Named one of TV s top 24 Cult Shows by TV GUIDE! — An exorcist is summoned after the children at Collinwood are possessed — High atop Widows Hill off the stormy Maine coast sits the foreboding Collinwood, home for centuries ... more »of the wealthy Collins family.
The Gothic television classic DARK SHADOWS attracted a fiercely devoted following during its airings on ABC-TV from 1966-71. The character of Barnabas Collins, a sympathetic vampire, turned the series into a must-see event for over 20 million viewers.
In this special release, the story of how the ghost of Quentin Collins haunted the eerie estate of Collinwood is detailed in a selection of scenes from the most popular episodes.« less
E. Hornaday | Lawrenceville, NJ United States | 06/26/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Decades before Twilight there was Dark Shadows, the first-ever gothic soap opera, its supernatural stories captivating audiences young and old almost 45 years.
With its alluring tales of Gothic mystery and supernatural intrigue, Dark Shadows became one of the most popular daytime series of all time. Since first airing on ABC-TV from 1966-71, Dark Shadows has justifiably earned the reputation of being one of the most unusual and enduring TV programs in history.
Thanks to MPI Home Video, that iconic Classic returns with two special DVDs compiling episode scenes from two of its most popular story arcs, one featuring the character Barnabas Collins, the vampire, the second disc featuring Quentin Collins, the werewolf.
Each disc, sold separately, contains about three hours of content, which includes selected scenes from color episodes as well as a new interview with the actor whose character is spotlighted.
Dark Shadows: The Haunting of Collinwood, is devoted to the original beloved werewolf - Quentin Collins.
Dark Shadows debuted in June 1966, but faced cancellation because of poor ratings within a year. Creator Dan Curtis, desperate to save the show, decided to "go" supernatural, so he launched various spook-filled stories that led to the introduction of vampire Barnabas Collins, portrayed by Jonathan Frid. The storyline saved the show, but several years later, the ratings dipped again. So, Curtis released another phenomenon from the genie bottle: the werewolf, Quentin Collins.
The introduction of Quentin, portrayed unforgettably by David Selby, was a high mark for the show and rejuvinated its fan base. The story involving Quentin had all of the elements that made Dark Shadows a true classic - the only soap opera in history to have had ALL of its episodes released on DVD. Like Frid two years earlier, Selby became incredibly popular, an instant idol and sex symbol among teenaged girls.
In this special disc, the origin of Quentin is told. Selby was also interviewed specially for this compilation release.
Quentin's tale had the core cast of the series portraying their own relatives, and other characters in the Collinwood of 1897, after Barnabas Collins had traveled back in time using secrets from the mystical Chinese practice of the I Ching, or Book of Changes.
Barnabas had made the supernatural voyage back in time to save young David Collins and his friend, Amy Jennings, who had both become possessed in modern-day (1970's) Collinwood. The children were being menaced by a horrifying and utterly silent ghost - the spectre of Quentin Collins.
Quentin was the victim of a werewolf curse that had been placed on him by a grieving gypsy, Magda Rocozzi (portrayed with memorable gusto in an Emmy-calibre performance by Grayson Hall), who blamed him for the death of her sister, who was also Quentin's wife.
Complicating the plot was the arrival of the sinister Count Andres Petoffi (also protrayed with brilliance by core cast member Thayer David), who possessed supernatural powers and was being hunted by the gypsies. Barnabas believed that the cure to Quentin's "affliction" rested with Petofi. If Quentin could be cured, then the children facing death in Collinwood's present day would be saved!
The core brilliance of has made Dark Shadows endure are the eternal themes it illustrated: Love, death, fear, longing, revenge, obsession, lies, secrets, loyalty and betrayal all played out against a compelling backdrop of Gothic sensibilities that included vampires, werewolves, zombies, seances, time travel, ghosts, mystery, murder, intrigue and a constant dose of the unexpected.
This "soap opera" managed to transcend its genre by bringing a taste of Gothic horror and science-fiction fantasy to the hum-drum world of the afternoon drama. There had never been anything like it before - and there never has been since!
