Amidst the drama of the last couple days of extreme political highs and lows in the USA USA USA, I thought we all could use a few minutes of comic relief right about now. My friend Ben had mentioned to me yesterday that he was a big fan of the late-'60s ABC-TV soap opera, "Dark Shadows," and we got to talking about it, which led me to the video I'm posting here. For those of you who might not be aware, "Dark Shadows" was one of the strangest television programs ever, which of course makes it also one of the most awesome. It was like a cross between "Days of Our Lives" and Dracula, done with the cheapest special effects and most over-the-top acting you could imagine. At the time, I didn't see the humor in that because I was just a little kid, although I do remember thinking that the vampire bat effect DID NOT LOOK LIKE A REAL BAT. I was totally hooked into it, and vividly recall scrambling to get off the school bus each afternoon in time to turn on the TV, waiting for the set to warm up (YES, I AM OLD), and being enthralled with the spooky gothic horror weirdness of the whole thing.

"Dark Shadows" was produced on a shoestring budget and was shot "live to tape," which in other words means, "we are shooting this episode only once because we don't have the time, money, or editing equipment to do it again." Flubbed lines? Too bad, they stay in. Big fake gothic door stuck and won't open? Oh, well! Green screen special effect looking really goofy? Hey, no one will notice! Lucky for us, every single episode of "Dark Shadows" was, fairly inexplicably for the times and budget, preserved for posterity so we are now able to revisit all those bloopers and high-camp acting skills once again!

I previewed this compilation clip of some of the best of the worst of "Dark Shadows" to Mr21 today, who was completely unfamiliar with the series beforehand. He laughed his head off. There are so many great things in this I can't even pick a favorite scene. It's just too hard. Anyway, please to enjoy, bats and batties!

"Dark Shadows" Favorite Lines, Flubs, and Moments II