Wednesday, 18 February 2015

Dark Shadows Bloodlust Episode Eleven written by Alan Flanagan, Will Howells & Joe Lidster and directed by Ursula Burton & David Darlington

What's it about: Some describe it as the town at the edge of the world. When Melody and Michael Devereux come to Collinsport on their honeymoon, they don't know the secrets that are hidden behind closed doors. But those secrets will be unearthed when an innocent is viciously murdered. Collinsport will be a town divided. One woman's rise to power will lead to further death and destruction. Families will be ripped apart. Blood will be spilt. And the dark forces that wait in the shadows will wait no more. For in Collinsport, death is never the end...

Maggie Evans: No she knows there is something irregular about her Maggie does the only honourable thing and owns up to it. She cannot protect Collinsport from the monsters and then hide the fact that she might be one of them. If Maggie Evans dies then the hold over Barnabas is broken. She talks about how she should have left town years ago. It strikes me that everybody would be so much happier if they skipped Collinsport but there is something dark at its heart that keeps them trapped like flies in amber.

Great Ideas: The bloodlust is what joins Angelique and Barnabas and so she can feel it when he has fed, taste it, hear the screams. Barnabas seemed to have turned Kate into a vampire on a whim, to please himself. I never for one second considered the fact that he might be under an influence himself. Amy swears bloody vengeance on the Collins family if any of her remaining family are harmed. And she sounds like she really means it too. Now Kate is feeding on blood there is a ready made suspect for the killings that have plagued the town since the first episode but the audience knows that she wasn't responsible in her current form since her transformation has just taken place. Unless this is a double double bluff and Kate was responsible for the murders of Melody and Andrew before she was bitten. Ooh I love a murder mystery! Barnabas has sentenced the town of Collinsport to Hell because of love. It transpires that a great deal of the terrible things that happen in this town happen in the name of love (such as Barnabas' transformation into a vampire, which occurred because he slept with Angelique). Petofi is a powerful warlock, a true monster. Death would never stop a creature like him and if even the smallest part of him survived he would be unstoppable.

Standout Scene: The final scene sees the coming together of two greats from the Dark Shadows universe and before I could enjoy their rivalry the damn title music kicked in. Do I have to go to work today? I haven't been this eager to kick on with the next audio in an age.

Result: It cannot be a co-incidence that the killer of Lucy Beale is being revealed on the same night as the final instalment of Dark Shadows Bloodlust is airing. Two serials with plots that have bee gestating for a time, offering up hints and whispers and red herrings and both are now ready to spill their secrets. If you are a fan of both Eastenders and Dark Shadows it is going to be an incredible night. It's time for all the pay off now and the this episode and the last have been a real rollercoaster of revelations and drama. This is a prime example of the advantages of serial storytelling, it might take you a little while to lure in your audience but once you have their interest you can reward them tenfold for their patience. And they will lap it up. Again I am reminded of the strong female presence in this series; powerfully written scenes that allow Maggie, Angelique, Kate and Amy to shine. In comparison the male parts are almost overshadowed but it is so refreshing to have such to see a series fronted by so many confident female performances I simply don't care. Bloodlust is a series that is ticking every box demographically and in a hugely positive way. You can feel the threads converging in a very exciting way, characters coming together to uncover plots, alibis being established, disclosures being made...the last ten minutes are quite a thrill as more and more information is thrown at you via these characters you have come to know so well. This isn't even the penultimate episode...I bet that is going to be unbearable! Read the reviews, Big Finish. We need a second serial from Dark Shadows: 8/10

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