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Alexandra Moltke
(as Victoria Winters)


Malcolm Marmorstein


John Sedwick


February 21, 1967


February 14, 1967


Complete: Disc 20
Beginning 5: Disc 4

172 Gallery
We have 2 images of Dark Shadows 172

Dr. Guthrie's tape recording of the seance is mysteriously erased.



My name is Victoria Winters. Even the brightness of morning cannot dislodge the phantoms of the night before. They remain to live in the minds of all who were at Collinwood, as the source of a baffling mystery and an undefined terror.

Mrs. Johnson dusts the Cottage noisily; Mrs. Johnson claims the séance and other 'goings-on' have her on edge. Mrs. Johnson agrees that, although it's generally not a good idea to take a Collins away from Collinsport, maybe Laura's taking David would be a good thing for the lad. She also laments Victoria's fate, why is she mixed up in this whole mess? And why did she cry out in sheer terror last night?

Act I

Laura can't give Mrs. Johnson one good reason as to why Victoria was in 'such a state'. Mrs. Johnson tells Laura that Victoria is sensible, not high-strung, but they both concur that everyone at Collinwood's changing. Mrs. Johnson's motto is 'leave well enough alone'. Mrs. Johnson wants to know what Guthrie's doctoring. Mrs. Johnson continues to question the motives and credentials of Guthrie, detecting an additional fishy scent in town. She plans to keep Guthrie away from Victoria. Laura slyly thinks that might be a wise idea. As Mrs. Johnson attempts to put out the fire so she can clean the hearth, Laura becomes anxious and orders her to leave it alone. Laura reiterates her desire that the fire be kept burning at all times. Mrs. Johnson, rattled, leaves.

Act II

Mrs. Johnson visits Burke at the Collinsport Inn with free information about the séance at Collinwood, the intention for which was to learn about Elizabeth's illness. Mrs. Johnson recounts how Victoria, Carolyn, Guthrie, Roger and Laura held the séance, including Victoria's speaking French and collapse. Burke resolves that something must be done about Guthrie; he doesn't want his quarrel with the Collins family to affect Victoria. Burke orders Mrs. Johnson to keep an eye on the governess. Burke calls his lawyer, Grant, to put him on the Guthrie case... today! Back at Collinwood, Guthrie's attempt to look in on Victoria is thwarted by Mrs. Johnson, who tells the doctor the only way he'll see Victoria is over her body!


Mrs. Johnson also stops Laura from going up to see Victoria and tells her that Carolyn's taken David into town. Laura can't think of an excuse to get up the stairs. They hear moaning emanating from the Drawing room, and Mrs. Johnson tells Laura that Guthrie's doing homework. Laura learns that Guthrie has a tape recording of the séance, which he found fascinating but she thought was a failure. Guthrie is excited by Victoria's fainting. He thinks it was a revealing and successful occurrence. He promises to tell Laura what his analysis have revealed once he's got all the information. He does give her a hint that there seem to be several phenomena mutually occurring at Collinwood. Laura thinks that Guthrie's taping the séance was a clever manœuvre; he plans to get an objective reading of the séance from the recording. Laura calls Guthrie crafty and can't wait to satisfy her curiosity about knowing what is on the tape, which she stares at intently.

Act IV

Burke shows up at the Cottage and insults Laura's choice of husbands. He demands to know what's going on; Laura corrects his tone and says they should remain allies. He tells Laura of his intentions to protect Victoria; Laura and Burke set their sights on Guthrie, who's not a policeman because Roger wouldn't allow a policeman in there. Laura insists Carolyn is working counter to Laura and Burke's plans. Guthrie's in a panic, and plays the tape for Mrs. Johnson. Nothing but the sound of crackling fire can be heard on the tape.

Memorable quotes[]

Mrs. Johnson: I smell something fishy, and it's not the wind off the bay!

Mrs. Johnson: If everyone were like me, there wouldn't be any problems!

Mrs. Johnson: I say spirits are like dogs: let sleeping ones lie.

Mrs. Johnson: There are too many strange things going on around here, and until some of them are explained, nobody's gonna be wandering around that girl!

Mrs. Johnson: Mr. Devlin, I have information I'd give you even if you weren't paying me.

Dramatis personae[]

Background information and notes[]


  • This is one of only six episodes in the series not to feature an actor who appeared in 200 or more episodes, along with 168, 180, 1010, 1141 and 1182.


Bloopers and continuity errors[]

  • In Act I, a boom microphone crane be seen at the ceiling in the cottage.
  • If Dr. Guthrie knows that Laura Collins is the key to all the disruption and may have supernatural powers, why would he tip his hand and tell her that he had a recording of the séance that could answer all his questions?
  • The end credits are out of focus.

End credits announcement[]

External Links[]

Dark Shadows - Episode 172 on the IMDb

Dark Shadows Commentary- Episode 172: The sound of fire

Dark Shadows Before I Die- Episode 172: 2/21/67