Monday, November 26, 2012

Dark Shadows Diary, Episode 47

Episode 47: "Welcome Back to the 
Beginning and the End of the World"
Aug. 30, 1966

Liz senses a tremor in the Force. She might be self-delusional and crazy manipulative, but when Liz has a bad feeling about something you'd best put down your Xbox controller and listen to what she has to say. She's not psychic (as far as I know) but she's been on the giving and receiving ends of ill will so many times that she can smell trouble a mile away.

She deals with the problem like any loyal devotee of the Miss Havisham Club for Single Woman by playing piano in the dead of night. Carolyn finds her playing an instrumental version of Johnny Mandel's "Suicide is Painless" (just kidding; I don't know what piece she was really playing) in the darkened drawing room. Liz ceases her nocturne to tell her daughter she's feels an "impending disaster" is looming. She fesses up that the feeling has something to do with Bill Malloy, which leads Carolyn to conclude it also has something to do with Roger. "You know how fond I am of Uncle Roger," she says, reminding us of those her uncomfortable comments from Episode 3 (when she admitted she had a crush on him.) I hate to be the one to remind you of that unfortunate conversation, but it comes with the territory.

Meanwhile, the cabal is growing restless at the Collins Cannery as Malloy STILL hasn't arrived for the meeting. Everybody but Burke is ready to amscray, which shouldn't be a surprise considering he's the only one with nothing to lose. Roger is surprisingly cool considering his twitchy disposition at the end of the last episode. Neither Roger nor Sam seem all that interested in continuing the meeting without the guest of honor, but Burke demands they keep their asses planted at the cannery until he finds out what happened to Malloy.

One they're alone, Roger seizes the opportunity to assert his dominance over Sam, which doesn't take much effort. They're already getting suspicious of each other and nobody even knows what happened to Malloy. Roger suggests Sam has a motive to get rid of the manager of the shipping fleet, which looks to the audience as though Roger's already propping up a patsy. EVERYONE'S A SUSPECT (dum dum DUM!)

As Burke returns to the cannery, Roger smugly begins to extract himself from the gathering, confident that Malloy isn't going to show. Roger tries to return the silver pen Burke had given Carolyn, but it's mysteriously missing from his pocket. I'm going to climb out on a limb and speculate that neither Dan Curtis nor the writers had a clue who killed Bill Malloy at this stage. The pen will become a narrative "hot potato" with the eventual culprit being the character left holding it when the story runs out of gas.

Confident he'd heard the name "Bill Malloy" for the final time that night, Roger returns home to get the third degree about the man from his sister. Liz tells him Malloy spilled whatever beans he had about Roger's involvement in Burke's conviction. Roger coyly admits he was responsible for Burke going to prison ... by testifying against him in court. Zing!

As the credits begin to roll, the show STILL hadn't told us if Bill Malloy is dead or alive. I thought it was a little strange that they didn't drop this bombshell on a Friday episode, because those are the kinds of weekend cliffhangers that soaps love. But, here it is, a Tuesday episode, and we STILL DON'T KNOW what's going on with Malloy. Are they going to drag this out all week? And will we soon see the first appearance of the mighty Thayer David on DARK SHADOWS?


Melissa said...

It's been a long time since I've seen that episode, but I see to remember Liz playing either the "Moonlight" sonata or one of Chopin's better-known minor-key preludes (C-minor or E-minor).

A Friend of Judah Zachary said...

Thayer's first appearance was in episode 38... just sayin'.

Cousin Barnabas said...

That's what happens when you write these things at 5:30 a.m.

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