Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Dark Shadows The Beginning Collection 3 - Episodes 71-105|
Actors: Dark Shadows, Joan Bennett
Genres: Horror, Television
With its alluring tales of Gothic mystery and supernatural intrigue, DARK SHADOWS (1966-71, ABC-TV) became one of the most popular daytime series of all time. The character of Barnabas Collins, a guilt-ridden, 175-year-old... more »
Finally, Ghosts, Ghoulies and Things that Go Bump in the Nig
E. Hornaday | Lawrenceville, NJ United States | 11/17/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"After months of sagging ratings, the fledgling soap opera Dark Shadows did, what in the words of its creator, Dan Curtis, no daytime drama had ever done: it went supernatural.
Following it's landmark premier in 1966, the first-ever gothic soap opera, Dark Shadows, settled into its afternoon time slot to haunt viewers with is unique blend of romance and psychological terror a la Jane Eyre. Unfortunately, viewer ship dwindled steadily, despite excellent stories and equally fine acting, which are clearly demonstrated in each boxed set of remastered DVD episodes from MPI Home Video.
The Beginning Set 1, reflecting the first 35 episodes of the series, introduced the characters and eerie atmosphere created by innovative sets and unforgettable original music that was the hallmark of the show for its five-year run; and The Beginning Set 2, which collected the next 35 episodes, built on that foundation by further developing the main characters and adding some new ones.
But, with The Beginning Set 3 the story gets more intense and leads up to the show's first and second ghosts, both harbingers of bigger and better things to come. Even before those crucial events, the supernatural begins to assert itself when a "real" crystal ball is given to young David Collins. Immediately, he begins to "see" things.
In this boxed set, the drowning death of Collins Plant Manager Bill Malloy is highlighted and becomes darker. In fact, it is his ghost that debut's as the first-ever depicted on the show, when his seaweed drenched corpse warns a terrified Victoria Winters to leave Collinwood or die.
Several episodes later, the young David Collins goes at night to the rundown and ramshackle family mansion, the Old House, where he looks up into the portrait of his great-great-great grandmother Josette Collins, the Lady in White. He implores her spirit to come to him as she frequently does when he needs help. Interrupted by caretaker Matthew Morgan, they leave the darkened drawing room together. Slowly, the portrait begins to shine and the music build. Then, a ghostly white figure appears to step down from the portrait and meander through the house and grounds.
Actress Kathryn Leigh Scott, who portrayed waitress Maggie Evans, was the ghost, saying she was the only actress on set who fit the clothing for Josette and who had a likeness to the portrait.
In addition to all of that, Burke Devlin (played brilliantly by Mitchell Ryan) declares an all-out war against the Collins family, promising to take everything they own, including the fishing fleet, cannery - and the ancestral family home: Collinwood!
Also of great interest in this boxed set are exterior shots, a rarity even today on soap operas. Shots included are of the Great House, the Old House, Widows Hill, Lookout Point and the beach below, Collinsport, the Collins Enterprises and Cannery, the Police Station, the Collinsport Inn, the Blue Whale, and the Evans' Cottage.
Show creators chose Seaview Terrace to represent the exterior of the Collinwood mansion. Located in the picturesque coastal town of Newport, RI, its imposing façade faced out to the edge of the Atlantic, just as writer Art Wallace had described in the original outline for the series. The privately owned house was patterned after a French Chateau, and was converted into student dormitories during the 1950's. It is currently leased by the Salve Reginia University, providing accommodation and classrooms.
Located near the mansion is the Cliff Walk and beach seen in several episodes, including the area where Victoria Winters discovered an incriminating pen that plays a pivotal role in this boxed set.
Also located in Newport, a little further down the coast is the Black Pearl Restaurant, the exterior of which was used as the Blue Whale. It still exists today, though renovations have changed the view commonly seen on the show.
