[syndicated profile] wilderssecurityforum_feed

Posted by Born23

Hi everybody,
I am on windows 7,
I made a virus scan of my network and I got this:

1/ for my computer:
services: 135- RPC
49152 - UNKNOWN
2/ for my box (router):
services: 53- DNS
80- HTTP
443- HTTPS
445- SMB
I have read every where (also on the good website of grc.com) that the 135 port should be closed for security and that DCOM service should be deactivated.What should I do?
What could...

Unwanted services or how to get rid of it...

Debian: stable or testing?

Jun. 25th, 2016 07:52 am
[syndicated profile] wilderssecurityforum_feed

Posted by dogbite

I am thinking about switching from Fedora to Debian on my primary rig.

Should I go for Stable or Testing? Stable is...well...very Stable but also lacks up to date applications. Testing is much more up to date, but is it usable (stable enough) for daily use?

Another question: EasyLife makes Fedora basically complete with codecs and additional stuff, what about Debian? I mean I need a system which can play/rip CD, DVD, etc.

Thank you.

What time to join TSH invite channel?

Jun. 25th, 2016 07:26 am
[syndicated profile] reddittrackers_feed

Posted by /u/cryoskyd

For the last few days I've been sitting in the TSH invite channel waiting for a mod to PM me. Usually by the time I get a response, I've already gone to bed. Anyone know what times the TSH mods are typically on? Or if there's an alternate way to get in?

submitted by /u/cryoskyd
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[syndicated profile] allthingshorror_feed

Posted by /u/AllComicLover

A few of the flicks I've seen released this year that impressed the hell out of me include:


An absolutely magnetic documentary, Tickled isn’t an outright horror film, in the least. In fact, it starts as nothing related to the genre whatsoever, but steadily becomes a darker and darker picture/story. This is the kind of real life horror shit that crawls under my skin.

Chocolate Strawberry Vanilla (didn’t hit US soil until earlier this year, though it was initially released in Australia in 2014)

deeply disturbing flick with one of the 5 or 10 best performances I’ve EVER seen from Glenn Maynard


This one DEFINITELY won’t work for all fans. However, if you’re big on character exploration, tense moments, cramped confines and finales you never in a million years saw coming, you’re probably going to love this.

Funhouse Massacre

An awesome nod to insane B-movies of the 80s, Funhouse Massacre isn’t to be taken too seriously and it has plenty of flaws, but this one is really just about watching with a few beers and feeling like you’ve been transported back in time a few decades.

The Conjuring 2

Far surpassed my expectations, but does what you expect of James Wan. Amazing camera work, a lot of slow build tension, and just as much in your face freak out moments. A surprisingly good sequel.

The Invitation

Oh man, this flick was brilliant. The tension, the paranoia, the wicked, wicked good performance from Logan Marshall-Green. Just a REALLY awesome, well assembled flick.

I know I’m missing a few, so start sharing your remarks. Hopefully I can catch up on a few gems I haven’t seen yet!

submitted by /u/AllComicLover
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Agent Carter fic: Boxing Lessons

Jun. 24th, 2016 11:58 pm
sholio: Jack and Peggy from Agent Carter (Avengers-Jack Peggy)
[personal profile] sholio
Another one from SSR Confidential (#5 of 8).

Title: Boxing Lessons
Fandom: Agent Carter
Word Count: 2600
Pairing: gen (though it could also be seen as flirty, light Jack/Peggy)
Summary: Jack and Peggy each have things to learn from the other, and they're slowly realizing it. Set after the season two finale.
Crossposted: http://archiveofourown.org/works/7118839

Boxing Lessons )
[syndicated profile] nerdist_feed

Posted by Clarke Wolfe

Earlier this week, cult icon Bruce Campbell, best known as Ash in Sam Raimi‘s Evil Dead series, celebrated his 58th birthday. He also released the line-up for the third annual Bruce Campbell’s Horror Film Fest taking place in Chicago, IL. Presented by the Starz series Ash vs. Evil Dead and in conjunction with Wizard World Chicago, the groovy line up is a solid mix of old, new, and more than slightly spooky.

“I’m thrilled to bring our annual horror festival back to the Windy City for the third year,” said Campbell. “There were some wicked cool flicks this year and we went after the cream of the crop. If you love all things horror, check out our lineup!”

Kicking off with Evil Dead (2013) director Fede Alvarez’s much anticipated sophomore feature Don’t Breathe produced by Sam Raimi and Rob Tapert who are expected to make an appearance at the festival. Genre icon Fred Dekker (Monster Squad, The Predator [2017]) will receive the inaugural “Groovy as Hell” award, and comedian Doug Benson will conduct a special “Movie Interruption” of Army of Darkness alongside the Chin himself.

Bruce Campbell’s Horror Film Fest will also see the world premiere of the horror-comedy Found Footage 3D and the genre-bending feature Show Yourself. Elijah Wood‘s SpectreVision will screen The Greasy Strangler, Darren Bousman‘s Abattoir will screen, as will the winner of the midnight audience award at the Los Angeles Film Festival, Beyond The Gates.

