Tuesday, 18 February 2014

Dark Shadows Episode 34

Hello, you beautiful beautiful Shadow Babies you. So, here's a thing... people seem to be actually reading this blog now, and it's freaking me out. Actual Dark Shadows fans have found it and are commenting on it and it's all very confusing and I don't know if I like it.

Anyway... last time on Dark Shadows Main Squeeze Joe got drunk and gave Lizzie S a big old telling off about ruining Carolines life, and Vicky W met up with Burke in the pub. It was all very exciting, and I'm raring to get stuck into what happens next, so let's dispense with my usual waffle and dive right in.

My name is Victoria Winters. I began my search in Collinwood, there in the great mansion on Widows Hill, surrounded by the ghosts of the past. I had hoped to unlock the secrets of my beginning, but the key has not yet been found and the search goes on, carrying me to a meeting with a man I wasn't sure I could trust.

I wonder who she means
We open on Vicky W and Burke having a nice drink together, and him making slightly oily remarks about how pretty she is. Which she is. She really is. They talk back and forth for a little while, mostly in really tortured metaphors and obscure riddles, because it's been a while since Sam was in an episode and the writer has withdrawal symptoms. Then we jump to the titles, the dirge doth play, dirgefully, and the episode proper is underway.

Of course, as is usually the case with this show, the episode proper is just a continuation of the exact same conversation they were having in the open. Now the metaphors become even more laboured, as Burke attempts to categorise all the female characters by what drink they remind him of, and works his devilish charms on Vicky W by telling her she's either a chocolate malt or champagne. At least, I think he was working his charm; he could have been insulting her for all I can follow this conversation.

After a while he tries to get her to have something to eat, but she insists she just wants to go to his room. She's a saucy minx, is Vicky W. No, hang on; alas for poor Burke of the Chin, she just wants to see the report he commissioned from a private eye about her. Who knew, when she remembered last episode that she'd only come to Collinsport to find out about her past, that it would last longer than 5 minutes? It never has before.

'Yeah, you is deffo champagne, girl. Fo sho!' says Burke, as he eagerly leads her from the bar. He still thinks he's getting some, the poor sad fool.

We aren't gonna see him get shot down though; at least not yet, because it's time to shoot up to Collinwood, to find out just how much of a headache Main Squeeze Joe has, after his big old bender.

Doesn't he look chipper?

It's not much of a scene, to be honest. Joe wakes up, moans a bit while Caroline teases him and then she wanders off to get him some coffee. As she leaves he asks her if he did anything foolish and she tells him that he made an enemy out of her. Which is all well and good, but you wouldn't have thought it from the way she was just acting; all playful and shit. Make up your mind woman! Still, she's adorable, so we forgive her for her confusing acting.

Wait, I guess she was just kidding, because we come back from what I assume was an ad break and they're merrily chatting.

They do look kind of cute together
Well, I say merrily; he's bemoaning his lot and she's commiserating. I hope she doesn't end up throwing him a pity... lifelong commitment and accepting his proposal. It'll only end in tears when he and Vicky W get together.

Yeah! You all thought I'd forgotten that I made that prediction in, like, episode 6 or something, didn't you? Ha, no chance! Mind like a steeltra ins are cool aren't they? Awesome.

What was I saying? Right, so Caroline is commiserating with Joe. Keep Up! Now we're headed off to Chateau Le Chin were Burke is still trying to charm Vicky W and Vicky W is still all...

The report, muthafucka!

In the end he relents and heads off to what I think is his bedroom to get it for her. Unless he's off to slip into something more comfortable. You never know.

Back up at Collinwood, Joe is a bit unsteady on his feet as he has a bit of a wander and looks at some old family portraits. One of whom, Caroline informs him with a cheeky giggle and a flash of her pearly whites, was a terrible alcoholic. It's nice when the youth take an interest in their family history, isn't it?

