Ockeghem's All Things DARK SHADOWS (w/Spoilers)

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by Ockeghem, Jun 19, 2010.

  1. Ockeghem

    Ockeghem Ockeghem

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    Harry,Nice post! So many of the first-season episodes are in my opinion magical. I never tire of watching them. :)
     
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  2. Charles Ellis

    Charles Ellis Screenwriter

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    About the missing #1219- here's a little-known fact .Remember a couple of years back when a whole slew of vintage Hollywood Squares shows from the late '60s-early 70s were found and then shown on GSN? You can thank Jim Pierson for that!! He was looking for possible lost master tapes of DS episodes (most likely 1219 was on top of his list) when he discovered those long-forgotten game show tapes (the majority from the original HS run were wiped). But as I always say, what is considered 'lost' may be found. And as the recent Doctor Who discovery shows, it is possible. Maybe I'm a Pollyanna, but perhaps the master for #1219 may show up someday.
     
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  3. Radioman970

    Radioman970 Lead Actor

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    I missed the first Sam, but I'll tell ya.. the replacement Sam is an excellent actor. Kind of subdued Shatner. He's believable as a depressed painter. If they brought the other guy back it would be awkward.

    The slates are neat... I love watching those sequences to see what happens. I'd be real surprised if someone hasn't put all those together into a single film and put it on youtube. Dark Shadows Black boards or something.

    "affordable price" Can't agree enough. I'm thinking this will always be the best deal I've ever gotten on a basically blind bought show (or any TV show...). There will probably never be a soap opera release like this ever. I was worried about missing out on it... otherwise I would have held off purchase for next year sometime. It's a release to have it.

    Yeah. Carolyn is so up and down too. I hate you now but next episode I'll love you again don't worry. :D I hate to poke fun, I'm truly watching the show from all angles, sometimes playful fun, other times edge of the seat or mad at a character...
     
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  4. Richard--W

    Richard--W Banned

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    Wish I'd known. I'd have finally bought it.

    This past year I've picked up a lot of Dark Shadows stuff. Each month a little more of this and that. Books, soundtracks, and all kinds of memorabilia. I've never collected movie and TV memorabilia before, except for buying DVD's, but Dark Shadows keeps pulling me in. Got to keep a wary eye on that coffin-box.
     
  5. Radioman970

    Radioman970 Lead Actor

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    I noticed all those books and things while shopping on ebay for the DVD set. Of course, I didn't know about all the knockoff DVD sets at the time.

    I can see me getting the books in the future, especially if there are new stories, etc in them. The audio stories I'll definitely look into..

    Good luck getting a set! I'm sure it'll be on sale again around Thanksgiving.
     
  6. Harry-N

    Harry-N Cinematographer

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    Another surprise today seeing George Mitchell playing Matthew Morgan. I see that he only does that for the first three appearances and then Thayer David arrives in the role.

    George Mitchell is of course very familiar in roles in many of the Irwin Allen series and the TWILIGHT ZONE.

    Harry
     
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  7. Mr. Handley

    Mr. Handley Supporting Actor

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    The early cast changes were interesting. David Ford and Nancy Barrett met on the set and were actually married in real life for a couple of years (I always found that a bit odd as he was quite a few years older than her). Thayer David was a huge addition to the cast as he ended up playing a variety of different characters. He's also one of my personal all-time favorite actors period. IMO, the most interesting casting change comes much later when John Karlen takes over the Willie Loomis role.

    BTW, I'm now up through Episode #1238. Only 7 more to go!
     
  8. Mark Collins

    Mark Collins Cinematographer

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    I watched Dead of Night this week only the bonus section. I noticed the Mummy and wondered if they had that thing kept around for a DS use. The one horror classic DS never went into. I always thought it was because of Laura. The other thing I was watching a bit of the DS reboot on chiller yesterday and wondered if perhaps an old script from Sam Hall for the second DS movie with Jonathan as the star was used for the 1791 flashback. The words from the pilot are right out of the first movie. I knew it was very close but not that close. Perhaps Dan thought why not put that old script of Sams into the new series I thought in my head. The script which had been gathering dust for the second movie which they either described to Jonathan or showed him to read. I do not mean a full script of course but who knows how much was written? My guess was none created to show him but it is fun to speculate

    Charles glad to see you back on the thread!!!
     
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  9. Charles Ellis

    Charles Ellis Screenwriter

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    Thanks, Mark- it has been a while! BTW, the 2014 Dark Shadows Festival is being held in Tarrytown during the weekend of June 28-29 at the Tarrytown Doubletree Hilton. Yes, i plan to be there (as always!)
     
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  10. Mark Collins

    Mark Collins Cinematographer

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    Hey DS Fans, Today for some reason I remembered an old movie of the week that was to become a pilot for a prime time series that would look very much like DS. I could not remember the name and then I thought of Joan Fontain being in it. Hey I found it and here it is.

