Episode 24: Taking Risks

Taking risks_ep24 opening GIF


Burke Devlin is one of the more intriguing characters of Dark Shadows beginnings. You never really know if he’s a good guy or a bad guy. He gets on the right side of characters we like, especially Maggie and Sam Evans. On the other hand, despite appearances he seems insensitive with other characters we like, including Carolyn Stoddard, and derives amusement from antagonizing other characters we like, particularly Joe Haskell.


Still, you have to root for the underdog, and in terms of Burke Devlin that means Collinsport Inn vs. Collinwood mansion, Burke’s hotel room vs. the Collins family drawing room.


Episode 24 belongs to Burke Devlin, and is set exclusively on his “home” turf.



Burke will be entertaining a guest up in his hotel room in the person of Constable Jonas Carter, who wants to question him about Roger’s accident. While Burke is away, the constable walks into the restaurant of Collinsport Inn, asking waitress Maggie Evans if she has seen Burke, then waits in the lobby until he shows up. When the constable states his business, Burke is not surprised. He’s already been questioned twice about Roger’s accident; once the night before, after midnight just as he was about to turn in, when Roger himself came knocking on his door to accuse him of tampering with his car. He even brought along the governess, Vicki Winters, to verify that he was seen standing in the garage by Roger’s car holding a wrench. Then the next morning Bill Malloy, who manages the Collins fishing fleet and cannery, walked in as Burke was having breakfast so that he could ask a few questions of his own. Now, the same day, the constable shows up just as Burke is about to have lunch. He can’t get through a meal without people coming after him suspecting that he may have had something to do with Roger’s car running off the road the night before.


The trouble with Roger trying to get Burke to confess and then Bill Malloy intending as well to help the family by confronting Devlin is that it seems to help Burke more than it does the Collins family. When Roger arrived at his hotel room, Burke was taken by surprise; and then with Vicki being brought along he walked right into an admission that he was seen in the garage holding a wrench while looking over Roger’s car. He became upset and resorted to shouting. But when Bill Malloy showed up he was only mildly irritated as he consistently denied having anything to do with Roger’s accident. Malloy accused Burke of coming back to Collinsport to ruin the Collins family, and even revealed what he knew about the private detective Devlin had hired to ask questions about the family. But by this time the element of surprise had evaporated, and Burke was able to smooth talk his way around Malloy’s questions.


So when the constable approaches him in the lobby, Burke is a cool customer and is ready for anything Carter has to ask him about. Not only that, but he is also quick to make use of an opportunity when he spots one. While at the counter in the restaurant ordering a sandwich and a container of coffee, he spots Carolyn and Joe at a nearby table having lunch, then comes over to say hello; but he’s really only after a specific piece of information. Just as Roger used Vicki as his witness, Burke is planning to use Carolyn as his.


Burke: Hi, kids. How’s the good life?

Carolyn: Hello, Burke.

Joe: If you wanna join us, the answer’s no.

Burke: Well, that’s not very friendly.

Joe: I didn’t mean it to be friendly.

Burke: Mm. [to Carolyn] How’s your uncle this morning?

Carolyn: Much better.

Joe: What do you want, Devlin?

Burke: Joe, I just wanted to know how long you two expected to be here, that’s all.

Joe: Yeah? Why?

Carolyn: Joe will be going back to his office in about a half hour.

Burke: What about you?

Carolyn: I’m going home.

Burke: Half hour, huh? Okay, thanks.


As Burke returns to the counter to wait for his lunch order, Joe says, “Someday, Carolyn, someday I’m gonna punch that guy right in the mouth.”


And he will, too! But that’s months of episodes from today. Upstairs in Burke’s room, the constable makes a bit of friendly small talk about how they haven’t changed the furniture in these hotel rooms in the last twenty years, and Burke says that he wouldn’t know, considering that when he left town years ago he couldn’t afford even a broom closet in the hotel. Burke then surmises that the constable wants to talk about Roger’s accident, and very calmly asserts that he had nothing to do with it. Even with the constable giving him a thorough interrogation Burke remains unruffled, and this is one of the reasons why we like Burke Devlin. He always seems to remain in control of a situation.