Essex, Connecticut, was used for the town of Collinsport, Maine, including the Collinsport Wharf, Collinsport Enterprises, Main Street and the Evans Cottage. The exteriors of Essex's Griswold Inn was used for the Collinsport Inn and the town Post Office was used for the town Police Station.
Special features in this boxed set include: New Interviews with actors Alexandra Moltke (Victoria Winters), Mitchell Ryan (Burke Devlin), and Conrad Fowkes (Frank Garner.)
These early episodes occurred prior to the arrival of the vampire, Barnabas Collins, played by the gifted Jonathan Frid. Once Frid joined the cast, the show skyrocketed to iconic status. Many fans who began watching once Barnabas became a fixture on the show, never saw these early episodes, so it's wonderful to have them finally available on DVD, to see how it all began!"
Life Before Barnabas....
Cat | Southern California | 05/10/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I was introduced to Dark Shadows at the very episode where Barnabas arrives. It's true what they say-that he's very intruiguing and he makes the story and all of the characters soar. I've also heard that Dark Shadows struggled before Barnabas arrived and was almost cancelled. I gave the "Beginnings" episodes a chance, just because I wanted to know the backstory to a lot of the main characters. I can say wholeheartedly that I'm glad I did. Although seasons 1 & 2 instantly throw you into the chaotic & dysfunctional family life of the Collins', it's season 3 where things really heat up. I don't want to ruin the plot lines for anyone, so let it suffice that there are more murders, lies, and blackmail. There's no Barnabas but there's still that exceptional, theatre-trained cast who are absolutely superb. With the exception of the Simpsons and I Love Lucy, the Dark Shadows series is now among my favorite TV shows."
Dark Shadows The Beginning collection 3
Dorothy Dixon | Cleveland, Tn United States | 03/23/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Dark Shadows The Beginning is the pre-Barnabas shows, there are 6 sets in The Beginning (Before Barnabas). The first year of Dark Shadows is about Victoria Winters searching for who she is and who her family is, it continues with ghosts and the supernatural. After the first year of Dark Shadows (The Beginning dvd sets 1-6) then the org. Dark Shadows dvd sets 1-26 with the vampire Barnabas Collins, the werewolf, the living dead, the doctor jeckel mr hyde serinoal and many many others like Adam and Eve Frankensteins,lets not forget all of the Time travels!!!
The best collection from tv series, and the ONLY daytime soap opra to ever have been released!"
The Agony of Transition
Tenebrous | The South, USA | 06/07/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I got my first taste of Dark Shadows with the Laura Murdock Stockbridge story arc, and so I decided to start my collection just prior to catch the series on its supernatural upswing. Watching this set leaves me with the inescapable taste of frustrated anticipation.
The supernatural elements have started to creep into the show (no pun intended), but the focus remains upon the standard suspense elements. The Bill Malloy murder does bring a darker hue to the show, but it's really only with the harassment of Victoria Winters in the last few episodes that the series approaches its zenith.
At this point in time, the characters are not wholly developed, either. Roger Collins empathizes with Victoria and at times even acts like a gentleman; he has not yet settled down into the surly, old-moneyed sot of the later episodes. Victoria had not developed the fine art of remaining above the fray and tells lies to extricate herself from tense situations. Even Carolyn's emotions turn on a dime and as a result, she comes across as quite unsympathetic.
With all that said, the discs feature a handful of very good episodes, which depend upon the writing of Francis Swann and some especially sharp acting by David Hannisey. (Yes, he can be quite chilling instead of annoying.) Alexandra Moltke, of course, is the perfect gothic heroine.
The actual DVD case and the DVDs' physical appearance don't disappoint. The inside liner notes briefly describe each episode and feature a press kit-style photo of Frank Garner's character. On each DVD, you can view all the episodes at once, or one-by-one. There are no extras, but there is an ad for a DS-related book at the end of each disc.
The hardcore Dark Shadows fan will find this collection worth every penny. I would rather it was a little cheaper myself, but I'm saving up for The Beginning No. 4, where the real fun begins."