    Dark Mansions

    1986 movie of the week.

    The opening credits leave no doubt "Dark Mansions" is patterned after "Dark Shadows" - but, surprisingly, "Mansions" isn't like the successful supernatural-dominated "Shadows" of 1967-1970. Instead, it revisits the show as it played out during the more lackluster years of 1966 and 1971. This show has the Gothic tone of writer Art Wallace's original concept, which producer Dan Curtis steered the show back toward, in 1971. Taking the vampires, werewolves, and witches out of "Shadows" proved to be fatal, so "Mansions" may seem like puzzling pilot. But, it's also a shadowy version of the then successful "Falcon Crest" (actor David Selby did "Crest" and "Shadows"; writer Robert McCullough did "Crest" and "Mansions").
    So, "Mansions" begins with star Linda Purl (as Shellane Victor) arriving as an authoress, to work on the biography of reclusive matriarch Joan Fontaine (as Margaret Drake). The character's name "Shellane Victor" is likely an homage to original "Shadows" protagonist "Victoria", who was originally named "Sheila". Like legendary golden-aged actresses Joan Bennett ("Shadows") and Jane Wyman ("Mansions"), Joan Fontaine assumes the role of a wealthy family matriarch. Note, Jean Simmons fit the bill in the 1991 run of "Dark Shadows", which makes it a Joan/Jane/Joan/Jean quartet. (Play other name games at home).
    Anyway, Ms. Purl is the spitting image of the dead "Yvette" (rhymes with "Josette"), who plunged to her death over the seaside cliffs, where the two "Drake" family mansions rest (but not in peace). The mystery of what really happened to "Yvette" is the ABC-TV movie pilot's main storyline. Widower Michael York (as Jason Drake) is also Fontaine's favorite son, and a potential romantic interest for Purl.
    Other family members (and suspects) include: Mr. York's bratty blonde daughter Nicollette Sheridan (as Banda Drake), his bratty blonde son Grant Aleksander (as Nick Drake), adopted "old house" castaway Paul Shenar (as Phillip Drake), his sexy wife Lois Chiles (as Jessica Drake), their blind clairvoyant daughter Melissa Sue Anderson (as Noelle Drake ), and hot-blooded son Yves André Martin (as Cody Drake). Blue-collared Steve Inwood (as Jerry Mills) and Raymond St. Jacques (as Davis) are significant outsiders.
    There are too many characters, and too much back-story, in "Dark Mansions" - although, admittedly, it all would have served a TV series well (had this "pilot" sold). The locations, sets, and overall setting is beautifully done; and, as photographed by Paul Lohmann and directed by Jerry London, they are the film's greatest strength. The cliff-side dwelling is how the original "Dark Shadows" might have looked, with a bigger budget. Watch for especially representative scenes as characters walk along the cliffs, with waves crashing in the background. And, if the house looks like "Collinwood", it's because it is the house (Greystone) picked to serve as "Collinwood" for both the 1991 and 2004 versions of "Dark Shadows".
    ***** Dark Mansions (8/23/86) Jerry London ~ Linda Purl, Michael York, Joan Fontaine

    I sure wish this was out on home video.
     
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  11. Charles Ellis

    Charles Ellis Screenwriter

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    By the way, Miss Fontaine turned 96 just the other day! More info: Loretta Young was originally signed by Aaron Spelling to play Margaret, but then she objected to the script. She and Jane Wyman were close friends, and I suspect Loretta wanted to duplicate the success Jane had with her primetime soap Falcon Crest.
     
  12. Radioman970

    Radioman970 Lead Actor

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    I'm having to avoid the interviews for now. too many spoilers.

    However, I did watch a bit of the one with "Burke". he talks about the 'Mathew" actor. I sure agree with him... I'm on eps 120 and that actor has really been shining. Wonderfully tense... he's Lon Chaney Junioring all over the place !
     
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  13. smithbrad

    smithbrad Screenwriter

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    We discovered the same thing, and have been avoiding them ever since. We may go back and watch some after we are done, or watch them along the way during the next viewing. Don't get me wrong, it's all great stuff but it can be hard to not catch a few spoilers along the way.
     
  14. Randy Korstick

    Randy Korstick Producer

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    At episode 120 the real roller coaster ride of Dark Shadows is just about to begin for you.
     
  15. David Weicker

    David Weicker Cinematographer

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    I've been watching this on Netflix. I am not looking forward to running out of episodes (I believe they just have the first four Barnabas sets). Any idea on how to 'suggest' they acquire further volumes?Another thing that puzzles me. The episodes are generally 22 minutes. I would have thought that 60s era shows would be 25-26 minutes ( just like hour shows were 50-52 minutes and are now 44). The episodes don't appear to be missing scenes or anything.Now I've seen the series a couple of times - original run, SciFi, etc, but financially the entire set is currently out of range.
     
