When David learns that Vicki saw a real ghost, his attitude toward her changes entirely and he begs her to stay. She agrees, but asks Mrs. Stoddard for a few days off.

Barnabas Joke of the Day: Is Barnabas ever late for work? No, he always gets there just in the neck of time.
DAY TEN [#92-96]:

According to Elizabeth, B. Hanscomb was the long-time butler at Collinwood, and Betty was either his daughter or his niece, but she didn’t look a thing like Vicki.

Planning to take a bus to Bangor to meet with the Collins’ family lawyer, Richard Garner, about the ledger sheet, Vicki is accompanied to town by Carolyn, who surreptitiously slips out to phone Burke Devlin to ask him to join them. Her plan backfires, though, because when Burke finds out that Vicki is going to Bangor, he insists on driving her there. This turn of events makes Carolyn extremely jealous.

In Bangor, Vicki meets with senior partner Richard Garner, but he isn’t very helpful. Vicki wonders if the other Garner might know something about the “B. Hanscomb” in the ledger, but when Richard calls him in, he turns out to be the elder Garner’s son, Frank. (When the ledger was filled out, the other Garner was Richard’s brother, since deceased.) Frank is in his late 20s, good looking and obviously attracted to Vicki. Frank is eager to begin helping Vicki unlock the secret to her past, but after she leaves, Richard reminds Frank that Elizabeth Stoddard, not Victoria Winters, is their client.

Later at the hotel restaurant, Vicki sits with Burke’s lawyer Blair and notices he has a pen identical to the one she found on the beach. It was a gift to him from Burke, and from Blair she learns that there are only six like it in the world, and the other four are in South America. She then erroneously jumps to the conclusion that Burke, not Roger, was at the scene of Malloy’s death. She becomes extremely frightened at the prospect of driving back to Collinsport with Burke, but the last bus has already gone. She tells Burke she plans to extend her trip another day, then calls Roger to pick her up.

Roger takes a back way home but the road is washed out, forcing them to seek shelter in a cabin they find along the way. They don’t have to spend the whole night there, though, because the sheriff happens by, but Vicki does tell Roger she suspects Burke of murdering Bill Malloy because of the pen she found.

Regarding the confusion surrounding B. and Betty Hanscomb, I think the butler may have had both a daughter (who lived with him) and a niece (who visited), and that Sam confused the one whose portrait he painted and the one who died.

Barnabas Joke of the Day: What does Barnabas think of the world situation? He thinks it’s grave.
Ah, the plot thickens. Somebody must've added some flour.
I recently signed up for Netflix which has Dark Shadows available for streaming beginning with the arrival of Barnabas (earlier episodes are only available on DVD). Turns out my wife was a huge fan of the show, so we have been watching several episodes per week, usually two at a time since they only run 21 minutes each. I believe we are up to #219. This thread has been great for filling in some of the back story.
DARK SHADOWS: THE FIRST YEAR

For whatever reason, keeping track of the number of days that have passed for Victoria Winters at Collinwood has reinvigorated my interest in the early days of the show. On October 25 I started with recap of Vicki’s first two days, then on the 26th I began a detailed analysis of each episode that made up her third. On November 5 I began summarizing the show on a “day-by-day” basis and got as far as “Day 10” (posted yesterday). Then I bought a new book, Dark Shadows: The First Year. Not only does it provide detailed summaries of each episode, but it also keeps track of how many days passed for Vicki before the arrival of Barnabas Collins. (52, BTW.)

Another idea I had was to compile all of the opening voiceover narration into “Vicki’s Diary” but the book did that, too. Knocked the wind right out of my sails!

It also provides brief summaries of each individual “day” as I did on Saturday. The books count of days tallies with mine ( so far) exactly, except they count Vicki’s first five hours as “Day One” rather than “Day Zero” as I did. Consequently, my numbering is off by a day, but the summaries below synchs my list up with the book’s as well as catches me up to where I am in my viewing. Going forward, I will refer to the way Dark Shadows: The First Year counts the days.

DAY ELEVEN TWELVE [#97-98]: Mrs. Johnson begins working at Collinwood and believes it is haunted.
DAY TWELVE THIRTEEN [#99-103]: Someone tries to get into Victoria’s room at night.
DAY THIRTEEN FOURTEEN [#104-105]: Burke and the sheriff trick Roger into digging up the pen he buried.
DAY FOURTEEN FIFTEEN [#106-113*]: The party responsible for the death of Bill Malloy is revealed.

*Six episodes; there were no episodes numbered #109-110 because of Thanksgiving.

Dark Shadows writer Ron Sproat provides the introduction to DS:TFY, and it’s obvious his storytelling sensibilities are somewhat different from those of Art Wallace, who developed the show and wrote its bible, but he does provide a simple and clear-cut explanation of what, exactly, Laura Collins is. I will return to this thread with a post tiled “25 Days of the Phoenix.”

Barnabas Joke of the Day: Does Barnabas use any make-up on television? No, he just dies his hair.

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