It's been a traumatic year for Victoria Winters. She started off 1967 having to save young David from burning to death with his Phoenix mother.
She was forced to keep secret Elizabeth's apparent murder of hubby, Paul Stoddard, while putting up with the obnoxious presence of blackmailer Jason McGuire and his lecherous friend, Willie Loomis.
Meanwhile, her best friend at the house, Carolyn, had no support to offer as she was busy hooking up with lovable miscreant, Buzz Hackett, for drinks and laughs to protest her mother's imminent marriage to Jason McGuire.
To make matters worse, her other best friend was kidnapped and she was led to believe that she had died.
It seemed something good had finally happened for her when romance blossomed between her and former bad boy, Burke Devlin, but he suddenly went through a dramatic change, becoming less romantic and appealing, and more overbearing and jealous over her burgeoning interest in the Collins family history that she shared with newly arrived family member, Barnabas Collins.
Nevertheless, they became engaged, and then he died in a plane crash in the Amazon jungle. Before Barnabas had a chance to put the moves on her to remake her into his lost love, Josette, the family held a séance and she got whisked away to 1795. Uptight Abigail Collins suspected her of being a witch, so she called in the menacing Reverend Trask, who manhandled Vicki and tied her to a tree in the forest.
Barnabas helped her escape, but now she has to hide out as Trask continues to pursue her. It's easy to understand why she may have forgotten all about her original quest to determine her parentage at Collinwood. We can only hope that 1968 will bring Vicki some glad tidings, though it doesn't seem like that will happen any time soon.
1967 was the year that Dark Shadows found its true supernatural vibe. From the Phoenix, Laura Collins, to vampire Barnabas and his ghostly sister, Sarah, to the witch, Angelique, summoning the pseudo-zombie ghost of Jeremiah Collins out of the grave in 1795, it was the year that the show began to take off. Barnabas indulged his Josette obsession by kidnapping poor Maggie Evans, while Willie went nuts and fell off the face of the earth. Julia Hoffman helped Barnabas murder her colleague and friend, Dr. Woodard, then caused Barnabas to prematurely age when he demanded that she accelerate her anti-vampire treatments. He restored himself with the curative powers of Carolyn Stoddard's blood, thereby making her his enthusiastic new vampire servant in a really creepy, incestuous way.
Before we could find out how much farther into crazy town the Collins family was going to go, time was frozen in 1967, and we traveled back into the past to discover the events leading up to Barnabas becoming a vampire, as well as learn the true story of Barnabas' relationship with Josette Collins. Thayer David returned to join the merrymaking as Ben Stokes, the cruel Reverend Trask showed up to abuse women, and Angelique stepped in and became boss of the show, with spellcraft that seems to know no bounds. Transforming Joshua Collins into a cat may have been one of her most impressive spells so far. You probably won't find that documented in the Collins family history books!
The 1795 storyline that resulted from Dan Curtis' inability to kill off everyone's favorite vampire, as originally intended, truly made it a successful year on Dark Shadows. Listen to Dan Curtis describe his thoughts on that storyline beginning at 2:05 in the video below:
There's a lot to look forward to in the year ahead on Dark Shadows. We have yet to find out how Barnabas became a vampire, and if we'll learn why Josette took a dive off the cliff at Widows' Hill. How will Vicki find her way back to the present under threat of being accused of witchcraft, and will her actions in the past have consequences in the future? It's an exciting time getting to know the Collins family ancestors and seeing a great cast of actors stretch themselves in new roles. I look forward to meeting new characters in the year ahead and discussing episodes over at Dark Shadows Before I Die. Come join the fun!