By PATRICK McCRAY
June 7, 1967
Taped on this date: Episode 256
Sarah appears to Maggie, singing and playing outside the cell. Maggie asks her to stop, but this request is fated to fail. Maggie begs her for help, but is ignored. The girl eventually leaves. Willie, having heard Maggie’s end of the conversation, asks to whom she was speaking. Maggie evades his questions, begging him for help. He explains that his will is not his own. Barnabas is even more powerful in his coffin, asleep. Willie wants to help, but can’t. He departs sadly. At Collinwood, Vicki is unable to teach David about Australia. Sending him out, Vicki asks Carolyn if she’s serious about marriage -- she is, and will marry Buzz on her own mother’s wedding day. She admits that it’s an openly self-destructive move, emulating her mother’s poor decision making. In a rare moment of stock footage, David is seen playing on a swing outside the Old House, where Sarah calls him over. Sarah tells him that she can’t find her friends. They play catch as she sings “London Bridge,” but he refuses to harmonize, calling it a baby’s song. She’s hurt because everyone in her life left her. (Welcome to the club, baby.) Willie enters to send David off, and David reports about the girl. Back at Collinwood, David tells Carolyn that Buzz has arrived on a cool motorcycle, and Carolyn tells him that they’re going steady, stopping short of admitting engagement. David tells Vicki of his meeting with Sarah, describing her as sad and dressed in an antique fashion. Back in the cell, Willie explains to Maggie that her refusal to eat will displease Barnabas. He leaves her alone, and the music box is drowned out by the sound of London Bridge as sung by Sarah. Sarah tells Maggie to not tell her big brother that she saw her.
Buzz does not appear in this episode.
It’s a big day for birthdays in the world of DARK SHADOWS. Both Diana Millay and Chris Pennock have them. Diana is best known as Laura the Phoenix, Roger’s first wife, mother of David, Edward’s wife, mother of Jamison and Nora, and Jeremiah’s first wife. She is the Mickey Rooney of DARK SHADOWS. There, a Mickey Rooney joke. Chris Pennock turns 72 today. A wildman, humorist, mystic, author, futurist, and one hell of an actor, Pennock is one gamma radiation blast away from evolving into a Marvel character I shall call The Ultimate Being.
(Episode 248 aired on this date.)
June 7, 1968
Taped on this date: Episode 520
Roger waits on the missing Cassandra when Julia enters. He’s worried that something’s going to happen. Julia tells him to trust his intuition. He decides to call the police. Barnabas enters, and Julia relates the news of Angelique’s disappearance. He fears she’ll be back any moment, but Julia thinks that Trask’s ghost has finally rid them of her. The evidence, she reasons, that his ghost will be at peace is if his skeleton is again hanging in the basement of Collinwood. Barnabas reluctantly agrees to go with her and look. The skeleton is back! Thus, Angelique is no more. Barnabas must retain hope. Back at Collinwood, Roger is fretting over matters when Liz enters, convinced she is Naomi, and that Barnabas is not dead, living in the tower room. She announces that Barnabas is one of the living dead. Julia passes it off as her madness. “Naomi” bolts away, and Julia suggests that she needs to be institutionalized or things may get worse. At the Old House, Barnabas is none too pleased with the news. Clearly, this was Angelique’s doing. Barnabas thinks it’s evidence that Angelique is alive. Julia charges him with going to Collinwood to prevent her suicide. At Collinwood, Liz signs a letter, seals it in an envelope, and then drinks a poisoned brandy, able to face Barnabas as he is. She ascends the stairs. Barnabas and Julia enter and follow her to the tower, retracing Naomi’s steps. As the poison takes hold, Barnabas enters the tower room and tries to get her to a doctor. She collapses.
So often, DARK SHADOWS works because its characters are blissfully unaware of the obvious. In this episode, Julia is like the love child of Sherlock Holmes and Jeanne Dixon. She makes deductive leaps that only a writer could provide. But what the hell, it moves the story. This episode is also the last one directed by John Sedwick, one of the key directors for the program and the man who helmed the episodes introducing Barnabas.
(Episode 509 aired on this date.)