It was 50 years ago that the first gothic soap opera came to be, when the iconic Dark Shadows debuted on ABC on June 27th, 1966. In the network line-up it followed General Hospital and The Nurses.
The series aired from 1966-1971, and Dark Shadows became a phenom with vampire Barnabas Collins, a role made famous by Jonathan Frid, as the show’s most beloved and recognizable character. Dark Shadows took its viewers audiences to the mysterious town of Collinsport, Maine, and all of its characters. Dark Shadows also feautured in its cast: David Selby, Grayson Hall, Kathryn Leigh Scott and so many others over its short, but historic run.
Today, Decades Network will be featuring Dark Shadows episodes, including the debut of vampire Barnabas Collins. Decades remembers the premiere of this cult favorite with the 12 episodes that marked the beginning of the Barnabas storyline, one that propelled the daytime series to new heights. The episodes will be presented in groups of three at 9 a.m. ET, 3 p.m. ET, 9 p.m. ET and 3 a.m. ET.
In addition to the selected Dark Shadows episodes, the Decades original one-hour daily series Through the Decades will present an exclusive interview with Steven August Papa, the proclaimed #1 lifetime fan of Dark Shadows, who shares his childhood love for the show and why he is still hooked many years later. They also speak with Walter Podrazik, Television Curator at the Museum of Broadcast Communications in Chicago, about the show’s place in TV history. The episode will feature interviews with cast members Jonathan Frid (Barnabas Collins), Kathryn Leigh Scott (Maggie Evans) and Lara Parker (Angelique Bouchard Collins).
Decades.com will also present the 1968 Dick Cavett interview with Jonathan Frid. Once thought lost, this rare audio recording is taken from an interview on The Dick Cavett Show not seen on television since it originally aired. The interview covers a variety of topics including the actor’s thoughts on researching and playing the vampire Barnabas Collins, a memorable and chaotic press tour he took for publicity, fan mail influencing the show, and his rapport with actress and co-star Grayson Hall who played Dr. Julia Hoffman.
So, were you a fan of Dark Shadows? Share your thoughts on Decades Network remembering their 50th anniversary in the comment section below!