Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Honey, I Possessed The Kids

EPISODES 686-691

Simon & Garfunkel
connecting the dots
Some time has passed after what went down with Quentin, Ezra Braithwaite and his two pair of glasses, and Barnabas is brooding in the drawing room as one does after they find a dead body in their house. Julia returns from the autopsy and informs Barnabas that the cause of Mr Braithwaite's death was heart failure. Apparently, Julia is the only doctor in town, which makes sense considering how the other two have been killed one after another; one of which by Barnabas himself even. Calling attention to Madame Findley's seemingly natural death not so long ago two feet away from where they are standing now (and that makes me wonder all the things Mrs Johnson must be saying when she is asked to mop the floor afterwards of yet another death in the house), Barnabas points "Curious so many hearts should stop in this house". Not to mention how my hearts should break. But I digress. Going over the list of suspects, they rule out Beth because she has proven herself to be a friendly ghost. Then, Barnabas mentions "the man Mrs Johnson claimed she saw", to which Julia simply replies "Mrs Johnson's a repressed hysteric", trying to make it sound like a professional diagnosis but failing hilariously. Thankfully, they know Maggie too has seen the mystery man so they are not retiring Mrs J and placing her in a nursing home yet.

While the two elder residents of Collinwood are pondering on who killed the old silver-maker, David, youngest of the Collins', conducts his own investigation to find out why. Sneaking the ledger out of the west wing, he brings it to his room and starts going through to pages when, to his luck, Beth appears and points, as she always does, to the relevant page. David reads what we already know about who ordered the pentagram et cetera, and Beth gets sadder as he goes on, probably remembering what happened in the past. There's no doubt that the child buried in the estate is hers. However, their slippery trip down memory lane is interrupted by Quentin's theme, the ominous melody that signals his arrival. Beth looks haunted -no pun intended- and disappears in a nice, creepy fashion. 

Simple life of a 12 y.o.
Once again falling under Quentin's influence, David rips the page from the ledger and hides it. On cue, Barnabas and Julia come knocking on his door and start cross-examining the boy to have him admit his involvement in the disappearance of the ledger. It is when David suddenly goes hysterical and Barnabas tries to calm him down that Roger decides to make his dramatic entrance back into David's room and into our lives, witnessing a scene that is a little too awkward to explain. Using this window, David jumps into Roger's arms to have his father defend him. Lucky for Barnabas and not so much for David and his upcoming years of therapy, Roger isn't the father of the year: All he does is mock Barnabas for his affinity for old stuff and cheap mystery novels while slightly scowling him. Then again, he is always scowling, isn't he? Well okay, even though he isn't that great at backing up his son, he isn't as bad as I've made sound either. When Barnabas and Julia leave, he promises David to be his friend and spend more quality time with him, apparently dwelling on andropause.

Who wouldn't miss such a
peaceful presence?
Speaking of diminishing functions of reproductive systems, Barnabas and Julia try to win over Liz's trust by offering her tea, so she would give them access to old family documents. When asked why, they promise to give a proper answer afterwards. Liz masterfully inserts an "I'd like to know what's happening in my own house" to remind them who the real boss is without sounding like a bitch, but she is also a peach-in-heart and says that she trust them, which is strange considering both Barnabas and Julia are practically strangers that appeared out of nowhere and moved in like it's nobody's business. Enter Roger, this time more serious and judgmental, just like we've always known and despised him for: All bark, no bite. He blames Barnabas for mucking up David's mind. Even the ledger seems to be back on the desk (offscreen courtesy of Quentin), and although Barnabas points to the apparent torn page as an evidence of foul play, Roger keeps on quacking (almost literally. "Yet?") and threatens to never let him in the house again if he doesn't apologizes to David. Barnabas gasps dramatically. You know what? I've even missed Roger. What good is a soap without a non-threateningly moody and positively annoying second man?

Meanwhile, having had enough of the men's piss contest, Liz and Julia are already in a storage room where old family crap are scattered around. Seeing them together, albeit briefly, makes me wish they have more scenes together. Liz's elegance and Julia's awkwardness mix just perfectly. But today ain't the day for MILF-bonding, so Liz leaves and Julia goes through some stuff in order to find anything related to the purchase of the pentagram. It's amazing to watch Grayson Hall do even the simplest of the tasks, such as lighting a candle or going through a book, in her own peculiar way with her slit eyes and flaring nostrils.

Past bites Julia
in the ass
 Conveniently enough, she finds something of importance in one of the first books she opens: The photograph of Beth Chavez! (looking as ghostly as she does as a ghost). Recognizing her, Julia heads to the door to call her husband wife friend Barnabas, but Quentin's invisible ghost acts first by locking her in, and tries to scare her with the usual sudden-opening-of-the-window, blowing-out-of-the-candle, rattling-of-the-chandelier... During the turmoil, Julia tries to communicate with the ghost as if talking to a person with a hearing problem or someone foreign ("Who is hereee? Answer meee!"). Barnabas arrives to save her from further embarrassment. Suddenly the door opens, lights come back on, and everything turns to normal except for the chandelier still shaking shamelessly, but they choose to ignore it and so should we. It turns out Quentin's scarefest was actually a diversion.. When they look again, Beth's photo is gone from the album. Someone is trying too hard to cover up their tracks and I'm dying to find out why. Once again: What did happen there in 1897?

3rd time's not a charm
for Roger Davis
Unaware of the horrors happening downstairs, Carolyn and Chris' flirting has blossomed into a full blown romance, and they are back from a date, enjoying some drinks and each others' lips. In a very soap-operatic turn, Carolyn wonders if Chris' secretive personality is a result of a secret marriage or something. Chris denies those claims and diverts her attention with some further make out. Once at the cottage, Chris suddenly starts to go through the transformation with the usual "I have stomach pain" movements, but wait! There is no full moon. He calls Collinwood to ask for his new pals Barnabas & Julia's help. They come running and take him to the Collins' Mausoleum. But it is only the beginning of Chris' problems. That night, a stranger from his past knocks on the majestic doors of Collinwood. But what is it? This man looks exactly like Jeff Clark (aka Vicki's time-hopping, passive aggressive bea), who Carolyn understandably mistakes him for when she answers the door. He corrects her and introduces himself as Ned Stuart, an old friend of Chris'. This Ned is nothing like Jeff; he is intrusive and sarcastic. Upon learning Chris lives in the cottage, he decides to pay him a visit there. After he leaves, Carolyn calls Chris to give him some heads-up despite Ned has asked her not to, as it is supposed to be surprise, but nobody answers the phone. It is a small but a nice touch about Carolyn's character and how much she's grown.

