Every family has a blacksheep in it, a kooky aunt, crazy cousin or slacker brother. The Collins family of Collinsport, Main are no exception. The quintessential dysfunctional family, part of the allure to this Dark Shadows clan, is that fans can relate to the dynamics and undercurrents of their relationships. Consider Elizabeth Collins Stoddard and her daughter Carolyn. Every mother knows that wild teenage years can be tough with hormones raging, and teenagers full of angst will moan about parental constraints and dream of freedom from it. Elizabeth and Carolyn have this very relationship.
Carolyn has a penchant for mischief and causing her mother heartache and Elizabeth can be controlling at times. However, no matter how the tempers may flare between them, viewers are left with no doubt that Carolyn loves her mother and Elizabeth would die for her young. Sibling tension is seen as well in the family.
Roger Collins (Elizabeth’s brother) while born into this well to do family, is the blacksheep, ne’er-do-well brother, and is often seen drinking in the family home. This and his strained relationship with his young son David, is cause for stress between he and his sister Elizabeth. Barnabas Collins is known to have a close bond with his beloved sister, Sarah, and his cousins.
Carolyn’s relationship with her young cousin David isn’t strained nor closely bonded. Carolyn is genuinely disturbed by her cousin’s strange behavior and clues the new governess Victoria in on this. Whether done out of fear or concern we’ll never know, but these two cousins are alike in that both their fathers abandoned them. This is the common ground they share.
As tragedies and illnesses strike at the heart of the Collins family, they seem to ever endure. It is that we can all relate to in our own families. In the recent 2012 Dark Shadows movie, we can see these very interactions during the family meal scenes. Oh to be a fly on the wall at a Collins family gathering. Barnabas quotes an old saying, that blood is thicker than water. It is what defines us, binds us, curses us.
So the next time you are sitting next to cheek pinching granny or weird uncle Harold, remember you are not alone. A Collins family member has also been through it. A family with flaws and inner issues, that for all their supernatural elements, still remain completely natural to us. That is why fans can relate to them and more.
Why not tell us how you relate to the Collins family.