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Dark Shadows DVD Collection 1

4.6 out of 5 stars 206 customer reviews

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(Apr 10, 2012)
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$18.31 $9.74
(May 28, 2002)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Woe unto young Victoria Winters, the new governess at Collinwood, the Collins family estate in (where else?) Collinsport, Maine. Her employers are a strange lot, and the arrival of cousin Barnabas from England, who just happens to be a guilt-ridden 175-year-old vampire, ratchets up the weirdness. These creepy, campy contrivances made this gothic mystery one of television's most popular daytime series from 1966 to 1971. DVD bonuses include new interviews with the actors and program creator, Dan Curtis. 14 hours on 8 cassettes or 4 DVDs; b&w.

From the Back Cover

With its alluring tales of Gothic mystery and supernatural intrigue, Dark Shadows became one of the most popular daytime series of all time. Since first airing on ABC-TV from 1966-71, Dark Shadows has earned the reputation of being one of the most unusual and enduring programs in television history. The character of Barnabas Collins, a guilt-ridden, 175-year-old vampire, brought the show tremendous success.

Released from his chained coffin after nearly 200 years, Barnabas Collins arrives at the Collinwood estate claiming to be a relative from England. Although noticing Barnabas's resemblance to his "ancestor" in the foyer portrait, the Collins family does not realize he is the same Barnabas who lived at Collinwood in the 18th century. As Barnabas moves into the Old House on the property, those around him are unaware of the horrors that will soon follow.

Contains: 40 complete, spine-tingling episodes. Bonuses: Special introductory Dark Shadows featurette and exclusive interviews with the actors. Starring: Joan Bennett, Jonathan Frid, Kathryn Leigh Scott, Louis Edmonds, Nancy Barrett, David Henesy, Clarice Blackburn, John Karlen, Mitchell Ryan, Dennis Patrick, Joel Crothers, David Ford, Dana Elcar, Robert Gerringer, and Alexandra Moltke. Black and white, approx. 15 hours.

Special Features

  • 40 complete, uncut episodes on four DVDs (beginning with the resurrection of Barnabas Collins)
  • New bonus material including interviews with the actors and series creator Dan Curtis

Product Details

  • Actors: Alexandra Moltke, Jonathan Frid, Joan Bennett, Louis Edmonds, Kathryn Leigh Scott
  • Format: Box set, Black & White, Full Screen, Subtitled
  • Language: English (Unknown)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 4
  • Rated:
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Mpi Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: May 28, 2002
  • Run Time: 900 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (206 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000060MVN
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #28,449 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Dark Shadows DVD Collection 1" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
... Basically, this first DVD set is VHS Volumes 1-4; in other words, 8 actual weeks of the programme, 2 weeks on each disc. The quality is better than the VHS tapes, but not greatly, as Dark Shadows was a very low budget soap opera, and through the years some of the original prints were lost, damaged, etc., and alternative prints were utilised in their stead; but it is a definite improvement over the quality of the VHS tapes. The programmes on this DVD collection begin at the same point in the series as the VHS videos begin: a synopsis of the earlier episodes and characters followed by the introduction of Barnabas Collins the Vampyre. As far as extras, there are three interviews approximately 5 minutes long each: Jonathan Frid (Barnabas), Kathryn Leigh-Scott (Maggie, Josette), and John Karlen (Willie, Kendrick), each interviewed several years ago. What really should be noted about the DVD collection(s) that differs from the VHS tapes is that ALL THE EPISODES ARE COMPLETE AND UNEDITED. The VHS tapes are actually edited. I didn't really notice this at first, until I realised I was seeing episodes and parts of episodes that weren't shown in the VHS volumes. (A clue to this being my former statement that the DVD collection, consisiting of 8 weeks, equals that of the VHS Volumes, 1-4; and as the VHS volumes only consist of approximately one week each, the math is incorrect.) By seeing the complete episodes, the viewer will find (after having watched the VHS tapes) the story to be fleshed out more, focusing more on all the characters and situations.
If you're new to Dark Shadows and are curious about this show and want a good starter sampler, this DVD collection is perhaps the best and least expensive way to start.
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Format: DVD
Although it's commonplace for classic TV programs to appear on DVD, it's unusual for this to happen with a soap opera. But DARK SHADOWS is an unusual soap opera -- the first to revolve around supernatural horror. In fact, the soap opera format gave DS time to present its tales of the supernatural with a depth and plausibility often lacking in TV speculative fiction. Furthermore, it was played by a group of topnotch actors who took it quite seriously and played it with as much sincerity as any reality-based soap opera.

The DVD release just might make it feasible to own the entire run. I don't know how I'd have stored the original VHS edition's 300+ cassettes (Liz, is the West Wing still empty?), but the DVD edition should total just over 30 of these boxed sets, which should fit nicely on one bookshelf.

DS is best known for the 200-year-old vampire Barnabas Collins, although he entered the story only after the show had been running for about a year. This installment begins with a 15-minute summary of that pre-Barnabas year, revealing that it was primarily non-supernatural, with periodic supernatural interludes.

The complete episodes begin with #210, wherein grifter Willie Loomis gets an unpleasant surprise during an attempted grave robbery. Willie disappears, and the mysterious Barnabas Collins appears, claiming to be a cousin from England. Willie reappears, suffering from an unidentifiable illness, and Barnabas asks permission to move into the abandoned "Old House" on the Collins estate. With Willie as an unwilling but powerless accomplice, Barnabas secretly kidnaps waitress Maggie Evans, intending to transform her into an undead reincarnation of his long lost love, Josette.
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Format: DVD
Are creaking coffins, cobweb-filled doorways and flickering candelabras your thing? How about romantic, angst-filled Gothic vampires, in endless conflict with their mortal souls and their immortal longings? Nah, it ain't that overly-slick, too-hip-for-its-own-good "Buffy" show that people talk about. We're talking about Dark Shadows, the FIRST vampire series on tv; the Granddaddy of all Gothic shows.
Premiering in 1966, it began as your basic routine, lovey-dovey serial tear-jerker with all those little coffee cups and handy hankies. But low ratings forced the mighty cancellation axe too close for comfort, so producer/creator Dan Curtis said, "Aw, the heck with it. If we're gonna go out, let's go out with a bang. Let's introduce a vampire!" And so, BARNABAS COLLINS was born. At first glance, Barnabas seemed another bastardly knock-off of ol' Drac himself...but this is daytime television. In soaps, you have time to peer beneath the surface of your favorite characters. We got to know him, this Barnabas, and rank imitator, or two-dimensional camp caricature he never was. No, this was a vampire with a soul. With a purpose. With longings far beyond the jugular of the next available neck. Ah, Barnabas. Television's first sex symbol of the undead. An instant American icon. You invited him into your home. You loved him, and you loved for him to scare the...out of you.
But wait, there's something else here that's even scarier than Barnabas! Ya see, this was taped back in 1966. It is LIVE on tape, that is, whatever they taped was what you saw. There was very little in the way of editing. This is television at its most raw, and most compelling. Everything is left to chance, or fate. If the candles accidentally fall off their holders, that's okay! Keep rolling! It's too expensive to stop and go back!
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