16 September 1999 | MickeyTo
Sex! Oil! Family! Everything Television should be!!
Dallas garners its own chapter in the history of television for several reasons. In its heyday this show was very popular! (The Who Shot JR episode remains one of the most watched programs of all time.) Dallas defined the 80's as the 'ME' generation, big hair and Republican values! JR Ewing takes his place as one of fictions most notorious villains. And the show itself conquered new territory. It was trashy television ... with bite!
The story centers around the Ewing family. Their lives center around oil and power (two things that mixed well in the 1980's). Their nemisis is the family Barnes, bitter rivals continuously looking for their fair share of an empire that they claim they helped to build.
The series opens up as Bobby Ewing brings home his new wife Pamela, first daughter to the Barnes family. The soap opera takes off and the sparks fly.
Over a 13 year run the show deals with all sorts of issues. Alcoholism (Sue Ellen is fabulous when she is sloppy!), infidelity, (JR sleeps with just about anyone with a skirt), drugs, impotence, politics, down syndrome, sibling rivalry, neurofibromatosis, breast cancer, divorce, child custody, homosexuality and physical abuse. And what's so great is that it deals with none of these topics well.
Dallas is not a show to be taken seriously, at least not on a cerebral level. If you want serious drama, watch Hill Street Blues. If you want something preachy, watch Facts of Life. Dallas is best watched with brain waves turned down to their lowest level, with a grain of salt and with an ear for catty drama!
Best storyline: Sue Ellen's drinking causes her to have the baby prematurely. No one knows for sure who the baby's real father is (Cliff or JR) - but Pam had better find out soon as she has just learned that she and Cliff are carrying a gene that could kill any children they intend to have. Complicated? Yes. But you gotta love it!