In addition to Selby, Frid, Hall and David, primary co-stars on the disc are: Joan Bennett, Louis Edmonds, Nancy Barrett, Lara Parker, David Henesy, Kathryn Leigh Scott, Terry Crawford, Virgina Vestoff, Don Brisco, Marie Wallace, Donna McKechnie, Clarice Blackburn, John Karlen, Michael Stroka, Paula Laurence, Diana Millay and Jerry Lacy.
(As noted: The entire series is available on DVD, also produced by MPI Home Video.)"
Great set for the casual fan
Reed Pitkunigis | New Jersey, USA | 09/18/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This disc, along with the other new DS DVD, are definately a must have if you are a casual fan of the show. For those of us with the complete collection already on DVD, there is nothing really new of interest. There is a nice NEW interview of David Selby, but it only runs a few minutes and leaves you wondering what happened to the rest of the interview. Just when you are getting into the interview, it chops off and ends. I guess they will be using the rest of it for some other re-issue down the road. There is also a funny 20 second PBS spot by Selby. Also included a a complete episode from the show. I would have left that off and included more of the interview, at least this way there could have been more new content on the disc. For the common fan who has not purchased all 20+ box sets, this is a good disc to get, but for those of us who regularly watch the episodes already on DVD, this disc will probably sit on a shelf collecting dust after the first viewing."
Not perfect, but pretty darn good...
Wayne Studer | United States | 10/31/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Inspired by Henry James's classic "The Turn of the Screw," the "Ghost of Quentin Collins" plot has always been my all-time favorite "Dark Shadows" storyline. And this DVD, "The Haunting of Collinwood," is a very good distillation of that plot -- which originally ran for about ten weeks (about 50 episodes) on the original series -- to a single disc. It's not perfect, mind you. I regret that they didn't start with David and Amy first hearing Quentin's voice (which the viewer doesn't hear at the time, making it especially creepy) on the old disconnected telephone, which got the whole ball of possession rolling. And I miss the sequence where the writing appears on the mirror. But the DVD makes up for it with what it does have. The sequence with the psychic Janet Finley is especially good, as are the segments where Elizabeth Stoddard finally realizes the children are indeed possessed. and when Prof. Stokes discovers -- nearly at the cost of his life -- that his attempted exorcism of the house has failed. The bonus episode, revealing how Quentin died and why he's haunting the house (which, as it turns out, was negated when Barnabas Collins went back in time and managed to change history), is the perfect complement.
Overall, this DVD is well worth owning if you don't already have the original episodes themselves and either want to "relive" the story or experience it for the first time. The "companion disc" -- "The Vampire Curse," revealing the story of how Barnabas became a creature of the night -- is excellent, too. But if I had to choose between them, this one, "The Haunting of Collinwood," is the one I'd get."
DARK SHADOWS THE HAUNTING OF COLLINWOOD
Daniel H. Silvio | Pittsburgh, PA | 09/24/2009
(3 out of 5 stars)
"DARK SHADOWS: THE HAUNTIING OF COLLINWOOD also released from MPI on Sept 15,2009. As with the Vampire Curse this DVD is also an edited edition of episodes from the 1969 episodes featuring the ghost of Quentin Collins haunting Collinwood. Bonus material is the complete episode #836 written by Gordon Russell, Directed by Lela Swift inwhich The ghost of Beth explains to Julia how Quentin died in 1897. The program originally aired 9/8/1969. A PBS promo from David Selby and an interview with him as well. (210 minutes) No worth the money if you have all the episodes on DVD. "
Arthur A. Andrews Jr. | Kent, Ohio USA | 02/11/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you want an overview of what Dark Shadows is all about, this is the DVD for you. You can't get a better feel for what the creator of this series was trying to convey. And this was just one storyline in a 5 year series that the drama and excitement never fails. If you are new to the Dark Shadows world or wanting to relive what you enjoyed about it in your youth, this is the DVD to get!"