Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Ghost in the Family

EPISODES 642-650

Fashion and suicide don't mix
The last we checked, Vicki was standing on the edge of Widow's Hill, despair in her eyes and lime color coat on her back but luckily Liz and Prof. Stokes arrive just in time to stop her. It's so considerate of Liz to have made time to cover her hair with a fashionable babooshka, especially when she was racing against time to save someone on a windy cliff. Prof Stokes, who pratically told Vicki a little while ago to kill herself, is quick to change his mind and say there is another way to contact Jeff. He grabs Vicki and cautiously moves her away from the danger zone as she has another nervous breakdown.

It's séance time again!
Once back at the house, Prof Stokes apologizes for putting ideas in her head. Vicki feels Jeff's presence in her room again and notices his watch (that had stopped when he vanished) ticking again. Then to everyone's surprise, a blue ball of light appears in front of them when Vicki calls out to Jeff. However it disappears shortly after and the watch stops working, leaving Vicki crushed again. Prof Stokes identifies Jeff's blue balls as an "astral manifestation" and offers to arrange a séance. Despite Liz's protests, Vicki accepts the offer knowing pretty well she may be sucked into the past like the last time. Also joining them are Carolyn and Chris, who happens to be around discussing the murder of that Blue Whale waitress, the latter being weird about it (for good reason). Prof Stokes is glad to have Chris on board because apparently spirits usually like to possess people with their gender to speak (and they could always use extra man). However during the séance, it is Carolyn who starts to moan and gets to be the ghost-walkie talkie. A spirit of a woman named Magda takes over her body and warns them anxiously about a curse and that "They must stop them. He must stay where he is". Probably assuming his own secret may be out in the open, Chris stops Carolyn's yammering, breaking the spiritual wi-fi connection in the process. Vicki runs to her room crying and stays there for the next eight episodes. When asked, Chris can't give a solid answer as to why he stopped the séance in a haste.

While we were left wondering what the heck that spirit chick meant by what she said, the answer comes quickly when Amy wakes David up and tells him that Quentin the family ghost is angry. He speaks to Amy on the phone again and he says "she will try to stop them". It seems the séance grabbed an unwanted visitor.

When ghost aren't
And that visitor doesn't wanna leave yet. Roger witnesses a book fall down from the piano and there is a letter in it adressed to Jamison Collins -Roger and Liz's father- by Quentin Collins asking for his help. Carolyn fills her uncle in on the séance he just missed and thinks Magda is still around. Of course, it also helps that Carolyn gets possessed by Magda occasionally to shout out warnings (but never too clear. It gets very annoying that those damn ghost can't be much more clear like "two little brats are about to unleash a ghost" and maybe then add "stop them"). Carolyn feels someone in this house is in danger. Cut to Amy and David, waiting for everyone to go to bed so they can sneak into the west wing. But the residents of the house aren't the only obstacle on their way. Magda's invisible spirit tries tricks like knocking the flashlight out of their hands or pulling them away from the door that opens to the abandoned wing. So, David and Amy use the secret panel in the drawing room that we haven't seen get used since the two digit episodes. It's good to see the writers didn't forget about that; cause I didn't either. Once they pass through, it's Quentin's turn to pull some tricks; he pushes the chair that covers the enterance back against the wall so their tracks are covered. The kids go up to the room where they first contacted Quentin on the phone but the ghost shuts the door behind them and locks them in.

Fancy a game of Wheel of Fortune?
Carolyn wakes up hysterically screaming from a dream in which she saw David and Amy dead. Roger goes to check on the children only to find empty beds. Magda gives them another obscure clue and the name Jamison appears on Carolyn's mirror. Roger guesses the word two letters before. Clever boy! Him, Liz and Carolyn go about the house looking for the missing kids but it is once again Magda that shows the way; she urges Carolyn towards the west wing. They go looking for them and even enter the room the kids are in. However, afraid of their punishment but obviously not of Quentin's wrath, the kids decide to hide and consequently they aren't found.

Is that Maggie's missing wig?
When they are alone again, the kids hear music from behind the wall. Assuming there's a secret room behind it, they break the board and voila, there it is: A door. It opens by itself while the kids discuss whether they should go through it or not, leaving them no choice but enter. And enter they do and find Quentin's remains sitting in a chair. They are sorta scared but are unable to leave for the door is locked behind them. They find a candle and light it as the gramophone in the room starts playing the same music by itself. Then, Quentin's evil man laugh echo in the room. By now we know he ain't no Casper.

The Hands That Rock The Cradle
The next day, Liz visits Barnabas at the old house to ask if he knows where the kids are; he doesn't but joins Liz on the search. Unbeknownst to them, David and Amy are hiding right outside; watching them. When the adults leave, the kids enter the house to do a job Quentin told them to do. Amy thinks David is acting weird. She is not wrong. As the search for them continues, the kids find what they came for in the attic: An old crib. Now, how they manage to sneak that huge thing into Collinwood and to the west wing without being seen by the worried adults I do not know but they do all that anyway. Then, the crib starts to rock by itself and David, acting like a creep again, pushes the scared Amy towards it, telling her "she won't hurt you". Too many unseen shes in the show. Nice!

Later, the kids come in through the front door like nothing has happened. Liz and Barnabas are surprised to see them but what is more surprising is to find out Amy and Barnabas had a friendship during their brief stays in Windcliff. There's nothing like a traumatic experience to bring an old man (who happens to be an ex vampire) and a little girl together. The kids make up one of the lamest excuses about where they were that I won't even bother to tell. Liz and Barnabas try to find a loophole in the kids' story but they can't, so they don't further dig it. Amy seems to be under the same influence as David now. Creepy kids from hell? Check!
Beth & Quentin: I'm lovin' them
The kids visit the west wing again that night and this time they come face to face with Quentin's ghost in flesh and blood. Ok, that doesn't really make sense; they see him would be more appropriate. He looks at the kids in a serious posture without saying a word. Then, the same music starts again. The air is tense. There is a lot of staring. Then out of the shadows, a woman in a white dress with a sharp chin appears and stands next to Quentin, eyeing the kids. Nobody says a thing.

Now that he has a new one,
Quentin can dispose of his old body
Sometime later, the ghosts are gone and the kids are wearing the 19th century clothes that they've found earlier. If you think that's odd, wait until you hear them call each other Quentin and Beth and talk in a kind, "why thank you sir"ish manner. A-ha! A classic case of what I like to call an "impersonation possession". David as Quentin says his family has to pay for the unhappiness they'd caused. But first, they must bury what's left of his body. 

