I've never liked soap operas. My grandmother used to watch them all the time and I thought they were awful. But then again they ARE mostly targeted for girls so maybe that's why.
But "Dark Shadows" has recently become a fascination of mine and I'm now a huge addict, which makes another accomplishment: I'm not usually into shows from the 60s.
"Dark Shadows" is a compelling, gothic, and moody daytime soap that aired for several years on ABC. After suffering low ratings, series creator Dan Curtis introduced supernatural elements to the show in a desperate effort to save it from cancelation. When this proved effective, the show switched into a full supernatural gothic tale that become a phenomenon.
Unlike many fans, I've had the luxury of seeing several episodes from the pre-vampire Barnabas days, and I think they were also very good. The characters are interesting and the writing is extremely good for a daytime soap.
Just the other day a couple of DVD collections came in the mail and I began watching immediately, and now I am more hooked than ever. Despite the fact the show can be corny just like every other soap opera, "Dark Shadows" manages to still be a fascinating piece of entertainment. Another interesting thing is that due to time and budget constraints all scenes were done in one take. Therefore there are several times in which the cast makes mistakes and stumbles over lines. However, this does two things. First of all, it shows how talented the cast actually was, as they always recover VERY quickly, when actors today mess up GOOD when they flubb a line. They'd never survive on "Dark Shadows". Secondly, it adds realism to the show. In reality people make pauses and mistakes in their speech all the time, yet in the big-budget TV shows and movies we see characters give long-winded speeches without a single mistake.
It's sad that no network is currently syndicating "Dark Shadows", but at least it is now available on DVD.
"Dark Shadows" is a must have for any fan of gothic tales of the supernatural.