UNK SEZ: Hey, it’s our old pal Mickster! She’s got some viewing advice and an axe to grind concerning a show she loved getting the hook! Take it away, Mickster…
MICKSTER: Twenty-six years ago, a show was canceled before being given a fair shake. Had the Internet, as we know it, existed at the time, no doubt people would have expressed their outrage at NBC for letting this gem go far too soon. I remember seeing the promos for the show and being thrilled because I felt cheated that I missed the original show. Darn being born too late! My older siblings spoke of it fondly. I was lucky enough to catch House of Dark Shadows on cable when I was about ten.
The revival of Dark Shadows did not disappoint me, and a big reason for that was Dan Curtis, who created the original show, produced it. The atmosphere and acting were spot-on. I will share a few of my favorite things about the show, and if you haven’t seen it, I strongly suggest you head over to Hulu and watch all 12 episodes.
#1-Ben Cross as Barnabus Collins-Ben Cross had some big shoes to fill when taking on the role of Barnabus since Jonathan Frid made the role iconic. However, I found Cross’s version to have the sex appeal that Frid lacked. I could completely understand all the women of Collinsport, including straight-laced Dr. Julia Hoffman, going wild over him. Dear Barnabus, I suggest picking victims at least a couple of towns over so not to throw suspicion in your direction.
#2 Barbara Steele as Dr. Julia Hoffman-Barbara Steele is very familiar to fans of the horror genre. She portrayed Dr. Hoffman as strong-willed and intelligent. She didn’t allow herself to be intimidated by Barnabus, but at the same time, she showed vulnerability when she developed feelings for him. Dear Dr. Hoffman, Betraying a vampire is NOT good for your health!
#3 Joseph Gordon-Levitt as David Collins-A very young Joseph Gordon-Levitt displayed his acting chops early with his disturbed portrayal of David Collins. He was the ultimate “creepy kid” who scared away all his governesses before Victoria Winters came to Collinwood. Dear Governesses of Young Master Collins, Don’t climb into your bed without checking it thoroughly first…you’re welcome!
#4 Jim Fyfe as Willie Loomis-Now I adored John Karlen as Willie Loomis, but Jim Fyfe just melted my heart. I am a southern girl so I will say, “Bless his heart!” It is true that it is his fault that Barnabus was freed from his vault to wreak havoc on the people of Collinsport, but dang it, his simple-mindedness made me feel bad for him. Dearest Willie, When Barnabus yells, “WILLIE!” Run like hell because he is about to pound the crap out of you.
#5 Joanna Going as Victoria Winters-Now, I feel Joanna Going’s Victoria Winters was far superior to the original. I enjoyed her as a wide-eyed innocent thrust into the chaos of Collinwood in the present and then the past. She made it all believable. Dear Victoria Winters, You look EXACTLY like the portrait of Josette du Pres. Coincidence? I think not!
#6 Lysette Anthony as Angelique-Okay, Lysette Anthony’s Angelique was the epitome of the woman scorned. Unfortunately for Barnabus, she was a woman scorned with supernatural abilities. Dear Barnabus, You should have kept your pants on all those years ago! It became Fatal Attraction circa 1790!
#7 Time Travel-I love time travel, and on Dark Shadows, the time travel was most effective. Victoria Winters was thrown back in time when a séance to contact Sarah Collins (sister of Barnabus) went terribly wrong. Victoria found herself in 1790. Accusations of witchcraft soon plagued Victoria, and her life was in danger. The viewer also was able to witness the events leading up to Barnabus’s transformation into a vampire. Dear Victoria Winters, Hide your clothing labels as the symbols for laundering may be misconstrue as signs of the Devil by a nosy bitch, um, I mean Collins family member.
UNK SEZ: Thanks for the tip Mickster! It looks like I’ve got some watching to do. Kids, as Mickster said above, the DARK SHADOWS revival is available on HULU for free! Watch it HERE before it disappears in a puff of smoke!