"The Leviathan Cult" is a storyline presented in the original daytime Gothic soap opera television series Dark Shadows. It was inspired by the works of H.P. Lovecraft, and involved the emergence of an unholy cult called the Leviathans who worshiped at the altar of a monstrous being who took the human form of a man named Jeb Hawkes. Even Barnabas Collins falls under their sway, but after freeing himself from their influence, he must find a way to save Collinsport before the spread of the cult reaches global proportions.
Barnabas Collins: Barnabas fell under the mental control of the Leviathans during a time travel trip to the year 1796. He was chosen to be the deliverer of the Chosen One and became the caretaker of the Leviathan box. He re-emerged in the year 1969.
Megan Todd: Megan Todd was a young entrepreneur who was married to a man named Philip Todd. In 1970, the Todds moved to Collinsport, Maine where they opened up an antiques shop. They quickly befriended some of the locals, including Carolyn Stoddard and Doctor Julia Hoffman. Julia became instantly interested in one of their pieces, an original painting by late Victorian artist Charles Delaware Tate.
Philip Todd: Philip Todd was a young entrepreneur who was married to a woman named Megan Todd. In 1970, the Todds moved to Collinsport, Maine where they opened up an antiques shop. They quickly befriended some of the locals, including Carolyn Stoddard and Doctor Julia Hoffman. Julia became instantly interested in one of their pieces, an original painting by late Victorian artist Charles Delaware Tate.
Altar of the Leviathans: The altar of the Leviathans is a stone structure relating to a mystical cult known as the Leviathans. The altar consists of a horizontal table as well as an upright pillar engraved with the symbol of the Naga - a four-headed serpent deity. The main altar has a hollow interior and is capable of splitting into two pieces across the middle. The altar has the ability to manifest at any location where it is required and can also disappear from existence, returning only when it is required to in accordance with cult prophecy. The altar is a critical ceremonial tool of the Leviathans who use it to not only subjugate new followers, but also to usher in the birth of the Chosen One - a leader who is destined to bring the Leviathan beings to a new level of power and reassert their power upon the Earth.
Leviathan box: The Leviathan box was a rectangular wooden box etched with carvings relating to Naga - a four-headed serpent deity. The box was constructed by the Leviathan cult, who were people who worshiped the ancient beings that once ruled the planet many thousands of years ago. In accordance with prophecy, the box allegedly contained the spiritual essence of the cult's leader - a Chosen One who would emerge in modern times to reclaim the birthright of his people. The soul of the unborn Chosen One manifested itself as a disembodied heartbeat, which could be heard anytime someone came into close contact with the box. In the year 1796, two Leviathan cultists named Oberon and Haza, took mental control of the vampire Barnabas Collins and bequeathed him the box, citing that he would be the deliverer of their divine leader. Barnabas took possession of the item and was enclosed inside of a secret hollow within the Altar of the Leviathans until such time that the Chosen One was prophesied to appear.
"The Leviathan Cult" storyline began at the end of the "1796 Flashback" reprise, which followed the "1897 Flashback" storyline.
Episode 980, which is the final chapter of "The Leviathan Cult" storyline and the final appearance of Christopher Pennock as Jeb Hawkes is also the first chapter of the "1970 Parallel Time" story-arc.
This storyline marked the return of the character of Paul Stoddard, played by Patrick Dennis. This character was referenced heavily in previous episodes, but before now was seen only in flashback and was presumed dead.