The next morning, the kids manage to sneak it out inside a toybox, even getting Roger's help to carry it. Once the body is buried somewhere on the estate, the kids return to their hidden room in the west wing and make a plan. That night, Roger is in his bed reading a book or something (aww, the hard on the outside man unravels like a lonely flower in front of us) when Amy visits him to say she's scared of the sounds she's heard downstairs. Roger goes down to investigate, not aware of the trap his son has set for him. He trips over the wire that's been placed on the stairs and comes down tumbling.
What doesn't kill you makes you
look like a fool, A FOOL!
That's two Collins siblings down the same stairs (remember how Liz fell because of Laura the phoenix?) and it is Liz who comes to his rescue 'cause she's now an expert on the subject of staircase accidents. Roger is bruised but alive. He is also convinced there's someone in the house trying to kill him, yet he fails to find the wire. The brats must be working like ants. On a funny note, Doctor Julia Hoffman takes all the time in the world to attend to Roger and we never get to see her do it anyway. Let's just hope she didn't give a man who may have a concussion a sedative. 

Tarot cards are bad omen
Later, Liz finds a single tarot card in Roger's room and gets freaked out by it. She has a gut feeling that the spirit from the séance is trying to warn them. When Roger doesn't really believe that, she calls Prof Stokes to consult his expertise on the occult. The next day after seeing the card, Stokes acts hesitant to give the bad news but Liz tells him to cut the crap and give it to her like a shot of stiff scotch. Prof Stokes waters it down to "a sign of upcoming unhappiness".

Meanwhile, David feels guilty about what he did to his father (we're talking about a kid who once messed his father's car up in order to kill him) and begins to break the influence but when the music starts playing and the cradle rocking again, he becomes not-himself again.

Prof Stokes comes back with an eccentric medium: Madame Janet Findley. She proves she is not a sham when she guesses some of the things that happened in the house, not that anybody at this point thinks that she is. She trances herself up to contact the spirit and speaks to the "one" who is somewhere in the house. Once out of the trance, she says there's a war going on in this house and she must find out how it started. Woo hoo, Collinwood now a battleground for a psychic war!!!
Medium stuff
As the medium has an intimate "one knock is yes, two knocks is no session" with Magda's spirit, Amy gets a visit from his cousin Joe who is out of the hospital and looking rather normal; Angelique's influence had somehow disappeared. Amy acts all normal during their brief talk where she says she's happy in Collinwood (you live in a mansion girl, of course you're happy). Then suddenly, she sees an upside down pentagram on Joe's face; just like Chris did on the waitress. The star disappears when Joe walks up to the mirror but Madame Findley says she saw it too and tells him to avoid an animal that walks like a man. Joe responds with the skeptic's sarcasm but when was he a believer anyway? (Although one would expect he opened himself up to different possibilities after his affair with a vampire but noo)

After Joe leaves, Madame Findley has a talk with Amy about her psychic tendencies but what she doesn't know is that she too is about to fall into a trap of two mischievous kids. David "accidentally" appears out of the panel that opens into the west wing and Madame Findley goes in to find the source of that spiritual energy against the children's "warnings". Once she's in, they close the panel behind her and cover up the evidence and tell Liz that the woman has left. Since Madame Findley didn't see that coming, I guess she isn't a very good psychic afterall. Through the dark corridors and stairs of the west wing, she finds her way into the secret room where Quentin died. She gets locked up in there and has a mental fight with the spirit that is trying to break her.. well..spirit. Quentin plays the same old tricks on her: the music, the rocking crib, the telephone call. She also feels a woman's spirit in the room; probably Beth's.

Meanwhile, Joe is at Chris' small hotel room talking about Maggie and his plans to leave town. Eventually the subject comes to the medium's warning and Chris gets utterly disturbed to hear it. He politely kicks his cousin out and thinks of a way to keep himself from killing him. Just because he has the mark doesn't mean Joe will die, does it? WELL DOES IT? Chris runs to Julia for help and asks if she can give him some seda-waitforit-tives; her favorites! She finds his insistance rather curious at first but agrees to give him a reasonable dose.

Stair falls are very in this season
Things start to go apeshit in Quentin's room. The ceiling lamb begins to swing and the furniture start to move around. Then something offscreen grabs Madame Findley's attention and she screams!! Downstairs, Liz is disturbed by the medium's disappearance and has been looking for her for hours. Then out of nowhere, the woman appears on top of the stairs, standing still in dark (mostly because she's trying to cover up the fact she is a stuntwoman). When Liz calls out to her, she collapses down the stairs and dies. Liz and Julia scream. Or was Julia doing a monkey imitation?

Forever Alone Barnabas!
Later, Roger comes back from the coroner's office and announces the cause of death was a heart attack (if the fall didn't kill her, Julia's scream did). Vicki must have been bored by the lack of attention, so she interrupts the siblings' talk and announces rather dramatically that she will be in her room all day (that's not really news, you know) for she feels Jeff is coming for her because of a dream she had. When all she gets is suspicious looks, she runs off back to her room like the drama queen she is. Roger decides it is best to bring in their best gun: Barnabas! However, he turns out to be the biggest hypocrite when he proposes to Vicki. Really Barnabas, is that your way of helping her you opportunist bastard? In the middle of all the mess she is in, Vicki doesn't forget to be nice and thanks him for the offer but no thanks, she can't love another man because she has just lost her husband (Here is where I usually mention Frank Garner and Burke Devlin but why bother; the girl is a slut). Hurt by the boot on his ass, Barnabas says his farewells to Vicki because she has decided to leave Collinwood.

Honeymoon to the past
Once she is alone, she starts pleading with Jeff to come back again. Occasionally the watch would start to work again and an "astral manifestation" that looks more like a giant twinkie if you ask me appears. Then, Vicki feels a hand touch hers. What do you know; it is Jeff friggin' Clark right in front of her. His love made him come for her again blah blah but this time he has come to say goodbye and asks Vicki to get over him.  He's finally made his peace with his identity as Peter Bradford and says his love for Vicki made him inhabit the body of a man named Jeff Clark but now he has to go back. They hug, kiss and Vicki doesn't look like she's gonna give him up. So she says she will go back to the past with him. It is a big, emotional scene "Please Peter take me, take me!!!". Liz and Barnabas run to her room after hearing her talk to a man; just in time to catch Vicki disappear with Peter into thin air hand in hand. Happy ending?

Notes.. Notes.. Notes..

*Vicki has finally reunited with her man. Good for her; she was actually turning into one of those crazy women out of the gothic genre. Anywhere but today is better for her, I suppose. But that Jeff Clark thing doesn't really make sense? If Peter inhabited the body of Jeff, what happened to the original Jeff? How did Dr Lang came into contact with the new Jeff? Too many loose ends and unanswered questions.

*I thought it was pretty funny that Roger finally pointed out the fact that Vicki has been slacking her duties as a governess for some time. About time someone noticed. Roger has also left for London; we won't be seeing him for a while, I guess. Oh how much I don't care.

*David and Amy were obviously possessed by Quentin and Eve but at some point, Amy suggested David be "Jamison". What's going oon?

*Poor Janet Findley! She never had a chance. It was obvious from the start that she'd be a victim of what I call "an outside help's curse". Remember Peter Guthrie and Bathia Mapes?

*I said I was shipping for Chris & Maggie but it's obvious it is Carolyn that has the werewolf's attention. But who knows, Maggie has been known to steal Carolyn's boyfriends before.

