Friday, April 25, 2014

Gosh, I miss Dark Shadows. Sci Fi Channel used to run two episodes a day in the mid 1990s. I'd tape them, and then come home and watch them as a means of relaxing after work. What a lovely time in my life that was...

Barnabas Collins wasn't always a blood-sucking fiend. Dark Shadows was a soap opera that aired on ABC from 1966 to 1971. Initially, it was supposed to be a Gothic soap opera. That alone was a big change of pace, since most soaps at the time were about endless and endless love affairs, as well as adultery, bankruptcy, burglarly, theft, embezzlement, and other minor crimes. But Dark Shadows didn't do well in the ratings, and less than six months in they decided to "go supernatural".

One dark and stormy night... well, it's always a stormy night in Collinsport.

Anyway, one dark and stormy night, Barnabas Collins shows up on the doorstep of the vast and half-empty Collinwood mansion. He claims to be a descendant of "the" Barnabas Collins, a member of the Collins family who left America in disagrace shortly before the Revolution and returned to England. He looks just like the Barnabas Collins in the big family portrait near the mansion's main door. Ah, but there's always a trick, isn't there? In fact, Barnabas Collins is a vampire.

We learn that, back in the day, Barnbas was a womanizer and arrogant and temper-prone. And even though he was affianced to the wealthy, beautiful, naive Josette du Pres from Jamaica, he nonetheless seduced and then had sex with Josette's maid, Angelique Bouchard. And then he tossed her over for Josette, because Angelique was a slut and low-born. But woe to any many man who dumps a Jamaican-born voodoo witch. What, unfortunately for Barnabas, she turned out to be.

Okay, so maybe Barnabas was a fiend even before he turned into a vampire.

But it made for a hell of a lot of fun after he underwent his "change"...

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