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David T. Cole

Dark Shadows

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Doesn't DECADES always show the same episodes of DS? It always ends on the same episodes. I guess they only have ownership of the b/w and some of the color episodes. I wish they would air all the episodes. I don't get the Retro Channel and don't get to see the The Doctors. Nothing like old time soaps when they were at their peak.

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John Karlen was so young.  Barnabas was a real villain in these episodes, but Jonathan's acting made him more sympathetic. 

I think this show influenced the soaps that came later.   I don't want to spoil @peacheslatour about what she'll see in two hours.

I love the theme music.  I didn't care that much for these episodes when I first saw them.  Maggie Evans wasn't my favorite character.

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I'm up to where they switched Anthony George for Mitchell Ryan as Burke Devlin.

From Victoria's narration:   "the sound of the sea is a primeval whisper, tempting us to think the world will never change."

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Oh crap, are they skipping episodes?  Dr Julia Hoffman just showed up. 

Edited by atomationage · Reason: more later, oh crap!
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I started watching this show when the SciFi channel reran it several years ago and it was awesome.  I always had a deep love for Carolyn Stoddard and Nancy Barrett in particular.  I liked that the show wasn't afraid to show Carolyn in a less than flattering light--she was constantly screwing up and getting into trouble and her family always forgave her--that felt very realistic to me.  And I think her best story line was when Barnabas hypnotized her into being his spy--NB was extremely badass when she played Carolyn under Barnabas' control.

I also thought that Don Briscoe and David Selby were insanely good looking and I bet they has girls swooning into their arms left and right :):)

ETA:  I love how haunting little Sarah's version of "London Bridge is Falling Down" is and you can't help but feel bad for this little girl who died so tragically--her ghost does help a lot of people, but the poor thing deserves some peace.

Edited by kitmerlot1213
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The episodes I'm watching now are in color.  David is trapped in the Collins mausoleum.  Roger says that several of his incenstors, ancestors are buried here.  Joel Crothers is featured.  He died quite young.  I haven't watched since early this morning, when Julia was taking a peak at Barnabas in his coffin.  

In the episode that started at 7:30 central time, Julia does the narration at the beginning. 

Edited by atomationage · Reason: next episode
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8 minutes ago, peacheslatour said:

yay, blue candles.

I was wondering if they were going to show the 1795 episodes, because Victoria was talking about being so connected to the past after Barnabas gave her the music box.  The blue candles were transported back to 1795 with her.

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On 10/31/2016 at 11:13 AM, peacheslatour said:

And then the next episodes are in black and white. Weird. But, yay, blue candles.

Episodes past 295 that you're seeing in black and white are kinescopes of episode tapes that were lost, usually made by filming right off the television monitor. There were quite a few of them, although it's remarkable that almost all the original videotapes survived a period in broadcast history when most soap operas weren't archived. 

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On April 30, 2014 at 10:12 PM, Collinwood said:

*Waves at moderators*

 

So I'm new around here and all and I don't want to sound pushy, but I don't like the title of this thread.  Just don't care for it one bit.  I really enjoyed Grayson Hall on this show and think she did a great job.  Is there any way we could possibly change the name?   When I think of Dr. Hoffman, I think about the way she handed out sleeping pills so easily and was forever advising someone to have a brandy and lie down and remember "it was only a dream, Insert Name."  May I ask for the subtitle The Doctor Will Sedate You Now? Another alternative is I'm A Doctor, Drink This Medicinal Brandy.

I know your post is old, but since Julia is my favorite character, I wanted to express my agreement.  I have no idea what that title means, but it somehow seems disrespectful to an actress who gave her best to a series for years.  

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The title alludes to the fact that the character as originally conceived was a man called Dr. Julian Hoffman. There was a typo somewhere along the way and the rest is history.

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When I was in high school the SciFi channel used to show Dark Shadows and so my father would tape the episodes for me and I would watch them when I got home.  Every so often my sister would watch them with me and she absolutely hated Roger.  Not the character but as she said back then (I am paraphrasing here), "The guy is such a sucky actor.  He's terrible."

