Friday, February 23, 2018

The Dark Shadows art of Bill Walko

Since the 2012 Tim Burton film, a lot of us have been wondering what the next big revival will be for DARK SHADOWS. The cycle for these kinds of things have been driven by Hollywood, which will dust off classic television programs every few years to varying degrees of success. Sometimes it works out (we're now approaching the sixth MISSION IMPOSSIBLE movie, for example) but frequently these stabs are followed only by awkward silence (THE MAN FROM UNCLE, TWILIGHT ZONE THE MOVIE and ... ahem ... 2012's DARK SHADOWS.)

Amazon might be breaking away from this cycle. Amazon Prime reportedly reaches half of all U.S. households, giving it the kind of reach a movie studio can only dream about. So, when all 1,225 episodes of DARK SHADOWS landed on Prime in January, I was interested to see what happened next. The dream is to see the property revived because of its own merits, and not because Johnny Depp has been trotted out in front of the press corps to repeatedly talk about how he used to run home from school as a child to watch it. I genuinely appreciate the sentiment, Johnny, but your movie has had some unintended consequences. Such as how the #DarkShadows hashtag on Instagram has been disproportionately applied to skeevy photos of ChloĆ« Moretz. Or how the DARK SHADOWS brand sometimes gets referenced during discussions of your own domestic abuse allegations. Google the words "Dark" and "Shadows" today and you'll have to wade through a lot of nonsense that has nothing to do with the original TV series.

So, it's nice to see #DarkShadows being attached to, you know, DARK SHADOWS. Here, it's art from Bill Walko, who was inspired by the viewings of the show on Amazon Prime to put pencil to paper and interpret the core cast from 1967. I've liked Walko's art for a while, so it was a joy to see Barnabas, Victoria, Sarah, Buzz (!) and the rest pop up in my Instagram feed last night. Below are samples of his work from Instagram, which you can find at Fingers crossed that he'll be inspired to create more.

You can find more of Walko's work at his official website,

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