Elizabeth tells the story of what happened at Collinwood eighteen years earlier, when she thought she killed Paul.

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(as Joe Caldwell), (creator) | 1 more credit »
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Victoria Winters (as Alexandra Moltke)
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Paul Stoddard seen in flashback
House Jameson ...
Judge Crathorne
Katherine Quint ...
Carolyn's hand
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Elizabeth tells the story of what happened at Collinwood eighteen years earlier, when she thought she killed Paul.

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10 July 1967 (USA)  »

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In the flashback, Paul Stoddard was seen only from behind, his face was never shown, which led to the suggestion that "a daytime Emmy should be awarded to the back of Joel Fabiani's head for playing the role of Paul Stoddard."Correction if you Watch the Dark Shadows dvd of episode 271 closely you can see Joel Fabiani's face as he turns around apparently the cameraman backed up to fast in the scene.Why Dan Curtis would want to not show Joel's face is the question,unless Noel was doing another soap at the time and his contract might not allow for him to appear on another soap. See more »

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Only early episode to show the iconic Paul Stoddard
11 April 2011 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Finally after much talk about him, this is the episode in which we get to see Elizabeth Stoddard's long-lost husband Paul (at least in flashback). Elizabeth has been a recluse for 18 years at Collinswood because she's hidden a dark secret -- the alleged killing of her husband (and Carolyn's father) Paul Stoddard. She's always maintained that he ran off when Carolyn was born, never to return, but now faced with the unpalatable prospect of a forced marriage to blackmailer Jason Maguire (Paul's old friend), Elizabeth reveals her secret -- that 18 years prior she killed Paul in a fit or rage with a fire iron. We see her arguing with an arrogant and cocky Paul in a great flashback scene. Paul is only shown from the back and sides, so it's difficult to see who it is -- the ending credits reveal it to be (then-unknown) character actor Joel Fabiani, in an early role. Elizabeth tells of how she got Jason to bury Paul's body in a storeroom of the basement, the one Elizabeth keeps locked, with the only key around her neck.

Of course once the Sheriff digs up the floor of the secret room and there's no body, then Jason is forced to reveal HIS secret -- that Paul was only stunned by the blow, and knowing Elizabeth thought him dead, he took the opportunity to leave Collinswood and make a new life. I've read that series creator Dan Curtis, having revealed that Paul Stoddard was still alive, planned to bring him back soon after, to make trouble for Elizabeth, had the series not taken such an unexpected (and popular) turn with the addition of vampire Barnabas Collins. When they finally did get around to bringing Paul Stoddard back, in late 1969, they made the unfortunate (and confusing) decision to cast the same actor who'd played Jason McGuire (Dennis Patrick)! He was central to the "Leviathans" sub-plot, then was killed off after many weeks.

I always thought Paul should have been played by a different actor (Joel Fabiani again?) than Dennis Patrick, who most viewers still remembered as Jason McGuire, Paul's friend. True, some actors such as Thayer David played multiple roles over the years, but Dennis Patrick was far to closely associated with the Paul Stoddard 1967 plot line to be believable AS Paul Stoddard! Also, Paul should have been made a permanent member of the cast, asserting his right under community property laws to half of everything, moving back into Collinswood where he always belonged, and taking over the position of head of the family from the weak-willed Elizabeth. And, of course, all the while aggravating Roger, and doing much womanizing on the side!


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