Fans can visit www.BCHFF.com for full details and additions to the slate as they happen and dates and times for each screening. For more info on the 2016 Wizard World Comic Con Chicago (August 18-21 at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont), visit the official site. Groovy!

And speaking of horror, Clarke talked to director Eli Roth!

Featured Image Credit: Starz

[syndicated profile] nerdreactor_feed

Posted by John 'Spartan' Nguyen

suicide squad

The new Ghostbusters theme song by Fall Out Boy and Missy Elliott was released this week with negative reactions. Now we have a new song from another summer movie, Suicide Squad, called “Sucker for Pain” by Imagine Dragons, Lil Wayne, and Wiz Khalifa w/ Logic & Ty Dolla $ign featuring X Ambassadors. (That’s a big collaboration.) This one is faring a lot better than the former… plus it’s not trying to remake a classic theme song.

The different artists are seen embracing their inner villainy, and it also shows off some Suicide Squad footage.

Stay tuned for another Suicide Squad song, “Purple Lamborghini” by Skrillex and Rick Ross, which will be out on July 1st. That video will feature Jared Leto suiting up as the Joker again, so it should be interesting to see what they have planned for Clown Prince of Crime.

Here’s the possible track (via YourEDM) below that was recorded at the Atlantic City’s Wav Nightclub with Skrillex performing with lyrics by Rick Ross. It has words like “purple Lamborghini”, “Gotham City”, and “Killer Croc”. Yeah, this must be it.

The film follows a team of villains forced to work for the government, led by Amanda Waller. It stars Will Smith as Deadshot, Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn, Jared Leto as the Joker, Jai Courtney as Boomerang, Cara Delevingne as Enchantress, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje as Killer Croc, and Viola Davis as Amanda Waller.

Suicide Squad hits theaters on August 5, 2016.

[syndicated profile] firefoxreddit_feed

Posted by /u/SasoDuck

So I just installed Kaspersky as the title says and now my Firefox is having a heart attack. It thinks that every website is unsecure and blocks basically the entire internet. I've received error screens like this one on just about every website I try to visit (common stuff like Reddit, Google, YouTube, etc.) and I have no idea what's going on. I've tried looking through both Kaspersky's settings and Firefox's settings and can't really find anything that accurately defines my problem, and /r/Kaspersky is apparently a closed forum, so I wasn't sure where else to turn. Does anyone have any experience with this? I'm posting this from shudder Internet Explorer, which is for whatever reason working just fine.

submitted by /u/SasoDuck
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[syndicated profile] svengoolie_feed

Posted by Svengoolie

It’s the original version of an early horror classic that has had numerous remakes- as a castaway becomes a prisoner in a bizarre island compound featuring monstrous mutations and a maniacal mad man- It’s the 1932 presentation of the H G Wells’ science fiction saga- “Island of Lost Souls”!

Originally a Paramount film that was  part of a major acquisition by Universal as part of a deal to form a package of films to run on TV, this movie starts with a freighter spotting  a shipwreck survivor and taking him on board. The castaway Parker is confused by the load of various animals being transported to one Dr. Moreau’s South Sea island- not to mention some of the odd looking crew members of the vessel. He crosses the captain when  he steps in to protect one of these crewmen that the captain is mistreating- but the Captain gets his revenge by tossing him over the rail onto the boat that has come to get the animals and transport them to Moreau’s island .

Moreau gives Parker a tour of his place- a combination of  a zoo, medical facility, and science lab, surrounded by strange plants and even stranger inhabitants. A less disturbing inhabitant is the sultry young woman named Lota, who seems  shy and of little experience with worldly things- or, even, with other people!

Meanwhile, Parker’s fiancee, Ruth, trying to determine his fate after his ship went down, finally discovers where Parker may be, and recruits a skipper and his ship to go find him!

Back on the island, Parker has become more suspicious of what goes on there- especially after  hearing horrid screams, and learning from Lota that they emanate from the awful “House of Pain”- which Parker gets a quick look at and decides he must escape! However, outside of the compound, in the surrounding jungle,  he stumbles upon a vast mob of animal-like men- who are only deterred from attacking him and Lota by the arrival of Moreau, whom they fear!

Moreau then reveals to Parker what he has been up to- and that these odd beast-men are his creation! He also schemes to keep Parker on the island to help with the “development” of Lota- who is another of his experiments!

The arrival of Ruth and her captain only increases the danger factor for all of them- will Moreau  be able to keep them prisoners, and keep control of his beastly subjects?

This fantastic movie, made before the Motion Picture Code which would have demanded changes in it,  has the amazing performance of Charles Laughton as Moreau, as well as the exotic Kathleen Burke (whose backstory is only semi-exotic) and a close to unrecognizable Bela Lugosi as a hirsute beast-man known as “the Sayer of the Law”. It is also famous for that litany of “what is the Law?”  and the line later adapted into a musical phrase by the New Wave rock group Devo – “Are we not men?”  We’ll have lots to tell you about the cast, the men under the make-up, and more- including a wide variety of Sven balderdash based on beasts, including some vintage bits!