Carter: You know what happened to Collins’ car, Burke?

Burke: Yes, I do. Somebody removed the valve from the master break cylinder, wasn’t that it?

Carter: That’s right. Used a wrench to do it with. Your fingerprints were on that wrench.

Burke: You mean my fingerprints were on a wrench, don’t you?

Carter: Alright, Burke! Suppose you tell me what happened.

Burke: Well, I, uh, I went up to the house. I saw Roger Collins and his sister. I had a very pleasant talk and then I left.

Carter: After asking Roger to meet you in town.

Burke: That’s right. I wanted to discuss a business deal with him.

Carter: How’d you figure he was gonna get into town?

Burke: Drive, of course.

Carter: Well, after inviting him to drive into town, you left the house. Then what?

Burke: Then I went into the garage.

Carter: Why?

Burke: Well I’ve been thinking of buying a car. I knew Roger Collins had a car, and I wanted to look at it.

Carter: That’s gonna sound mighty peculiar on the witness stand, Burke.


With a sideways grin, Burke then shakes his finger at the Constable.


Burke: We’ll never get to the witness stand, and you know it.

Carter: I don’t know anything yet. Go on.

Burke: Well, I was looking over his car. I even opened the door and got behind the wheel to see how it felt. That’s when I noticed the wrench.

Carter: So you just picked it up, just to keep Roger’s car nice and neat and clean.

Burke: Have you ever sat on a wrench, Mr. Carter? Sure, I picked it up. Then I got out of the car. Closed the door, and I was about to throw it on the work bench when the girl came along, the kid’s tutor. We talked for a while, then I left, and that’s it.

Carter: Collins said there was no wrench on the seat of that car.

Burke: Well then maybe you better find out who put it there. Instead of wasting your time with me.

Carter: Don’t worry about my time, Burke. That’s what I get paid for. What next?

Burke: Then I came back here, changed my clothes, had something to eat, and then I went over to the Blue Whale to wait for Roger to show up.

Carter: Who couldn’t make it because he was being dragged out of that wreck.


Having finished with his lunch, Burke crumples up the paper bag and walks across the room to drop it in the waste barrel.


Burke: Mr. Carter, I’ve taken lots of risks since I left this town. That’s how I made my money. Taking risks. One thing I never did was place a bet on a dead horse.

Carter: I’m just a country boy, Burke. You’ll have to translate that one.

Burke: Well, do you think I would jump into a river if I knew I couldn’t swim? Just think about that. Suppose I wanted Roger Collins dead. Suppose I tampered with his car, which I didn’t. But suppose I did. And there I was, standing in the garage with a wrench in my hand. And someone comes along and sees me. You think I’d be stupid enough to go through with it?

Carter: There wasn’t much else you could do.

Burke: Oh, come on, constable. You’re not that much of a country boy, I know that. I’d have told Roger not to come into town. I’d have tried to find some way to put the valve back. But one thing I wouldn’t have done is come back here and wait for you to come up here and ask me questions.

Carter: Do I worry you that much, Burke?

Burke: Ah, you don’t worry me at all! But I’m up to here with all these accusations! I didn’t come back to Collinsport for that.

Carter: What did you come back for?

Burke: Certainly not to commit a murder.

Carter: That’s no answer, Burke. You told me why you didn’t come back. I want to know why you did.


But that’s not the sort of information the constable is going to get, because Burke has something else in mind. This time, Burke will be asking the questions.


Carter: Miss Stoddard, having you drop up here like this was Burke’s idea, not mine. I see no reason in involving you in any of this.

Burke: We all need our evidence, Mr. Carter. You have your fingerprints, I have Carolyn.

Carolyn: I don’t understand.

Burke: Mr. Carter and I were discussing the reasons I came back to Collinsport. I told him it was a pleasure trip, it had nothing to do with harming your family. As a matter of fact, I didn’t expect to see your family at all.

Carter: You were there.

Burke: Sure, I was there. But the, well the… the idea was not my own. Ask Carolyn. Now she’s a member of that family, that family I’m supposed to be planning to ruin. Do you think she would lie for me?

Carter: Would you, Miss Stoddard?