A few years later I went to a Dark Shadows convention and Louis was there signing autographs.  I asked him to sign an autograph for my sister and he did so.  When I got back to the hotel room I handed my sister the autograph (She was too cool to go to a DS convention so she went shopping with my mom in Times Square) and she laughed her ass off.  I believe she still has the autograph to this day.

I miss watching old episodes of DS, I wish SyFy would show them again.

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I really only knew Louis Edmonds from All My Children as Langley Wallingford/Lenny Vlasic! Never knew he was on Dark Shadows. Cool! My late grandmother loved this show, though, and used to talk to me about it.

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I've been watching the episodes in order as they aired 50 years ago (i.e. I watched the August 18, 1967 episode on Friday). A couple of thoughts
 

  • At this point in the storyline, Julia is really unlikeable. Whether she's hypnotizing Maggie to forget about the kidnapping, manipulating Vicky to stay away from Barnabas or lying to Dr. Woodard. Julia is just unbearable. (That's no reflection on Grayson Hall, who is doing an admirable job portraying her. I do cringe, though, every time she starts smoking a cigarette.)
  • I find I'm missing the "My name is Victoria Winters" part of the intro once it's gone. I always loved how the opening narration was from Vicky's perspective.
  • Speaking of Vicky, it's amazing just how many episodes Alexandra Moltke actually appeared in. Moltke was only 20 in 1967 and she must have had exceptional stamina to put up with her workload.
  • I never love the transition to color when it comes. If any show should be filmed in B&W, it's Dark Shadows!

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I just finished (I assume) the Reverend Trask portion of the 1968 episodes and have to give kudos to the actor and his eyeliner.  Very good, sorry to see him go and be stuck with the yelling defense attorney.

Edited by funkopop

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Watching the episodes from this week in 1967 (in which Barnabas is attempting to gaslight David) makes me question whether a network would ever approve a story like this today. It's easy to forget just how despicable Barnabas really was in the pre-1795 period until you see him manipulating events to make it look like David is disturbed and needs to be sent away.

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On 10/4/2017 at 4:16 PM, Jan Spears said:

Watching the episodes from this week in 1967 (in which Barnabas is attempting to gaslight David) makes me question whether a network would ever approve a story like this today. It's easy to forget just how despicable Barnabas really was in the pre-1795 period until you see him manipulating events to make it look like David is disturbed and needs to be sent away.

I never got past early Barnabas, and I honestly didn't feel like the writers did a good job of making me, if that was the intention. He was forever gaslighting, engaging in violence and coercion against women, and even outright setting women up for rape and beating. The only difference was he no longer was doing it to rich people named Collins. 

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50 years ago this week, the show was about ten episodes out from the first great time travel storyline (to 1795.) The show was firing on all cylinders at this point: Barnabas was obsessed with having Vicky as his bride, Julia was hypnotizing Vicky to recoil from Barnabas (because Julia was jealous of Barnabas' interest in Vicky), and Carolyn was completely under Barnabas' power and was working mightily against Julia. Nancy Barrett, in particular, was outstanding at this point. Carolyn was always written with an underlying streak of cruelty but, at this juncture, what had been an undercurrent had become a major current.

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I finished my chronological tour through the 1967 episodes with the November 17th, 1967 episode (#365). This is the episode in which Vicky was hurled back in time to 1795.

I've picked up with the November 17th, 1969 episode (#886), which was first episode in the Leviathans storyline. I've never seen this storyline before and it's often cited as one of the least favorite storylines of most viewers. But so far, through five episodes, I'm loving it. I like how the focus is on Julia: aware that something is definitely wrong with Barnabas after his return from the past, helping Chris Jennings with his werewolf curse and trying to find the portrait of Quentin (and, by extension, Quentin himself) from 1897. And, to me, the Leviathans are great fun with their altar in the woods surrounding Collinwood, the box with the Naga sign on it, etc.