“Island of Lost Souls” will be on MeTV tonight at 10 pm eastern/pacific, 9 central, or check your local listings (and/or at www.metv.com ) for channel and time in your area. Chicago viewers will get a second date with the “Leech Woman” at 11 am on our sister station, the U, WCIU!

Come island-hopping with us tonight- just don’t get too chummy with the locals unless you’re bringing with a flea collar!



laughing_tree: (Seaworth)
[personal profile] laughing_tree posting in [community profile] scans_daily

"They’re kinda right in my sweet spot. Two guys (best friends) in their late teens with a lot of power and almost zero life experience, trying to find their place in a very real world (in this case college) while simultaneously battling large scale menace. It’s the same kind of themes that interested me in The Spectacular Spider-Man and Young Justice." -- Greg Weisman

Read more... )
[syndicated profile] jobloemporium_feed
Some cliche somewhere said that 'a picture is worth a thousand words.' This has proven to be the case for me and especially when it comes to fan art. I have always sought out great fan art and have wanted to share it with as many people as possible. "Awesome Artwork We've Found Around The Net" is the outlet for that passion. In this column I will showcase the...
[syndicated profile] redditkatorrents_feed

Posted by /u/vanduzled

Like movie thumbnails and never repeating movie titles. Basically, just like how yiffy did it in the old days. Kat.cr is my go to movie torrenting site but I always find it hard to browse or navigate or search for new movies.

submitted by /u/vanduzled
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[syndicated profile] ghacks_feed

Posted by Martin Brinkmann

Both Internet Explorer and Microsoft Edge are configured to download files to the user's download folder by default.

The location does not change across devices, so that Windows users know where to look when it comes to locating downloaded files on Windows machines.

While convenient, the downloads folder may not always be the best location for downloads. This can be the case if the main partition of the computer is rather small size-wise. If you ever tried to download a Windows ISO image or another file that is at least several Gigabytes in size, you know that space can be an issue in these cases.

You may change the save location for downloads both in Internet Explorer and Microsoft Edge. The options to do so are somewhat hidden though, hence this guide.

The default download location

defaullt downloads folder windows

The default download location that Internet Explorer and Microsoft Edge use to save files downloaded from the Internet to the local system is %USERPROFILE%\Downloads.

USERPROFILE is a variable that refers to the logged in user's profile directory on the Windows machine, e.g. c:\users\Martin\.

Changing the location of Internet Explorer's Download folder

The method applies to all versions of Internet Explorer that are maintained by Microsoft. Internet Explorer is the default system browser on all supported versions of Windows with the exception of Windows 10 where it has been replaced by Microsoft Edge.

The browser is however available on Windows 10 as well.

To change the file save location of Microsoft Internet Explorer, do the following.

Step 1: Open Internet Explorer, click on the menu icon, and select View Downloads from the context menu that opens. Alternatively, use the shortcut Ctrl-J to open Downloads directly.

internet explorer view downloads

Step 2: When the download window opens, select the options link at the bottom left of the screen.

internet explorer downloads

Step 3: This opens the download options screen which allows you to set a new default download location and configure download notifications.

Simply click on browse on the screen, use the folder browser to select a new location on the computer that you want Internet Explorer to use as the new downloads folder, and click on okay in the end to complete the change.

internet explorer change downloads

The download options window should display the new folder name when you make the change. Please note that it will only list the folder name and not the full path.

Changing the location of Microsoft Edge's Download folder

Microsoft Edge is a completely redesigned browser which shares little in terms of interface with Internet Explorer.

You open the list of downloads with a click on the Hub icon (the three horizontal lines) in the browser's interface, and selecting downloads from the menu if not selected automatically.

Note: Changing the downloads directory in Microsoft Edge is only available when the Anniversary Update is installed on the system. Edge did not list options to change downloads in previous versions.

To change the default download directory of Microsoft Edge, do the following:

Step 1: Click on the main menu icon (three dots) in Microsoft Edge's interface, and select the settings option from the context menu that opens.

microsoft edge settings

Step 2: Scroll down until you find the advanced settings section. Click on the view advanced settings button.

Tip: A click on the pin icon pins the settings sidebar so that it won't just close without your doing.

edge advance dsettings

Step 3: Locate downloads on the next page. Microsoft Edge lists the current location that downloaded files are saved in (the full path). Click on change, and select a new folder on the local computer to change the location.

microsoft edge downloads location

Closing Words

Internet Explorer and Microsoft Edge will use the new folder for all file downloads from the moment you make the change.

Previous downloads remain in the old folder though, and if space is scarce, you may want to consider moving the files from the old to the new location.


Ghacks needs you. You can find out how to support us here or support the site directly by becoming a Patreon. Thank you for being a Ghacks reader.

