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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I've watched up to episode 136 now.  Laura is staying in Matthew's old cottage (it's been, what, two days since he died?), and Roger's drawing up papers for a divorce. Which leads to one of my all-time favorite line flubs so far, as Garner, Roger's attorney, asks "Who is her legal responsib-- um -- who is her lawyer?" Almost certainly the script read "Who is her legal representation?" and he started to say "responsibility" instead, and then had to reach for a bit to save the take. 

Also, it doesn't look like Laura packs or unpacks, either! And she psychically calls to David. And David thinks she's an impostor! Meanwhile, Sam is obsessed with painting her in a fire. 

"My name is Victoria Winters, and I'll paint any car for $49.95."

"My name is Victoria Winters, and we've got movie sign."

"My name is Victoria Winters, and there has never been a successful escape from Stalag 13."

"My name is Victoria Winters. You killed my father. Prepare to die."

Speaking of Victoria Winters's name... was that an actual practice, of naming foundlings after the season when they were found? I mean, it's as good a name as any, and they need something... but it strikes me as very "Jon Snow" in Game of Thrones, where the whole naming convention for bastards was to give them the surname of the predominant feature of the region where they're born. (I know other bastards in GOT were named Sand, and I'm sure there's some Woods or Salt or something else I'm forgetting, since it's been a while since I read the books.)

On the other hand, I keep expecting Victoria to realize she's related to Baron Winters, who, let's face it, would fit RIGHT in.

  

"You know nothing, Victoria Winters."

Yep, that checks out.

COLLINSPORT INN:

Did you ever notice, in the location shots, how various actors would walk to the side of the structure (the one with the columns was obviously the front)? they did a good job of matching the side doors with the studio set of the front desk and restaurant, but why would the main entrances be on the side? 

Here is a link to the what the real location looks like today: Griswold Inn, Essex, CT

Say, would anyone be interested in meeting up there (not this year and probably not next, but how about in 2022)? In addition to the inn, Griswold is also the location for other exterior shots, such as the police station, main street and the waterfront around Roger's office and the Collins Cannery. the exterior of the Evenas' cottage is also in the area. 

I would totally be into a meetup there, once it's safe! Looks like it's a 3-hour drive for me. And by 2022, I'll have finally met Barnabas!

I've seen through episode 139, and we've had quite a lot happen... Roger's pulled a gun on Burke, and told him he'll kill him if he doesn't stay away from Laura... Laura wants a lock of David's hair... and David's hanging off the cliff at Widow's Hill because he was so upset that Laura came to see him.

But most of all... this might not be Laura??? A body in her apartment was burnt beyond recognition when her apartment building burnt down back in Arizona,,, and the body's been tentatively ID'd as Laura. So is it Laura, and is the woman who arrived in Collinsport a "phoenix" of some sort? Or was is not Laura, and did Laura cause someone else to die in her apartment? Or....?

This is a really exciting development.  

Those are all the questions you should be asking at this point, but it's too early to discuss it. Just sit back and gather evidence, and I'll try not to spoil too much.

Tracy and I watched that YouTube thing tweeted by KLS and posted by Tim here last week. for whatever reason, I assumed (or maybe just hoped) it was to have been a performance of some sort, but no, it was an hour and a half of senior citizens trying to use Zoom. There were 12 DS actors hosted by two fanboys. the first question was "What have you been doing [for the fifty years!] since the show ended?" Some of them tried to give as complete an answer as they could; David Selby mentioned taking out the trash today. 44 minutes (the length of time it took for everyone to answer the first question) was about all we could stand.

NOTE to Rob: You would have recognized only four of the 12 actors: the ones who played Maggie, Carolyn, Burke and David.

NOTE to Bob: "Mr. Sneery Face" was there, too. 

The two biggest surprises were the participation of David Henesy and James Hall: David Henesy because, to my knowledge, he has not participated in anything DS-related since leaving the show, and James Hall because he was in only five episodes (although his character was in many, many more). If you don't know who that is, don't worry about it; we'll get to him soon enough.

KLS showed some memorabilia: a plastic "vampire bite" appliance from the movie, a call sheet from the TV show, and an envelope of Jonathan Frid's hair (!) which she picked up off the floor when he got a haircut on set.Marie Walace, "Eve" (again, Rob, don't worry), showed a recent issue of Soap Opera Digest which had a crossword puzzle with eight DS clues. Ooh! Roger Davis went on far too long about his prostate cancer.

The most interesting thing was seeing what the actors look like today, but I really can't recommend watching this... to anyone

Wow.... I knew I'd be skipping that because of potential spoilers and not enough reference to who the actors were... but WOW. That's next-level bad. Such a shame, too, since this opportunity won't come around often!

Not too many spoilers, but if you change your mind, it's up on You Tube; you didn't have to watch live (we didn't).

Episode 141.

David takes Laura to the old house -- and Josette doesn't manifest for her, but seems to want to. And Vicki goes to visit Maggie, and sees Sam's painting of Laura... and there's a detail on the painting I didn't notice before. In the flames, there's a shape of someone's head and shoulders toward the bottom of the painting...pretty much exactly where you'd expect David to be.

Loving it.

(Oh, and in episode 140, I think, Laura not eating is definitely reinforced as a plot point, as both Roger and Elizabeth mention that she's barely touched her food. It seemed like one was trying to cover for the other seemingly forgetting their line. Roger recovered the scene pretty well, though.)

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