So, my wife got me hooked on this show (she calls it the missing link of her life), and I have to say I'm really enjoying it.
It was a soap opera, originally broadcast in the US from 1966 to 1971. The show took off in popularity when the character of Barnabas the vampire was introduced, helping to save the show in much the same way that Spider-Man did for Marvel (not much was expected of either character initially, remember).
A trip to Wikipedia will tell you all the different storylines, involving plots that borrow from Dracula, Frankenstein, The Wolf Man, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, The Picture of Dorian Gray, The Turn of the Screw, and Wuthering Heights. So far I've seen a vampire, several ghosts, a scattering of seances, time travel, a witch, a kidnapping, a man turn into a cat, a belligerent drunk chick, and even a biker-hippie who's a dead ringer for George Michael circa Faith!
It has unintentional camp, resulting from everything being shot in one take (not quite broadcast live, but pretty much), actors only having one night to learn their lines, some plain old hammy actors (my dad considers Grayson Hall as Dr. Julia Hoffman to be the female Vincent Price), some laughable (by today's standards, anyway) special effects, etc. To be fair, some special effects are good
by today's standards, too!
For all the 'funny' elements, though, there are some genuinely creepy moments as well. I've seen a tomb bleed, a ghost scene that reminded me of a scene from Silent Hill 4, and a dazzling dream sequence wherein a little girl calmly tells the dreamer about how pretty the flowers were, and how sad everyone was, when she died.
Anyway, I think Netflix in the US has all the episodes available, but do some research first and just jump to the ones with Barnabas in them (the first dvd set actually starts around the 200th-something episode, while the pre-Barnabas episodes were later released as "Dark Shadows - The Beginning").
I get a vaguely similar vibe from it as I do from reading "I, Zombie", what with all the monster-mashing going on. Also, production on a film (involving Johnny Depp and Tim Burton) is set to go into production in April this year...so now's the time to get in on the ground floor!