The post How to change the IE and Edge download folder appeared first on gHacks Technology News.

[syndicated profile] gbfansnews_feed

Posted by The Gateway Online

The Gateway Online

The Watch-men Ep 36: Ghostbusters (1984)
The Gateway Online
When Sam's out of town and you need to do a review of the 1984 Ghostbusters, who you gonna call? Amie and Mifi join Matt to discuss the original (or was it?!) Ghostbusters. They discuss the film's presence in the 80s, what made it such a memorable ...

[syndicated profile] nerdreactor_feed

Posted by Mark Pacis


Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan is highly regarded as one of the best Star Trek films ever made. Admittedly, I never was big on Star Trek but Wrath of Khan is still remains as my favorite classic Trek film. It’s all due to the direction of Nicholas Meyer, who changed Star Trek from a franchise about space exploration to a franchise about military men. This is where, in my opinion, the franchise was at its best. Meyer was able to bring drama, fun, and entertainment to a franchise that sorely lacked it. However, he also doesn’t lose sight on what made Trek such a popular television series. He never lets the explosives overwhelm the very tender moments of the script, but also not losing sight of the need to make his movie exciting and tense.

What also makes Khan one of the best Star Trek films, is that it’s able to combine two distinct thematic elements and seamlessly combine them. First and foremost, Khan is a spaceship-bound thriller that’s highly inspired by the great submarine thrillers of the past. This is where the tenser moments can be found. The other element is the film’s openness about age and dying. Those familiar with the film might know exactly to what I’m alluding to as the film blatantly calls attention to this metaphor. However, Wrath of Khan isn’t a perfect film. There are still dull moments to be found in the film as well as certain scenes dragging on longer than it probably should.

But with the entire Trek cast playing their respective characters for so many years, everyone seems to be in peak form here. Especially the typically hammy William Shatner, whose performance is far removed from his television performances. The late, great Leonard Nimoy proficiently plays Spock and has never been so moving. Even Ricardo Montalban is able to become a menacing villain while still becoming his usual charming self. After all, the film is only just as good as its villain.

Overall, Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan is a fantastic sci-fi adventure film that compellingly and vibrantly weaves the thematic motifs of life, loss, and space adventure seamlessly together. Even after all those years, he cast have never been better. Time to boldly go back to watching this film again.

Movie Rating: 4.5/5 atoms
NR 4_5 Atoms - A-


Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan Director’s Cut is presented in a 1080P MPEG-4 AVC encoded video with a 2.39:1 aspect ratio. The contrast of the film is a little flat with the film looking much dimmer. The black levels in this dimmer film are excellent without any loss of shadow detail. The film’s colors are inconsistent at times. At some points, the colors are drab and desaturated while some scenes are richly saturated. The details are consistently sharp throughout, but the film is distractingly grainier when compared to other classic Blu-ray re-releases. Despite the imperfect color grading and noticeable grain, the video does hold up quite nicely.

Video Rating: 4/5 atoms
NR 4 Atoms - B(1)


Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan Director’s Cut is presented in a Dolby TrueHD 7.1 surround audio track. Although the original soundtrack comes from a Dolby Stereo source, the audio transfer did a valiant job remixing the original soundtrack to a 7.1 soundscape. However, there is still a bit of problem to be had from this remix. The dialogue is crisp and clear coming from the center channel. Unfortunately, the rear channels and subwoofer aren’t as aggressively utilized as the other classic Star Trek releases. Its usage is limited even during the action scenes. There are certain effects which do effectively fill up the room, but they are few and far between. Despite the source limitations, the audio sounds great in Dolby TrueHD.

Audio Rating: 3.5/5 atoms
NR 3_5 Atoms - B-

Special Features

The Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan Director’s Cut Blu-ray contains the following special features:

  • Commentary by director Nicholas Meyer (Director’s Edition & Theatrical Version)
  • Commentary by director Nicholas Meyer and Manny Coto (Theatrical Version)
  • Text Commentary by Michael and Denise Okuda (Director’s Edition)
  • Library Computer (Theatrical Version)
  • The Genesis Effect: Engineering The Wrath of Khan
  • Production
    • Captain’s Log
    • Designing Khan
    • Original interviews with DeForest Kelley, William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy and Ricardo Montalban
    • Where No Man Has Gone Before: The Visual Effects of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan
    • James Horner: Composing Genesis
  • The Star Trek Universe
    • Collecting Star Trek’s Movie Relics
    • A Novel Approach
    • Starfleet Academy: The Mystery Behind Ceti Alpha VI
  • Farewell
    • A Tribute to Ricardo Montalban
  • Storyboards
  • Theatrical Trailer

Even though there are a lot of special features listed for this release, much of the featurettes were ported from the previous home video releases. However, the brand new 30-minute documentary, “The Genesis Effect,” goes fairly in depth and features fascinating stories about Khan‘s production from the creative team and the various contributors to the film. It’s definitely an insightful documentary for Trek and non-Trek fans alike. Even if there aren’t a lot of brand new content in this release, “The Genesis Effect” is worth it.