*I've started to change some stuff about the blog, namely the background. Doesn't it look fancy. What was I thinking using the flat grey one for a whole year? I may play around with it from time to time.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Burton's Shadows: Pros & Cons

From the old cast to the new: "Why so serious?"

I finally saw Tim Burton's "Dark Shadows" last week, two months after it's original release date and one month after it opened here in Istanbul. Last year around this time, when I first started watching the series I couldn't get enough of the news from the film's production but somewhere along the line I lost interest for a variety of reasons (from the fan backlash after the trailer surfaced and revealed the film would have a comedic tone rather than a serious one -which btw I had no problem with then..or now- to some cast members *coughHelena&Evacough* bitching about the show in interviews). So, I waited until I really felt like seeing the film and I have to admit it was way better than I'd expected. So, instead of doing a regular review (I am already too late and many people have beat me to it anyway) here's what I liked and disliked about the film in a nutshell:

-First of all, I LIKED the fact that the film wasn't a comedy afterall. The humour was spread along the story evenly and not so obviously that reminded me of old Tim Burton films. That being said, I DIDN'T LIKE the humour. The jokes were executed in a poor fashion that end up being neither funny nor black comedy-like.

-I LIKED that they kept the soap aspect of the show. It was apparent in the dramatic way some of the dialogues were delivered without falling into parody.

-I LIKED Bella Heathcote. Period! Ok, not period. She delivers a very believable performance as Maggie/Vicki/Josette with such strength; it is clearly one of the better choices of departing from the original concept. But I feel the character's potential wasn't really used. I also LIKED how they integrated Maggie Evans into the story. Would I have liked to see her as a different character? Sure, but this way she is acknowledged as a big part of DS History.

2 seconds of screentime and
still a thunder stealer!
-Speaking of DS History, I LIKED the way they winked at the original series: Barnabas' almost exact line about Vicki's name, Carolyn's mention of her father disguised under Alice Cooper's "Ballad of Dwight Fry", the whole "Laura" thing -which I would have liked better if she was burned instead drowned, or the mention of Windcliff. And of course the cameos by Jonathan Frid, Kathryn Leigh Scott, Lara Parker and David Selby (whom I yet to meet in the show)!

-I LIKED that we got to see Collinwood thoroughly; a big breathing room after the depthless sets of the series. I don't know how I feel about the useage of sea mythology as gothic decorative items. Probably indifferent.

*I LIKED "Nights in White Satin" and the opening title sequence. It suggested a serious tone that sadly  didn't really follow afterwards.

*Aaaand the actors & their characters. I neither LIKED nor DISLIKED Johnny Depp's Barnabas. I thought he was the most uninteresting of the bunch but then again that's how I feel about Frid's Barnabas as well. 
Surprisingly, I LIKED Helena Bohnam Carter's "Julia" and Jackie Earle Haley's "Willie" the most; surprising because I thought JEH was a rather weird choice for the character (although I really like the actor) and HBC was simply.. well let's just say she didn't leave a good impression during the film's publicity talking shit about Grayson Hall. Well, that didn't stop her from giving a good performance nonetheless. I thought both of their renditions of those characters were the most faithful to the original; they obviously did their homework. 
When the actors were announced, I'd thought Michelle Pfeiffer was an excellent choice for "Liz". While I still LIKED her in the film, I thought she was unbelivable at times. One would argue that the film itself is tongue-in-cheek in tone but one of the best things about the show is that the actors took their jobs very seriously regardless of how silly the story would be. Nevertheless, I give her a gold star for being a devoted fan of the show. 
I can't say I DIDN'T LIKE Chloe Grace Moretz as "Carolyn" but hers was a very different approach to the character. I think she did her best as the troubled teenager but isn't she becoming the poster child for tough talking or odd teen roles, like Dakota Fanning was the girl who could cry? (Though, Grace will always be the girl in Kick-Ass that goes "He has a special signal he shines in the sky. It's in the shape of a giant cock"). The werewolf twist was played well until the moment of revelation. After that, it was just irrelevant to the overall story. 
Eva Green's "Angelique" was less hysterical and more overt. The only thing I LIKED about her was the part when she cracked like an eggshell in the end. The actor who played Roger was alright but his character was the most pointless of them all. No wonder he eventually got the boot: Barnabas' boot of family values! Same goes for David; he was there just for the sake of at least keeping the show's original premise intact. And I DIDN'T LIKE that underuseage. Mrs Johnson was a peach and a half.

*I DISLIKED the montage sequences. Too many of those water up the mood.

-I LIKED the way they twisted Julia's original story around but once again it felt like they did those radical changes to keep it interesting because they didn't know what to do with the vast choice of characters since they didn't fit in the main plot.

*I DIDN'T LIKE Barnabas-Angelique sex scenes. Sorta.

*I DISLIKED that they made up a new character for Christopher Lee when Bill Malloy would have been perfectly suitable as he had been rumoured to play.

At least one Julia got happy
-Finally I was WTF'd by Julia giving Barnabas head. Makes me wonder what Grayson Hall's Julia would have to say about that.


All in all, I thought it was a nice adaptation. I had fun watching it although I don't know if it was because of trying to grab all the references and nods to the original. Although I understand the strong, negative fan response it'd be good to look at it that way. Burton didn't ruin the original; it'll always be there. Which I should return to anyway.

See you in the original Collinwood. Ciao!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

the Second Second Chances

EPISODES 633-641 

Dark Maggie
Eve's body had been dug up by Harry J. and Nicholas and now lies once again on the operating table in the make believe laboratory and YAY there's no scratch on her. Julia and Barnabas look weary, going "Not this shit again" when Nicholas arrives with that stupid, face-stretching smile. Barnabas teases Nicholas about his obsession with the "second chances" and how they blow up in his face. He lets the warlock know that Tom is dead and god knows what will happen to Eve. Adam's also there, still hopeful after all that happened he will get the mate he wants. You can't help but feel sorry for him. Then, the guest of honour arrives, the life source of the experiment: Maggie Evans!! Barnabas and Julia instantly protest against her involvement but she claims to really wanna go through with it. So that was all that black ceremory altar thing was about? To brainwash Maggie? And didn't Nicholas brainwash Carolyn before for the very thing without ever doing something as dramatic as that? It seems to me the only effective thing that came out of that cliffhangery ceremony is Maggie's hair. It got darker (If it is a conscious choice, bravo!). But still, even that won't mean she is the evil queen of hell or anything. Keep reading~

The final experiment with deadly consequences (plus Barnabas' smile)
When Barnabas refuses to have Maggie provide the life force, Nicholas uses his powers to make Adam's heart slow down, which directly effects Barnabas. They have no choice but do what Nicholas says. So the experiments starts again with the regular beeps and sizzles. But Barnabas doesn't wanna hurt Megster, she doesn't deserve this. So, he goes on and wrecks the equipment just when Eve starts to come alive and Maggie go dead. And at that moment, shit really hits the fan. Nicholas gets furious as a bull and attacks Adam. Barnabas and Julia manage to get Blair off him and this time Adam goes mad. Nicholas flees from the house and Barnabas runs behind him despite Julia's protests. Then Adam notices Eve's body has turned into a skeleton and goes into a little shock. Meanwhile Julia realizes Maggie is alive but has lost her memory in the process. It is like a chain of events from hell!! And Julia tries to boost up Maggie's memory by making her listen to Josette's music box and look at her portrait. What is she trying to do? Drive the girl over the edge? Outside, probably on Widow's Hills, Nicholas pleads with his Master to give him "another chance" (pfft!) but instead Diablos sets him on fire. Barnabas enjoys the spectacle like a maniac.

