Monday, July 3, 2017

The Dark Shadows Daybook: July 3


Taped on this date in 1967: Episode 278

Boosted by the opinions of Roger and Vicki, Barnabas goes forward with the costume party where Victoria will wear Josette’s dress, drawing her spirit ever closer to his lost love. Willie, afraid for Vicki and for Barnabas’ privacy, argues against it. Barnabas prevails and invites Vicki to come over and help him select the costumes. Liz has doubts, too, feeling that the spirits are too close for comfort, but they persevere.  As they go through the costumes, she rhapsodizes about the past, and compares Barnabas to a man from another time… one she longs for. They match up the costumes with Barnabas’ ancestors, and Barnabas falls into nostalgia when Sarah’s dress is found.  Later, after Vicki remarks to Liz that Barnabas may forever be lost out of time, Sarah’s ghost appears to claim her lost dress.

Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Previews of Coming Attractions.

The producers are incredibly exact in lining up modern characters with their ancient counterparts. It’s a very precise effort, and it marvelously primes the pump for 1795. Additionally, it’s a slow burn; Victoria won’t go back to 1795 for nearly a hundred episodes and four and a half months. After playing it fast and loose with dates and names related to the Collins ancestors, the producers finally bear down and make firm decisions. When I first watched the show, these pre-time travel references evidenced how vast was the DS canvas. How little did I know how vast the payoff would be, but that’s one of the rewards of patience with the show. I also appreciate Victoria’s brave curiosity about the past. She’s exactly the opposite of Maggie, although she also has the luxury of not being a brainwashed kidnap victim, which is a state that arguably gave Maggie second thoughts about the whole Josette business.

On this day in 1967, Aretha Franklin’s “Respect” reached #1 on the pop charts.

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