Ned meets Barnabas and Julia at the cottage to their initial shock (and Barnabas's annoyance). They are rather suspicious of this friend of Chris', who mysteriously shows up at this hour and acts like that one unwanted guest who just doesn't know when to leave. After some awkward chit-chatting, he finally drops the bomb: Chris used to be engaged to his sister (whaaat?), but one day he disappeared never to return. He hints that his sister was dead and insists that he stays there until Chris arrives, but Barnabas & Julia manage to get rid off him by lying about a book that they are writing. I can imagine the title: "Fantastic Beasts of Collinsport and Where to Find Them".

David's shaky start as a writer
Back at Collinwood on that never ending night, David has a monologue with Quentin in the drawing room and tells him he wants out of the "game" because of all the death it has caused. Quentin doesn't show up, but his music does, and possesses the boy although he puts up a fruitless resistance by covering his ears. Under the influence, David begins to write. Sometime later, Maggie is surprised to find David in the drawing room (Was she sneaking out of Mrs Johnson's room at 3 am? I hope so) and tries to reach out to him by being friendly. But David acts like a creep and begins to recite the story he's been writing like a maniac: There was a man cursed to change into an animal who killed people, but he found a room where he could hide and wouldn't hurt anyone else. Then one day, someone who didn't want him to suffer anymore let him out and a hunter killed him in the woods (Wait is that Chris' story or Quentin's? They both have a secret room? Is that their connection? Was Quentin a werewolf too? I'm hooked up). Once David finishes telling the story, he starts to act like a spoiled brat again and runs out into the night. You know, one of those days Maggie is bound to give him a good smacking and we won't judge her. 
Maggie's job is in peril
She goes out behind him and runs into Ned, who is so used to being mistaken for Jeff by now that he introduces himself right away (What baffles me is why Maggie was so frightened to see Jeff. I mean, of course it must be unsettling to have a time travelling person coming and going as he pleases, but she could have at least asked how Vicki was. A-ha! Maybe, that's exactly what scares her that Vicki will come back and reclaim her governessnes). Maggie has hard time warming up to Ned who offers to help her find David and the fact that he's carrying a gun doesn't help either. They decide to go back after failing to find the boy.

Barnabas and Julia arrive in Collinwood, still speculating about that Ned guy's motivations to look for Chris and they find pages of David's story lying on the floor. Shocked by the fact that he seems to know all about Chris, Barnabas does the math and claims that David may not have been himself when he's written this. Finally, someone suspects that an evil force is work here. Scared that David has gone to the Mausoleum to let Chris out of the secret room as hinted in the story, Barnabas goes to look for him donning his favorite (only) silver tipped cane. Once again, he is right. Inside the mausoleum, he manages to stop David from pulling the handle that opens the secret door at the last minute. 

Breaking of an ex vampire's heart
Barnabas gets angry with David and questions the boy, but David has proven himself to be a skilled liar then and again so it doesn't come as a shock when he manages to get out of this one too, by making up a story about hiding from Maggie to piss her off. Maggie is happy to see David back with Barnabas. After she sends the boy to his room, Maggie tells Barnabas about her worries concerning David's strange and swinging moods. Because she is an angel with a heart of gold, she opens up to Barnabas about trying to fill Vicki's shoes, but not realizing how much the man is hurt by the mention of the former governess' name. Kudos to Barnabas for heroically gulping down whatever feelings he has left for Vicki and encouraging Maggie. I want to pinch his cheeks.

Visited by Maggie in his room, David is back to his own quasi-innocent self and finally opens up to Maggie about being so scared. The governess tucks him in and tries to get the boy to trust her enough to explain what it is that scares him so much, but to no avail. Apparently David is scared that by mentioning Quentin, he will be angering the ghost and risk everyone's lives. It turns out to be true. After Maggie leaves, he appears to David looking like a the devil itself and harasses the boy when he voices his reluctance to play the game anymore. The scene cuts away, once again leaving the horrors to our imagination. 

Monsters come in
many forms
Barnabas visits Chris at the family mausoleum with the sunrise and tells him about the previous night's encounter with the annoying Ned Stuart. Chris is shaken to hear his name and tells Barnabas honestly about what happened with Ned's sister; his fiancée. Apparently, she witnessed the transformation while she was organizing a surprise party for Chris, despite his efforts to prevent that. Guess she was the one that got a surprise after all! Chris doesn't know if he killed her or not but assumes it is the case, and that's why Ned is here: To get even. Chris thinks Ned must have been the one that poisoned his drink the other day. He decides to run away, but Barnabas isn't the type to let down his friends (except when he is a vampire; then he usually decides to kill them himself) so he offers to have our werewolf's fluffy back when the time comes. 

Hurricane Quentiné
Of course since this is Collinsport, one drama starts before another ends. Barnabas returns to Collinwood to find, along with Liz and Maggie, that the drawing room has been hit by a hurricane: Tables, chairs, lambs and all the other semi-tasteful accessories are trashed and overturned, and there's no logical explanation as to who might have done this in the short period of time where the room wasn't inhabited the previous night. Seriously, how long was that night? And come to think of it, did Carolyn and Chris sucked face unaware of Mr. Braithwaite's death there only few hours prior? Does anyone even care to let the others know about what's going on in this house anymore? Anyway, name of the hurricane is Quentin and during the chaos downstairs, he is in David's room smiling grotesquely and throwing braggy looks (really Quint?) while David protests against his actions. It takes a second for Quentin to turn into a cold eyed monster again and he touches David's arm with his ghostly hands, setting it on an invisible fire. 
Abuse takes a dangerous turn
Maggie hears David's screams and Quentin's evil laughter, enters the room to find David lying unconscious on the floor with a burn mark on his arm. Maggie hears David mutter Quentin's name while coming to his self and asks him if that is the name of the man she saw in the west wing. Another gold star to Maggie! David panics and his first reaction is to deny it, but he can't resist Maggie's affection any longer and breaks out into tears in the governess' arms. Then, in a sudden but not unexpected twist, he runs out of the room and then the house. And that's him pre-puberty! Sigh! He, and later Maggie run into Ned Stuart who happens to be at the door again. Maggie doesn't have time for Ned's shit, so she goes after David while totally ignoring him.

Someone get a tape measure!
As we've already seen in the two episodes that he's appeared on the show that Ned has some serious problems differentiating public and personal space, so naturally he invites himself in. He meets Amy, of all people, in the drawing room. He is surprised and a bit delighted (in a sneaky way) to learn that she is the sister of none other than Chris; he tries to act friendly but it comes off threatening and creepy. To further confuse the poor girl, he mentions his sister and her brother almost marrying; and makes a cheap jigsaw puzzle analogy that is simply painful/delicious to watch. Amy instinctively feels repulsed by the man and thankfully Chris shows up to save her. The men stare at each other coldly while exchanging shady and not at all sincere greetings; you can cut the sexual tension with an antique one of a kind Collins family silver dagger made by Mr. Braithwaite (may he RIP). After sending Amy out to have a talk alone, Chris and Ned recite your run-of-the-mill soap opera lines. Ned denies poisoning Chris' drink but is strangely happy to learn someone is also trying to kill him. Chris, who has always assumed Ned's sister (whose name happens to be Sabrina by the way) is dead, has the shock of his life when he learns she is actually alive and, on top of that, here in town. Ned forces Chris to go see her when the latter hesitates, and I go "Yay, new character!".

