Thursday, November 9, 2017

The Dark Shadows Daybook: NOVEMBER 9


Taped on this date in 1970: Episode 1145

Gerard hypnotizes Lamar into having a “psychic dream” where he finds further proof that Quentin is a warlock. Meanwhile, Quentin completes his Time Staircase and shows it to Gerard, not knowing that he will use it as further evidence against him. Although Samantha is initially sympathetic toward Quentin when she learns that Joanna has died, his coldness cancels that. She is further antagonized as she receives more and more evidence that he is an alleged warlock. She speaks to Daniel about altering the will, and although Daniel is noncommittal, he is willing to also listen to Gerard on the matter of Quentin. Gerard takes him to Quentin’s occult lab where he gives Daniel a vision of Quentin attacking the late Lorna Bell. How does 1840 cram so much storytelling into twenty-two minutes? It’s as if they know the show is headed for the gallows and they are dancing as fast as they can. And dance, they do. I always enjoyed the Time Staircase, and felt that it was a sharp, economical idea they happened upon a bit too late. Had the show continued, I suspect it would have been a fixture, allowing stories to be told in multiple time periods at once… and why not? At one point, I tried to convince Wallace to make a makeshift Mego-style Collinwood Drawing Room playset, which would just be the Enterprise bridge redressed. Of course, the transporter would have become the Time Staircase. 1840 feels more mature than most storylines because it hinges on uneasy truces between adults who either can’t stand each other or are seething with disappointment. It feels like a different type of storytelling for the show. It’s almost anti-romance, and I can see how that frustrated audiences. Of course, after years of other flavors, I think it’s a welcomed relief. And against those unions, the relationships between Barnabas and Julia and Angelique seem like bedrocks of sanity. On this day in 1970, the Soviets launched Luna 17 to the moon and the US Supreme Court said that it was a-okay for Massachusetts residents to not fight in undeclared wars. Good to be in Massachusetts. Meanwhile, in 1966, the cast keeps filming on location.  

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