Carolyn: Certainly not!


From here, Burke takes over completely, handling the situation like a master defense lawyer cross-examining a witness in a courtroom.


Burke: Carolyn, just before you took me up to Collinwood, did you come here to see me?

Carolyn: Yes.

Burke: Had I asked you to come?

Carolyn: No.

Burke [to Carter]: She just walked in. Unplanned, uninvited. [to Carolyn] Isn’t that right?

Carolyn: Yes.

Burke: At the end of your visit, how did you get home?

Carolyn: You drove me.

Burke: At whose suggestion?

Carolyn: Mine.

Burke: Why don’t you tell the constable what I said when you made that suggestion?

Carolyn: Well, you said you didn’t think it would be a good idea, that my family wouldn’t want to see you and you felt it would be better if you stayed away from them while you were in town.

Burke: But I did go up to Collinwood with you, didn’t I? As Mr. Carter says, I was there. Why don’t you tell him why I went with you?

Carolyn: I insisted. I said I wouldn’t leave unless you went with me. I wish I’d never asked you.

Burke: At the moment, so do I. [turns to face Carter] No master plan, Mr. Carter. Carolyn insisted I go up to Collinwood, and that’s the only reason I went. Not to try to harm Roger Collins.

Carter: Well, it’s all very neat, Burke. But it doesn’t prove a thing.

Burke: Neither does anything that you have. Look, I came to Collinsport for a visit, period. And right now, I wish I could get out of here as fast as I could.

Carter: Well, I wouldn’t go away for a while if I were you.

Burke: Are you going to arrest me?

Carter: No, but I wouldn’t take any sudden long trips.


As the constable is preparing to leave, he asks Miss Stoddard if she is coming, but she says she wants to stay and talk to Burke. Once the constable is closing the door behind him, the moment allows for one of the great instances of innuendo in the early days of Dark Shadows.


Burke: Thanks, Carolyn. I’m sorry I had to use you in that way.

Carolyn: Use me? You’re lucky I didn’t tell the constable how you did use me!


Carolyn’s words are all the more amusing considering that she is only seventeen and Burke is in his thirties.


But come to think of it, Nancy Barrett (who is really twenty-two) and Mitch Ryan really do have great chemistry together. In contrast, there is hardly a sputter between her and Joel Crothers, who plays her boyfriend Joe Haskell. Fans of later periods of Dark Shadows, for whom the ideal couple is Maggie Evans and Joe Haskell, would be surprised to discover that Carolyn and Joe were once an item in the first few months of the show. But this is how it was written in the beginning, as first envisioned by story creator Art Wallace, that it should be Joe Haskell who would rescue Carolyn from the suffocating angst of gloomy Collinwood so that she could mature into married life.


Yet when she’s around Joe, as we’ve seen thus far, Carolyn is anything but mature. She is a frustrated young girl always getting moody and retreating whenever he suggests they get married, which he does practically every other episode. But with Burke, she seems more adventurous, more a go-getter, more of a young woman. She could become a more interesting character if this relationship really could blossom, but alas he has other things on his mind, like meeting with one of his business associates who has flown up from New York to help him with something the constable wasn’t able to get him to admit to today.


Burke Devlin_end credits_ep24



Burke Devlin is not the only one fond of taking risks; in this episode, Dark Shadows director Lela Swift will be taking a big one herself. Set in the control room of the television studio, The Dan and Lela Show is an ongoing behind the scenes audio drama that plays through the control room microphone. Just as with crew members coughing and mechanical equipment moving around and/or clattering to the floor, discussion through the control room microphone is part of the peripheral audio sounds that are included as part of the original broadcast, but which are made clearer through use of headphones and more sophisticated sound systems than were available in the days of single-speaker analog television sets.


Executive producer Dan Curtis is trying to get her temperamental director to stop complaining about his supporting actors – what’s left of them, that is.


No sooner does Michael Currie make his first appearance walking through the lobby of Collinsport Inn and toward the restaurant than Lela can be heard in a loud voice from the control room:


Lela Swift: Dan, I still don’t like Michael Currie.


She continues as the actor walks through the restaurant for the counter to deliver his first lines:


Lela: I don’t think he’s right for the show.