House of Horrors I
David runs into Amy in the woods while hiding from Maggie and the children express how scared they are of Quentin now. David reveals Quentin's master plan is to drive everyone out of Collinwood, so him and the children can live there all alone you know what that is JUST SICK! The kids finally agree on letting Maggie in on everything that's been happening but Quentin appears right there and gives one of now infamous cold stares (supported by a low angle light, which he seems to carrying around for dramatic effect). Back at the house and once again possessed, the kids try to act normal around Maggie, well as normal as those two creepballs could ever be, and convince her to play dress-up with them. Now, I don't really understand why they are still casually hanging in the house especially when everyone else is out somewhere and there is a frigging ghost in the first place. But on top of that, Maggie agrees to PLAY GAMES? What the actual hell? Just pack your bags, ditch the kids if you must and go back to your cozy little home, girl. So we can sort of say Maggie has the events, that will befall her shortly, coming. When the kids disappear to get dressed and never come back, Maggie wanders around looking for them like a stereotypical young woman in a horror film. The storm outside rages on, doors of the house blow open by themselves, and there is definitely something evil lurking. Then, Quentin's laughter echoes in the house and Maggie follows through another horror cliche and locks herself in in what I think was Roger's study, instead of running out and maybe moving to another state. 
House of Horrors II
To double the terror, the children join in on the laughter like crazy, which I have to admit is pretty scary. Maggie is cornered against a wall with her beautiful brown eyes wide open. The door slowly opens to reveal the kids dressed in those period clothes and Maggie would almost be relieved to see it's only them, if it isn't for QUENTIN STANDING BEHIND THEM, AS DARK, EVIL AND SIDEBURNED AS EVER! And he has the scarf that he used to strangle Maggie in her nightmare! He comes closer and closer! Maggie backs away helplessly! The children snap out of the influence and plead with him to leave Maggie alone! From here on it's a total chaos: Just when Quentin is about to wrap the scarf around Maggie's throat, she faints. Mrs Johnson enters the room and screams. Liz follows her in but Quentin disappears, so she doesn't see him. Mrs Johnson panics. Liz panics too upon seeing Maggie unconscious. Mrs Johnson blames the kids. Liz tells her to take the kids upstairs. Mrs Johnson says okay but she will come back down right away. It's like a circus hit Collinwood!

A long due bulb goes on
Mrs Johnson takes the kids to David's room but she doesn't want to hang out with them, she knows better, she may be getting old but she has plans to move to Bahamas when she retires, biting the dust while trying to save two spoiled brats from a ghost isn't on the bucket list; so she sham-comforts them saying there's no one in the room, pretending to look under the bed (and the bookcase?) and busts her ass outta there, locking the younglings in. Mrs Johnson is my spirit animal. Since he is too big to fit under the bed and since he is a friggin' ghost, Quentin appears in the room as he always does and punishes the children when they rebel against him. He moves his hand in front of Amy's eyes which blinds her. Meanwhile, Maggie's gained her precious consciousness and tries to explain to Liz what has happened. Mrs Johnson comes in to back her up, and Liz runs upstairs to check on the kids and see if her employees are indeed telling the truth. Surely, they both can't be repressed hysterics, can they? Once she sees the kids running around in the room like headless chickens talking to an invissible Quentin, she stares into the camera and finally accepts the fact that they are possessed! About time Elizabeth.

Night of the
Chicken Dead
A bit later, Liz is back from looking for Julia but she is nowhere to be found (for once in her life). Liz tells Maggie to call Professor Stokes; for "He is our only hope". While trying to get him on the phone, Maggie hears the storm outside just...stop. So does Liz on her way to see the kids. Mrs Johnson comes out of David's room where she's been watching the kids (never say never) and hurriedly calls Liz in. As the sounds have abruptly silenced, the kids have collapses and fell asleep. Mrs Johnson points to the fact that the storm continues to rage outside but inside there is a deathly silence (groovy!). Out of nowhere, Quentin's music starts echoing inside the house to both Liz and Mrs Johnson's horror. The kids wake up looking very different, very mature in an uncanny way. David announces that "It's too late to be afraid" and laughs like a maniac which eventually joins with Quentin's own laughter. The women hold hands in terror. The screen fades to black. I let out a little pee.

Notes... Notes.. Notes..

*It is no new information that this show has great child actors but those kids were at the top of their games while playing "possessed". I watch both David Henesy and Denise Nickerson with my jaw dropped. 50-year-belated kudos!

*I'm a sucker for typical soap stories so I'm definitely digging the Chris-Ned-Sabrina side plot.

*Thanks to Dark Shadows Fans page on Facebook for featuring my blog, and also to the visitors who have been supportive. Drop by and say hey if you want.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Turn of The Screw à la Collinwood

EPISODES 678-685

Hours of liquor tasting workshops
finally come in handy
Chris is apparently dying as our reliable family physician Julia has said so, but Barnabas and her take all the time in the world to help him. Instead, they go around collecting evidence to determine what may have caused him to be... dying. Following the lead that is the glass on the floor, Julia (the alcoholic anonymous), sniffs the drink bottle twice (one for business; one for pleasure) and is able to identify strychnine right away. Assuming it was a suicide attempt, Barnabas goes full drama queen once again reflecting back to his days as a vampire and how he too used to think about killing himself, when actually he friggin' should be helping the poor man dying on the floor and wait for throwback thursdays next time he feels nostalgic. At that same moment, Amy has a nightmare where she is led to Chris' cottage by Beth (who is finally saying some words; albeit still a bit on the obscure side) and witnesses her brother getting stabbed with an expression on his face as if killed by Samara. Oh, how I've missed Don Briscoe's ridiculous face-makings in extreme situations.
Samara visits Collinwood
In the dream, David admits having trying to stop Quentin, and Beth confirms this. Amy wakes up screaming. The next morning, still at the cottage, Barnabas and Julia assume the mysterious woman that led them there and disappeared must be a ghost. When Chris wakes up supporting a sexy stubble (Julia must have pumped his stomach or something), they go all "We don't judge you for trying to kill yourself" to which he simply says he neither did nor would, as he has them for support now. Aw. Upon learning David was the only visitor he had that day, a suspecting Barnabas has a talk with the boy but he can't learn much because David is one little witball, so he leaves with implied "I'm-on-to-you"s. 