One thing I've noticed with these later episodes is that the show was really using color to great effect by this point. I've always hated the initial change from B&W to color in 1967 but, by 1970, the show had taken on a lurid, Expressionistic look that really suits the material.

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To me, when Vicki leaves the show... the show loses an element of normalcy that it never gets back.  Julia/Barnabas were good, just like Angelique... but Vicki was the ingenue center of the show that future attempts to fulfill didn't quite work (Maggie, Roxanne, and Daphne).

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On ‎12‎/‎27‎/‎2017 at 0:40 PM, peacheslatour said:

I don't know if you guys know about this site but I am addicted to it: darkshadowseveryday.com. BTW Jan Spears, the blogger agrees with everything you posted.

I'll have to check it out. Thanks for the head's up!

I'm now 30+ episodes into the Leviathans story and, I have to say, there's been no let up at all. What I would say by way of recommendation is that, if you go into it viewing the entire storyline as a showcase for Grayson Hall as Julia, Nancy Barrett as Carolyn and even Joan Bennett as (a possessed) Liz, you'll enjoy yourself tremendously. That being said, if you go into it expecting to see Barnabas in tortured but heroic mode, you'll be disappointed. (Jonathan Frid actually gave a great performance as a brainwashed and evil Barnabas and it's evident from the episodes that Frid himself relished the change of pace for his character.)

There are numerous twists and turns in the storyline all of which seem to revolve around Julia: being at odds with Barnabas about how to help Chris Jennings and definitely aware that something is wrong with Barnabas, trying to resolve the mystery of "Grant Douglas" (a.k.a. Quentin) so that she can help Chris, and figuring how out the succession of creepy kids (who are VERY creepy) at the antiques shop and Paul Stoddard's seemingly delusional behavior fit together. Grayson Hall was definitely earning her pay checks during these episodes as she, along with Nancy Barrett, we're really carrying the show.

To build on something I wrote earlier in this thread, not only did the show's creative staff  figure out to use color creatively by 1970 but they also figured out how to create 'dark shadows' in color by 1970. Episode 915 (the "Emergency Leviathans Episode," which explained again for viewers why Barnabas was behaving the way he was) has some of the best use of shadows since the B&W glory days in 1967.

The only thing I'm finding difficult about these episodes is watching Don Briscoe as Chris Jennings and knowing that, in about four months time from this point in the show's history, he would start to experience the health issues that would force him to leave the show. He's so handsome and full of life in these episodes. It's difficult knowing he would spend the remainder of his life ruled by a terrible health problem.

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At long last, I think I have found an active Dark Shadows message board! 

I started watching Dark Shadows a few months ago on my dad's recommendation, and I am absolutely hooked. I get through ten episodes a day if at all possible. I'm currently at the beginning of the 1840 storyline, and so far it's interesting but I'll reserve judgment until I see more. 

I have to agree with you, Jan Spears, I really liked the Leviathan storyline as well. It was definitely different, but it kept me guessing. I loved Jeb as a character, how he started out as arrogant, impulsive, and malicious but softened when he developed genuine feelings for Carolyn. Ultimately he gave up power for love and humanity, which I found to be quite beautiful. My heart broke for Carolyn after she lost him.

I'm also with you on Don Briscoe. Watching his last episodes was incredibly painful.  

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I've seen a few episodes of DS before the arrival of Barnabas, and I've read up on the overall storyline. Honestly, it doesn't interest me. From what little I've seen, it has a good look to it--a creepy, mysterious atmosphere--but as for the content, I couldn't care less. I guess it's because the very first episode I watched was the one that introduced Barnabas and I pretty quickly became invested in him. When I eventually tried to go back and start from the beginning, I kept getting bored. I may watch them some day just to say I have, but I'm in no hurry. One thing is for sure, though: I'm going to have to pretend that David's mom and Jamison's mom are two different Lauras who both happen to be phoenixes, even though I know that's not the case. Either that or I'm going to have to pretend that David is Burke's son instead of Roger's. The gene pool gets too muddied for me otherwise, haha.     

