Dark Shadows DVD Collection 12 When Barnabas sees a mysterious photograph with a silhouette of Victoria Winters hanging from the gallows, he decides he must go back in time to the year 1796 to save her. He attempts to cha... more »nge the course of history, but his efforts are threatened with the appearance of Angelique, the witch. Once again, Barnabas finds himself a victim of the vampire curse. In 1969, Carolyn Stoddard invites Chris Jennings to move into the caretaker?s cottage on the Collinwood estate, unaware that he is harboring a dark and deadly secret. Soon afterwards, a werewolf attacks Carolyn in the woods. Meanwhile, Maggie Evans searches for David Collins in the abandoned west wing of Collinwood and is terrified to discover the ghost of Quentin Collins. Professor Stokes is summoned to exorcise the haunted mansion and the Collins family is forced to abandon the estate. Bonuses: Exclusive interviews with actors Jonathan Frid, Denise Nickerson, cameraman Stuart Goodman and former network publicist Les Schecter. Starring: Jonathan Frid, Joan Bennett, Louis Edmonds, Kathryn Leigh Scott, Nancy Barrett, Thayer David, Grayson Hall, Lara Parker, Roger Davis, Joel Crothers, David Henesy, Humbert Allen Astredo, Don Briscoe, Denise Nickerson, Marie Wallace, Robert Rodan, Clarice Blackburn, Betsy Durkin, Cavada Humphrey, Conrad Bain, David Selby, Terry Crawford and Alexandra Moltke. Color« less
"Yes they are corney, yes they have some really bad acting (along with some good stuff), but who cares? Its Dark Shadows. The show we used to run home from school to watch every afternoon. For some of us, it was quite a run. Maybe if our kids today did the same running, they wouldn't be so rotund and glued to their video games. There is Barnabus, the vampire with a guilt complex. Quentin, the werewolf who was and is scarrier than Jack Nicholson having a bad hair day. Sister Sarah as a 8 year old ghost stuck in a void between life and death. Then you have the abnormal family members (the above mentioned ones were the normal ones), whose various characters lend a good chuckle as props fall around them. They frequently flub their lines and are often seen reading directly from the teleprompter. Doors would be heard slamming in the background and the child actors frequently forgot their lines alltogether. Sometimes I wonder about the sobriety of some of the camera operators back then. But what the heck, it scared the beejeebers out of us as kids. The best part, is, it's alot better than 90% of the crap they have on today (i.e. reality shows), and given how many episodes there are, you can never run out of something different to watch. Plus the best extra bonus, our kids hate this stuff, and we can finally have some time alone to ourselves if front of our beloved boxes. I recommend starting at the beginning (vol 1) and only watching 2-3 episodes at a time. I only hope that MCI can one day find the copies of the first year (pre-Barnabus) to complete the set. I also hope that one day, the movies House of Dark Shadows and Night of Dark Shadows will be released on DVD (right now they are only out on VHS). Besides, there are over 40 episodes and special features per set. This is only about $1.00 per episode to own and enjoy forever (alike the eternal Barnabus)."
Keeps getting better...
Cynthia M. Garland | MD. USA | 05/27/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Not only does this show take me back to being a kid again, it holds up well against the so-called horror genre of today - faulty camera work and blown lines aside. I hardly finish watching one DVD set before I start getting anxious for the next. And no, I don't go to conventions nor dress like a vampire. But it can be greatly enjoyed as the "guilty pleasure" portion of a balanced life. And since Quentin was introduced in the storyline last set, this one is poised to really heat up. They just keep getting better."
(4 out of 5 stars)
"With the 12th DVD set, things start to heat up. The story arc leading to the 1897 tale is underway, but in the meantime, Barnabas takes a short detour to 1795 to try to save Victoria from the hangman. A lot of the re-telling is the same script as earlier in the series, however, the production values are MUCH better. The sets are dimly lit with candles lending flavor to what we have seen before. Jonathan Frid is allowed to stretch his performance and the few episodes back in time are classic. Even with a substitute Victoria, the shows are excellent. Thayer David is a personal favorite as Ben Stokes.Also, David Henesy is surprisingly evil, being controlled by the ghost of Quentin. Can't wait for the next set!"
Now we're getting somewhere
C. S. Junker | Burien, WA USA | 03/11/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)
"As someone who is watching the show for the first time, I've felt it's been in something of a slump ever since Victoria returned from 1795 and the Adam storyline began. Robert Rodan did what he could with the Adam character but the Frankenstein plot bordered on the ridiculous at times. This sequence was rescued primarily by the performance of Humbert Allen Astredo, one of the better actors to appear on the show, as Nicholas Blair.
Now things are picking up again, with the journey back to 1897 just around the corner and the surprisingly complex Quentin Collins plot. I have mixed feelings about Don Briscoe, who plays Chris Jennings, and the less we see of Roger Davis the better... but the show is finally getting back to that "can't put it down" pace that keeps me watching three to six episodes at a sitting.
And it gets even better in the next set!"
Probably my LEAST favorite of all the DVD sets
Bud Bundy | MN USA | 06/18/2006
(2 out of 5 stars)
"This set starts out pretty well, with Chris Jennings turning into a werewolf, and Barnabas going back in time to 1795 to save Vicki from the hangman. The werewolf stuff is pretty good, except for the way they keep having people show up to have a long conversation with Chris just as he's about to undergo the transformation. He acts really uncomfortable, trying to politely tell them to leave, then he finally has to get rude. By about the fifth time they repeat this exact same thing, it's gets pretty old. On the other hand, the trip to 1795 is especially nice. It's my favorite time period and any time spent there is fine by me. Angelique looks especially fabulous, unfortunately this plot line gets cut rather short. I would have preferred if they spent twice as long in 1795 and really fleshed out the story a bit more. There's also a plot with Elizabeth who seems to have died, but actually she's just under a curse from Cassandra. I enjoyed that quite a bit as well.
But then comes the bad part - Quentin possessing the two kids, David and Amy. This just gets more and more unbearable the longer it goes on. The kids act like absolute brats, Amy Jennings' voice gets to be like fingernails on a chalkboard after a while, and it's just episode after episode of nothing but these kids. Now, I don't mind the kids in small doses, but this is way too much. Their constant overacting really grates on my nerves. They tell their utterly transparent lies, always switching to their "innocent little me" tone of voice when doing it, then they share a smug smile with each other afterwards, and all the adults act like complete imbeciles. And poor Maggie, they utterly lobotomized her character to accommodate the kids being brats storyline. The really sad thing is, if they had just played this whole plot line more low-key, for instance "David...what are we going to do?" instead of "David!!! What are we going to do!!!" it could have been very creepy and effective, and the kids could have come off as innocent and sympathetic victims of the possession. When they get completely frantic towards the end, it would have been emotionally gripping. But, um, no...that didn't happen.
Towards the end, Chris Jennings is contacted by Ned Stuart (Roger Davis in yet another role), and finds out his wife, whom he presumed dead, is still alive. Professor Stokes also shows up to perform an exorcism of Collinwood. These little bits are pretty interesting once again, and hopefully a sign of things to come.
I am SO looking forward to getting on with the next DVD set, when we get a bunch of new characters and a de-emphasis of the kids. I DESERVE some good episodes after suffering through this stuff."