Christopher Pennock, whose long career in daytime drama is best known for his portrayal of a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde character on the ABC supernatural soap opera Dark shadows, died on February 12 following a brief hospitalization in California. Pennock, who was diagnosed with melanoma last summer, was 76.
His death was announced on Dark Shadows News The Facebook page. Pennock’s wife, Lynn Dunn Pennock, told the site that her longtime Buddhist husband “made the transition to the pure land of Dewachen with complete enlightenment, leaving behind only a rainbow body. -sky”.
Dark shadows actor David Selby, a friend of Pennock since his days on the 1960s-1970s show, wrote about his blog, “Chris was the most loving, generous and kind man with a big smile. He was the kind of person this world needs most … His spirit and zest for life will be with me and everyone who has been fortunate enough to cross his path.
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Kathryn Leigh Scott, who played housekeeper Maggie Evans on Dark shadows, wrote on Facebook: “Such a day for all of us who loved Chris Pennock. Celebrating her glorious life and spirt while mourning her loss is difficult. . . and I’m afraid that the heartache of losing a beloved colleague and a dear friend is the dominant feeling for me today. Chris, you will always be in my heart.
A graduate of the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York City, Pennock began his stage career, playing as an understudy in a 1966 Broadway production by Tennessee Williams. The rose tattoo. Longtime member of The Actors Studio, Pennock will appear on Broadway in 1969 A patriot for me and 1971 Abelard and Heloise, among other scenic roles.
It was during his run A patriot for me that Pennock was hired by Dark shadows Creator Dan Curtis will play a pivotal role in what would prove to be a disappointing storyline for the scary series, with Pennock playing an HP Lovecraft-inspired character called a Leviathan.
Although this convoluted plot was largely dismissed by the show’s fan base, contributing to a drop in viewership, Pennock survived unscathed and was later cast in Cyrus Longworth’s central and flashy role, the Dark shadows version of Dr Jekyll and, with a not quite convincing false nose, his alter ego Hyde John Yaeger.
Pennock stayed with Dark shadows, in various roles (as was the practice of the series), until the series ended in 1971. He also starred in the franchise’s second spin-off feature, 1971’s Night of Dark Shadows. A fan favorite, Pennock took part in Dark shadows conventions for decades after the series ended and created a popular comic book series based on his Dark shadows experiences.
following Dark shadows, Pennock has performed on various episodic prime-time shows (Cannon, The Love Boat, Cagney & Lacey, Melrose Place, Simon & Simon, Dynasty, The A-Team, Silk Stalkings, Baywatch, among others) and in films such as Savages (1972), California Suite (1978) and Frances (1982). He remained active on daytime television with roles on General hospital, the young and the restless, guiding light and Days of our lives.
Most recently, Pennock appeared in Brandon Riley Miller’s streaming series. High, with its final episode which will air later this year.
Besides his wife, Pennock is survived by his daughter Tara and other family members.
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