Drill Bits: ‘Dallas’ Girds for an Olympics Onslaught

Dallas, John Ross Ewing, Josh Henderson, No Good Deed, TNT

He survived jail. What about the Olympics?

TNT’s latest “Dallas” episode, “No Good Deed,” was seen by 3.3 million viewers on July 25. The audience included about 895,000 viewers between the ages of 18 and 49, the demographic advertisers pay a premium to reach.

The show was the evening’s second most-watched cable program behind USA’s “Royal Pains,” although this was the smallest audience yet for a Wednesday night “Dallas” telecast. Previously, the lowest-rated episode was “Truth and Consequences,” which was seen by 3.4 million viewers on Independence Day.

Keep in mind: “Dallas’s” ratings often soar when DVR users who record the show and watch it later are factored in. For example, “Truth and Consequences” was seen by 5.1 million viewers altogether within a week of its July 4 debut.

“Dallas’s” real ratings test comes next week, when the show begins competing with the Summer Olympics, which often draw huge audiences.

NBC will broadcast the games for 17 days, beginning tonight. This means the final two episodes of TNT’s first season of “Dallas” will be telecast in the midst of the Olympics onslaught.

On Wednesday, August 1, when TNT telecasts “Dallas’s” ninth episode, “Family Business,” NBC is scheduled to broadcast swimming and diving finals, beach volleyball and the crowning of the men’s gymnastics champion. One week later, on the night TNT shows “Revelations,” the “Dallas” season finale, gold medals are expected to be awarded in women’s beach volleyball and men’s track on NBC.

This will be the first time “Dallas” has competed with the Summer Olympics, although the original series aired opposite the Winter Olympics six times – twice each in 1980, 1984 and 1988.

Back then, “Dallas” beat the games every time – except once: On February 22, 1980, the classic episode “Jock’s Trial, Part 1” was crushed by ABC’s coverage of the “miracle on ice” hockey game, when the U.S. men’s team scored an upset victory over the Soviets.

Shooting J.R. at Home

Dallas, John Ross Ewing, Josh Henderson, J.R. Ewing, Larry Hagman, TNT, Truth and Consequence

Their own turf

“Dallas” has lifted TNT’s ratings, but the show has also brought major economic benefits to its namesake city, Christopher Kelly reported this week in the New York Times.

The first 10 episodes were shot in North Texas in 2011 and 2012, pumping $28.8 million into the local economy and boosting civic pride.

Says Janis Burklund, head of the Dallas Film Commission: “Everywhere I go, I’m hearing from people about how cool it is to see the city on the show. And it looks great. When you watch the show, you have to say, ‘Wow, our city looks great.’”

‘Dallas’ After Dark

Three “Dallas” stars made the late-night talk show rounds during the past week: Last night, Josh Henderson appeared on Andy Cohen’s “Watch What Happens Live” on Bravo. Meanwhile, Julie Gonzalo visited the “Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson” on July 23, three days after Jordana Brewster dropped by the CBS show.

High Brow Humor

Dallas, J.R. Ewing, Larry Hagman, Price You Pay, TNT

Those brows

Larry Hagman’s eyebrows “kind of have a life of their own,” says Lynn Barber, “Dallas’s” makeup artist, in an interview published yesterday by Entertainment Weekly.

We don’t doubt it, but we also wonder if J.R. might have competition for television’s top brows.

In a meeting last week with the nation’s television critics, PBS officials discussed the popularity of public broadcasting’s hit soap opera “Downton Abbey,” citing the Twitter feed Lady Mary’s Eyebrows as an example of that show’s cultural impact.

Of course, Hagman and J.R.’s brows have their own Twitter feeds, too. Could a J.R.-vs.-Mary eyebrow beat-down be brewing in the twitterverse?

Line of the Week

“How much time do you have?”

The response from Bobby (Patrick Duffy) in “No Good Deed” when Christopher (Jesse Metcalfe) asks, “How could J.R. do this to his own family?”

Bottoms Up!

If you love Brewster’s refreshing performance on “Dallas,” you’ll enjoy The Elena, the latest “Dallas Drinks” cocktail from Dallas Decoder’s favorite mixologist at Cook In/Dine Out. Enjoy!

“Drill Bits,” a roundup of news about TNT’s “Dallas,” is published regularly. Share your comments below.


  1. Lady G. says:

    I never watch the olympics so I know what I will be tuned in to watch. 😀 But with DVR technology, I think Dallas has a great chance of retaining that spot.

  2. What would Lady Mary and J.R. make of each other? I bet she could hold her own against him. Lucky for him he’s not Turkish.

What do you think?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: