Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Dark Shadows Diary: Episode 57

Episode 57: "The Death of Honesty"
Sept. 13, 1966

Bill Malloy and Burke Devlin were a lot tighter than we'd been lead to believe. After waxing poetic about Malloy showing him the ropes about fishing as a lad, Devlin vows to buy the man "the biggest and best meal he's ever had in his life." His banter makes Maggie increasingly uncomfortable, forcing her to break the news to Devlin that his mentor has been fished out of the ocean like so much Namor. Devlin takes the news better than I'd have guessed, in that he doesn't drive directly to Collinwood and give Roger Collins an acute case of lead poisoning.

Malloy's problem? He was ultimately too honest to live, in Devlin's assessment. It's not a philosophy that appeals much to Maggie. "You talk about honesty as thought it were a disease," she says, and logically speculates that Malloy's swimming skills might have played a bigger part in his death.

Victoria Winters, the town's Gothic Pollyanna, wanders into the crossfire of this conversation and doesn't much care for Devlin's attitude, either. Devlin toasts to "the death of honesty" and from the looks on the women's faces he might have also admitted to a fondness for kicking puppies.

Burke soon finds himself a "person of interest" in the death of Malloy, which is curious given everything that's known about him. Even though Malloy has been missing (Christ ... I have no idea how long the man's been gone. A day? A week? They've drawn out this story for so long that I've lost track) since calling a mysterious meeting with Devlin, Roger and Sam, Sheriff Patterson doesn't think the event is of much significance. He doesn't offer much explanation for why Devlin's is a suspect, either, unless being a badass is now a felony offense in Collinsport.

Victoria and Maggie have a sweet tête-à-tête about all the spooky goings on in town and how the governess relates to it all. Maggie doesn't understand why Victoria is subjecting herself to the hardships that accompany the Collins family. Victoria says she's got no plans of leaving until she knows how she's related to the family, if she's related to them at all. We also get a quick recap of clues about her past and how these plot threads tie to Collinwood.

These threads are already reaching out toward Maggie. Her father has already bound his destiny to the Collins family, a decision that will lead to his death in a few years. And, whether she knows it our not, Maggie is already being sized up for a governess's uniform. Once Victoria disappears from the show Maggie assumes the characters practical and dramatic responsibilities. In light of this, Victoria's explanation of her role at Collinwood seems more like an omen than exposition.

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