Hey TV.com, Should I Watch Dallas?

Saddle up, folks: TNT is reviving the long-dormant daddy of all nighttime soaps, Dallas, and thanks to a press screener I’ve got the scoop on all the forthcoming back-stabbing and loaded looks. Are you a lifelong fan of the original or simply a potential newcomer to South Fork ranch? Either way, read on to determine out whether you should hitch your rig to the latest iteration of the series.


When does the drilling start?

Dallas debuts Wednesday, June 13, at 9pm on TNT with a special two-hour premiere.


Who will be gracing the screen?

It really is the old and the new, with Larry Hagman and Patrick Duffy reprising the iconic roles of J.R. and Bobby Ewing. Linda Gray will also be back as Sue Ellen Ewing, J.R.’s long-suffering ex-wife. The new addition to the old guard is Brenda Strong (Desperate Housewives), as Bobby wife, Ann. But most of the focus is on a new generation of Ewings, and the young and beautiful are on full display with Josh Henderson (90210) as J.R. and Sue Ellen's son Jon Ross; Jesse Metcalfe (Desperate Housewives) as Bobby's adopted son Christopher; Jordana Brewster (Fast & Furious) as Elena Ramos, John Ross's girlfriend and Christopher's former fiancee; and Julie Gonzalo (Eli Stone) as Christopher's current fiancee.


Who is behind this resurrection?

The original Dallas was created by David Jacobs and ran for 14 seasons from 1978-1991. It established a template for the high-stakes nighttime soap opera, which became a staple of the 1980s. Dallas 2012 was developed by Cynthia Cidre, who created CBS's short-lived but similarly plotted family soap Cane in 2007.


What's the show all about?

Dallas in its original form was a modern retelling of the Hatfields and McCoys and centered on two families, the Ewings and the Barnes, warring over land and oil. But the meat of the story was always the rivalry between brothers J.R. and Bobby Ewing, and the fight for control over Ewing Oil; J.R. was devious, dirty, and driven by greed, while Bobby was the moral compass of the clan, always wanting to do what’s right. That set-up happily remains intact for the new series, which TNT is billing as a "continuation" of the original. Dallas 2012 literally hands down the rivalry to the next generation, with J.R.’s son John Ross (Henderson) proving that the apple don’t fall far from the oil well and wanting to drill, drill, drill all over the sprawling South Fork Ranch, which his family has owned for 150 years. But John Ross butts heads with his cousin Christopher (Metcalfe), the adopted son of Bobby Ewing and a leader in clean energy, who wants to preserve the land, just like his daddy. Throw in the sexy daughter of the Ewings' housekeeper, Elena Ramos (Brewster), who has both John Ross and Christopher’s heart, and you've got light sweet crude galore.


Who should go drilling for this oil?

If you've got a hankering for back-stabbing family rivalry, then this is your show. Obviously, if you were a fan of the original Dallas, you'll at least want to see “what happened” to your favorite characters and have passing interest in how the next generation plays the oil game. If you are a newcomer to South Fork, rest assured that TNT has taken into consideration those weaned on One Tree Hill and Melrose Place.


What makes this rig gush?

For my money, the show shines brightest when John Ross (Henderson) is on screen. He throws down the gauntlet as J.R.’s son and is a lot of fun to watch. But then, evil is always more entertaining than good when it comes to soaps. Larry Hagman’s J.R. Ewing is still a thing of wonder; even after considerable aging, the old gray mare comes out of the gate swinging. As father and son, they are a reason to give this show a chance.


Where are the leaks in the pipeline?

Dallas 2.0 could be also be titled Loaded Looks. So much screen time is dedicated to people giving each other weighted glances that it almost becomes comical. This property comes with a bit of camp already installed, but TNT is playing it with a very straight face, at least for the first few episodes. I’ve love to see a little more sparkle in my Texas tea.


Should I invest in this project?

Curiosity will win out for those who grew up with the original. And it pays off, somewhat. But it's the younger demographic that will make the ship sink or swim. I would say give it a whirl; the characters could develop, over time, into a fabric more worthy of the legacy. Let’s just hope they up the stakes even more.


Do you have a trailer or clip I can look at?

I reckon’ we do.


What might I tipple while watching Dallas?

A VERY strong cocktail may help you strike oil. Might I suggest a variation on the Long Island Iced Tea, appropriately renamed Texas Tea in honor of the Lone Star State?


Dallas debuts Wednesday, June 13 at 9pm on TNT.

Comments (29)
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As if there are not enough garbage shows on, they bring back one of the worst ever.
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Finally had time to watch the DVRd show. Not bad, but it might have been a lot more interesting if John Ross had turned out to be the nice, sweet, alternate energy guy and Christopher the ruthless oilman.
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I was there for the original without benefit of a PVR. It was must see TV every Friday night along with Falconcrest. It was about a family run vinyard/winery in the Napa Valley. Lots of coniving there, too.

I find it ineteresting that the writer says, "For my money, the show shines brightest when John Ross (Henderson) is on screen. He throws down the gauntlet as J.R.'s son and is a lot of fun to watch." I find the new JR over the top and hard to watch because he's so full of himself. Can't stand people like that.

