The Dal-List: Another 15 Reasons to Watch TNT’s ‘Dallas’

Dallas, Elena Ramos, John Ross Ewing, Jordana Brewster, Josh Henderson, TNT

Never take your eye off a Ewing

“Dallas” is back to finish its third season on TNT, beginning Monday, August 18. If Dallas Decoder’s earlier list didn’t persuade you to start watching this show, hopefully this one will.

Dallas, Emma Bell, Emma Ryland, TNT

Reading is fundamental

15. “Dallas” is “Beach Read TV.” The world becomes a different place this time of year, don’t you think? Even when you’re not on vacation, you’ve mentally checked out, at least a little. That’s what makes “Dallas” the ideal summertime show. It’s pure entertainment, although it can also be surprisingly smart without getting too heavy. In other words: “Dallas” is the television equivalent of a great beach read. Dive in and let yourself get lost in it.

Dallas, John Ross Ewing, Josh Henderson, TNT

Cool down

14. “Dallas” will help you stay cool. Here’s another reason “Dallas” makes great summertime viewing. You know how eating spicy food in hot weather makes you sweat, which in turn helps you cool off? Well, “Dallas” essentially does the same thing. Don’t believe me? Then check out the picture at right and the one above. These are the kinds of scenes you get in every “Dallas” episode. If that doesn’t raise your perspiration levels, I don’t know what will.

Ann Ewing, Bobby Ewing, Brenda Strong, Dallas, Patrick Duffy, TNT

Dynamic duo

13. Patrick Duffy and Brenda Strong are kicking ass. Of course, “Dallas” isn’t just sex and skin. This show also boasts one of prime time’s strongest ensembles, beginning with Duffy and Strong. The increasingly rocky marriage of their characters, Bobby and Ann Ewing, has become the stuff of great domestic drama, especially whenever he accuses her of lying. Don’t you want to be there when Ann finds out all the stuff Bobby’s been keeping from her?

Dallas, Juan Pablo Di Pace, Nicolas Trevino, TNT

The dark side

12. Juan Pablo Di Pace is on fire. When Di Pace showed up on “Dallas” earlier this year, his character, Nicolas Treviño, was a charming rapscallion. What a difference a half-season makes! Nicolas has gotten darker and more twisted — as Elena’s poor, punctured diaphragm would tell you. (If diaphragms could, you know, talk). It’s impressive to see how effectively Di Pace has altered his performance, turning that suave smile into something so sinister.

Dallas, Elena Ramos, Jordana Brewster, TNT

Read ’em all

11. “Dallas” has the world’s most passionate fans. I hope you enjoy reading Dallas Decoder, but this site isn’t the only game in town. You’ll find fun interviews at Dallas Fanzine, nifty graphics and insightful commentary at Dallas Divas Derby, and all-around excellent coverage at Ultimate Dallas, the granddaddy of “Dallas” fan sites. And that’s just to name a few! Only a great show like “Dallas” could inspire this kind of hardcore obsessiveness.

Dallas, Judith Light, Judith Ryland, TNT


10. If you like (blank), you’ll love “Dallas.” Our show has a lot in common with many of TV’s best dramas. Examples: Do you get a kick out of the twisty “Scandal”? You’ll go crazy for “Dallas,” which offers a steady stream of OMG! moments. Are you addicted to “Downton Abbey”? “Dallas” is pretty much the same show, but without the funny accents. Do you go gaga over the evil witches of “American Horror Story”? Good news! We’ve got one of those too.

AnnaLynne McCord, Christopher Ewing, Dallas, Heather McCabe, Jesse Metcalfe, TNT

True romance

9. Jesse Metcalfe and AnnaLynne McCord are charming. “Dallas’s” most pleasant surprise this year? The pairing of Metcalfe and McCord’s characters, Christopher and Heather, whose down-to-earth romance has proven a nice antidote to the show’s wackier plotlines. Of course, this is “Dallas,” where couples rarely live happily ever after, so we probably shouldn’t get too attached to Christopher and Heather. Kinda like Metcalfe’s beard, which we still miss.

