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Big Finish are pleased to reveal further details about the next six Dark Shadows audio dramas - all set after the climatic events of Bloodlust. The following news story contains spoilers if you haven't heard the last episode of Bloodlust...
Panic sees Quentin Collins (David Selby) telling his great-great grandson Tom (Michael Shon) about how he came to be married to Doctor Lela Quick. The story is written by novelist Roy Gill.
“I’ve long been fascinated by Dark Shadows. It’s a mixture of gothic horror, mad fantasy and epic storytelling, all of which I love,” says Roy. “Joe liked my work on the The Confessions of Dorian Gray range, and asked me to pitch a story that would explain how and why Quentin Collins got married. It was a challenge I couldn’t pass up!"
Lela is played by Susan Sullivan, currently a regular in the television series Castle. Panic sees her reunited with her Falcon Crest co-star, David Selby.
In The Curse of Shurafa, by Rob Morris, Barnabas Collins (Andrew Collins) tells Harry Cunningham (Scott Haran) about the time he spent in Cairo with Julia Hoffman and Professor Stokes – fighting zombies!
“I adore Dark Shadows,” says Rob, “both the TV series and the audios, so when the chance to pitch came up I jumped at it – not least because it would mean I could write for the dream team: Barnabas, Julia and Stokes. It’s such a privilege to write for such an iconic trio and I genuinely can’t believe my luck.”
In The Twinkling Of An Eye is by Penelope Faith, another writer new to Big Finish. “As I have always been drawn to the supernatural in storytelling I was thrilled at the chance to pitch for Dark Shadows and then beyond thrilled to get the chance to write an episode,” says Penelope. “My story investigates a near-death experience which is no surprise considering my high regard for both A Matter of Life and Death and It’s A Wonderful Life. Prepare to be unsettled.”
Deliver Us From Evil is by Aaron Lamont, writer of popular stories The Haunted Refrain and Beyond The Grave. “This is quite a nice return to Dark Shadows for me, as I’m following on from events set up in the 2013 audios,” says writer Aaron Lamont. “Bloodlust has completely redefined what can be done in the range too, and that’s very exciting. I get to tread on the dark side again – I’m good at that - so I’m hoping we’ve got some big psychological shocks in store for a certain character.”
The following month sees the release of Tainted Love – the story of a twisted love triangle - by Daniel Collard. Daniel previously played Victor Frost in Snowflake and Deputy Eric Hanley in Bloodlust.
“I’d heard about this ‘Dark Shadows thing’ for ages before I finally got involved myself, but once I did I was hooked – my iPod is currently chockablock with the stuff!” says Daniel. “Though primarily an actor, I’ve been dabbling in writing for a quite a while, so I was thrilled when Joe asked me to pitch a story for three brilliant characters.”
And finally, in And Red All Over... Maggie Haskell (Kathryn Leigh Scott) finds herself trapped in a cabin in the mountains with a madman. A madman who looks strangely like her old friend Burke Devlin (Mitchell Ryan). The story is written by Cody Schell who previously wrote the award-nominated The Flip Side.
"The pre-Barnabas era of Dark Shadows is an overlooked gem and Burke Devlin is the main character that everything revolves around,” says Cody. “The Collins Family, Victoria Winters, the Evans clan - everyone is talking about him! 'And Red All Over…' brings this amazing character out of unjust obscurity and casts some light on his mysterious past. It also returns Mitchell Ryan to the role, which puts me over the moon!"
The stories will be released monthly from May through to October. Covers for the first two releases and behind-the-scenes pictures and trailers for Panic, The Curse of Shurafa and And Red All Over... can be found on the relevant story pages.
Dark Shadows (1966 - 1971) was a US TV series which told the story of the cursed Collins family. Set in the town of Collinsport, it featured witches, vampires, werewolves and warlocks plotting and scheming against each other. It was recently remade as a film starring Johnny Depp.