Director: Richard Friedman
Writer: Edithe Swensen
Cast: Sally Gracie, Linda Thorson, and Paul Sparer
Composer: Michael Karp
Air Date: 3/1/1987
While sharing a prison cell, witches Mary Hobbs (Sally Gracie) and Elizabeth Eaton (Linda Thorson) covet a unique talisman for its extraordinary power. Unable to share the item, Mary and Elizabeth agree to take turns keeping the talisman for several centuries—with a surprising outcome.
Employing witchcraft as a central narrative device, “Auld Acquaintances” offers an intriguing premise for fans of the horror genre. Series enthusiasts may, however, wish to avoid this episode for its boring execution and weak twist ending.
Sally Gracie deserves praise for her portrayal of Mary Hobbs, the main antagonist of this episode. Specifically, the terrifying expressions and ominous vocal inflections of Mary—a witch who makes no attempt to mask her evil intentions—contrast with the subtle, innocent demeanor of Elizabeth Eaton, whose trickery may come as a surprise to the majority of viewers.
Taking place entirely within a small dungeon, this offering suffers from a bland location, insufferable pacing, and an utter absence of tension. Mainly problematic is that the actual dungeon, though fashioned after a 17th century prison cell, fails to enhance the supernatural atmosphere of this episode.
In addition to its limited setting, “Auld Acquaintances” is marred by tedious exposition—an issue compounded by the fact that both main actresses lack the chemistry, charisma, and range of emotion to carry a twenty-minute episode.
“Auld Acquaintances” is a cheaply made, underwhelming entry of Tales from the Darkside. Despite benefiting from an interesting concept, this episode barely expands on the centuries-old conflict between both main characters.
Overall Quality: 3/10
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