Special Features Rating: 3.5/5 atoms
NR 3_5 Atoms - B-

Overall, the Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan Director’s Cut still shows why it’s heralded as the best Star Trek film. It’s emotional and entertaining, something that’s been lacking in the William Shatner/Leonard Nimoy era. Unfortunately, this Blu-ray release has such a decent video and audio presentation that’s unworthy of the series’ 50th anniversary year. On the bright side, this release comes with a brand new insightful documentary that any cinephile will enjoy.

Overall rating: 4/5
NR 4 Atoms - B(1)

Game Of Early

Jun. 25th, 2016 05:20 am
[syndicated profile] backtalkkinja_feed

Posted by Ginger Yawn

Sunday is the sixth season finale of Game of Thrones, The Winds of Winter. I’ve scheduled reactions when the episode ends, and will bump again Monday morning.


[syndicated profile] avclubdaily_feed

In HateSong, we ask our favorite musicians, writers, comedians, actors, and so forth to expound on the one song they hate most in the world.

The hater: These days, Jensen Karp is best known as a podcaster and the co-owner and operator of Gallery 1988, a pop-art focused gallery in Los Angeles that’s hosted art shows centered around everything from comedic heroes to Breaking Bad to cult movies. In the mid-’00s, though, Karp was best known as Hot Karl, an indie rapper who won freestyle competitions on L.A. radio stations and eventually signed with Interscope Records for Your Housekeeper Hates You, a never-released record that featured appearances from Redman, Will.i.am, Mya, Sugar Ray, MC Serch, and Kanye West. The latter is now one of the subjects of Karp’s latest book, Kanye West Owes Me $300: And Other True Stories From A White Rapper Who ...

[syndicated profile] avclubdaily_feed

For those who know Dr. Strangelove well, here’s a fun experiment: Watch it with the sound off, imagining that you’ve never seen it before, and try to determine at which point you’d realize that you’re supposed to be laughing. Stanley Kubrick, collaborating on the script with Terry Southern and Peter George, deliberately warped George’s novel Red Alert (originally titled Two Hours To Doom), turning what had been a deadly serious thriller into a black comedy. Equally inspired was Kubrick’s decision to fashion the movie’s visual scheme as if nothing had been changed at all. Apart from some mugging by George C. Scott (who was famously tricked into giving a much broader performance than he wanted to) and a few especially goofy moments in the last few minutes, Dr. Strangelove looks for all the world as if it’s telling the same sober cautionary ...

[syndicated profile] avclubdaily_feed


The Hitman games are cruel black comedies of Rube Goldberg carnage, like playable Final Destination movies starring a bald dude with a barcode on his head as the angel of death. Since the 2000 original, this series has put gamers in the black suit and tie of a skilled assassin and unleashed them in mundane, ingeniously mapped environments, where targets can be dispatched through a seemingly endless variety of methods. The latest installment, called simply Hitman, is the most sophisticated yet, populating each level with countless chatty, oblivious characters and creating a real-time schedule of events (the where and when of a target’s movements) that can be studied and exploited. But the appeal remains largely unchanged: Instead of giving players’ hand-eye reflexes a workout, Hitman privileges careful planning and observation, rewarding problem-solving abilities with morbid punch lines. It’s hours of wicked fun for those who always wished ...

[syndicated profile] firefoxreddit_feed

Posted by /u/Darth_Nootnoot

  • BetterPrivacy
  • Cookie Monster
  • Canvas Defender
  • Decentraleyes
  • Google Redirects Fixer
  • HTTPS Everywhere
  • NoScript
  • Privacy Badger
  • Random Agent Spoofer
  • Self Destructing Cookies
  • Ublock Origin

I have way too many add-ons i know. I'm fairly certain some of their functionalities cross over or can be achieved with native settings/features. Help me cut some of the fat from my browser!

Thanks in advance!

submitted by /u/Darth_Nootnoot
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Episode 887: Whatever Comes Next

Jun. 25th, 2016 04:48 am
[syndicated profile] darkshadowseveryday_feed

Posted by Danny Horn

“I can’t understand why I have the feeling that something frightening is going to happen.”

It always starts with a box.

You’ve finally figured out what you’re going to do with your life. You’ve got an unstable girlfriend hidden in your house, who’s provisionally agreed not to massacre herself until you get back. You’ve arranged with a friend to destroy the coffins that he was saving up for you. And now you’re going back home, so that you and your girlfriend can use a magical oil painting to travel one hundred years into the future, turn into different people, and live happily ever after. Everything is going according to plan.

And then somebody hands you a mystery box, and the world slips sideways.

887 dark shadows oberon barnabas altar

Barnabas Collins has fallen in with a pair of eccentric drama students, who have given him a special drink that I suppose makes him more amenable to weird grad student death pranks.