Ghost fueled girl power
However it is Amy who is really onto David and boy, hell hath no fury like a little miss muffet scorned. Making sure her brother is alive, she confronts David like a firecracker and threatens to expose him as the accessory to a crime. David is not a turkey shoot either, so he covers the girl's mouth and twists her arm around, making her cry. Luckily, Liz is there for the save right on time as she always is and separates the two; my heart really aches for Amy. When David is sent to his room, Liz has a girl-to-girl talk with Amy, where the latter excitedly begins to tell the whole story (out of order and like a crazy person to be honest) but can't finish anyway because of Quentin's sudden appearance in the drawing room. As expected, he disappears when Liz turns around to look (sigh) and Amy understands talking about Quentin would endanger herself and the others. She goes back to David, ready to make a deal with Quentin to keep playing the game as long as no harm comes to Chris. That girl is feisty and I could eat her up.

The original "Stop playing with
your phone and do your homework"
Using the new authority granted to her by Liz to discipline David any way she sees fit, Maggie the supergoverness takes the old phone that the kids originally have been using to contact Quentin away from David in order to teach him a lesson. Once again Vicki is mentioned being the superior governess but Maggie can finally stand up for herself as she has that aforementioned full damn authority alright! As much as I like Vicki, I must admit Maggie does seem to be the better governess. She has both compassion and puissance, whereas Vicki was mostly hugs and marshmallows. Okay, maybe not, but we can all agree that she was way too easy to fool. At least Maggie was once a straightforward, no bullshit waitress of the best diner in town, so ain't no little boy gonna break her (Then again those countless memory tricks by Julia may have scarred her for life, so who knows). 
With his only way of communicating with Quentin is gone, David has no choice but to visit his secret room in the west wing to deliver Amy's negotiation offer, but not before Maggie spots and tails him. Seeing David go into the storage room, Maggie follows him there, only to find it empty for David has already sneaked into Quentin's adjoining secret room through the hole in the panel. Befuddled, Maggie leaves, trying to figure out for the next couple of episodes how the hell David has evaded her. David delivers Amy's message, right before falling under the possessive influence of Quentin. Possession stories are discomforting as they are, since it is practically a form of abuse and molestation; but it is extra repulsive when we have children in the middle of all that. Connotations of child abuse are not so subtle.

Meanwhile downstairs, Mrs Johnson is kinda, sorta made fun of by Liz for being afraid of the children when she is asked to take David's food up to his room. Actually the whole conversation is so amazing that I'll just go ahead and quote it verbatim:
Mrs J has no time for your bullshit
Mrs Johnson: (dramatically) Those two children are playing some kind of monstrous game. A game that's intended to scare us all to death.
Liz: (mocking) Mrs Johnson. All children make up odd games from time to time.
Mrs Johnson: I didn't say this was odd. I said it's monstrous and that's what it is.
Liz: Mrs Johnson, you're a mature woman. David's twelve years old. You mean to tell me you're actually afraid to be with him for anytime.
Mrs Johnson: (nodding unashamedly) You can have my head examined but that's the way I feel.
This can be one of my favorite scenes so far, right up there when Julia slapped Cassandra (#535) or Naomi smacked Reverand Trask (#438). Or Liz calling off her wedding to Jason and confessing killing her husband (#270). Anything with Joan Bennett, really! But Mrs Johnson is the real star here; the subject of poor woman's age and sanity has come up three times this week and she took it like a pro and threw it back like the sassma
ster she is. However, this couldn't get her out of the task ahead and she grudgingly goes up to David's room, where she jumps up and down with joy to see Maggie, who is going through David's clothes. Overjoyed that she wouldn't be alone with David, or with David at all for he is missing, Mrs J acts like Maggie is her favorite person in the world, whereas just a couple of weeks ago she had no problem whatsoever to openly compare Maggie to Vicki. Upon seeing David's Victorian era coat, she says David was wearing it the night she caught the two brats playing dress-up and Maggie begins to connect the dots back to the man Mrs Johnson said she saw in the cottage. Maggie asks Mrs Johnson not to tell Liz about David's absence because she wants to handle it herself. Of course, Mrs Johnson will be Mrs Johnson, and she somehow manages to throw a shade here and there before leaving, once again questioning Maggie's adequacy as a governess. When questioned by Liz, Mrs Johnson lies halfheartedly and runs into the kitchen to avoid further query.

David gets even-steven
David comes back from the west wing to find Maggie in his room, soap operatically positioned in the armchair. A showdown of sorts take place as Maggie, firm and not gullible, asks how the hell David has gotten out of the storage room without her noticing. The reason why I've been beginning to like David is that he is ready-witted and quite sharp, managing to evade every question. He not only always has something to say, but also does it dipped in wit. But Maggie wasn't born yesterday either. The verbal tennis match ends with Maggie grounding David, who in turn calmly threatens to get even, sending chills down Maggie's and our spines. Welcome back David the child-sociopath of the early episodes! And even he gets! With a sequence of creepy tricks of the gothic genre (lights going off, the old telephone ringing, the window blowing open), Maggie is terrorized (seemingly by Quentin) in her room. Mrs Johnson is the one to come for Maggie's help ("Well, when I told you I saw that man down at the cottage, you looked at me as if I were crazy". With that finally out, I am hoping for Maggie and Mrs Johnson becoming besties).

Attention to the hand
Set to show David who the boss is, Maggie heads back to the west wing when she can't find David in his room. All alone she walks through the dark, scary, spider webby corridors up to the storage room. She opens the door hoping to see David but BAM!! Quentin is standing there and looking at her menacingly. Naturally, Maggie screams and runs downstairs; lucky to find not one but three familiar faces: Carolyn, Chris and Liz (It did not escape my attention that Maggie used this opportunity to grab Chris' hand when she first came down. Is she gonna snatch him right under Carolyn's nose? Wouldn't be the first time, you know!). Upon hearing there is a creepy looking man in the closed up part of the house, Chris and Carolyn volunteer to go look for him. Ah, love. Makes you do crazy things. But not surprisingly, they can't find anyone. Meanwhile, Liz offers Maggie a stiff drink to calm her down; I like it when she is generous like that.
Quentin & Mr Juggins:
7 Differences
However, she doesn't really see how that man, who she learns Mrs Johnson also recently saw, would possibly have anything to do with David. To set it straight, they go to David's room (who has been there all along but just hiding) and question him. Being a notorious liar, he manages to dodge every accusation. He even offers to take them up there and show them where he was hiding when Maggie failed to find him. Of course, he isn't doing this out of the sweetness of his heart. When the two women and the boy go up to the storage room, they run into Mr Juggins the sideburn-donning, creepy looking, easy-to-mistake-for-a-man dummy. "Could this be the man you saw?" Liz asks, rather mockingly, which must have stung like a bitch, definitely more than running into Quentin himself. There is a chill in the air, not because of the ghosts roaming the halls or the thunderstorm outside, but because Liz has an intimidating left profile. Maggie hangs her head in shame and David smiles defiantly, for he was the one who put the dummy there after Quentin told him to.

