I’ve just responded to one of the best letters I’ve received in years. I hope my new friend doesn’t mind if I discuss that here on WP. I was sure she was going to indulge in my own work better by watching the 2012 “Dark Shadows” film to get familiar with those characters. However, the contents of her letter showed that instead she viewed “House of Dark Shadows” from 1970! Oh, dear! It didn’t go down well, for which I am incredibly grateful!
Does this sound confusing to anyone? If so it’s because the strong memories of life in the 20th Century might be gone for you. They are not for us.
My friend loves movies of all sorts, but is also an admitted film-snob in certain regards: fun regards! Regards in which I delight hearing about. This is a world Joel Hodgson of “Mystery Science Theater 3000” found a way to share with many of us who understood, in a story-format that entailed coercion rather than choosing to view B-grade movies. (Mad scientists were making them watch the movies. They were not viewed on The Satellite of Love by choice, so it was less cruel to heckle openly in such a setting.)
With my new friend, her reaction to “House of Dark Shadows” was, well, to endure it. Hee hee hee! I feel blessed to read the words of her gazing into this world that makes more sense to myself as a viewer of the television show “Dark Shadows”. Also it was apologetic as if I prize this movie as one of the finest, which to me it is not. I love it, but I love it for other reasons.
Still, I wanted to express myself as being incredibly happy with this turn of events. Our exchange on this topic is stepping back into a world many of us knew before 2013. Movies exist to entertain us, whether they be our favourites or not. It’s for some of us to share in the delight or the “oh dear” together. They didn’t range into the ghastly realms of hate-speak or sacrilege to enjoy. They were our bonus stories to choose somewhere in our day when we were not working. Leisure in moving pictures and sound. How we took to them depending on who we were, our personalities, not the amount of “likes” we would garner for saying something outlandish or extreme.
I love this world. I grew up in this world in which things could be exciting or pleasurable in fiction. Analyzing the special effects was just a little something we did when the story seemed to go on a long time without dialogue. Sometimes we’d be argued with about our favourites but it didn’t get too heated most of the time. If someone wanted to get long-winded about why they disliked a film and we didn’t care, we’d open a book and wait for them to get it out of their system.
In the 1980’s Frank Oz once admitted, “When I get out of the theater I look around and ask, ‘Ok, what’s for dinner?’ I’m just like anybody else…” and then went on to describe a film he helped to create that really touched him and why. But that it was his experience, really, in the creation, so it would make sense he would want to discuss how important it was to him. He didn’t expect it to be of vital importance to every other last movie goer in the world.
When listeners hear my gratitude to pen friends in my podcasts it is no joke. I truly am grateful. Whatever we’ve paid so much money to become entangled with online is a far cry from what I would choose for myself. I’m happy to be less known, less hated, less put-upon, and spend my time with people of like-mind and interests.
Some new friends in this decade have asked me, “Are you famous?” and I’ve answered, “Maybe a bit…” But to another new friend I made in the last half decade, I expressed, “I might be more infamous…” and she smiled, “I think I like that more.”
As the ghost of Sarah Collins tells Maggie in The Pit of Ultimate Dark Shadows, “Oh, it should turn out all right if you keep your wits about you.”
I feel … as though … said “wits” have been found. ❤
(((knock on wood)))