Jonathan Frid reported dead
Barnabas Collins was terrifying to viewers of the original Dark Shadows series not merely because of what he was, but because of what he did, felt, and thought.
We could be scared just watching him look out of a window.
It wasn’t the rare fangs or the admittedly ludicrous-looking bat that appeared from time to time.
It was the subtlety of classically-trained Jonathan Frid’s performance.
We knew the menace that tight-lipped smile might mean…the hypocrisy in offers to help.
Frid’s career was largely on the stage, outside of more than five hundred Dark Shadows episodes.
For some time, I’ve been going back through the Dark Shadows episodes on Netflix. Putting aside the production values and the obvious speed of making the episodes, I can still feel uneasy with Barnabas’ ruthlessness and calculating nature. There is no security in taking his side…and less in opposing him.
Frid continued to support the fan community, appearing at conventions in the last years of his life. He returned to the part of Barnabas in an audio only performance that included other original DS actors
Jonathan Frid also cameos in the Tim Burton Dark Shadows movie opening in less than a month.
Good-bye, Jonathan Frid…for geeks everywhere, you are truly deathless.
This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the The Measured Circle.