Adam's last act of terror
But Adam wants his revenge for what Barnabas did to Eve's remains, so he rushes to Collinwood to kidnap Vicki (the eternal victim). Carolyn catches him in the act and tries to talk him out of it, to no avail. He strangles Carolyn and leaves with Vicki. Later, Barnabas finds Carolyn just as she's gaining her consciousness. While he listens to what went on, Adam attacks Julia in the Old House. Then he has Vicki strapped to the operating table and randomly pushes some buttons to kill her. Barnabas and Julia try to unlock the door to the basement as Adam fights his conscience that appear in forms of Julia and Carolyn (It is important to point out that these two characters have been referred to as being Adam's "mother" and "object of desire" respectively. An in-depth psychoanalytic reading of this whole storyline would be much fun). Barnabas and Julia eventually find a way in and Barnabas shoots Adam when he won't stop, knowing pretty well he'd be hurt himself. Aww, he loves Vicki more than anything; what a gentleman. Adam's shot on the shoulder (good aim Barnabas, unless of course you were shooting to kill) and runs away, refusing Julia's help. Vicki is beat but alive. All is serene in Collinwood. Well, not really.

'Cause you're beautiful; no matter
what they say
Adam makes his way to his old pal Prof Stokes' house since every other one of his acquaintances are either angry with him or in hell. There, they have Adam's wound treated by a physician that is not Julia Hoffman (the shock!). Adam is desperate, bleak and finally out of that green sweater. Prof. Stokes briefly voices Adam's history and where they went wrong with him. A nice little look-back on behalf of his final episode, that is. All of Adam's problems comes down to his inferiority complex about his monsterous appearance ("I can't change. I'm too ugly". This concept recalls Didier Anzieu's "Skin-Ego" theory). Stokes suggests such a change is possible via cosmetic surgery. As funny as it may be imagining Adam having his brows lifted and lips injected with collagen, I think it is fitting that science comes to the aid of a creature made by science in the first place. Anyway, their convo is interrupted by an unexpected knock on the door and it is Jeff Clark asking to see the Professor. Adam is sent to the other room for one last time and we never see him again.

Vicki literally holds Jeff together
Jeff has apparently been bailed out and cleared off the murder charges, and now he is asking for Prof Stokes' help to remember his past. And the ritual, that involves Jeff eating some leaves and herbs in romantic candle light, begins. Once in trance, he writes down his name as "Peter Bradford" on a paper and recites the story of how he pleaded to see Vicki once again before she was hanged. At that moment Vicki appears at the door, having heard Jeff call out in her sleep. She holds him and tells their love has transcended time and reunited them here as a colorful glow surrounds the couple. I don't know when she's become the expert on this but Vicki says if Jeff wants to stay in this century, "they" will let him. Jeff declares rather victoriously that he does and they shamelessly suck each others' face in front of the Professor, who might as well go on a mate-hunting trip with Adam after this envy-inducing, glorious show of affection.

Liz would rather be sleeping
And what better way to celebrate an extraordinary union that even time itself can't hinder than with a very tedious and heterosexist festivity that is the institution of marriage! It is after midnight and the marriage arrangements are being made. Liz is asked to be the witness while she was on her way to bed. Being nice and anal retentive, she accepts the honours. Meanwhile, Jeff is once again moody and doubtful, pulling Vicki's mood down as well. They just can't stay happy for an hour straight without one of them pulling an emo out of the hat, can they? But the ceremony is performed anyway and Liz couldn't have looked more bored (I'd say she was even jollier during her own turn at the altar with Jason McGuire). Afterwards, Jeff and Vicki make a toast to themselves in the Collinsport Inn where they will be spending their honeymoon. I'd advise them to stay away from the room Chris Jennings is staying but then they won't need a werewolf when they have Jeff to bring down their spirits. Vicki once again has to console him. Speak of the worst honeymoon!

Later that night (one of those long, long nights), Barnabas is crushed after hearing about Vicki's sudden wedlock event, to which he wasn't even invited thank your very much. So, he spends the night with Julia wondering about Adam's whereabouts and trying to locate Angelique in case she didn't disappear after Nicholas' demise. They find her empty coffin and Nicholas' broken magic mirror that leads them to believe Angelique will be with them again. Sure, she will; the woman is like a cat with ninety lives.

Dissolving Jeff
The sun rises and the newlyweds are still busy crossing the borders between bliss and gloom. Vicki gives Jeff a wedding gift that she meant to do after their original wedding: A watch that has some unoriginal love words inscribed on the back. Jeff has nothing to give to her, not shockingly, but his love will do. Then Jeff gets immersed in the past again as the same glow surrounds him. They panic and Vicki tries to make him fight the urge to be pulled back in time. However, it doesn't work this time and Jeff fades away right in front of her eyes. Enter Vicki's hysteric screams. I don't wanna point fingers but seems like Barnabas has jinxed it.

In shock, Vicki returns to Collinwood and faints, too bad there's nobody in the room to witness the dramatic performance (although I have to admit I thought it was a nice scene). She is found by Liz shortly after and she tells what has happened after gaining her consciousness. Meanwhile, Julia is at Maggie's doing some damage-check (and it beats me how the hell she got in her room). It seems Maggie now has her memory back minus the last couple of hours. Julia lies to her that she fainted after rejecting Nicholas' proposal that made him leave the town for good. Maggie isn't sad, actually she's kinda relieved (that may support my theory about her involvement with Blair being spell related, rather than free will). Then, Julia recieves a call from Liz about Vicki's situation and she, along with Maggie, leave for Collinwood.

Vicki's behaviour cause some
major "what the-"
Vicki isn't hysterical anymore but rather calm and hopeful that she will find Jeff, which makes Liz send "WTF?" looks at the camera. Both Julia and Maggie try to comfort her (and the readers of this blog should know I'm always up for Maggie-Vicki bonding, although it was more fun with Vicki #1) but Vicki jumps up and down, saying she feels her husband's presence in the room and his touch (that, dear, is what we call a new bride's fantasy). But when my favorite duo finds Jeff's watch that he was wearing when he disappeared lying just outside Vicki's room, they suspect there may be some truth to what Vicki is saying.