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On ‎1‎/‎16‎/‎2018 at 0:06 AM, TheLovelyAnomaly said:

I've seen a few episodes of DS before the arrival of Barnabas, and I've read up on the overall storyline. Honestly, it doesn't interest me. From what little I've seen, it has a good look to it--a creepy, mysterious atmosphere--but as for the content, I couldn't care less. I guess it's because the very first episode I watched was the one that introduced Barnabas and I pretty quickly became invested in him.

The pre-Barnabas era can be slow going but it does have certain things to recommend it. First, the show is entirely in B&W during this period and this really adds to the creepy feeling a show titled Dark Shadows should have. I've always thought that the show lost something (at least initially) when it switched from B&W to color. Another advantage to the pre-Barnabas period and the first few months after Jonathan Frid joined the cast is that Collinsport felt like more of a real place than it did later on. Vicky's interactions with the Collinsport characters (Burke, Maggie, Joe and Sam) grounded the show in a semi-realism that kept it from drifting into absurdity (as it sometimes did during post-Barnabas storylines.) Finally, some of the characters, particularly Vicky, Carolyn and Maggie, were much better written earlier than they were later. Over time, the younger female leads became blanded out to the point where there were no longer sharp personality differences between them.

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On 8/26/2016 at 8:25 PM, azshadowwalker said:

I felt the same way about Quentin. I think Barnabas bothers me more because the torment he inflicted on others was depicted as heroic. Quentin was softened from his introduction as the manipulative drunk who locked his wife away, but I never felt that they made him the hero of the piece. But he was an evil bastard, too. 

They were both teen heart throbs. If you look back at 16 magazine covers from back in the late sixties the two of them were on every cover. You could even win a date with Barnabas. It has been said that vampire fiction draws on rape fantasy. Even looking at Twilight, the main character is essentially a blank slate that the reader can project her own personality upon. It a'int right but it's there never the less.

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I've finished with the final 12 episodes of Collection 17 and the first 3 discs of Collection 18, which puts me just about at the half way mark of the Leviathans era. Here are my thoughts and grades for the major storylines:

Leviathans/Paul Stoddard's Return/The Antiques Shop

I've been pleasantly surprised to find that, contrary to legend, the Leviathans storyline is actually quite exciting and contains numerous twists and turns. The Leviathans themselves are like a disease that is slowly beginning to infect Collinsport. This was the perfect set-up to showcase Grayson Hall as Dr. Julia Hoffman, who is definitely aware that something strange is happening with Barnabas and at the antiques shop in town but can't quite "diagnose" the problem. This storyline also features a superb performance from Marie Wallace as Megan Todd, who becomes increasingly deranged and sadistic as the storyline progresses. (Wallace specialized in playing these kinds of characters, which included the supernatural Eve in 1968 and the insane Jenny Collins in 1897.) Matching Wallace along the way is child actor Michael Maitland who plays the Leviathan creature during one of its transformations. Maitland is very impressive and, as a child actor, he more than holds his own opposite Grayson Hall and Jonathan Frid.

Grade: A- (Dropped from an A because Dan Curtis & co. lost their nerve a bit regarding Barnabas' motivations. Barnabas starts out being completely under the control of the Leviathans. But then his motivation changes mid-story and he becomes a victim of blackmail by the Leviathans.)

Chris Jennings Werewolf Story

The werewolf story is actually quite compelling, and Don Briscoe and Grayson Hall are good in it. Unfortunately, the storyline is not sustained consistently. It takes center stage at times and then it -- and Don Briscoe -- disappear for long stretches.

Grade: B

Quentin's Return/The Portrait of Quentin/Quentin and Amanda

If there was one dud during this period, this storyline was it. At a certain point (and that point comes quickly), Quentin's amnesia and Julia trying to find the portrait of Quentin from 1897 become repetitive and tiresome. Also, the Quentin and Amanda love story isn't especially compelling and it's conclusion -- Quentin trying to rescue Amanda from the afterlife -- is too far-fetched even for this show. Points, though, for actor Emory Bass as "Mr. Best" (a.k.a. Death) who makes the most of his too brief appearances.

Grade: C+

Edited by Jan Spears

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On 6/28/2016 at 10:13 AM, atomationage said:

James Hall was the original Willie Loomis, and he was very creepy, always bothering Caroline.  Maybe when they switched actors, they switched directions. 

Oh wow! I never knew there was another actor who played Willie before John Karlin! 

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On 6/10/2016 at 2:26 AM, Kim0820 said:

Watching the beginning, I wish they'd followed through somehow on their purpose for starting?  Who sent the money from Bangor and who is Victoria?  Liz said she and Carolyn were about the same age, but was she lying?  Is she Carolyn's older half sister?  Clearly Liz knew who she was and offered her the job.  

Yeah! Victoria looked more like she could be Liz's daughter than Carolyn did ! 

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22 hours ago, Max fan said:

Yeah! Victoria looked more like she could be Liz's daughter than Carolyn did ! 

Carolyn looked more like Roger and Laura's daughter. I guess she nominally looked like Paul's daughter. 

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On 6/5/2016 at 8:21 AM, Kim0820 said:

I was thinking why didn't Angelique just put a spell on Barnabas to make him be in love with her, rather than having to win him over after putting a spell on Josette and Jeremiah to fall for each other.  But I guess that would have ruined the plot as it would have been too easy!

Angelique's deal with the devil specified that she was no to use magic to get a man to fall in love with her.

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On 6/5/2016 at 11:21 AM, Kim0820 said:

I was thinking why didn't Angelique just put a spell on Barnabas to make him be in love with her, rather than having to win him over after putting a spell on Josette and Jeremiah to fall for each other.  But I guess that would have ruined the plot as it would have been too easy!

I think that question was raised at one point during the show, although I can't remember when or by who (it may have been Ben Stokes who brought it up but I'm not sure), and Angelique basically said that she didn't want to do that because then her relationship with Barnabas wouldn't be genuine. She wanted him to come to her of his own free will.

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You know, it's funny, I didn't like Julia Hoffman at first. She gave me that "psychiatrist who's nuttier than her patients" vibe. But then she grew on me, and now she's become one of my favorite characters on the show. I love the complexity and development of her relationship with Barnabas--how it started out as needs-only, with Barnabas only tolerating her so long as she was useful to him, but gradually progressed into a genuine friendship where they see each other as equals and help one another out of mutual caring.  

Edited by TheLovelyAnomaly
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I was aware that a different actor originally played Willie, but I've only ever seen him be portrayed by JK so he's Willie for me. And he does such a good job! Willie is one of those characters who can frustrate the hell out of me one moment and then break my heart the next, and it's always believable. I honestly couldn't imagine anyone bringing him to life with the same level of honesty as JK does.   

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Roger's "incestors" line will forever be my favorite (how Joel Crothers could stay in character through that I'll never know; I'd have died). There was also one in the 1795 storyline where Barnabas is talking with Trask about Vicki's witchcraft trial and says something like, "I'm defending her right to be judged innocent until she's proven... innocent."

It's funny, Etaoin, that you mention the actors swearing to force a re-shoot because David Selby actually let out the word "shit" once and it was kept in. You can check it out here: 

He says it pretty quietly, but if you turn up your volume you can hear it. :)   

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The original Willie played him differently. And it is fun to see him again if I can catch early episodes. JK definitely brought more heart, and fear, to the character.

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On 6/8/2016 at 3:11 AM, azshadowwalker said:

In the Angelique thread, I mentioned that I felt human Barnabas was a creep who used the maid, then tosses her aside for a "proper lady". I know the show eventually wanted me to see Barnabas as a hero, but I just couldn't. He was always about his rich family, and he did horrible things to people whom he considered lesser with the excuse that it was for the benefit of his family.