Dan Curtis: Oh, for Christ sakes, Lela. Why is it that every time there’s a new supporting actor on who’s middle aged, you suddenly can’t stand him?


At the close of the teaser, as the camera pulls in on a close-up of Currie as he stands near the front door of the hotel lobby, Lela barks in a loud voice from the control room:


Lela: Michael Currie, I’ll sabotage you!


As the opening theme plays over the waves intro, Lela outlines her plan for sabotage:


Lela: I mean it, Dan. I’m going to sabotage Michael Currie off Dark Shadows just like I sabotaged Mark Allen. I’m going to have one of the camera crew run into him, so he’ll go up on his lines.


In Act I, as Burke is in the Collinsport Inn restaurant ordering a sandwich, he lets a pause fall, after which Dan Curtis can be heard prompting him from the control room:


Dan: Butter and mustard, Mitch.


Ryan then completes his line and moves to the nearby table where Carolyn and Joe are seated. Before Ryan delivers his next line, you can almost see the wide grin on Curtis’ face as he comments, probably to Lela, “I thought Mitch was going up on his lines.”


At least Dan Curtis is there in the control room to help the actors. With Lela Swift, it’s quite often a different story. As Constable Carter and Devlin enter Burke’s room, Dan and Lela can be heard from the control room:


Dan: Oh, is this the scene where you plan on sabotaging Michael Currie?

Lela: I’d rather keep it a surprise.

Dan: You know, Lela, you better not. My show’s been sabotaged enough.

Lela: When it comes, you’ll know it.

Dan: Lela, what’s it gonna take for you to stop messing up my show?

Lela: I told you, Dan. Michael Currie isn’t right for the part.

Dan: Oh, Jesus Christ, Lela. Just because you can’t stand a man’s trousers?

Lela: I’m trying to tell you the trousers have nothing to do with it. He’s just not right for the part. He messes up lines.


Then, this happens:

Camera_ep24 GIF


A camera comes up beside Currie, swings left to hit him, and knocks him off balance. As it is being pulled away, the camera is swung left to clip him again.


Dan: Oh, Jesus Christ, Lela!


Michael Currie reacts after camera bumping_ep24 (1)


The cameraman can be heard commenting in the background:


Cameraman: I was moving for the shot, I couldn’t see him.


Michael Currie reacts after camera bumping_ep24 (2)


A moment later the cameraman comments in a lower voice:


Cameraman: Lela Swift told me to do that. I feel like an asshole. That shouldn’t’ve happened.


Michael Currie reacts after camera bumping_ep24 (3)


Dan Curtis is understandably irate:


Dan: Jesus Christ, Lela! What do you think you’re doing, trying to pull something like that?

Lela: I told you. He always misses lines. So I wanted to give him a reason to miss his lines.

Dan: Alright, Lela! Fortunately it looks like your little stunt failed. He’s holding up pretty well. Fortunately for you, that is… Now listen to me, Lela. I want you to stop ruining my show. Do you hear me, Lela? I want you to do what you’re paid to do. Just direct the show, stop trying to destroy it. I put your name back in the credits. But if you mess up again, John Sedwick is the director.


Over the end credits, Dan still has a few words to say to his director:


Dan: For Christ sakes, do you have any idea what you’re trying to do to my show, Lela?

Lela: I told you, Michael Currie is not right for the show, Dan… Oh good! My credit’s back.

Dan: It’s back, but you’d better behave, or John Sedwick will be the director and you’ll be the associate director…


Needless to say, the above camera gaffe will not be listed in the bloopers section – because bloopers are never intentional.


Until next time, this has been The Dan and Lela Show.


Photo Gallery:

“Mr. Carter, do you always go around chasing people just to say hello?”

Mr. Carter do you always go around chasing people just to say hello_ep24


“Does everybody in this town know everything I do?”

Does everybody in this town know everything I do_ep24


“The constable was looking for you.”

The constable was looking for you_ep24


“Hi, kids. How’s the good life?”

Hi kids how's the good life_ep24


“Someday, Carolyn, someday I’m gonna punch that guy right in the mouth.”

