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CBS (ended 1991)

Jumped the Shark?

  • Avatar of kaempf82

    kaempf82

    [1]Feb 14, 2006
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    Use this post to submit your ideas on when Dallas jumped the shark. For those that don't know, jumping the shark is the moment when the show went downhill (coined after Fonzie literally jumped a shark on water skis, in his leather jacket). Some ideas of mine are:

    1. Sue Ellen and JR remarry and then divorce...again
    2. Pamela turns into a mummy and disappears
    3. Ewing Oil breaks up
    4. Bobby wakes up and erases an entire season
    5. Jenna and Ray
    6. Lucy comes back
    7. Clayton cheats in the same manner Jock did years before
    8. Nicholas is in the mob

    Thoughts?
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  • Avatar of WaLkErAnDaLeX

    WaLkErAnDaLeX

    [2]Feb 14, 2006
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    humm i dunno...i think it is when april stevens euwing dies..lOl..but yea that was a joke..but i would say i dont really care for the JR Sue Ellen thing..so i think that is why..i preferbly wish that JR died..he is down right mean!! but that is just how i feel! lOl
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  • Avatar of PersonWorld

    PersonWorld

    [3]Feb 14, 2006
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    WaLkErAnDaLeX wrote:
    humm i dunno...i think it is when april stevens euwing dies..lOl..but yea that was a joke..but i would say i dont really care for the JR Sue Ellen thing..so i think that is why..i preferbly wish that JR died..he is down right mean!! but that is just how i feel! lOl


    lol. I wish J.R. would die too. And yeah he is 'down right mean' As for when the show jumped the shark, I haven't seen enough episodes (only the ones with april in them and i've even missed a few of those) to give an honest answer about when I think the show jumped the shark.
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  • Avatar of BRAH

    BRAH

    [4]Feb 23, 2006
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    Umm, my opinion tends to change, but I think honestly, it jumped after the 1986-87 season (the 9th or 10th depending on how you look at it).

    I think when the 1987-88 season started, and Victoria Principal's contract was not renewed, and they just wrote Pam off by having her disappear, and say she just couldn't bare to return. Then to top it all off, a year later have another actress come on the show to play Pam for one episode, then for a season later to have the same actress return and play a Pam look-a-like Bobby falls for ... wow. I think you get the idea.

    I don't think erasing the 1985-86 season by having it be a dream was really that bad. The show strayed off course in that season, because they started trying to emulate "Dynasty", which was strange, seeing how "Dallas" started first and was still higher rated. Even tho "Dynasty" won the 1984-85 ratings season over "Dallas", they only won because "Dynasty"'s Moldalvia finale counted in their ratings, and "Dallas"' Bobby's death episode wasn't. If Bobby's death had been counted in the ratings, it would leaped over "Dynasty" in the finals.

    As for jumping the shark, the whole handling of Pam at the end of the show was entirely un-characteristic of her. Then we get her replacement, April, who wasn't even a fart worth as much of an interesting character Pam was.
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  • Avatar of ddkl

    ddkl

    [5]Mar 4, 2006
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    I think the dream season was the beginning of the end, but Dallas jumped the shark when Pam left. I watch this show on SoapNet everyday and the episodes from Season 11 (I think thats whats playing) are painfully bad. Carter McKay and his mercenaries literally made me laugh out loud. This show was awesome in its prime, but went downhill fast.
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  • Avatar of jekyll

    jekyll

    [6]Apr 18, 2006
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    ddkl wrote:
    I think the dream season was the beginning of the end, but Dallas jumped the shark when Pam left. I watch this show on SoapNet everyday and the episodes from Season 11 (I think thats whats playing) are painfully bad. Carter McKay and his mercenaries literally made me laugh out loud. This show was awesome in its prime, but went downhill fast.
    That and the whole thing with J.R.'s shotgun wedding to Cally.
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  • Avatar of primetime97

    primetime97

    [7]May 23, 2006
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    I think most shows jump the shark when they don't involve the entire cast in every episode.  That usually is because a successful show creates a lot of money hungry actors who demand a figure per episode, so they can't afford to cast all of them in every show.  The characters either leave or are in some episodes and not others.   The first season after on Dallas after the dream, lead characters started missing or having very minor parts in episodes.  By seasons 12 and 13, they would miss many episodes. 