Proletarian revolution starts here
Later that night, Maggie is gloomily hanging out in the drawing room while everyone else is asleep. Everyone but Mrs Johnson. When Maggie tells her about the man she saw, Mrs Johnson feels a) happy because this proves she isn't crazy; b) scared because he is in the house now; c) lesbian because Maggie looks seductive in that blue, fluffy nightgown helpless because they are only ones who know what is going on and can't convince Liz otherwise. I am really, REALLY loving their scenes, bonding and comforting each other. I knew some bff action was coming their way. Mrs Johnson believes the children are wicked but Maggie thinks they are innocent and need their help. They exchange goodnights and head to bed (unfortunately, not together), but not before Maggie gives one final "And Mrs Johnson. Lock your door" for the sake of it. Geez, girl. You'll give the woman a stroke. That night, Maggie has a nightmare à la Elm Street where she goes to the storage room to confront Quentin, but gets strangled with a red shawl instead.

Mrs Johnson climaxes
Next morning, Maggie fills Barnabas in on everything that went down and he believes her right away on the first try. It's a big relief for Maggie and also us; finally there is someone in the house who doesn't try to rationalize it when a strange thing happens, especially after all the scary shit that went down (curses, witches, spirits, fuckin' time travel, Buzz). Barnabas doesn't keep this info to himself and does the most logical thing to do: Bring Professor Stokes in. Suddenly, some people started to get smarter in this house. Stokes believes Janet Findley, the medium he sent here couple of weeks earlier and ended up dead (well, shit happens), didn't die a natural death even though it looked like a heart attack. So, as it the Collins tradition in every 100 episode or so, it is SEANCE TIME AGAIN! This time participants are Stokes, Barnabas, Maggie and despite practically begging not to be involved, Mrs Johnson (they were ones who got close and personal with Quentin afterall). It was about time they popped Mrs J's séance cherry, and as one would expect, the whole thing was hilarious. And as if it wasn't enough, the spirit of Madame Findley picked her of all people to be her human-speaker. Mrs Johnson moans and utters some words like "Children. The Panel. The room." instead of saying "You know guys while I was looking for the malevolent spirit, the children led me to the west wing. There I discovered his secret room by going through the panel" but yeah yeah, the wi-fi connection is and has always been slow between the two worlds. Luckily, Mrs Johnson finishes the story by screaming "AND HE KILLED ME" before collapsing, at least proving there is something evil inside the house. We haven't seen Mrs J ever since, I hope she is dealing okay with the séance hangover.

Consenting adults try hypnosis
The next morning Barnabas tells Julia about previous night's hoopla and try to decipher the dead medium's message: He believes children are either in some kind of danger or they know who the murderer is. Or worse yet, they are the murderers. They hope it's either number one or two. Later, they visit Chris hoping to learn more about this mysterious ghost looking out for him. He says he doesn't know, and it turns out to be true when Julia hypnotizes him (with his consent, probably the first time we see Julia using work ethics) with hopes of uncovering something buried, yet fails. Chris finds it hard to believe in ghosts. An odd statement from a man who happens to be a werewolf every now and then. Outside, Beth appears to Amy and asks her to do something (again, not speaking), and it turns out to be to get an old doll of some kind from the west wing, which Amy embraces and starts playing with. I still don't get how the kids are able to go in and out the west wing without having the bejesus scared out of them.

The estate of Collinwood
is one big graveyard
A little bit later, Beth finally appears to Chris in the woods and points him to a spot on the ground. Chris does the most sensible thing to do to a guardian angel and shouts "You are the one. You are the woman!" at her face. Naturally, she disappears and Chris goes and gets Barnabas. The two man dig the earth where she pointed and discover a child size coffin of 50-70 years (Barnabas shows off his expertise on the coffins; and he should know). It is a saddening sight. When they open it up, they find the remains of an infant and a silver pentagram necklace. Ohh, the plot thickens. They speculate that it must be a protection against a werewolf, which proves there must have been another one before Chris, which proves his condition must be connected to it. They take the necklace and bury the coffin back, not knowing Quentin is watching them. Another easy paycheck day for David Selby.

Possession stands for what exactly?
Back at the house, David grabs a book from the library (why the hell is there a book titled "Ghosts and Exorcism" in the Collins' collection I am not sure, but then again they have always been a bit morbid) and Carolyn comes in and tells him it's a weird choice for a bedtime reading. David is ready to open up about what has been scaring him, but right on cue, Quentin the ever silent, the ever present, the ever buzzkill ghost appears and David shuts up. Later when they meet in Quentin's room, David first rejects whatever it is Quentin has asked him to do this time, but the music starts playing and David falls under the man-ghost's influence once again. You know, I can't unsee the child abuse metaphor even if I want to now and it is unsettling. It is also supported by the fact that they always cut away once Quentin starts to possess them.

Sherlockin' Barnabas
Examining the pentagram in the drawing room, Barnabas notices an inscription that says "'To guard you from the wrath of Cerberus", which is amazing 'cause who doesn't like Greek mythology subtly integrated into any story? Carolyn recognizes the jeweler's mark and identifies it as belonging to Mr. Ezra Braithwaite, the third and last generation craftsman in a line of jewelers providing the Collins family their much needed silver. Barnabas calls him up while David watches and eventually filches the pentagram right under Barnabas' nose, as Quentin has ordered. On top of that, he manages to get out of this one, even though he was the only other person in the room and Barnabas even apologizes to him for assuming he stole it. Barnabas must be having one of his slow days (it was the 60's, the acid was the thing; we are not shaming him for experimenting).

Barnabas supporting local businesses
Lacking the real thing, Barnabas visits Mr. Braithwaite in his shop with a drawing of the pentagram. The man is very old and eccentric. He has two glasses: One pair to see people; the other for things (like all of us, really). He almost has a memory of making the necklace and promises to look through his books to find out. Later, he gives Collinwood a call to let them know that he has found out who it was made for, but unfortunately it is David who answers the phone and before he can summon Barnabas, Quentin intervenes and takes the phone from his hands. When David protests, Quentin chases him up the stairs looking creepy as ever. Right after the opening credits, we see them talking in the drawing room, so once again we have been denied to witness whatever it is Quentin does to those kids. Anyway, Quentin must still be resentful towards Amy because he disappears right after she joins them (what is he, 7?). Amy is the mature one here and she figures whatever it is those two are doing must be something Chris would be harmed at the end of. She warns David not to trust Quentin, and he agrees by saying he doesn't like the game anymore.

Amy must have remind Barnabas
of his own sister Sarah
Enter Liz, getting ready to go to the airport to pick up Roger who is finally coming back from Boston doing devil knows what, while his sister has been resurrected, his niece got attacked by a werewolf and his son has been possessed by ghosts galloping around the house like there is no tomorrow. Liz wants to take David with her but meets much resistance, because he wants to make sure Quentin behaves. Amy almost blurts the whole thing but the clock strikes conveniently and Liz has to go. Jeez! Then, Amy and Barnabas have a heart-warming talk about their good old (offscreen) friendship at the Windcliff Sanitarium but Amy still can't bring her tiny self to admit who she is afraid of. QUENTIN! IT'S QUENTIN!!1!