I am shipping this couple already
Meanwhile, some other drama is taking place downstairs. Chris Jennings tells Julia that he's changed his mind and can not stay in town. He offers to give her some money that would cover his sister Amy's care but bumps into Julia's wall of a determination. Maggie too voices her disappointment in Chris (I love when characters that have shared no onscreen interraction in the past meet and appear to know each other; just like Maggie's scenes with Tom Jennings) and if I were him, I'd have accused her of being slut for breaking Joe's heart in return. But he ain't been around long, so it's understandable if he is out of the loop. Anyway, Chris can't give them a valid reason why he can't stay and leaves in a hurry when the sun sets. Two full moons in a row? 

Saved by the werewolf's sis
Later, Julia gets a phone call from Windcliff and learns that Amy Jennings has escaped, making me seriously question the security of that place. Julia should spend less time living the luxurious life in Collinwood and more time tightening her hospital's security that right now even a little girl can outwit. While Julia waits for more news on the girl's escape, Liz almost gets attacked by a "wild animal" on her way to the old house. Luckily, she runs into Amy in the woods and the mystery animal retreats, which doesn't escape Amy's attention. Liz takes the girl back to Collinwood and tells Julia about this man-like wolf creature; Julia says she believes her, hardly keeping a straight face. She also wants to have Amy taken back to the hospital but Liz steps in, allowing the girl to stay overnight (we all know that those overnight stayers eventually end up living here and yes, I am looking at you Julia). It is also a nice coincidence that all of the Windcliff escapees (Maggie, Liz and Amy) are under the same roof tonight. They should form a club of sorts where they can discuss their madhouse adventures over tea and biscuits.

The Goonies
Amy is introduced to David and they rush off to explore the great house. They hit it off instantly because Amy turns out to be as interested in the weird stuff as David. They sneak into the west wing to look for some ghosts but not so much luck. Then, Amy finds an old phone and begins to speak to a ghost named Quentin Collins like it is the most usual thing in the world. David thinks she is fooling him but he too hears a breathing from the other side of the phone (A breathing ghost? Curious). Once David notices the phone line is cut, he knows they have a real deal on their hands. They take the family album to Amy's room and try to find more information on the man. A picture from his boyhood from 1800's and one group shot which isn't much help is all they can come up with. Liz provides more intel when asked if she knows a Collins named Quentin: He is her great uncle that went to France when he was young and died there (We heard that story before; Collinses aren't very creative when it comes to covering up mysterious happenings surrounding their family). Amy remembers Quentin saying he lives nearby so when everybody is asleep, she speaks with Quentin on the phone again (whose voice we've yet to hear) and goes to the west wing to meet him (I guess anyone can enter that wing now). But David finds Amy there and makes her go back to her room, probably because he is jealous the ghost will talk to her and not him. Back in Amy's room, David says the best way to contact Quentin is through a séance; he's apparently seen his family members do it again and again. But their go at the séance is interrupted by Vicki, who appears at the door like a ghost and almost gives them a heart attack.
Vicki chillin' as a ghost
We finally get to see her do some governessing again (must be hard while dealing with sudden marriages and vanishing husbands) as she tucks the kids into bed. Hearing Amy mention her brother Tom, who has recently attacked Vicki as a vampire, sends chills down her spine yet she doesn't say anything.

Girls just won't take "No" for
an answer
The next morning, Chris visits Collinwood and he is welcomed by Carolyn, who he hasn't seen in ages. That scene alone suggests "something" may happen between them in the future. Carolyn must be on the same page with me cause she fixed her hair in the mirror right after their conversation. Anyway he also meets Vicki (Victoria Clark now), who is strangely in a cheery mood for a woman who has just lost her husband to time travel. Then, he tells Amy that he won't be able to look after her, for reasons he can't explain yet. She doesn't take it well. Carolyn and Vicki try to convince Chris to let Amy stay in Collinwood instead of handing her to social services. He agrees after having a talk with Liz.

The werewolf incident
Then, he and Carolyn head to Blue Whale for a few drinks. They talk about nothing of importance when Chris realizes it's getting dark outside (Three full moons in a row? C'mooon!). Then, he sees a pentagram on the waitress' face, which freaks him out and make him leave in a hurry. Back at his hotel room, he chains himself to the radiator right before he turns into a WEREWOLF IN FRONT OF OUR EYES!!! Finally, the onscreen appearance. He breaks free out of the chains and returns to the bar where he attacks & presumably kills the waitress after she closes the place down.

At that same moment, Amy wakes up screaming in Collinwood. She believes something has happened to her brother. Vicki tries to calm her down as Liz tries to reach Chris on the phone. When neither of them is successful, they lie to the girl Chris is alright.

Then it is Vicki's turn to be sad again. She realizes Jeff's watch stopped at the exact moment of his disappearance and there's nothing Liz can say or do that would make her happy. During the night, she feels Jeff's presence in her room again. We see her door open by itself and she begs him to come back but the connection is lost when Amy enters Vicki's room, scared and wanting to sleep with her. Instead of slapping the bejesus out of the girl, she gives her a hug.

Vicki is touched by Jeff  and nobody
seems to understand her 
The next evening, Prof Stokes arrives at Collinwood and Liz asks him to tell Vicki to get over Jeff, because it is devastating her. Then, he goes up to Vicki's room and explains to her that he did give Jeff three indian herbs that made him available to be called back but it wasn't the herbs that send him back; it was because he belonged there. He even goes as far as to grab Vicki's shoulders and shake some sense into her, hoping necessary roughness will help. He even asks if she really wants to go back to a time where she was hanged as a witch and to which she says yes and they can change the future, something that the Professor doesn't find "accommodating". He tells her Jeff is long dead and for them to be together, she has to die too.

Widows back at work!
Meanwhile in her room, Amy gets up from her bed and goes to the open window where she starts speaking to the Widows (wow, that's a blast from the past). She hears them crying and asks to help. When she won't get an answer from neither them nor Quentin on the phone, she goes downstairs to ask Liz what or who these widows are. Liz, who has just had a fight with Vicki that ended up with latter leaving Collinwood in a hurry, gets bothered by this. When Prof. Stokes asks what it is, Liz recites the legend: If widows are heard on a stormy night, someone will die. 
And then, we see Vicki on Widow's Hill. Looking down...


Notes... Notes... Notes...

*What's with the "second chance" theme surrounding the show? Or should I say the failure of the concept? Eve was given a second chance to live; didn't work. So was Nicholas but he ended up in hell. Vicki and Jeff tried to have another go at marriage and it did seem to work until Jeff was pulled back in time. And we had Adam who thinks he can't have another chance in life because he is too ugly. And do I have to remind you that his creation itself was a second chance in life?

*Adam is gone! I hope we will be given a proper explanation about what happens to him. Or will he just slip into limbo like Tony Peterson and Frank Garner?

*It was nice to Eve even though she was lying dead on the operating table throughout the episode. Must have been a jammy gig for Marie Wallace, getting paid for lying still and lifting her arm.