Someday someday Carolyn I'm gonna punch that guy right in the mouth_ep24


“Say, were you two just talking about Burke?”

Say were you two just talking about Burke_ep24


“You threatened to kill him, Burke.”

You threatened to kill him Burke_ep24


“That’s how I made my money. Taking risks.”

That's how I made my money Taking risks_ep24


“I’m just a country boy, Burke. You’ll have to translate that one.”

I'm just a country boy Burke You'll have to translate that one_ep24


“Are you going to arrest me?”

Are you going to arrest me_ep24


“No, but I wouldn’t take any sudden long trips.”

No but I wouldn't take any sudden long trips_ep24


“Thanks, Carolyn. I’m sorry I had to use you in that way.”

Thanks Carolyn I'm sorry I had to use you in that way_ep24


Use me? You’re lucky I didn’t tell the constable how you did use me!”

Use me You're lucky I didn't tell the constable how you did use me_ep24


Favorite Lines/Exchanges:

Constable Carter: Morning, Maggie:

Maggie: Well hello, Mr. Carter. How’s the police force today?

Carter: Its feet hurt.

Carolyn: Hello, Maggie. See that table over there?

Maggie: You mean the one that shows where you spend all your money?

Carolyn: Uh huh. I want two hamburgers, medium, two coffees.

Maggie: Hey, you eating for two these days?

Carolyn: Very funny. You I don’t need.

Maggie: Burke. Did you come through the hotel?

Burke: Oh hi, Maggie. How about fixing me a ham and cheese and a container of coffee, black, to go?

Maggie: Well the constable was looking for you.

Burke: That so, huh? Well, probably wanted to sell me a couple tickets to the bazaar.

Maggie: Well, I don’t think that was it, because he’s –

Burke: Maggie. Let’s have an agreement, huh? You stick to fixing my sandwich and I’ll take care of my life of crime, alright?

Burke: Hi, kids. How’s the good life?

Carolyn: Hello, Burke.

Joe: If you wanna join us, the answer’s no.

Burke: Well, that’s not very friendly.

Joe: I didn’t mean it to be friendly.

Joe: Someday, Carolyn, someday I’m gonna punch that guy right in the mouth.

Maggie: Say, were you two just talking about Burke?

Joe: Uh? What about it?

Maggie: Oh, nothing. ‘Cept he just phoned. He said he’d like to have Carolyn drop up to his hotel room for a few minutes.

Joe: He what?

Maggie [laughs]: Oh, don’t worry, Joe. There’s a chaperone. The constable.

Burke: Thanks, Carolyn. I’m sorry I had to use you in that way.

Carolyn: Use me? You’re lucky I didn’t tell the constable how you did use me!


Background/Production Notes:

Episode 24 is the first to not have any scenes in Collinwood or anywhere on the grounds of the estate.


As the opening narration begins, after ten seconds the location footage representing the back lawn of Collinwood dissolves to exterior footage for Collinsport Inn (the Griswold Inn, filmed in Essex, Connecticut).

Location footage for Collinsport Inn_Essex Connecticut_Griswold Inn_ep24


Dark Shadows extras: Besides the regular actors, there are three extras in the Collinsport Inn restaurant. This is the first episode to show actors in the restaurant set other than the regular players. They are Tim Gordon, Liz Ingleson, and Pat McNamara.

Collinsport Inn restaurant_extras_ep24 (1)

Collinsport Inn restaurant_extras_ep24 (2)


In this episode there is another instance where a character is mentioned but never appears onscreen. Joe tells Carolyn about a co-worker at the cannery named Jerry Gerss, who may become Joe’s partner in the purchase of a fishing boat he wants to buy so that he can go into business for himself.


In episode 23, the main law enforcement officer in Collinsport is introduced as a constable. In this episode, for the first time, a patch on the left arm of Constable Carter’s uniform reads Sheriff, but everyone still refers to him as a constable.

Constable Carter with sheriff's patch on uniform_ep24


After Carolyn and Joe have finished with lunch and Maggie hands Joe his change, she says that Burke would like for Carolyn to drop up to his hotel room. As she is relaying the message, and because the scene will change to Burke’s room without a commercial break, the camera closes in tight on Maggie and Joe, so that Nancy Barrett can hurry to the nearby set for Burke’s room.