Ezra is a little too fond of silver
Meanwhile downstairs David welcomes Mr. Braithwaite in, who has come up with his ledger to tell Barnabas about his discovery. David leaves the old man admiring all the iron Collins' have alone in the drawing room, to have Quentin prey on him. And right on cue, Quentin appears behind the hidden panel (appearing out of thin air like a regular ghost must not be dramatic enough for him) and approaches the man. Poor old Braithwaite has his "things-glasses" on, so he can't make out Quentin at first and even assumes he is the friend Barnabas has mentioned.
Quentin plays with his
prey first
Noticing this, Quentin has some fun and pretends to listen with a smile on his face while Braithwaite goes on and on about how the pentagram was one of the first pieces he made, and it was ordered by Miss Beth Chaves and charged to Count Quentin Collins. After he's done reading, Mr. Braithwaite switches back to his people-glasses and casually identifies the man as Quentin Collins. After a pause that actually seems like a whole minute, he realizes that it is impossible and yells "You're dead! You're dead!" as Quentin comes closer and closer... During that, David has actually gone up to Barnabas' room to tell him about Mr. Braithwaite's arrival but got caught up in his cousin's never ending speeches. When he finally manages to interrupt him and tell the news, they run down to the drawing room to find Mr. Braithwaite sitting in a position with his head hanging down, now practically screaming I'm dead. Right on cue, he drops to the floor like a single raisin as the ex-vampire gently touches him. As Barnabas yells David to stay away and call Julia, Quentin is already in the west wing, with the ledger.

Notes... Notes... Notes

- Chris is one of my favorite characters now. He's nice but edgy; secretive and overall cool to watch. I really enjoy watching Don Briscoe's performance and was sad to learn he had a tough life.

-Julia has been reading about the werewolves and apparently there are two ways you can be one: By a bite or a curse. We know Chris' thing is a curse but not sure how he got it. How is he related to Quentin, Beth and the dead baby we will see, I hope. It is also a bit hypocritical of Julia to suggest they will have to expose Chris if they fail to help him, while that was never an option for Barnabas. Unrequited love has blinded her.

-While on the subject of werewolves, even though Barnabas made it sound like Cerberus was only a random guard dog at the gates of hell, it was actually a huge three-headed beast. Now that we know there was another werewolf back in the town's history, it would be cool if Chris was one of three people who are affected by a curse, forming a symbolic Cerberus through time.

-It is funny how Liz is right back at her game again, with no lasting after effects of being dead. With no mention of the whole thing, one would assume she only went to Bangor for a couple of days.

- Occasional black and white episodes give me a nice feeling of nostalgia and an opportunity to see what the show would have looked like if it never gone multicolor during less gothic and more exciting, full fledged supernatural stories.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Cry wereWolf!

EPISODES 666 (oooh)-677

This morning I woke up from a dream where I was running in the woods to stop Angelique from leading a line of childrens' spirits deeper into the woods for some evil intentions, after a warning I had from Josette's ghost, so I said it's time to go back to the blog 'cause it's apparently calling out to me in my dreams now. 


Death of a Countess
Natalie the Vampire Slayer and her sidekick Nathan are stopped by Barnabas' loyal servant, Ben, right on time before they could kill the vampire (Although I remember perfectly well that the previous episode ended with the ominous sight and sound of the hammer coming down on the stake; that is one big retcon, if you ask me). Nathan shoots Ben, but the man is built like Jason Voorhees. Not only he is unaffected by the shooting, but he also goes on and kills both Nathan and Natalie with his bare hands, although to be honest the latter was more like an accident. Who knew people tended to die when you cover their mouths to keep them quiet for so long? All in all, the history has been changed but no worries, these "accidental" deaths had no effect in the present, which we cut to right away:

Julia and Willie are restlessly waiting in the Old House for Barnabas' return from the past (Very casually as if he's just gone out to buy some groceries). Sick of waiting around, they visit the cemetery and notice that the graves of Peter and Vicki have vanished. Julia takes it as a positive sign that Barnabas is changing history, just the way he intended. Still very casual. But then again, dealing with vampires, witches, warlocks, Frankenstein monsters and other otherworldly beings eventually makes one rather indifferent to the et cetera. Anyways, Julia cries out into the night for Barnabas to return, but his coffin is still empty.

Back in 1796 for what I hope will be the final time for God's sake, Ben fills Barnabas in on the itsy bitsy murders of Nathan and Natalie. The vampire tells him to get rid off the bodies; then, make up a lame story to tell his father Joshua about their whereabouts. As his final order, he tells Ben to chain him in his coffin for his time travel ticket has almost expired. Too bad for him, he reappears in the present time right after Willie checks his coffin and leaves the mausoleum. Barnabas is stuck in his coffin, gasping for air and letting us have a great view up his nostrils.

Waiting on the other side
But not all odds are against him. Back in the Old House, the weeping ghost of Josette appears to Willie, mysterious and weepy as ever, and vanishes. Then, he hears the heart-beat sounds emitting from Barnabas' portrait, just like he did when he first found Barnabas in episode 210 and saved the show from cancellation. Taking it as a sign, he and Julia rush off to the cemetery and whoa what is that, there are suddenly chains around the coffin??!! They break the locks and open the lid rather cautiously for Barnabas may have come back as a vampire. And there he is, barely alive and no fangs. A Happy Snoopy Dance and a heart warming reunion later, the trio are almost caught red handed by Carolyn and Amy who happen to be in the neighborhood bringing flowers to the dead. They hide in the secret chamber until the girls leave. Not so much drama or suspense there.