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  • Avatar of volker704

    volker704

    [8]May 28, 2006
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    I think it took a turn to the worse when characters like Miss Ellie weren't on the show anymore especially when they tried to explain those things in a stupid way like Clayton and Ellie travelling around all this time. They also made some unfortunate decisions like after the dream season to have the Wes Parmalee character pop up again basically re-using that storyline from the dream season.
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  • Avatar of primetime97

    primetime97

    [9]May 29, 2006
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    True, there were rumors that Ben Stivers was going to be Jock in the dream season (in fact even the writers were heading that way), so in a way having Steve Forrest come back as Wes Parmalee claiming to be Jock the next season seemed a repeat.   However, it was never revealed in the dream season as to who Ben Stivers was, so it wasn't a complete storyline repeat.

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  • Avatar of primetime97

    primetime97

    [10]May 29, 2006
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    volker704 wrote:
    I think it took a turn to the worse when characters like Miss Ellie weren't on the show anymore especially when they tried to explain those things in a stupid way like Clayton and Ellie travelling around all this time. 

    I agree, that really hurt the storylines.  As great an actress as Barbara Bel Geddes was, her absences (some due to illness) hurt the storylines.  Like in 1983 when (due to BBG's real life illness) Ellie had a mental breakdown and had to go off with Clayton.    That was not consistant.  Ellie had fully come to grips with J.R. and Bobby's problems and Mickey's injury.  Then they had one scene where Ellie was weak and helpless, to give Clayton an excuse to take her away for half a season.   Even though Donna Reed's casting wasn't good, it was better to have "ellie" on the show as Reed than the ridicious storylines they came up with to explain BBG's absences. 

    Also, I still don't understand how Miss Ellie and James Beaumont never meet despite being on the show together for more than half of season, with both living at Southfork during that time.  Ellie never even mentions James on screen, her own new grandson who is living in HER house.    

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  • Avatar of Galmgalm

    Galmgalm

    [11]Jun 19, 2006
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    So many stories are unbelievable from Pam's disappearance on. The plot when J.R. got into jail in Haleyville, later the plot when he got into the sanatorium, also the plot which leads to April's death, McCay’s mercenaries .


    On the other hand: In my point of view Lucy’s occasionally appearances were a win, the comedy between J.R. and Cliff were also well played.

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  • Avatar of willie01

    willie01

    [12]Jun 28, 2006
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    Dallas definitely jumped the shark when Bobby's return erased the entire 1985-86 season.
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  • Avatar of Galmgalm

    Galmgalm

    [13]Jun 29, 2006
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    I don't think so. His return was a credit to the show. And after all: The Dallas-writers were the first who created a dream sequence (afterwards)
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  • Avatar of BRAH

    BRAH

    [14]Jul 8, 2006
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    primetime97 wrote:

    volker704 wrote:
    I think it took a turn to the worse when characters like Miss Ellie weren't on the show anymore especially when they tried to explain those things in a stupid way like Clayton and Ellie travelling around all this time. 

    I agree, that really hurt the storylines.  As great an actress as Barbara Bel Geddes was, her absences (some due to illness) hurt the storylines.  Like in 1983 when (due to BBG's real life illness) Ellie had a mental breakdown and had to go off with Clayton.    That was not consistant.  Ellie had fully come to grips with J.R. and Bobby's problems and Mickey's injury.  Then they had one scene where Ellie was weak and helpless, to give Clayton an excuse to take her away for half a season.   Even though Donna Reed's casting wasn't good, it was better to have "ellie" on the show as Reed than the ridicious storylines they came up with to explain BBG's absences. 