Camera angle so that Nancy Barrett can move to other set_ep24


The usually reliable and authoritative Dark Shadows Wiki says that episode 24 “was mistakenly credited to Lela Swift” and that John Sedwick directed the episode instead.

Lela Swift_end credits_ep24

I’ll go with what’s listed in Dark Shadows: The First Year (2006, Blue Whale Books, by Nina Johnson and O. Crock [summary writers], pp. 32-38), which says that the first twenty-eight episodes were directed by Lela Swift, since the people involved in that project had direct access to all the primary source materials including original scripts and other production documents, ABC network interdepartment correspondences, etc.

Dark Shadows_The First Year_front cover


Daily studio schedule for Dark Shadows in 1966

7:00-11:00 a.m.  Lighting

8:30-10:30           Morning Rehearsal

10:30-11:30         Break/Make-Up

11:00-12:00         Engineering Set-Up

11:30-2:00           Camera Blocking & Run Through

2:00-2:30             Dress Rehearsal

2:30-3:00             Test Pattern

3:00-3:30             Episode Taping

3:30-4:00             Knockdown

3:45-4:15             Technical Meeting

4:00-6:30             Dry Rehearsal for Next Episode

4:00-7:00             Reset Studio


Set Design:

The opening scene provides an exterior glimpse of the phone booth as Carolyn enters to call Joe to invite him for lunch. The location of the phone booth is known to move about from episode to episode, even in the hotel lobby.

Carolyn enters phone booth_Collinsport Inn lobby_ep24 (1)

Carolyn enters phone booth_Collinsport Inn lobby_ep24 (2)

Carolyn enters phone booth_Collinsport Inn lobby_ep24 (3)

Carolyn enters phone booth_Collinsport Inn lobby_ep24 (4)


Bloopers/Story Continuity:

It’s lunchtime in Collinsport, but the clock over the front desk in the lobby of Collinsport Inn reads five minutes before ten. In fact, that clock always has the time as five minutes before ten.


Some would say it’s a blooper that Carolyn orders her hamburger cooked medium, when in episode 19 she ordered one rare. But it could also be seen as typical of someone who doesn’t really know what they want, which Carolyn in previous episodes has said about her life in general.


In Burke’s hotel room, as Constable Carter is questioning Devlin, even after three tries Michael Currie can’t get himself to say convicted: “…I remember a young man who was committed, committed, er, committed for, uh, attempted manslaughter…” The crime was simply manslaughter, an accident. Also, it may be the way Michael Currie pronounces words, but it seems that several times he refers to Burke as “Burt.”


In the Collinsport Inn restaurant, as Maggie is handing Joe his change for the bill, the front part of a second camera is caught momentarily in frame (behind Joe).

Another camera in frame_right of screen_ep24



The Ralston Purina lamp can be seen in its usual place on the front desk of Collinsport Inn as the end credits are set to roll.

Ralston Purina lamp_ep24


Food & Drink in Collinsport:

In the opening scene in the Collinsport Inn restaurant, Maggie tells Constable Carter about the lunch special for the day: lobster rolls, cole slaw, fried potatoes – but the constable cuts her off, telling her instead that he’s looking for Burke Devlin.


In the Collinsport Inn restaurant, Carolyn and Joe each have a hamburger, medium, with coffee. The hamburger comes with a pickle spear.

Carolyn and Joe_hamburgers and coffee_Collinsport Inn restaurant_ep24

Joe eats the hamburger, but leaves the pickle spear.

Joe doesn't eat pickle spear_ep24


Attention method eaters! For those who like to binge on the Dark Shadows diet (that is, a roast beef sandwich and a slice of apple pie with coffee before viewing episode 1, etc.), to more completely consume the Dark Shadows viewing experience, episode 24 has on the menu what I have dubbed the Burke Devlin Club Sandwich: ham and cheese, butter and mustard, no lettuce. The Burke Devlin Club Sandwich – hold the lettuce, and double your comfort! This is what Burke orders in the Collinsport Inn restaurant, to go, with a container of black coffee. He’ll have to eat it up in his room while the constable questions him about Roger’s accident.

