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Dallas Review: Making Daddy Proud

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The original Dallas started off with one major theme. It was about two brothers who desperately wanted to make daddy proud. Fast forward 30 years and you'll find that not much has changed.

Let's review the latest episode, shall we?

J.R. Comes Home. "The Price You Pay" opened with J.R. holding a blade to his son's throat. No need to call the cops. It was just J.R.'s way of showing the boy he cared.

J.R. Taunts John Ross

You could tell that J.R. was more than a little proud of his child's ability to go behind his back, even if he didn't quite pull it off. And despite being all grown up, John Ross was desperate to win his father's approval.

That was quite some piece of theater they pulled off in front of Bobby and Annie as they squabbled over Miss Ellie's journal. It was good, just not good enough.

Annie Get Your Gun. The more I see of Annie, the more I like her. When this woman sees trouble she picks up her gun and confronts it head on but as J.R. was quick to point out in this Dallas quote...

Bullets don't seem to have much of an effect on me darlin'. | permalink

She didn't hesitate about having J.R. move back into Southfork because he's family, yet she saw right through the old devil when he used his son to manipulate Bobby.

Now if she could only use that x-ray vision to see through Tommy and Rebecca the Ewings would be much better off.

Cliff Barnes Returns. I remember that there were moments when Cliff had a sweet side, especially when it came to his sister, but more often than not he was just a conniving fool. J.R. crushed him under his boot more often than not, yet the man kept getting up for more.

When J.R. was just as ornery to Cliff as he'd ever been, I had to smile. It's nice to see that some things haven't changed.

But has Cliff now been relegated to the role of Christopher's crazy old uncle. I was proud of Christopher when he turned down that money. As Cliff told him he'd never be a real Ewing and warned him not to let the Ewings destroy him the way they had Pam, it was clear that nothing has changed at all.  The Barnes/Ewing feud lives on.

Everyone Returns to Southfork. One of the strangely dysfunctional and incredibly entertaining things about Dallas has always been how everyone migrates back to Southfork, even when they despise one another.

J.R. being back will surely give us many wonderful moments between him and Bobby but my favorite was when he showed Annie the photo of Bobby and Miss Ellie and told her...

Spent a lot of my life hating how much she loved him. | permalink

It's so true. So much of their issues come from the petty jealousies of children who never really grew up. Now Southfork is just the latest toy they're arguing over.

There were so many other moments in this episode that it's hard to list them all but here are a few…

  • I was a little disappointed that Rebecca sent Elena that e-mail. It makes the most sense but I found myself hoping for an additional twist.
  • It was almost comical that Bobby was more worried about hair loss than heart failure when it came to the side effects of his treatment.
  • The Elena/Christopher/Rebecca love triangle gets more complicated every week and I love it even though I'm not even sure who I'm rooting for just yet.
  • Can someone please trim J.R.'s eyebrows? They're so distracting I'm afraid they're going to crawl away on their own.

I'm already lamenting that there are only seven episodes left in this season because I'm having so much fun getting to know the Ewings all over again. How about you?

Review

Editor Rating: 4.6 / 5.0
  • 4.6 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.7 / 5.0 (68 Votes)

C. Orlando is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow her on Twitter.

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Loved the shaving scene. J.R. (as he shaves John Ross’ throat with a very sharp razor): I loved my daddy, and I respected my daddy, but most important, I feared my daddy. … Were you gonna cut your daddy out of $2 billion dollars worth of oil? The look on John Ross' face was priceless. OMG! He knows! look on his face.

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I laughed so hard when JR said he recognized the smell of "brimstone and crazy", I had to pause the episode. Also, the reminder that bullets don't seem to have much of an effect on JR? Priceless.

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Finally, a return of the true, hard working - actors and not all that "reality" crap!
I love Dallas-then and now- however, there was a slight mention of
Pam just disappearing = does that leave the door open for her to
return ...I sure hope so.
Great writing... Keep it coming.

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Long live J.R. and his "dastardly deeds"! Bless the old scoundrel's heart, he is never boring. Now if the other characters could be one quarter as interesting as him, Dallas would be quite a show ...

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The show is getting interesting! there's no triangle for me, I'm definitely rooting for rebecca and christopher!

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Agree with Rank. When JR's eyes opened and he said, "the fried chicken here isn't bad. Get me some of that red jello, too," I was much relieved.

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Oh, I think Hagman should keep those brows. They make him look more devilish. It's almost like they're an additional character because they certainly get more attention than Sue Ellen. Everyone, including J.R., seems to forget that for all of J.R.'s dastardly deeds, Bobby ALWAYS found out and frequently bested his brother in business, usually because J.R.'s way of doing things got Ewing Oil in trouble with the government and sent them backwards to square one. I have two favorite scenea in this episode - the opening one w/JR & John Ross & the final one. Hagman & Josh are knocking it out of the park as father & spawn. Wow! Even when the dialogue is revealing there is so much going in on their expressions. Age is NOT slowing Hagman down one bit. When Bobby & Ann wryly comment about why J.R. even thinks he can fool them, we are reminded again that Bobby isn't just a good person; he's a survivor, and a very smart one. This is an EXCELLENT continuation of DALLAS. BRAVO! Keep it comin'!

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Love the new episodes. I wonder if Valine and Gary will visit.

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I think Rebecca will come clean in the next couple episodes to Christopher and that he'll stay with her because he feels guilty for kissing Elena.

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Great episode. This show is living up to expectations. I'm curious to see where this show will dare to tread regarding JR teaming up with some serious unsavory types from South America. Nice to see Carlos Bernard, Tony from 24, back on tv. These guys seem like some serious kill you as quick as look at you types and will be interesting to see the JR we know deal with these "allies". A good thing is I'm actually digging the new generation which, is important for the show to have legs. I really like John Ross, Christopher and Elayna, not sold on Rebecca yet but will see how that plays out. Loving the new Dallas!!

Dallas Season 1 Episode 3 Quotes

J.R. Now I loved my daddy and I respected my daddy, but most importantly, I feared my daddy.

J.R.: It feels good doesn't it?
John Ross: Almost sinful.

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