*What the hell is Julia's obsession with sedatives all about? It seems like she doesn't know any other type of medication: Hit your head? Have a sedative; Saw a werewolf? Here's a sleeping pill; No candy in the cupboard? Treat yourself.

*I like Amy. She's a fresh breath to the show and ain't annoying like Sarah was with her "Helloo"s and "London Bridge"s. I really enjoyed her mischievous adventures with David and there should be many many more of them. I think that storyline was specially made as a wink to the young fan base of the show at the time.

Up next, my somewhat of a review of Tim Burton's "Dark Shadows".. finally!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Second Chances

EPISODES 628-632

"Satan is out,
can I take your message?"
The last we saw Angelique, she burst into flames while calling forth a powerful evil being, "The Master". The spell pays off and she is teleported to the realm of the Master aka Satan aka Diablos (as titled in the credits) who, to be honest, looks rather like his secretary than the Satan himself, mostly due to the decor: One expects flames across the ceiling with skulls dangling down and a sacrificial virgin or two. And a throne, the Satan MUST have a throne! What we got instead is a less than impressive desk; the hell must be going through a rough patch. But what Diablos lacks in fancy ornamentation, he makes up for in authoritarian demeanour. Thankfully he ain't your typical red headed, horned creature; he wears a hooded robe that suggests there's nothing in there but darkness. But, I digress. Like a student telling on a fellow student to a teacher, Angelique complains about Nicholas and blames him for being unjust. She also says that he has derailed from the ways of evil for he fell in love with a mortal: Maggie Evans. This grabs Diablos' attention. Great! The Devil's interest was just what Maggie needed!

Like mother; like son.. not!
Meanwhile, Adam is at Nicholas' place pretending to be angry with Eve's absence when Julia drops by and announces Eve's death. She knows Adam has something to do with that despite his desperate attempts at lying and tells him to own it up 'cause Jeff is wrongfully accused (although they are all aware Adam, being a monster, can't go to the police, so what's the point of this intervention really. Moral lessons, maybe?) Julia also says she has protective maternal feelings towards Adam because she brought him to this world (Geez woman, you just pressed some buttons). Then she leaves Adam with his conscience.

Twin Peaksy connotations
Later, Maggie arrives at Nicholas' place looking puzzled and no idea why she came. Soon after, it all becomes clear when she begins to choke and suddenly the lights turn to red and Diablos speaks to Nicholas through Maggie. Kudos to Satan for his sick sense of humour but hey, this is our sweetheart Maggie you're messing with mister! Nicholas begs his master to leave Maggie alone, which Diablos notices as signs of "human(e) feelings". He finishes off by telling Nicholas to be ready for his judgement at midnight! When the lights return to normal, Maggie wakes up and Nicholas tells her she fainted. I swear the poor girl will have brain tumor one of these days from all the mind-meddling.

Nicholas pays a visit to Collinwood that night to talk threaten Julia into repeating the experiment to revive Eve's dead body with a new life force. She asks why he won't do it himself with his powers (good question) and Nicholas replies with freaky Biblical references: Both Eve and Adam have to be made artificially so they can be different than regular humans and so his master can rule their lineage of superhumans. When Julia says no, Nicholas threatens to kill Adam, an action which they both know will also kill Barnabas. Upon this, Julia calls Windcliff to speak with Barnabas, not aware of Liz watching her suspicious behaviour.

Can't argue with the Master!
At midnight, Nicholas is summoned by Diablos to his set hell dimension. They gossip a bit about Angelique and her cunning; a quality that Diablos appreciates but blames Nicholas for overlooking. He also blames Nicholas for giving her more a lot of "second chances" despite her various attempts at treachery. Then comes the subject of the failure of Project Eve but lucky for him, Nicholas has already arranged it to be redone. Diablos gives him two days to finish it and after that he will be bound to exist only in this hell dimension. Nicholas surprises the audience, namely me, by pleading to give up his powers to live with Maggie. However, Diablos' twisted sense of humour strikes again and he will let the lovebirds be together BUT only in the Underworld and for that Maggie must be sacrificed on the black altar. OH NO! Yet again, here's the sacrificial decoration I was looking for.

Once back in the Overworld (or you know, just the world), Nicholas is visited by Barnabas, who is apparently back from Windcliff and not under Angelique's influence as much. They go through the routine whose penis is bigger contest: Nicholas -modest as always- believes himself to be the winner yet finds Barnabas a worthy opponent. Good thing Nicholas ain't no longer hiding his thing-- I mean his powers. He says he has someone in mind for the life source and Barnabas should get his science team together asap.

Enter Maggie again, this time she looks oriented enough. Nicholas first impresses her with his antique goods (and I don't mean his pee-pee this time) and then pops the "will you marry me" out of nowhere! She hesitates because of Joe and Nicholas knows it, so he tells her to make up her mind soon for he is leaving Collinsport. Maggie claims she can't imagine the town without Nicholas. Really Maggie? You can't imagine your hometown of twenty-something years without the man who's been here for what, two, three months?

Vicki #2 w/a temper
Same night (seriously, how long is this night?) Maggie goes to Collinwood to discuss the proposal with her dear friend VICKI #2 and my first reaction is, why the hell does she have Carolyn's old hair? Betsy Durkin took over the role from Alexandra Moltke and initially I was very judgemental but I realised after two or three episodes, she grows on you; too bad she only has like ten of them. This Vicki comes off as being very edgy when she asks how Maggie can marry a man she hardly knows. Obviously, nobody bothered to pull Miss Durkin aside to tell her about the true nature of the character. Anyways, she knows things about Nicholas that she can't let Maggie in on and after their argument where their friendship almost ends (what a sympathetic way to introduce a new actor as an established character), Vicki decides to face the man herself. Nicholas and her have a heated quarrel where she accuses him of being a warlock, judging from the fact that he is Cassandra's brother. Nicholas denies this but she threatens to tell all this to Maggie unless he calls the proposal off. Look at you fervent little Vicki! Alexandra Moltke must have felt very jealous.

Tom's second chance..
Mr Nicholas Blair, instead of finding an easier way like casting a simple memory spell or killing Vicki on the spot, goes to the trouble to deal with this and surprise surprise, he revives Tom Jennings the ridiculously unphotogenic vampire. We were wondering what happened to his body after Barnabas put a stake through him and it turns out, Nicholas had it in his cellar all this time. We also learn vampires don't turn to dust like in Buffy or True Blood style jelly mess but they just remain there, dead until someone removes the stake. Easy as that! Tom is sent to sneak into Vicki's room and he'd have killed her too if it weren't for Barnabas to the rescue (and can someone tell me what the hell is he doing outside her room in the middle of the night). They are both shocked to see the supposedly-dead Tom alive.. or, undead! After he rushes out the window, Barnabas tells Vicki about the existence of vampires. Damn it, why the fun things are happening to Vicki #2 whereas the original Vicki spent all her time "not understanding"?