    Also, I still don't understand how Miss Ellie and James Beaumont never meet despite being on the show together for more than half of season, with both living at Southfork during that time.  Ellie never even mentions James on screen, her own new grandson who is living in HER house.    



    I know, i've always thought that too. I think if you really want to reason it away, Ellie was burnout on all of the tears & wars that surrounded the Ewing family, and James was a prime representation of that. She just ignored him, because in her mind, her first grandson would always be John Ross.
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  • Avatar of randito1

    randito1

    [15]Aug 3, 2006
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    I agree with all of you. I became an avid fan of Dallas during my senior year in high school when it was on TNN--- as I must have been in my room playing with GI Joes in the 80's. First, when Jim Davis died, Jock's should have been found, like in a body bag at the crash site. The whole Wes Parmlee thing was ridicolous. Second, VP should have been offered $$ (maybe she was) to stay for another two seasons with Linda Grey and it should have been Pam and Sue Ellen who made the blackmail film about JR, with Pam staying and Sue Ellen leaving to London. I did like the Christmas Carol type ending with Joel Grey showing JR how evil he had been, how Gary and Valene would have had a smoother relationship without him, but I think this could have been done in the 89-90 season with the ghost appearing in an episode immediately after JR was detained in the asylum, a gun finding its way into JR's room, and the attempted suicide happening there with us left hanging. The final season was ridicolous. Ending in 1990 would have been a a great mystery ending for everyone, James and Michelle, Calli, JR, Sue Ellen's move to London, Lucy's trip, Ellie and Clayton's trip --- without the uncessary explanations for missing people the final 90-91 season. It would make more sense an illusion/ghost/demon would be seen in the asylum anyway. In this hypothethical alternative, the company could have been taken over by Bobby and Pam, which is what JR feared most of all...
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  • Avatar of BRAH

    BRAH

    [16]Jan 10, 2007
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    :
    I agree with all of you. I became an avid fan of Dallas during my senior year in high school when it was on TNN--- as I must have been in my room playing with GI Joes in the 80's.  First, when Jim Davis died, Jock's should have been found, like in a body bag at the crash site.  The whole Wes Parmlee thing was ridicolous. 

    I actually liked the Wes Parmalee story. I think they should've made him Jock, and here's the reason why. The difference between Steve Forrest, and say, Donna Reed, was that Steve Forrest was actually believeable as potentially Jock. In hindsight, knowing the awful direction the show took in it's later years, to make Steve Forrest - Jock, although it wouldn't saved the series or extended it's run, certaintly would have given it much more fuel in the tank down the road with new angles to play and twists, that they didn't have because it was squandered.

    I always thought with Season 10 [9 depending on how you look at it] (1986-87) the whole B.D. Calhoun thing should have been drawn out the entire series, and a "24"-esque season finale concocted. Not only do the Ewing's loose Ewing Oil, but B.D. Calhoun works his way through the family & the people close to them trying to get to J.R. leading the an explosive season finale. In the process, Jack dies, Jamie dies, Mandy dies, Donna dies w/ baby, Pam dies, and Clayton dies in the most shocking "Dallas" finale ever. This way, all of those people who weren't brought back anyways would've went out much more spectacularly. Then because of Clayton's death, a new angle begins. What does Miss Ellie do? Honor Clayton's memory, or let her original husband come back to Southfork? Jock then begins the fight to regain Ewing Oil from the fed's. Do Bobby & J.R. align themselves with him? Or, fight him, and loose Ewing Oil forever? Does Ray honor Donna and his unborn child's memory or try to make his relationship with Jenna grow? Does Bobby fall back into Jenna's arms after Pam's shocking death? There's alot of interesting stuff that could've been done.

     

    :
    Second, VP should have been offered $$ (maybe she was) to stay for another two seasons with Linda Grey and it should have been Pam and Sue Ellen who made the blackmail film about JR, with Pam staying and Sue Ellen leaving to London.

