Zombos Says: Very Good
For Dark Shadows fans, HorrorHound issue 34 has two very interesting articles on the original soap opera series and its creator, Dan Curtis. There's also a bland, Extra-depth, interview with director Tim Burton that eschews any meaningful exploration of his motivations or intentions in reimagining the series into a Beetlejuice-styled quirky mix of humorous vampire Gothic. Burton even pretends to not know his movie's being referred to as comedy Gothic, and seems reticent to acknowledge how different his approach is to the original series. Unfortunately, the interviewer lets Burton's answer-pablum remain fluffy, which left me unsatisfied.
Jessica Dwyer's mind-boggling retrospective on Dark Shadows not only covers the many rich--and confusing--storylines the show ran through during its 6 year run, but liberally illustrated throughout her article are the comic book covers, paperback covers, toys, bobble-heads, model kits, and other mechandise the show's popularity produced. She also gives a concise television and movie production history for Dan Curtis in her second article, The Man Who Built Collinwood, which is essential reading for younger fans who may not fully appreciate Curtis's influence on horror television and the vampire romance theme he solidified with Barnabus Collins.
In addition, Christopher Lee (he plays the manager of the Collins fishing fleet in Burton's movie) is highlighted in a movie retrospective compiled by Aaron Christensen, which neatly bookends Nathan Hanneman's Hammer on DVD list. As Christensen's title alludes to, Lee's movie range contains "the good, the bad, and the Ughhhh, Lee." I won't admit its good or bad, but one of my favorites covered is Mario Bava's Hercules in the Haunted World.
All in all, a very good issue to spend a few hours with.
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