The tall guy is leading some kind of seminar. “The past is but the beginning of the beginning,” he says, “and all that is and has been is but the twilight of the dawn.” His scene partner looks at him attentively, eyebrows fully arched.

“And beings which are now latent in our thoughts,” he says, “and hidden in our loins,” — whoa, that got weird in a hurry — “shall stand upon this earth, as one stands upon a footstool, and shall laugh, and shall reach out their hands amid the stars.”

And then he does some hand gestures. We might need to workshop this a little more.

887 dark shadows oberon barnabas gestures

Barnabas opens his eyes, and hoists himself off the platform. Now, you might imagine, sanity will reassert itself.

But, no. This is eccentric millionaire Barnabas Collins, who never leaves a bad idea alone. He invents his own hand gesture, which thrills the drama nerds, and then he recites a poem. You’re going to want to pay attention to this poem. It doesn’t mean anything, and it’s not going to help, but they’re going to say it a bunch of times, so you might as well get used to it.

“The water shall nourish each grain of sand
Wedged between ancient sacred stones
And guide us to the threshold of a time to be
And restore our flesh and bones.”

He carries it off. Jonathan Frid has certain core skills, and one of them is the ability to deliver verse with gravitas — and the less meaningful the text is, the more gravitas he provides. This particular chunk of gravitas is so dense that you’d need a wheelbarrow to carry it away.

887 dark shadows haza oberon barnabas happy

He turns, and gives the grad students a significant look. They stare back at him, not entirely sure what to do.

The guy says, “My name is Oberon,” which is unlikely. Barnabas just stands there and looks at them. After a moment, the girl volunteers, “And I am Haza.” Nobody asked.

Oberon is super pumped about how this is going so far. He shouts, “We bid you welcome, master!” Barnabas sneers, “You have performed your tasks well.” He doesn’t seem overjoyed about it. “Thank you, master,” says Haza. Apparently, Barnabas is their master.

887 dark shadows oberon glitter

“There is one thing that must be done before I leave,” Barnabas intones, sepulchrally. “Do you have the ancient book.”

“Yes. We have it,” Oberon says. He does not produce the book.

We get a nice close-up on Oberon, and he’s got glitter on his face. They both do, Oberon and the other one. This new storyline is tilting in a worryingly Twilight-y direction.

“Then I shall do what must be done,” says Barnabas. “Have you made the necessary preparations.” Barnabas keeps asking questions in a way that doesn’t sound like it’s a question.

“Everything is ready for you, master.” Oberon is super into this master idea.

887 dark shadows here is the leviathan box

Haza goes and picks up an intricately carved wooden box. “Here is the Leviathan box,” she says, as she passes the box to Oberon, and then Oberon passes the box to Barnabas. This, we are meant to understand, is the Leviathan box. You can tell because it’s the one that has Leviathans in it.

Barnabas gloms onto the merchandise, and says, “It is written that only this box shall accompany me.” I guess the ancient book needs to make its own travel plans.

“But you, Haza, and you, Oberon, shall be with me — in spirit. Do you understand?” They indicate that they understand. I think we all understand why you wouldn’t want to bring Oberon and Haza along. I wouldn’t even want to split an UberPool with them.

“When the time has come,” Barnabas says, “how shall I know the chosen ones.” It’s actually not clear whether Barnabas is telling Oberon and Haza what’s going to happen, or the other way around. They each seem to have half a set of instructions.

Haza pipes up. “It has been written in the ancient book, that when you seek guidance, you will find it in your dreams.”

“It is for that reason,” Oberon concurs, “that we must go on, in spirit.”

You see what I mean about the instructions? First, Barnabas is telling the grad students what’s written in the ancient book, and then they’re telling him about it. No wonder this seminar is so lame; nobody’s actually done the reading.

887 dark shadows barnabas altar box

They start wrapping things up. “Soon,” Oberon says, “we shall herald the arrival of a new and all-powerful leader!” Barnabas shoots him a look that’s like, yeah, I know, obviously I know that, that’s the whole thing that we’re doing right now.

Barnabas asks, “This box must not be opened until that time?” and Oberon says “Yes!” which is not an easy piece of syntax to get your head around.

887 dark shadows barnabas wtf

Finally, Barnabas grimaces directly into the camera for the closing statement.

“I shall not fail. The power and the wisdom of two thousand years shall protect me and guide me, and that which has been prophesied — shall one day become reality.”

And then there’s a peal of thunder, with nature once again responding right on cue.

So, I have to ask at this point: What in the sam scratch is going on? Two minutes ago, Barnabas was super concerned about Josette, and now he’s suddenly in charge of this drama school death cult.

There appear to be three possible interpretations of what we’re looking at.

Number one: Barnabas is being possessed by some powerful force to which we have not yet been introduced.

Number two: Barnabas has been a sleeper agent for the Leviathan box this whole time, just waiting for his activation signal.