  16. Ockeghem

    Ockeghem Ockeghem

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    David,You bring up a good point about the length of half-hour episodes from the 1960s era. I know that there were at least two commercial breaks (usually three or four commercials at most) during each episode of Dark Shadows (not including commercials before the opening and after the conclusion). I think I'll have a look soon at one of my episodes that has all of the commercials included in it and see what the length of that episode is. Now you've got me curious.
     
  17. Harry-N

    Harry-N Cinematographer

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    I believe it went something like this:

    Teaser
    Opening Credit roll
    1 1/2-minute commercial break
    Act One
    1 1/2-minute commercial break
    Act Two
    1 1/2-minute commercial break
    Act Three
    1 1/2-minute commercial break
    Act Four
    1 1/2-minute commercial break
    Closing credits
    5 second promo for ABC
    30 seconds local time for station identification.

    That would make a 22-minute episode with everything stripped out of it.

    Harry
     
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  18. Mr. Handley

    Mr. Handley Supporting Actor

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    Yeah, I think the daytime shows had a few more commercials in them back then, hence the slightly shorter running times.

    James, you're really getting into some fantastic episodes ahead. When Laura arrives on the scene things really "heat up" (pun intended)!

    I'm now up through Episode #1241 (the final week of the show)! Man, this thing really is limping to the finish line (not ANOTHER lottery). Anyway, it'll be a bit sad for me to see it all end. I think it's been mentioned before in this thread (I really don't want to hunt for it), but perhaps one of the experts here can remind us of the circumstances surrounding the demise of the show. I seem to recall that it was rather sudden but not very surprising considering the declining ratings. Thanks!
     
  19. Mark Collins

    Mark Collins Cinematographer

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    I love the talk about commercials. I knew the show so well that I knew when the show would return after the commercials while audio taping live all those years. I was screwed up when the show decided to change format in July 1970 during the PT 1970 storyline. The epsiode begins where Angelique confronts Julia in the cave and the credits roll and the show keeps going. Man I nearly lost a few words.

    The ratings on the show were starting to climb again. ABC thought it cost to damn much and a game show was a better fit. The show Somerset was getting better ratings on NBC but their ratings were not the greatest either. ABC and DC productions said that being in the past had cost the show more money than if they had returned to 1971. The entire costume change for PT 1841 from those used in 1840 were designed for the actors and the best ever used on the show. Jonathan of course said it was he that killed the show because he was tired of playing Barnabas. He has also stated many times over that the show just ran out of gas. He said they began to repeat themselves and had used up all the classic monster storys.

    The show was suppose to go into syndication right away as reported in the media. Never did until 1975 but 1976 was when we received it in Chicago. The previews were from 1897 with Barnabas Edward and Quentin in the cave. The highest rated episode ever of DS was where that preview came from. I know i have read that NBC ran it for awhile but do not know if that was just New York or what the deal was on that. Sam Hall wrote that very nice article in TV guide when the show went off the air. The article contained where he felt the show would have gone in the future. Some of this is used but not ALL by Roger Davis after the last show airs on your DVD sets.

    Like I said before they had plans to bring Laura back in 1971 but that never came to pass and she was at least put into Night of Dark Shadows when Samantha was suppose to play Charles Collins wife and could not do the movie. I was always glad because it gave us another shot at seeing Laura.
     
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  20. Mark Collins

    Mark Collins Cinematographer

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    I failed to make mention that when the show aired in Chicago it came to a HALT right during the Barnabas first year. The show stopped on the episode where Barnabas confronts Dave and states " consider it a dream" well I will not finish the statement. I was so angry because that preview from 1897 made fans believe that we were going to get the whole show!

    Flash forward to 1981 and Madison WI which I can pick up to this day decided to air the first year complete but then they come to a halt. Vicky has returned to 1968 and the last episode to air is when Vicky walks in with Angeliques portrait. Talk about being upset again. I never got to see the show until NJN began to air it and then it comes to a halt with John Yager being found out in PT 1970. I could not get SFI when they began to air it so I had to wait until MPI came out with the series on VHS with an edited first year of Barnabas until the episode with Jason and Liz and Carolyn climax. The rest of the tapes were fine and they even included fan favorites of 3 slates and all to round out VHS 9 I think it was. I have them and do watch them. The first will be coming up in the next week and then the last aired over the Holidays week.

    The great story I would like to know is how they ever found a fan who had that missing audio episode from 1971. I do not have every audio episode of the show. How in the world did they find this person and who was it. Perhaps they do not wish to share that part which I can understand. Still makes for a great story though. Charles may know for he knows a great deal about the show.
     
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