Peer pressure &
Maggie lies a little
Once back at Collinwood, Amy is bullied by David into "playing the game", and Carolyn catches, scowls and grounds him (in that order) despite both his and Amy's protests that it was a misunderstanding. It is unsettling how Amy repeatedly covers for David's ancestrally-possessed-ass. Seeing how Carolyn is a likely obstacle in their evil evil plans, David says they will have to "play the game with her", and by now we know they don't mean they are gonna invite her for a make believe tea party. First, they play cute and win over Maggie's trust that night when she catches them together in David's room. Maggie, trying so hard to fill the void of governess-ing Vicki left when she started a brand new life in 1796, opts to trust and cover for them against Mrs. Johnson's prying, who has nothing whatsoever to prove, so she sticks to being her (neurotic) strict self.
Later, when they make sure that everyone's asleep, they sneak into the west wing through the hidden panel in the drawing room, wearing the same 1800's clothes. *cue Quentin's theme* Amy, now calling herself Beth, claims they are in her room and the two once again recite the almost-100-year-old dialogue between Quentin & Beth. Amy as Beth curiously says she is afraid of "them. I'm afraid of both of them." They mention a man and a woman who hates Quentin, and Amy mentions the woman having powers/curse. Uh-oh. What did happen there in 1897? But before we can learn more, the possession is interrupted by Mrs Johnson, who has followed the children's voices through the west wing (but what she was doing there in the first place, I do not know. Maybe she has a secret room there where she goes to chill and get shitfaced once in a while, after a day of heavy work; and that would be well deserved, that woman looks after a whole mansion by herself).
She is shocked to find children in such demode attire, hangin' out like two creeps in candle light. Sliding back to their child-selves, the kids shamelessly make fun of Mrs Johnson's age by pointing out she must have forgotten how cool the game of dress-up is. Well, sorta. Mrs. Johnson, not having been born yesterday (as pointed out by the kids), does not buy this story, shoos them away and is certain there is something up with those creeps-for-kids and that scares her. Unfortunately when she shares this with Maggie, the only thing she gets is a hinted "you must be crazy" and a "maybe you should retire". Okay maybe not in so many words, but there was definitely a mocking quality to Maggie's tone. Boy, is that girl trying too hard to be the governess of the year.

Wouldn't be a soap without a
troubled couple
Meanwhile during that whole ordeal, Carolyn and Chris Jennings have been making moon eyes at each other under the moonlit terrace and flirting in a very delicious soap-operatic manner where Carolyn is the love-struck young girl and Chris is more the "I am scared of my feelings because I may hurt you" type. Well, being a werewolf and all, this time it is a bit justified. And Carolyn, after her mother's not-so-death death, has become very mature in every way and automatically inherited her mother's generosity. She offers Chris the cottage that was previously used by Matthew the psychotic handyman and Laura the the psychotic phoenix. Well, after a brief consideration, the cottage is now inhabited by a psychotic werewolf. But, before that-- 

-- Mrs Johnson, who has been assigned to clean up the place to much dismay because she thinks the cottage is evil and should be burnt down for what went down with Matthew Morgan (and for some reason, she forgets to mention Laura; which makes me wonder if she had some sort of secret affair with Matthew back then to harbor such bitterness), recruits her annoying son Harry (different actor; same annoyance, and thankfully final appearance before he drifts into limbo) to set up the place for Chris. Timing is perfect for David and Amy to give poor Mrs. Johnson a lesson for meddling with their sicko game the night before. First, David tells Maggie how jumpy Mrs Johnson has become recently and implies she is going slightly coo-coo, to prepare her for the coming storm.
Mrs J is harrased by a ghost
with a serious case of sideburns
Then, when Harry leaves his mother alone in the cottage (after some amazing mother-son bickering that makes me almost sorry for Harry's disappearance), the kids lock her in and Quentin makes his silent but deadly appearance as he out stares Mrs Johnson into delirium. Maggie and the kids hear her screams and run for help, but the boogeyman is nowhere to be seen when they arrive. Once again, Mrs Johnson's craziness is implied but regardless she warns Maggie the kids and their "game" are somehow involved in this. Wow, give the woman some credit. She solved the case in like two episodes.

Carolyn's beauty tip: Maybelline
with a tint of Pentagram
From here on, the series snowballs into a werewolf drama: Chris moves in to the cottage and finally starts to interact with his sister Amy, who has been flung into the dark shadows of Collinwood after Tom's death and forgotten since. Feeling the impending danger, Amy sees the pentagram star this time on Carolyn's face, who in turn looks in the mirror and acts as if the girl is talking about a ice cream smudge that just isn't here. Right on cue, under Quentin's invisible orders David and less hesitatingly Amy, make up a plan to send Carolyn to Chris' cottage right when he is turning into a werewolf. The kids don't know anything about the wolf-man roaming the estate; they just do what Quentin tells them to do. However, their plan misfires when Maggie volunteers to go and saves her skin only briefly, when Chris manages to send her away right before changing. Carolyn suspects the kids are up to something (but that's mostly because they randomly declared how they wished she would go, instead of Maggie; practically announcing her as their least favorite person in the house).

Carolyn screams;
Liz dreams
The kids' plan failed but that doesn't mean Carolyn is out of the woods yet. Same night, she goes to visit her mother, whom she believes to be not exactly dead, in her mausoleum after totally ignoring Maggie's bona fide advice to "let it go". What she doesn't know is that not only the werewolf is out and about on her trail (and for some reason making a quick visit to his twin brother Tom Jennings' grave) but also her mother is trying to speak and warn her of the danger from her tomb. Yes, our poor Elizabeth is indeed dead on the outside but alive on the inside thanks to Cassandra's curse and she seems to able to feel what the heck is going on outside. After two episodes worth of Carolyn causally walking the grounds from Collinwood to the cemetery and to Chris' cottage (which is mysteriously empty and ruined during Chris' lupine transition), the werewolf finally catches up with her and she hides in her mother's mausoleum as every fetal-regressive child should. Elizabeth fights the catatonia to push the special button placed in her coffin as her daughter fights the monster right outside; and finally she manages to do so and the bells start to ring all over, grabbing Barnabas & Julia's attention. They arrive and save Carolyn just in time before she becomes werewolf food, and Barnabas beats the wolf-creature with his wolf-headed cane, making it run away. Carolyn, scarred on her cheek, is positive that her mother is alive but opening of the coffin and one of Julia's famous pulse-checkings prove otherwise. Or is it?

Matriarchy returns to Collinwood
Elizabeth, being an elegant woman of taste and style, shows up at Collinwood in her gorgeous red dress (they buried her in that?) only minutes later, when Barnabas & Julia duo are treating Carolyn's wound in the drawing room. I guess, she must have thought rising up from a grave wasn't graceful enough so she needed to make a proper entrance. Way to go girl! She is naturally shocked from the whole experience of being.. um.. deadish and warns the other three about Cassandra, who Barnabas says shouldn't be a concern anymore. Interestingly, Elizabeth says she indeed felt the witch die in flames (making an awesome cross-time reference to when Angelique died burning in Collinwood when Barnabas last visited that timeline only recently, and how Liz was able to feel it in her dead-state was just great). She is taken upstairs to rest and isn't seen again for a while. Boo hoo, for bringing back our favorite matriarch only to send her offscreen again. But we got more werewolfy stuff in our hands so we forgive (but not forget).

So, there is a "wild animal" on the loose, going around attacking people and understandably folks are scared. Barnabas, being the brave gentleman of the house he is, grabs his rifle-gun and his cane (he is smart; me like Barnabas) and goes werewolf hunting; and not surprisingly runs into the creature right away. First, he shoots him, but as we already know by now the bullets have no effects on the werewolf! Understandably mad and vengeful, the werewolf attacks the camera Barnabas, only to meet his silver tipped wolf headed double dong cane. It retreats like a puppy (with some nice action stunt sequences up and down styrofoam rocks) and Chris wakes up somewhere in the woods next morning, blood on his shirt.

