“Barnabas Collins – babysitter.”
Barnabas Collins (Andrew Collins) is left to watch over Harry Cunningham (Scott Haran) one evening. Conversation quickly turns to the relating of old tales.
Barnabas and Julia Hoffman tag along with Professor Stokes to Cairo*, where they attend a funeral and stumble across a rather strange set of zombies…ones controlled by invasive swarms of flies…
* don’t ask me when this happened, it’s never mentioned.
And an ancient vengeance of a long-dead Egyptian nobleman puts Julia in jeopardy…and brings Barnabas to face a difficult choice…
Other than the wraparound (which features effective cameos from Haran and Stephanie Ellyne’s Amy Cunningham), this is entirely an Andrew Collins affair, told Companion Chronicles style.
While still retaining that giggle inducing eeeeeevil vampire cliche orientation noted in Bloodlust, Collins does grow on the listener the more airtime he gets, and his performance similarly seems somewhat more restrained than how it came off during the earlier, more appropriately episodic short run audio soap opera last Fall.
As further positives, Collins has a pleasant baritone and crisp delivery, with marked attention to proper diction (particularly when placed against the more modern, colloquial approach of Haran), and while the story itself is somewhat ephemeral, it does have more than enough gothicism (albeit displaced to more of a pharaonic setting and orientation) and sufficiently evocative sound design* to leave The Curse of Shurafa with a generally pleasant taste to the Dark Shadows aficionado’s palate.
* hats off as well to the uncredited personage who delivered a hilariously Grayson Hall-esque scream from offstage during the initial “fly assault” scene…
All in all, it’s a decent offering, particularly given the seemingly insurmountable hurdle of a script revolving around no less than three beloved actors, each of whom has long since departed this mortal vale!