The storyline that made me hate him the most was the Jekyll and Hyde storyline, when he set Buffy Harrington (?) up to be repeatedly raped and beaten in order to get information. On top of the torture he forced her to endure at the Hyde character's hand, Barnabas himself terrorized her. But she was poor and her name wasn't Collins, so this was okay to him. He was never a hero to me. He was always a rich, spoiled predator.

On your first point, one thing to consider is that Barnabas is a product of his time. It was common for men to behave that way back then, especially if they came from prominent families. Wealthy men could and often did have mistresses and “flings” with maidservants. I don’t agree with it by any means, but that aspect of Barnabas’ character is historically accurate. As is his "my family comes first" attitude. I can't remember exactly what episode it was, but at one point Joshua was asked if Barnabas' onyx ring had ever been duplicated and he responded with, "Our jewelry, like our pride, is without equal." The Collins family threw people under the bus for their own benefit throughout the entire series. Some members were more callous than others, but "me and mine above all" was a pervasive Collins mindset, one which Barnabas was raised with.   

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10 minutes ago, TheLovelyAnomaly said:

On your first point, one thing to consider is that Barnabas is a product of his time. It was common for men to behave that way back then, especially if they came from prominent families. Wealthy men could and often did have mistresses and “flings” with maidservants. I don’t agree with it by any means, but that aspect of Barnabas’ character is historically accurate. As is his "my family comes first" attitude. I can't remember exactly what episode it was, but at one point Joshua was asked if Barnabas' onyx ring had ever been duplicated and he responded with, "Our jewelry, like our pride, is without equal." The Collins family threw people under the bus for their own benefit throughout the entire series. Some members were more callous than others, but "me and mine above all" was a pervasive Collins mindset, one which Barnabas was raised with.   

I don't think much about this has changed.

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18 hours ago, peacheslatour said:

I don't think much about this has changed.

I really don't think it has, either. Certain members are more likeable/understandable than others, but on the whole the entire Collins family--in all generations--is chock full of arrogance, deceit, and betrayal.  

Edited by TheLovelyAnomaly

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3 hours ago, peacheslatour said:

I wasn't referring to the show.

Oh, my bad. I thought you were referring to the bolded text. Apologies! 

No, not really. Infidelity is still pretty prevalent, and it seems to be quite common for wealthy, powerful people. I think it's less acceptable nowadays, though. In the 18th century a man who cheated on his wife was barely considered to have strayed. Today we frown upon it much more. If a sex scandal breaks out, people are far more likely to call out the cheater and lose respect for him/her. There's actually a book (as a side note) called Marriage: A History, written by a historian named Stephanie Coontz, which states that disapproval of infidelity has risen dramatically.

And as for having a "me and mine first" mindset, that definitely still exists, but I think it's also frowned upon much more now. In the 1700's slavery and indentured servitude were both legal and rampant, and the rich and powerful rarely held a humanitarian view toward those less fortunate than them. Generally speaking, we've become more invested in the wellbeing of fellow humans. People still screw others over and get away with it all the time, but there's more active disapproval of it, and a higher likelihood of facing consequences.      

Edited by TheLovelyAnomaly
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17 hours ago, peacheslatour said:

True that.

I remember watching after school and thinking Barnabas was creepy as hell. How did he turn into some kind of a heartthrob?

I think it has to do with the allure of vampires. They've fascinated people for centuries. Dracula wasn't described as attractive in Bram Stoker's book, yet he's often portrayed that way in movies and TV shows (two examples of this are the show Dracula starring Jonathan Rhys Meyers and the movie Dracula Untold starring Luke Evans), and audiences are still captivated by him. Vampires are mysterious, otherwordly, and powerful. That makes them intriguing. 

As for me, I'll admit that I find Jonathan Frid attractive. When I first started to become a fan of the show, I looked up some of his interviews and was taken by how gentle, intelligent, and well-spoken he was.  

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