Burke Devlin with sandwich_ep24

Burke Devlin with coffee_ep24


Recommended Reading:

From the page I created for Dark Shadows Wiki:

Dark Passages is a novel written by Kathryn Leigh Scott and published in 2011 by Pomegranate Press, Ltd.

Set in the 1960s, Meg Harrison leaves her native Minnesota for New York to pursue a career in acting while working as a Playboy Bunny in New York’s Playboy Club. After changing her name to Morgana Harriott, she soon lands the role of Margie, a restaurant waitress and daughter of a local artist, in the new daytime TV serial Dark Passages. The show will eventually feature a vampire, but the catch is that Morgana is one in real life.

The characters described on the sets of Dark Passages resemble quite vividly those on Dark Shadows and the actors who played them. The diner set where Margie works is greatly similar to that of the Collinsport Inn restaurant on Dark Shadows.

For the back cover, Jonathan Frid wrote the following blurb: “Reading DARK PASSAGES was like being back on the sets of DARK SHADOWS, except with real vampires behind the scenes!”

Dark Passages_novel_front cover


Recommended Listening:

In this eight-CD box set of composer Robert Cobert’s series soundtrack, every music cue used on Dark Shadows is available, including the full-length original recordings of the guitar instrumentals heard at the Blue Whale.

Dark Shadows_Soundtrack Music Collection_Front cover


Since 2006, UK production company Big Finish has been extending the Dark Shadows legacy with audio dramas offering new stories featuring cast members from the original TV series. My favorite is the 2015 audio drama …And Red All Over, in which Mitchell Ryan reprises his role as Burke Devlin to the backdrop of an eerily compelling backstory on how he came to acquire his wealth in business. Also starring Kathryn Leigh Scott as Maggie Evans, with original series themes and music cues composed by Robert Cobert. A must listen for any fan of the first year of Dark Shadows.

And Red All Over_CD booklet front image


Coming next: Episode 25: People Management


— Marc Masse

(aka PrisoneroftheNight)


© 2018 Marc Masse and Dark Shadows

from the Beginning. All rights reserved.

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of

the content herein is a violation of the

terms and standards as set forth under

U.S. copyright law.


7 thoughts on “Episode 24: Taking Risks”

  1. Thanks for the kind words, and welcome!

    Yes, I would think “container” of coffee refers to takeout — like the plastic container Burke takes up to his hotel room. I believe those came from the coffee shop/greasy spoon near the television studio they were using for food and drink, as opposed to a proper cup like the one Joe is using in the opening GIF, or in an earlier episode when Burke invites Vicki to join him for “a simple cump of coffee.”

    So true about all those little special touches these early episodes have to make the backdrop of Collinsport come alive as though a real place, especially the food and drink that lend such places as the diner their functionality.

  2. Thank you for writing this wonderful blog. I especially like the notes on sets, locations, and food & drink, the sorts of things that gave the early episodes their reality.

    This is the first episode where someone says “container of coffee.” I love the phrase, never heard it anywhere but early DS. I think they’re talking about “go cups.” Is “container of coffee” still a usual way to refer to that, maybe in some other part of the country? I wonder if it’s a regionalism, an older way of speaking, or maybe just an Art Wallace-ism. Anyway, around my house we have been calling them containers of coffee out of respect for Burke Devlin.

  3. Joe had to be the stick in the mud to make older man Burke all the more alluring to Carolyn by contrast. Carolyn and Joe would have been tearin’ up the dance floor if Joel had been in his Lt. Forbes persona.
    What’s the story on Lela Swift? Was she considered to be some great catch as director? Why else would Dan Curtis put up with her childish crap?

  4. Wouldn’t it be nice if Carolyn eventually found happiness as Carolyn Collins Stoddard Hawkes Hackett? (Just the romantic in me.)

  5. You’d think that David would eventually crush on Carolyn, following her crush on Roger. And then, in real life, Henesy marries. Her name is Carolina.

  6. When I first watched DS, I was creeped out by Burke macking on Vicki, though I thought he was much older than he’s supposed to be. Him with Carolyn would have been too much for me!

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