Donna's dead body had more
screen time than her alive one
It is repeatedly established that there is a mysterious bond between Chris and his sister Amy, who once again gets worried during Chris' werewolf hours that Julia has to calm her down by talking a little more firmly than usual ("Amy, Amy listen to me, Amy listen to me. Stop this Amy!) and then lie to her when she can't find Chris in his cottage. There is definitely no doubt that Julia and Barnabas are a team now: She is Scully to his Mulder. Watson to his Sherlock. Bertie to his Ernie; long gone are the days of routine strangulations and hello hours of working together, fighting supernatural beings. Barnabas, having seen the monster up close and connecting it to the moon's phases along with Chris' accompanying strange behaviors (and tons of other evidence), figures out Chris is a WEREWOLF! Well done, Barnabas. But while the two are taking their time and not jumping to conclusions ("Speculation is a dangerous game" Julia remarks dramatically), Chris goes on and kills Carolyn's one-episode-wonder friend Donna who happened to be in Collinwood and was about to dry hump Chris' leg before he attacked her. Who was the friend? Why didn't Carolyn pull her weave off as it was obvious the bitch was causally flirting with her man, we'll never know. Has Dark Shadows suddenly gone feminist? Apparently not, since the only non-villain female character who has shown bit of casual sexual interest (albeit a bit pushy) has just got hacked. Oh, well. 

"Try not to shed so much next time
you turn into a werewolf, son"
Carolyn identifies the body at the morgue (or more likely in a random room in sheriff's station); she says Donna was a friend through a mutual so she won't be grieving much; oh and Sheriff Patterson and his office are back. What a lovely throwback. However, the Sheriff now knows Chris was the last person Donna was in contact with, so decides to call him in for an interrogation and locks him up (to give him time to make a believable story, which I think is illegal). Meanwhile, feeling gloomy and relating Chris' situation to his own vampiric times, Barnabas believes the man is not guilty of his actions, so he and Julia locate the evidence (a bloody shirt and Donna's purse, which, hilariously Grayson Hall tries very hard not to see before her cue) and get rid of them. Barnabas, then, calls the Sheriff and vouches for Chris' whereabouts on the night of the murder, just before Chris is about to confess being the murderer. Seeing how his ass is saved the last minute with lies about heavy drinking and such, he chooses to keep quiet.

Chris opens up
But Barnabas is up at his cottage, waiting for him in the dark, dramatically situated in an armchair with his back turned and all. He admits that he knows Chris' secret. After a dun-dun-duuun moment and a brief history recap of Chris' werewolfness of 7 years; Barnabas takes him to the Collins Mausoleum and keeps him locked in the secret room during the night. The following morning, Chris wakes up happy realizing he didn't kill anyone else. Barnabas lets him go, without giving a proper answer as to why he is helping Chris at all and why on earth is there a frigging empty coffin in the secret room anyways (which Chris, as the werewolf, totally ripped apart btw)? Do you know how expensive those 1700's coffins are, Chris?

Beth points
Meanwhile, Barnabas and Julia are not the only ones covering up Chris' ass mess. Something about their diabolical plans must have disturbed the ghastly relationship between Beth and Quentin, that the former appears to Amy in the woods and warns her (by wailing and pointing, as we know by now ghosts aren't good at just coming out and saying whatever the hell is on their mind) about Chris. Not only that, but she also possesses the girl to get rid off other evidence that would give away Chris' identity as a wolf-individual (I think this is more politically correct to call them nowadays). Quentin and through him David, doesn't like the fact that Amy is pooping over their plans, so they decide to kick her out of the whatever freaky club from hell they had, and keep her out of their plans. Amy, being the cutesy loyal friend, is sad but doesn't give away David's secret. The kids continue to mentally torture Mrs Johnson by simply staring at her while she is dusting, which was overall an amazing scene (I am the president of Mrs Johnson Fan Club). Desperate, she tells Barnabas about the whole costume fetish thingie the kids have going on and how she is sure it is related to the scary man she saw in the cottage. Barnabas doesn't act like she is crazy (at least to her face; here, learn some manners Maggie), actually he takes it seriously.

Quentin is a bully &
Beth mourns over Chris
Quentin summons David to his secret room in the west wing and tells him (without speaking of course) to poison Chris with strychnine. There is actually a bottle of strychnine with a label that says Strychnine. I am kinda shocked that David knows what it is, as he recognizes the poison, rejects the idea and runs away. He figures that is why Quentin kicked Amy out of their "game" for she would oppose to the killing of her own brother, who also happens to be her only living and sane relative. The next day, David goes over to Chris' cottage to hang out with him and have some soda (maybe he just wants to see what the hell the big deal with Chris is all about; which I too wonder, why the hell the ghost of Quentin wants to get rid off Chris so much, and also why Beth does not on that matter), a scene that is reminiscence of David's friendship with Burke. The guy seriously needs a father figure. Which reminds me, where the heck is Roger?! After Chris politely kicks David out, lid of Chris' liqueur bottle opens by itself and an invisible force, which I assume to be Quentin, pours down the poison in it. So, he could do it all along but wanted David to do it? That is sick, mister! That night, unaware of the danger waiting him, Chris gulps down a glass, that drunkard. As he collapses, the crying ghost of Beth awakes Julia from her sleep (always fun to see Julia in a nightgown) and leads her into the woods. Barnabas, returning from the loo I assume, mistakes Beth's blonde figure for Carolyn and also tags along. Realizing the mysterious woman is leading them to Chris, Cher and Bono Julia and Barnabas rush to his cabin to find Chris, as Julia medically puts it, DYING!


So, it appears that I am back after four years of absence. Just in time for the series' 50th anniversary! Totally a coincidence by the way. I always felt bad for stopping watching the show rather abruptly but knew in my gut that I would eventually go back to it. And now that I have, I also decided to revisit the blog because Dark Shadows meant Dark Shadowed to me. Where was the fun in watching the series if I wasn't gonna bitch about the things Angelique would do or laugh over something Julia does or Mrs Johnson says. 

Actually this post was started in 2012 (including my dream of Angelique and Josette, which I still remember), then briefly continued in 2013 but mostly written recently. It was very hard for five minutes before I slipped back to that "voice" and the rest came very easily. But I also think four years is a long time, people change and I will eventually find my new "voice".

To conclude, I am not sure where blogging or even blogspot stands now in this day and age of follower obsessed fast social media interactions. It is nice to see some Dark Shadows sites (especially the wonderful The Collinsport Historical Society ) is still up and running, and doing amazing things. I know I am not ambitious here, I will write as I keep watching at my own pace but if you ever happen to drop by here, maybe some old fellow fans that we used to interact or new, feel free to say hi!

I have found going back to Collinwood a strangely familiar experience.