The third possibility is that this isn’t the show at all; it’s actually the commercial break. In a minute, Barnabas is going to intone, “How shall I keep these ancient cloaks as fresh and clean as sunshine,” and the kids will tell him about the brighteners and water softeners in All-Temperature Cheer.

887 dark shadows julia notebook

And then, just when all seems lost: Julia!

Which is thrilling. We’re back! It’s 1969 again, and Julia is back on the show!

Now, I don’t know when you picked up reading this blog — I don’t keep track of these things — so you may not be aware of our very strict policy regarding Dr. Julia Hoffman, namely: she is one of the all-time great characters in fiction. Julia is always interesting, in every scene; she has no choice in the matter. Grayson Hall imbues every line with at least three separate and contrasting facial expressions, and everything that she says is a lie. I have missed Julia very, very much during the extended 1897 time trip, and I never want her to leave again.

Here, I’ll show you. We find her in the Old House, reading her own journal, and reacting to it as if the text that she has just written is coming as a complete and utter surprise.

887 dark shadows julia expression

“Tuesday, November 18th, 1969,” she says, in thinks. “It’s now been over a month since I returned from my strange and terrifying journey to another time. I’ve waited here every night at the Old House, hoping that Barnabas would somehow give me a sign, but there’s been nothing! When I first returned, I frequently heard voices from the past — faint voices that frightened me, for I didn’t know whether they inhabited the same rooms as I, or merely the dark and tormented corridors of my mind.”

So there you have it. Julia is a woman who actually writes entries in her diary about the dark and tormented corridors of her mind, and when she reads it back, she makes shocked facial expressions. Julia can even surprise herself; she’s that good.

887 dark shadows paul

Closing up shop, she stows the notebook in her handbag, and we learn that a gray-haired stranger wearing a dark hat and black gloves is standing outside the window and watching her, for some mysterious reason. He hangs back until he sees her exit the house, and then he paces slowly after her.

Then there’s a little sequence in the woods where she stops walking because she thinks that she hears somebody following her, and then she keeps going, and it turns out somebody actually is following her. The whole thing takes a little over a minute, with no dialogue or plot elements. No comment on this right now; just parking it here. We’ll come back to this later.

887 dark shadows julia carolyn back

Julia gets back to Collinwood, where she talks to Carolyn, who’s back too, hooray, except she’s in one of those moods that I have no patience for, where nothing is going wrong, but she feels gloomy anyway.

“I can’t understand why I have the feeling that something frightening is going to happen,” she says, which in my opinion is not an acceptable thing for a character in scripted entertainment to suggest. It is the screenwriter’s responsibility to provide the character with something interesting to talk about. Actual human beings can experience mood swings with no obvious source. Fictional characters do not have that luxury. Either introduce a plot element, or cheer up.

887 dark shadows carolyn skirt

She’s also currently engaged in a battle with her casualwear, walking around with a sad expression at the top and a clown explosion in the south-central region. It’s the kind of thing that makes you wonder why we ever left the 19th century — not just the show, but us, and our entire civilization.

The sad thing, actually, is imagining the costume director finding that skirt at Ohrbach’s sometime in mid-July, and thinking, oh, I can’t wait until we get back to 1969. The first chance I get, this is going on Carolyn. This is an outfit that must be televised. 

Then there’s another fifty-second sequence of not very much at all. Carolyn offers to make Julia some tea, and Julia says sure, so Carolyn leaves the room, closing the doors behind her. Then we see Julia kind of silently puttering around the drawing room — touching objects, tapping on the piano, opening the window, closing the window, indicating that opening the window made her cold, walking to the center of the room and staring at her notebook. Just absolutely nothing of consequence. Again: just parking this moment; we’ll come back to it.

887 dark shadows julia voices

Because then something absolutely magical happens. Julia’s pointless reverie is interrupted by voices — faint voices from the past, inhabiting the dark and tormented corridors of each other’s minds. It’s Magda and Pansy Faye, our pals from 1897, performing a little storyline coda.

“I don’t understand this, I ain’t done nothin’ wrong,” Magda growls, and Pansy chirps, “Who said you done something wrong? I told you, Mr. Edward wants to ask you some questions.” They do a little knockabout cross-talk routine, with Pansy explaining that Barnabas and Kitty were seen entering the Old House, and they never came out again. Magda replies that she don’t know nothin’, because Magda is Chico Marx, and there’s simply nothing we can do about it.

While all of this is going on, Julia stands there and emotes frantically, punctuated with little subliminal flashes of Barnabas’ portrait and Josette’s portrait, pulsing through the scene. This is a new visual trick they picked up a few weeks ago, when Kitty was musicboxing and Barnabas was asserting hypnotic control. It’s very televisual and avant-garde. It’s just a great scene overall.

Pansy insists that Barnabas and Kitty have vanished without a trace, and then the voices fade away. Julia makes approximately six dozen elaborate facial expressions in a row, and then bursts into the foyer, to tell Carolyn that Barnabas is dead. She’s over-reacting, really, but what do you expect? This is a person who practically loses consciousness reading her own diary entries.

