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Dark Shadows DVD Collection 5

4.8 out of 5 stars 34 customer reviews

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(Apr 29, 2003)
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Product Description

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 as 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.

In 1795, the beautiful and jealous witch Angelique attempts to destroy Barnabas' romance with his fiance, Josette DuPres. She enslaves Collins family servant Ben Stokes to assist her evil plans. Abigail Collins and Natalie DuPres find evidence they believe proves Victoria Winters is a witch. The family moves into the newly-built Collinwood mansion and the fanatical witch-hunting Reverend Trask is summoned to exorcise the Old House. A vengeful Angelique places a vampire curse on Barnabas.

Bonuses: Interviews with actors Jonathan Frid, Kathryn Leigh Scott, Jerry Lacy and music composer Robert Cobert. Starring: Joan Bennett, Jonathan Frid, Kathryn Leigh Scott, Louis Edmonds, Lara Parker, Anthony George, Nancy Barrett, David Ford, Clarice Blackburn, Joel Crothers, Grayson Hall, Jerry Lacy, David Henesy and Alexandra Moltke

From the Back Cover

Includes 40 complete episodes! (372-412)

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Jonathan Frid, Grayson Hall, Alexandra Isles, Nancy Barrett, Joan Bennett
  • Writers: Dan Curtis
  • Format: Box set, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • 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: April 29, 2003
  • Run Time: 900 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00007G1WU
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #124,341 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Dark Shadows DVD Collection 5" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By David H. Downing on April 29, 2006
When the now-classic daytime soap opera DARK SHADOWS introduced the 175-year-old vampire Barnabas Collins (Shakespearean actor Jonathan Frid), the plan was to tell a closed-ended story, set entirely in the present day. The events of 1795 that made Barnabas a vampire and took away his true love Josette were to serve only as a back story. But Barnabas's popularity changed the plan. He was spared the hammer-and-stake treatment, viewers were transported to 1795, and that back story became the main plot.

This entire installment is set in 1795, where the witch Angelique (Lara Parker) is determined to steal Barnabas from Josette, and has no compunction about destroying the entire Collins family to do so. Eventually, their confrontation reaches a crises in which Angelique turns Barnabas into the vampire we met way back in episode #210 (set 1).

To be fair to Angelique, you could argue that Barnabas had his fun with her, then dumped for the high-class woman. But you could counter-argue that Angelique is (and so perhaps always was) motivated at least partly by status-consciousness. In #373, she's trying on Josette's hat. In #374, she's using (then zapping) Josette's rose water. In #410, she's arguing with Joshua Collins (Barnabas's father) over her legal and financial rights as Barnabas's widow, even as she's rushing to prevent Barnabas returning as a vampire.

To the extent that Angelique is motivated by love, it's ironic that she understands one significant truth while missing the bigger truth. She understands that hexing Barnabas to make him love her would gain her nothing, because his love would be synthetic. The bigger truth she misses is that you can't force anyone to love you by any type of coercion or manipulation.
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I think I've seen just about every episode of Dark Shadows when they showed it on the Sci-fi Channel, and this particular bunch is my favorite. The characters seem so completely at home in the year 1795; Almost moreso than they do in the present day. Being set in the past is the perfect compliment to the whole gothic atmosphere of the series. These episodes also set up the basis of the love / hate relationship between Barnabus and Angelique, as well as featuring the character we all love to hate, Reverand Trask. You really need to see these episodes to completely understand the motivation of Barnabus in all the others episodes. The whole series is as much about Barnabus as it is about anything or anyone else, and this is where his story begins.

Another neat thing is the accuracy of the historic setting. The man of the house is the master - no one dare cross him. This takes the viewer very convincingly into a different era. And the witch hunt concerning Victoria Winters is emotionally compelling as well. Even such details as spelling the word jail as "gaol", as it is spelled in Britain and would have been spelled in Maine in 1795, is correctly portrayed.

All in all, Dark Shadows always managed to take me completely away from my own life, depositing me within its plot and setting, surrounding me with its characters, and providing a fantastic escape from reality.
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The much-anticipated 1795 Flashback begins in DS DVD Collection 5 (VHS Volumes 29-36). In these episodes, Victoria Winters has trouble accepting the fact that she has travelled over 200 years into the past. Barnabas Collins' fiance, Josette duPres arrives, and the evil witch Angelique Bouchard vows to destroy their romance. She enslaves family servant Ben Stokes to assist her. Eventually she ruins the plans and sets a plague on the entire family, resulting in deaths. Abagail Collins and Natalie duPres begin to suspect Victoria of being the witch and the cause of all the trouble at Collinwood. The fanatical witch-hunter Reverend Trask arrives on a quest to find and destroy the witch. After discovering that Angelique is really the witch, Barnabas shoots her, however she places a vampire curse on Barnabas.
Bonuses include interviews with Jonathan Frid (Barnabas Collins), Kathryn Leigh Scott (Josette duPres), Jerry Lacy (Reverend Trask), and music composer Robert Cobert.
The 1795 Flashback continues in the next collection.
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In Collection five of the widely acclaimed MPI DVD set of the ever popular Dark Shadows, we find that Victoria Winters, governess of young David Collins has been thrust back into the year 1795 during a seance in present day Collinwood. As she tries to settle into the role of the new governess to young Sarah Collins, now very much alive, she is in fear that she will never get back to her present day in 1967. Meanwhile, Josette DuPres, fiance of Barnabas Colins has arrived with her aunt, father and maid servant, Angelique, who unbeknownst to Josette and Barnabas is plotting to get Barnabas for herself through witchcraft. Her wicked spells soon draw the suspicion of spinster Aunt Abigail Collins and Natalie Dupres to suspect that Victoria is the witch! As the family moves to the newly built Collinwood manor, Sarah falls sick and dies and the evil zealot Reverend Trask is summoned to bring Victoria to justice. Finding out who the real witch is, Barnabas shoots Angelique, who thinking she is dying, summons a vampire bat to bite Barnabas and infect him with the vampiric curse! This volume contains some of the most compelling episodes of the series. Although the storylines were loosely based on such classics as Jane Eyre and Dracula, this show far transcended even the classics. Although sometimes rife with flubs and technical difficulties during filming, these classic episodes are full of hours of enjoyable gothic suspense! Fully worth the price!
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