Season 14 Episode 22

Conundrum (1)

Aired Friday 12:00 AM May 03, 1991 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
27 votes

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Episode Summary

Nearing the point of suicide, J.R. is visited by Adam, who takes him on an It's a Wonderful Life-style journey to see what would have become of the Ewings had he never existed.

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  • J.R. begins the episode wallowing in self pity, and then is greeted by an supernatural guy who shows him what life would have been like if he had never been born.moreless

    This was a disappointing finale to an outstanding show. First, it was a repeat from a wonderful life, a story that\'s already been done. Second, one of the great things about J.R.\'s character is that even when things didn\'t go his way, he always rebounded quickly. This show is out of character for him in that way. Third, it was a bore to have this \"fictional\" third brother Jason and it was impossible to warm up to the \"alternate\" Bobbys or Rays in one episode. Thankfully, this disasterous ending was corrected with the TV Movie \"J.R. Returns\" 5 years later. That explained away most of this episode, and put the characters back in their proper perspective.moreless
Linda Gray

Linda Gray

Sue Ellen Pearce

Guest Star

Joel Grey

Joel Grey


Guest Star

Jack Scalia

Jack Scalia

Nicholas Pearce

Guest Star

James Newell

James Newell

Walter Kingdom

Recurring Role

Deborah Marie Taylor

Deborah Marie Taylor


Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (2)

    • When aired in reruns, the first half of "Conundrum" features the standard "Dallas" closing music over its credits instead of the extended closing theme that was written specifically for the finale.

    • "Last time on Dallas", the introduction shows every season finalé.

  • QUOTES (0)

  • NOTES (5)

    • Guest star Conor Duffy, who plays Bobby's son, Little J.R., in this episode is the real-life son of series regular Patrick Duffy, while guest star David Katzman, who plays Bobby's other son, Bobby Jr., is the real-life grandson of Executive Producer Leonard Katzman.

    • Leslie Bevis, who guest stars in this episode as Jeanne Lawrence, Gary's opposing attorney and lover, appeared in several episodes in the 13th season as Diana Farrington.

    • Rosalind Allen who guest stars in this episode as Bobby's ex-wife, Annie, in the alternate universe went on to star in the subsequent TV-sequel, Dallas: J.R. Returns, as "Julia Cunningham," a love interest for Bobby (Patrick Duffy).

    • This is the only episode where the guest stars are shown with a picture in the beginning of the episodes. Guest Stars that are shown are Jack Scalia (Pearce), Joan Van Ark (Valene), Joel Grey (Adam), Linda Gray (Sue Ellen), Mary Crosby (Kristin), Steve Kanaly (Ray), and Ted Shackelford (Gary).

    • Originally aired as a two-hour episode.


    • The subplot revolving around Sue Ellen's soap opera character, an older newswoman being replaced by a prettier, younger and less experienced colleague was an allusion to the real-life events happening around that time in which Jane Pauley of NBC's Today was replaced by Deborah Norville.

    • Valene tells Gary that he was recommended to her by her friend Esther MacKenzie. On Knots Landing, Valene and Gary's next door neighbors and best friends are the MacKenzies.