Someone pointed out that the newcomers are all too young. I agree.

The special, "War of the Ewings" was okay, too but I wonder how old it was. I was stunned by how good some of the old characters appeared and then how terrible they looked when the new series debuted last week. Sue Ellen prime among them. Sure a lot of crows feet in a couple of weeks!

I'll try to watch but this time out, it's not must see TV.
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I watched every episode of the original series and the specials that came afterwards. This is the 1st "new" TV show that I'm actually looking forward to in years!
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What I expect to happen after an episode or two is for the show to put the newcomers front and center and relegate the original stars to occasional appearances. No thank you to that. I may catch an episode or two On Demand, but I don't anticipate watching regularly.
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Where are the chicks?!
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Oh, you bet I'll be watching. Watched the episode of when JR was shot last night on On Demand. I'd forgotten how poorly acted but creatively written it was. The lines that JR comes up with are priceless.



Funny story... I was living in Hawaii when JR was shot and I was so excited when season 3 premiered that i called my mother in Maine who was 5 hrs ahead of me to find out who shot JR. What a bummer to find out the question didn't get answered till several episodes into season 3. A phone call from HI to ME cost ALOT of money back in 1980. Remember how we had to wait 8 long months between seasons due to the writer's strike.
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trailer looks good and also good looking men are there so what more to ask .
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Someting is not right. Body's and JR's sons should be in their forties.
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They are. Texas billionaires have access to age slowing technology that has to be started in adolescence. That's why it can't be used on the older generation.



Those guys have an estimated lifespan of about 300 years.

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Noone seems to be mentioning that the orig. show ended with a huge letdown for fans.I thought on the finale of the original it was revealed to be a big copout because everything was supposedly a dream. So does this show take place after the dream, or whenever duffy's character started tripping balls? I am just curiouse, but I gotta give it to tnt to bring back a show that ended on a long convaluted hallucination!
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No, Dallas wasn't *entirely* a dream. Just one season, to resolve a standoff when the show and Duffy had parted ways. But it was the first show to use this way to undo a mistake. That is if you don't count the daytime soaps with the stampede of previously unknown identical twins and "life in the balance" comas. Or the endless [sic] sci-fi time travel plots where cataclysm is reversed and order is restored, just in "time".



You may be thinking of "St. Elsewhere" which the last episode revealed the whole series was the imaginings of an autistic boy. Or maybe you're thinking of "Newhart", the best "it was all a dream" ending ever.
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I've never seen dallas... Can I watch this ?
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Will watch it since I've remember Dallas only from when I was a kid and my folks was watching it.
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I love Jordana Brewster. Love her. LOVE.



My love for her, however, is nowhere near strong enough to watch a show I have absolutely no interest in. It would need at least 3 Jordana Brewsters for me to possibly enjoy it.
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I have to admit, when I saw the headline for this article I thought no f*cking way, but then I saw Brewster on the picture so I decided to give it a read. I doubt I'll bother with it, despite having the beautiful Jordana starring in it.
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I really want to know who was asking for this?

wasn't ever really interested in the origional so i wont be watching this. And even if i was a fan i prob wouldnt want to watch it either (i seldom like remakes/resurrections of old tvshows/movies)
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Jordana Brewster is in it. So I'll definitely give it a try.
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It's still hard to see Patrick Duffy without thinking Man from Atlantis.



I have a feeling that as the show goes on the older characters will appear less and less. We could even see one of them die in the season finale.
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I doubt whether there is a single person that believes that this will be anywhere near as good as the original. And even if it were 10 times better than the original I still wouldn't watch it. So no.
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@Michael Svoboda: Can I just make a suggestion? You referred to Larry Hagman as "the old grey mare"...a mare in a female horse...just for future reference ;)
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This is a correction not a suggestion. just for future reference ;)
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good call :)
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I realise that I am probablyin the minority here but... I can't wait!! I was a massive Dallas fan, and even though I know it won't be the same. I am too much of a fan NOT to check this out. As long as JR is still bitchy and the storylines are OTT I'll be happy! At the very least it can't be worse than what happened to Gossip Girl..... :-)
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Um no. Metcalf and Channing Tatum I think are in a competition for who can act the worse and yet have the biggest career. Sadly Tatum is winning. But it was dumb before, it is going to be dumb now. And Jordana Brewster isn't hot enough to make me watch it.
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I'll try it out. I wasn't alive while the original was on but have heard a lot about it. The "who shot JR???" chaos! I'd be more interested in a Dynasty remake or something.
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I grew up with the original, but didn't watch much - opting for a little of Falcon's Crest and Dynasty, preferring Dukes of Hazzard and the like if I could get it. This however has looked not a damned thing like the original, this looks generic and weird, the new cast bland and uninteresting. This is an easy pass for me.
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Oh God no, why can't dead things just stay dead.
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I will def be watching..plus Jordana is in it....



Ps. That Shower Photo Is Creeping Me Out...
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