...is poorly wasted!
Nicholas has three more visitors that night (that house is busier than a whorehouse on thanksgiving): One is Chris Jennings investigating his brother's death by going through his last employers and his timing is perfect! Nicholas tries his best to make the man leave and Chris almost sees his revamped brother outside the window. Later, Harry Johnson comes upon Nicholas' order and they get ready to rob Eve's grave. Their discussion is interrupted by Barnabas who this time has the upper hand on the powerplay and tells Nicholas rather firmly to keep Tom away from Vicki and his own paws from Maggie for the sake of the experiment. He agrees after much fuss. But Barnabas wants to be sure, so he enters the Blair house once he and Harry leave to dig up Eve. Tom attacks him but he is saved by the rising sun. Tom burns and vanishes as Barnabas watches in pity. Good to know he is at least acknowledging his vampire days while going around slaying vampires like he is the boss. At least, the Tom-Chris mess is cleared!

It is FINALLY the next day and Nicholas summons Maggie to get her answer on the marriage. His promise to Barnabas was of course a sham! Maggie agrees to marry him and Nicholas says it has to happen tonight. Then, they will leave for London and live happily ever after! LIES!!! Meanwhile, he tries to get Adam used to the idea of a new Eve. Good luck with that!

Not brother dearest
On a different dramatic note, Chris visits his little, troubled sister Amy at Windcliff. She is mad at him for not being there for her sooner and she gets madder/sadder after hearing he isn't gonna be sticking around. Seeing his sister like that saddens him and he changes his mind about leaving. Once back at the hotel (Yay! @ reappearance of the good old innkeeper after almost 600 episodes), Chris asks to change his room with the most secluded one and Mr Wells takes him to the attic-like room with a barred window. "Perfect!" he says and asks the man to lock him in til morning and never ever open the door, regardless of the noises he may hear ("I sometimes move around and act out while I'm writing"). Later, the full moon rises and Mr Wells hears some trashing sounds from the room. Not listening to Chris' earlier warnings, he enters the room to see if he is alright and is killed by something offscreen. Later we see his slashed body get dragged across the floor. Nobody has used the W-word yet but do they really have to?

Satanic weddings are a hoot
Meanwhile, Maggie is at Nicholas' place, in her wedding dress and waiting for the minister to arrive. She's confused about the whole marriage thing. Heck, even I am confused about what is Maggie's free will and what is part of a spell. So, Nicholas drugs and carries her to the altar and starts the black ceremony or whatever it is called. "Let the legions of the damned salute youuu!" he says.. Maggie lies still but we hear her otherwordly screams in the distance.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Farewell to Vicki #1


Run Vicki run while you can!
And it finally happened. Alexandra Moltke Iles left Dark Shadows. Well, she kinda did it over 40 years ago but I've witnessed it only recently, so my wound is fresh. Episode 627 was her final appearance. I knew from very early on that she would eventually depart from the show (to my disappointment) and I've kept on hoping she'd go with a bang than a whimper. Well, if it was a bang it probably was on a smurf scale. Her character Vicki has been fading into the background for some time now. Once the tractive character of the show, she has eventually become a monotonous being that didn't have much going on for her. 

And just when she was getting a new storyline, Miss Iles decided to leave the show. From what I gather from the interviews, her departure was due to some complications with her pregnancy at the time as well as the reluctance to keep playing this rather dull role. I can't really blame her but considering the place she left the show, it makes me wonder couldn't the writers tie up some loose ends if she agreed to do an extra week or two. But that's obviously not how things work and what's done is done.

Alexandra's final moment before
she disappears into Collinwood
Although the character of Vicki was getting a new spotlight again, Ms. Iles' last episode was rather.. how shall I say.. unceremonious. She had two scenes one of which was more about Eve's death and Jeff's feelings rather than her own and the second -the final- one was a very brief conversation with Julia before she ran deeper into Collinwood. It is as if the great house has her now. Forever.

Not yogurt!
The character of Vicki isn't gone yet but apparently neither one of her two replacements last long enough to gain acclaim from the audience, so the character was eventually written out. Well, trying to replace a pivotal character like Vicki is like trying to replace ice-cream with yogurt. It may be good but it ain't what you paid for. Same goes for other untouchable characters like Barnabas and Liz or Julia. Dan Curtis played that gamble with Vicki and lost. Twice. Yet, Dark Shadows moved on and I'm grateful for that. I'm actually excited to see what the other actresses' takes on Vicki were like. I also wonder, without actually knowing what the future will bring, what that future would have been like with Vicki. And I'm also curious what the actual future of the show is like.

I remember Alexandra Moltke joking in an interview that she was scared her pregnancy would be used in a Rosemary's Babiesque fashion because the film came out the same year. Or maybe she was serious. She was also contacted periodically whether she wanted to come back to the show or not, and once she agreed to do so if they let Vicki be possessed or something; she wanted to be evil for a change and they friggin' did not let that happen. It would have been the ultimate shocker of the series: To have a long lost character return with a  big twist but Mr. Curtis said no and there was no deal. What a pity!

Monsters always had
a thing for her
When I conclude this entry devoted to Alexandra Moltke Iles aka Vicki #1, I can't help recall the very first scene where we met her. "My name is Victoria Winters; my journey is beginning" she said sitting on a moving train. That journey of self-discovery took her to very unexpected places: To the dark corners and corridors of a great house; to the tombs and crypts; to encounters with supernatural beings as ghosts, vampires, witches, warlocks, phoenixes; and even back in time. 

Now let's watch and see how it will eventually come to an end. Ok, someone hand me a tissue.


Aged 65, Ms. Isles has been directing documentaries
on human rights since the mid 90's.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Six Hours Of Time Travel (And No Jet Lag)

EPISODES 623-627

Eve keeps bugging Peter regardless
 of the century
Angelique sends Eve back in time to the year 1795 (or '96, depending on which continuity you wanna take into account; the writers too were apparently confused) some weeks after Vicki's and mere hours before Peter Bradford's execution. Appearing at the Collinsport Gaol curiously dressed in period clothes, Eve learns    about Gloria Winters' Victoria Winters' hanging and how people in town are still confused by Vicki's replacement with some other woman at the gallows after the hanging (Am I the only one who still feels sorry for Phyllis Wick). We also learn Eve aka Danielle and Peter were about to get married when she killed Philippe Cordier and was forced to flee. In her absence of six months, Peter met Vicki and fell in love with her; something Eve isn't very happy about. She convinces the jailer to let her see Peter by shamelessly flirting.  Peter isn't thrilled to see her ("Look there's nothing between us anymore" Aww) and I am not even gonna point out the mishmash by asking how can Peter recognize Danielle in Eve's body in the first place. Eve learns Peter is innocent (remember he was covering for Vicki?) and decides to bust him out of jail. It seems that she forgot about Angelique's six hour rule or totally ignored it. Either way she is Eve; she can do whatever the hell she wants.