887 dark shadows feet

And then, coming to you live, directly from the woods somewhere: This guy’s feet.

We break away from Julia’s scene of teatime terror, which was fraught with human interest, to watch the gray-haired stranger as he strolls around in the open air.

We see him walk around a bit, step, step, step, and then the camera slowly pulls across the ground to finally rear back and show us an empty clearing — and then the crazy stone altar appears.

A crash of thunder and lightning, a huge dramatic music cue — you know, bum bum BUMMMMM, one of those — and then we go to commercial.

887 dark shadows paul altar

A couple words from Ban antiperspirant and Di-Gel antacid later, we roll back from a static shot of the altar to show the stranger standing there, looking at it. It just apparated in front of him out of fuck-all nowhere, but he doesn’t seem super concerned about it. He just turns and walks away. The altar tries some more thunder and lightning, but it’s no use. The man is simply not in the market for supernatural Chromakey altars.

Instead, he strolls back to the Old House, and tries the door. Finding it unlocked, he lets himself in, and takes a look around. He slowly walks across the room. He lights a match. He uses the match to light a candle. And then it’s back to Julia and that horrifying skirt.

887 dark shadows julia carolyn skirt

The reason why I keep pointing out these little longeurs is that this is what the entire Leviathan story is like. This episode is an example of the kind of thing we’re going to see for a while — a sporadically phenomenal show, with weird people saying mysterious things, big emotions, funny surprises, avant-garde directing tricks, and utterly outrageous fashion choices — intercut with irritating stretches of nothing at all.

That last pause with no dialogue or plot points was a full two minutes of screen time, not counting the commercial break. Man walks through woods. Altar appears. Man opens Old House door. Man lights candle. And it’s not even setting anything up — I know who the strange intruder is, because I’m a time traveler and I’ve seen this before, and what he’s doing makes absolutely no sense. Why would [REDACTED] be so blase about enormous lawn ornaments appearing within his line of sight? Why is he randomly breaking into the Old House? And so on. It doesn’t actually mean anything, and it’s getting in the way of my sarcastic appreciation of that skirt.

And after this Julia/Carolyn scene, there’s another eighty seconds of silence — just [REDACTED] and his candle, staring at the portrait of Barnabas for no reason at all, as Julia watches him through the window and clutches her coat collar.

Yesterday, I quoted this bit from The Dark Shadows Companion:

This unsympathetic portrayal was coupled with a storyline that, compared to the high-gear 1897 saga, quite simply dragged. An irate viewer, writing to one of the daytime soap magazines, complained that the actors seemed to have only half a script and then improvised for the rest of the episode about “how weird the people are down at the antique shop.”

And this is what the irate viewer is talking about. I share the irateness. Looking back over the episode, there’s a minute of nothing as Julia leaves the Old House, another minute of nothing while Julia’s in the drawing room, two minutes of nothing after Julia hears voices, and then another minute and a half of nothing to finish the episode. Meanwhile, something unspeakably odd has just happened to Barnabas, and we don’t even get to see him again.

That’s six minutes of nothing happens, placed throughout a twenty-two minute episode like little speed bumps. Every time we get some momentum going — like Julia hearing Magda and Pansy, and falling to pieces over it — we get another one of these sudden drops in altitude. It’s not quite half a script, but it’s two-thirds at best.

So this is the weird downshift that the audience experiences, rolling out of 1897 and rejoining the present day. There are so many people that we want to see again — how’s David? is Chris okay? where does everybody think Barnabas went? — and they give us gloves and shoes. This is what happens when you try to write a daily television show and a feature film script at the same time. Something has to suffer, and there’s a very good chance that something is us.

Tomorrow: Little Shop.

Dark Shadows bloopers to watch out for:

In the opening shots of the teaser, the camera pans across the Old House drawing room, as Nancy Barrett explains that Josette has killed herself, while Barnabas is held prisoner by two mysterious beings. The implication is that we’re looking at the Old House in 1796, but Julia’s sensible wool coat is hanging by the door.

As Haza hands Oberon the urn, there’s a glimpse of one of the studio lights above.

When the stranger follows Julia through the woods, you can see the edge of the green burlap that stands in for the forest floor.

When Julia talks to Carolyn about the present she’s wrapping, you can see the shadow of the camera moving around in the hall.

Behind the Scenes:

The gray-haired stranger in the shadows is played by Mark Aldre, in his only Dark Shadows appearance. This is his only screen credit, as far as I can figure.

Also, I don’t suppose there’s any way to know, but I wonder if Julia’s diary in this episode is the same red notebook that she hid in the clock in the foyer, all the way back in 1967. Maybe she got it out of Tony Peterson’s safe. If it is, then her handwriting must be incredibly compact, because it looks like she’s still filling out the sixth page.

Tomorrow: Little Shop.

887 dark shadows julia diary

Dark Shadows episode guide

— Danny Horn


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