Like the waves that crash upon the cliffs of Collinwood, ancestral home of vampire Barnabas Collins, I have been hitting my head against the wall trying to figure out why some fans of the “Dark Shadows” TV show gripe that Tim Burton’s movie version, opening tomorrow (pictured above), is too campy.
“Dark Shadows” ran on ABC from 1966 to 1971. I used to rush home from school to watch this supernatural soap, in which Barnabas arises after a nearly 200-year nap in his coffin. The show was spooky! And totally campy!!!! If you don’t believe me, check out the new DVD set with all 1,225 episodes (a wallet-sucking $599; available in July, but you can pre-order now).
Actors stare into the distance as if reading cue cards (which they were). Plots were preposterous. Witch Angelique just wanted Barnabas to LOVE her — only he didn’t, so she tied a ribbon around a voodoo doll to make him choke, then, oopsies, couldn’t untie it! Because the show was recorded “live on tape,” botched lines are in the mix. Young David Collins declares, “At sunrise, when the water … when the ocean … when the SUN rises over the ocean …”
“Dark Shadows.” It was its own blooper reel!