Collinwood now a sullen place
We cut to Collinwood to see what has become of the scattered Collins Family. Joshua Collins is still a bitter old man who cares about pride more than anything. Having read and inspired by The Collins Family History that Vicki had brought from the future, he decides to record the family history according the one in that book: Barnabas will be mentioned to have sailed off to England, Millicent has lived a life of spinsterhood and all that weird shit about Josette, Jeremiah, Naomi, Angelique will either be written out or changed in a plausible fashion. It is sort of a brainfuck that Joshua is copying the book which he had written in the first place. It's sorta like Kyle Reese going back in time to protect Sarah Connor and ending up being the father of John Connor, if not more complex. Since there can only be one family book, Joshua orders Ben Stokes to burn the Vicki's version; he doesn't believe in witchcraft but he does believe the book is cursed (?).

What was their connection,
we'll never know..
On his way to do his master's bidding, Ben is greeted by Eve. They obviously know each other and it's hinted that he helped her run away once, although he seems resentful about it (That's where I usually start to speculate a secret lesbian affair or something). Eve talks him into helping her free Peter because he is wrongly accused and all. She also manages to get her hands on the family history book, making me wonder how the hell a dolt like Ben is able to produce a genious of a descendant like Prof Stokes. Eve knows she's found a treasure and keeps hanging onto it despite Ben's naive protests to have it back. Ben has the horses ready outside the gaol but Peter has changed his mind about the prison break, mainly because of his eternal love for Vicki.  Yawn. He hands Eve a letter and is taken to the gallows shortly after. This gives Eve another cunning idea and she vanishes from the past with the book and the letter after six hours. Poor Ben must have spent his entire life looking for her and the book.

Eve: a true femme fatale
Eve arrives in the present time looking radiant as ever, hence the title of the post. But Nicholas is furious about her disappearance, so she lies to him about having taken a walk. A long walk indeed. When asked about the book, she says she grabbed it from Collinwood during their recent visit with Adam. Nicholas is suspicious but can't put his finger on it, so he tells her to be nice to Adam instead. So, Eve uses all her charm to fake being in love with Adam, which sends him over the clouds. If only he knew..

What, no gift receipt?
Unaware of the evil forces working against her, Vicki spends her time with dress rehearsals and opening wedding presents. Liz helps her through like she is her own daughter (well..) and Carolyn is nowhere to be seen. Maybe she's jealous. Vicki enjoys the gifts, especially the one from the orphanage. The issue of her origin is addressed very very briefly again, making me miss the good old gothic episodes. However, one particular gift wards off sweet memories of the past and brings up some ancient, nightmarish ones: The Collins Family History, with a card attached that says PETER! Oh no..

Collinwood has a wedding curse
Aaaand comes the day of the wedding and Vicki is in her dress, being comforted by Liz. Meanwhile, Jeff copes with his own nervousness when Eve approaches him on the terrace. She once again goes on and on about him being Peter Bradford and this time she has proof: The letter! This new evidence confuses him more than anything so he sends word with Roger that he wants to see Vicki ("Before the ceremony?" asks Liz rather baffled at his scandalous request). Vicki sees him nevertheless and Jeff comes clean about Eve's claims, as well as his own confusion concerning his identity. He needs to know who he is before he can marry her (although I don't see why this is an issue since both Peter and Jeff loved Vicki), so he goes off to the cemetery to dig up Peter B's grave. What is a good soap opera wedding without a last minute interruption, right? Good thing they didn't cast any guests or made a set for the altar, otherwise it would be a big waste of money. Come to think of it, they didn't show anything remotely close to a wedding ceremony except for Vicki's dress. This wedding was destined to be doomed even from the pre-production stage.
Anyway, Jeff digs up Peter's coffin with Roger literally looking down on him and is shocked to find it empty. That makes one of us. He goes through a dramatic phase questioning his existence and knocks down some styrofoam tomb stones in the process.

Meanwhile, Vicki has a vision of some sort, or more like a memory of her last encounter with Peter before she was taken to the gallows. He promised her he'd find a way to be with her, didn't he? When Roger returns without Jeff, she decides to go and see him despite Liz and Roger's protests.

Irretrievable Breakdown
But she ain't the only one who wants a piece of the Jeff pie. Eve is already at his place, bitterly looking at Vicki's headshot CV photo and waiting for Jeff to arrive. Then the door slowly opens and Eve calls out to her lover, only to find to her horror, Adam standing like a giant in the door frame. The jig is up and Eve is busted, so she has another nervous breakdown, her last, before Adam grabs and pulls her into the shadows. The dark shadows.

Later, Jeff arrives at his place unaware of the events that took place there a while ago and starts packing dramatically. Soon after, Vicki pays him a visit and they have a long, sorta boring talk about why they should and shouldn't stay together. Jeff is now almost convinced he is Peter Bradford and that's why they can't be together, because he may eventually go back to his time just like Vicki did. However a horrific discovery puts a halt on their fight: Eve's lifeless body in his closet!! After the initial shock, Vicki persuades him to call the police. They hug.
Nothing brings lovers together like a dead woman in the closet

Adam's in the woods, guilt and self-pity written all over his face. Angelique comes to his aid; she probably witnessed the whole thing on Nicholas' mirror. She sells Eve -her recent partner in crime- down the river in a haste and tells Adam that he did the right thing for Eve was an evil bitch and Nicholas intentionally made her that way. Angelique never wastes an opportunity to find an ally against Nicholas, so she tells Adam to go home and act surprised at the news of Eve's death. She has a plan!

The Mystery Jennings
That night far away from the ongoing drama, Joe, still at the hospital after his suicide attempt, is visited by a familiar face: His dead cousin TOM JENNINGS??!! Wait-- it isn't Tom the crooked eyed vampire but his cool twin brother Christopher "Chris" Jennings. He is in town to look into his brother's mysterious death. His obvious resemblance to Tom freaks out Julia as well (the earphones jumped out of my ears when she screamed), who too happens to pay Joe a mysterious late night visit (we all know she just wants a piece of that ass). Both Julia and Joe try to avert Chris' questions about Tom. When they're alone, Joe tells Julia a bit about his cousin. Once a bright fella, he has become this drifter after a mysterious event that changed him during college. A new delicious mystery. I like it! Chris gives Julia a ride to Collinwood where we get to learn more about the Jennings family. There's a little sister Jennings who got placed in the Windcliff Sanitarium after Tom's death and Chris is hesitant to see her.

Vicki rushes in when Chris rushes out and tells Julia about the murder and Jeff's arrest. Julia is shocked to hear the name "Eve". Vicki runs to wake Roger so he can bail Jeff out.

"The Master" is inflamed
Somewhere else, at her hidden place, Angelique puts her plans into motion and performs a summoning of what she calls "The Master" from the mouth of the dragon and of the beast, from subterranean rivers of blood and smoke of torment and other big, scary words. So big and scary that it hints some supreme shit is about to happen. Then at the highest ecstatic moment of her chant, Angelique gets engulfed in flames and screams at the top of her lungs.


*Eve is dead. Boo Hoo! :(