Conversation moves on to Burke of the Chin; because it's been all of 15 seconds since he was on screen and I don't know about you but that's about my limit for Burkeless Dark Shadows; and Caroline beseeches Joe to apologise for whatever shit he gave Burke last episode. She tries to tell him what a wonderful, nice man Burke is. That goes down well.

It's the same argument they've been having since the pilot to be honest, and there's nothing really new here, except that for some strange reason there's an entire minute of their conversation filmed in a non stop close up.

Close ups agogo
 I honestly thought they must have been trying to hide crewmembers or another cast member wandering around on the set, trying to prep a big shocking reveal or something. Nope. When they stop talking it cuts straight to Burke in his hotel room, without ever pulling out of the close up. It's very odd. I mean, it's nice and all, because we get a nice lingering close up on Carolines face, but still...odd.

So, Burke. In his hotel room. Right. What's afoot? Well, he appears to be ordering food. I guess he finally convinced Vicky W to stick around and have dinner with him; I wonder if he's tied her up?

Nope, she's fine. I guess his charm must have done it. Well done, Burke.

Practising his Napoleon cosplay

She's not overly impressed with what she's reading in the files; it seems there's nothing there that she didn't already know. Burke is being very sympathetic but Vicky smashes him down and accuses him of just prying into her life to find something to use on the Collins family. Now, I'm not saying she's wrong, but the dude just bought her a steak; some manners wouldn't go amiss.

He perseveres though, because he's Burke of the Chin, and if there's one thing Burke of the Chin is good at it's persevering at the same conversation for nine weeks in the face of overwhelming hostility and viewer apathy. Soon he seems to have her convinced that he does actually just want to help her, and has no desire to see her swept up in his feaud with Roger et al.

Do I believe him? Fuck knows, to be honest, but I'll tell you this; if he and Vicky W get into some sort of sexy times clinch I shall be very upset. She and Main Squeeze Joe are destined to be together I tell you. Just as son as he gets over Caroline. So, you know, any year now.

From here we get Vicky W telling him her life story, but we've heard it a hundred times before so we'll not go into it again. One thing that does stand out in the conversation though is Burke warning her that;

There are going some things that are going to be happening up at Collinwood. Unpleasant things. What you've seen is just a ripple; you haven't touched the whirlpool, but it is there.

Basically, he's telling her to get the hell out. And if that wasn't clear enough, she asks him if he's telling her to get out and he says yes. You know, just in case you were thinking that the show had suddenly developed subtlety.

After they gaze at each other with smirky faces for a bit, and I start to get an uneasy feeling, there is a knock at the door. Assuming it's their long delayed steaks finally being delivered Vicky heads into the bathroom to wash her hands and air out her knickers, while Burke answers the door. But TWIST! It isn't the food!

Plot Twist!
That's right folks! In yet another example of the people teleporting 10 miles between scenes that this show loves so much, it's Main Squeeze Joe! Come to repay Burke of the Chin for covering his bar tab last episode. Cos he aint gonna be in no mans debt, yo! Also, they needed an excuse to have him be in the room to see Vicky W emerge from the back, yo! So he can tell Caroline in a jealous rage over her infatuation with Burke, yo!

Ok, so that last one was a guess, but I'd say a pretty safe one. Once Joe has left Vicky wastes no time in putting her coat on and following him out. You know, I don't think she ever intended to eat Bure's steak. Poor Burke of the Chin. :(

And so, as  Burke of the chin mournfully closes the door on his last best hope of getting his leg over tonight, the episode comes to a close. What's happened? Nothing much. What have we learned? Even less. But I suppose we can't expect them to launch into a new epic storyline straight away, following the resolution to the car crash saga; I can give them the benefit of the doubt for a couple of episodes. So long as they keep shooting close ups of Caroline's face, anyway.

1 comment:

  1. First!

    I wonde how that Joe storyline will work out. Will him and Caroline Stoddart marry? Will David be best man? What will Burke do? What about the boat?

    And what drink was Elizabeth again?