    Victoria Principal wanted out at that point. She was tired of the series and wanted to move on. Larry Hagman threw a bunch of money at her to return in the 1988-89 season (this is why she was kept alive in the storyline), and begged her to return, but she turned it down. Linda Gray actually wanted to continue to be apart of the series, but she asked for more money and her contract was not renewed for the 1989-90 season.

    :
      I did like the Christmas Carol type ending with Joel Grey showing JR how evil he had been, how Gary and Valene would have had a smoother relationship without him, but I think this could have been done in the 89-90 season with the ghost appearing in an episode immediately after JR was detained in the asylum, a gun finding its way into JR's room, and the attempted suicide happening there with us left hanging.  The final season was ridicolous. 

    Interesting idea, but at that point, Season 14 (1990-91) was needed. I feel the final season really was tremdously better than Season 13, and there were some certain things that needed to be repaired. However, the J.R. in a sanitarium twist could've been saved to end the series

    :
    Ending in 1990 would have been a a great mystery ending for everyone, James and Michelle, Calli, JR, Sue Ellen's move to London, Lucy's trip, Ellie and Clayton's trip --- without the uncessary explanations for missing people the final 90-91 season. It would make more sense an illusion/ghost/demon would be seen in the asylum anyway. In this hypothethical alternative, the company could have been taken over by Bobby and Pam, which is what JR feared most of all...

    Definitely an interesting idea. It would've at least ended the series with Miss Ellie, Clayton & Lucy still apart of the cast. But keep in mind at that point, Pam was out of the picture, and I don't think had Pam came back, she and Bobby could've co-existed running Ewing Oil. What would've been an interesting twist is if Bobby & Cliff would've been left running Ewing Oil, or possibly kept the "J.R. Returns" reunion, and Sue Ellen returns to steal Ewing Oil away from J.R., and Sue Ellen & Bobby are left running Ewing Oil.

    "J.R. Returns" would've been a better series finale, although I did enjoy the 'justice' of the "Christmas Carol" series finale.

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    bpilots

    [17]Feb 3, 2007
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    How soon did Bobby return after he died.  I just watch that tonite.
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    Scandal2000

    [18]Feb 25, 2007
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    I am probably in the minority but I don't think it jumped persay. The show simply ran out of gas after season 10. Almost all of the regulars had left and the new characters except for April who was on the show for five years just never caught on. The storylines were tired and were beginning to get repeated.

    Personally I loved the Wes Parmalee storyline but they ended it rather abruptly.

    Concerning the return of Bobby, I don't think there was any other way to do it. If Bobby had not returned the show would have been done within another year or two. It needed the two brothers battling. Having him return from the dead is common in soaps. I didn't have that big of a problem with it.

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    nancybelle

    [19]Feb 26, 2007
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    New Dallas fan.

    I just recently discovered Dallas. One of my friendsbought season one and we watched the pilot and I was hooked. I recently just rented the rest of season one and two on netflix. I am very excited to discover a new series!! So it is very interesting to hear you all talk about jumping the shark!

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    Adelette

    [20]Mar 26, 2007
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    primetime97 wrote:

    I think most shows jump the shark when they don't involve the entire cast in every episode.  That usually is because a successful show creates a lot of money hungry actors who demand a figure per episode, so they can't afford to cast all of them in every show.  The characters either leave or are in some episodes and not others.   The first season after on Dallas after the dream, lead characters started missing or having very minor parts in episodes.  By seasons 12 and 13, they would miss many episodes. 



    That's not how it works. Actors are contracted for a certain number of seasons - if they are a regular character then their contract also states that they appear in every episode; if you notice a regular character not appearing in every episode it is most likely due to personal reasons on the part of the actor, not the network. After a contract expires (its usually for five seasons) actors are free to leave the show or re-negotiate terms. It is then left up to the producers and the actors to decide the terms of their future on the show.
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