One of my favourite things in the world is the 1960s TV series Dark Shadows. I just love it. This is the story of my relationship with the show and my ongoing quest to watch all 1,225 episodes.
This is a clip of the pivotal episode where scumbag Willie Loomis accidentally releases the vampire Barnabas Collins from his captivity. The spooky sixties vibe of the show in all it's glory!
I watched the 40 episodes of that first DVD boxset three times. I just fell in love with this mental horror soap opera, and made the decision that, however long it took and how difficult it would be, I was going to watch every single episode. Which is where the problems started. Well not exactly problems...
The DVDs are only available in America, though the discs themselves are region-free. Twice now I've been stung by the 'extra tenner and no-one gets hurt' tax those gangsters at Customs add. They were bloody expensive enough to begin with!
Dark Shadows is almost unknown in Britain, at the recent Inverness Comics Expo a grand total of one person recognized my Dark Shadows T-shirt. ( it was The Beano's Kev F Sutherland, fact fans!).
I kept going on and on about this 40 year old TV show that no-one had ever heard of. The whole world was full of wrong except me! My first attempt to join the massive online Dark Shadows fandom was disastrous. Five minutes of surfing and I accidentally saw spoilers for episodes I hadn't seen yet. And soaps thrive on shock endings, so I had to keep away. I don't even look at the Dark Shadows wikipedia entry these days!
Salvation was at hand though. I lent the first DVD to my friend Paul Scott, and he was as enthusiastic about it as I was. He watches every DVD after me now, and it's great to have someone to discuss it with. Even now after a couple of years of this we're barely a third of the way through the marathon, at Episode 457. It's been quite a ride so far, but the show's golden years still await us...