Throughout my grade school years, as soon the teacher would dismiss the class I would run home as fast possible. For a kid who wore size “husky,”that was no easy feat. The reason for my haste was “must see TV,” the daily soap opera Dark Shadows (the reason it was only 3x a week for me was Hebrew classes preempted the other two).

Dark Shadows was no normal soap opera, it wasn’t about doctors and nurses. Dark Shadows was about vampires, witches and time travel. It had a Gothic setting (although at the time none of the kids, myself included, knew what that meant.

The man who played vampire Barnabas Collins, classically trained Actor Jonathan Frid “died” last week (so they say).

The vampire played by Jonathan Frid was not the evil “I Vant to Suck Your Blood” type, he was a true tragic figure. He was turned into a vampire by a witch because of his love of another woman.  He wasn’t a monster, he was a troubled soul desperate to be able to love again.  Some people follow their loved ones to the end of time, because of his curse Barnabas followed his beloved Josette’s soul across the centuries.

For those of you who only know Dark Shadows from the 1991 NBC revival Ben Cross was NOT qualified to wear Jonathan Frid’s big black ring or scary walking cane.  And judging by the trailers, Johnny Depp plays Barnabas Collins for laughs (Frid does have a cameo in the comic revival which comes out May 11th)

According to his publicist, Jonathan Frid the real Barnabas Collins left the world of the living appropriately last Friday—the 13th.

I hope they chained his coffin closed…you know…just in case.

May his soul rest in peace.