Dallas, Emma Bell, Emma Ryland, TNT

So good, so bad

8. Emma is excellent! Do you love to hate a wicked witch? Oh, have we got one for you! Meet Emma Ryland, the home-wrecking hussy played to perfection by Emma Bell. It’s fun to hiss at the vixenish Emma whenever she slinks onto the screen, but don’t be surprised if you find yourself feeling sorry for her. That’s because Bell never lets the audience forget that Emma is more damaged than evil. I mean, cut the gal some slack. She was raised by Judith, after all.

Bobby Ewing, Dallas, John Ross Ewing, Josh Henderson, TNT

It’s a party, Uncle Bobby

7. Every “Dallas” episode is a party. The only thing better than watching “Dallas” is watching it with your fellow fans. With Twitter, you can view the show live on Mondays while simultaneously tweeting about it with other “Dallas” diehards. Everyone comes together to OMG when John Ross outmaneuvers his rivals and LOL when Harris cracks wise about Judith. Each episode is a celebration, and who couldn’t use one of those on Monday nights?

Dallas, Harris Ryland, Mitch Pileggi, TNT

The chameleon

6. Mitch Pileggi is one of television’s most watchable actors. Pileggi has been entertaining us for years, and never more so than in his role as Harris Ryland, “Dallas’s” resident chameleon. Is Harris really carrying a torch for ex-wife Ann, or is he just trying to spite his controlling mama Judith? Is he really trying to help the CIA bring down the drug cartel, or does he have a trick up his sleeve? No one keeps us guessing like the awesome Pileggi.

Dallas, Julie Gonzalo, Pamela Rebecca Barnes Ewing, TNT

What’s next, darlin’?

5. Just say Julie! You know who else keeps “Dallas” fans on their toes? Julie Gonzalo, who plays irrepressible Pamela Rebecca Barnes Ewing. In three seasons, Pamela has been a desperate con artist, a bitch-on-wheels corporate tigress, a would-be mother devastated over the loss of her unborn children, and a hopeful wife who has no idea her husband is a cheat. What will be Pamela’s next role? I have no idea, but I know Gonzalo will nail it.

Christopher Ewing, Dallas, Elena Ramos, Jesse Metcalfe, John Ross Ewing, Jordana Brewster, Josh Henderson, TNT

Those jackets! Those boots!

4. Watch and be inspired. Not only will “Dallas” help you cool off, the show can also help you look cool. Part of the fun of watching “Dallas” is to see what the characters are wearing — and then recreating those looks in your own wardrobe. That’s easy to do, thanks to mega-talented costume designer Rachel Sage Kunin, who dresses the cast in clothing that’s aspirational yet accessible. Let “Dallas” show you how to dress like a million bucks without spending it.

Dallas, Linda Gray, Sue Ellen Ewing, TNT

Shades of Gray

3. Linda Gray is amazing. As I’ve written before, Gray is great because she makes you feel everything her character, Sue Ellen, does. This season, we’ve experienced Sue Ellen’s joy when she outmaneuvered the governor, as well as her shame over her never-ending battle with the bottle. Will our heroine rise from the ashes of the Southfork fire? Maybe, maybe not. The only sure bet is that Gray will continue to dominate this series like no one else.

Dallas, John Ross Ewing, Josh Henderson, TNT

The future has arrived

2. Josh Henderson is outstanding. The most thrilling part of “Dallas” this season? Watching Henderson become one of the most captivating actors on TV. His character, John Ross Ewing, is still struggling to escape the shadow of his legendary father J.R., and Henderson is rising to the occasion, delivering complex, absorbing performances. I have no doubt he has Emmys and Oscars in his future — and maybe a Grammy or two. (Dude can sing!)

Dallas, J.R. Ewing, Larry Hagman, TNT

Long live the king!

1. J.R. Ewing lives! We all miss Larry Hagman and “Dallas” will never be the same without him, but the new show is doing a splendid job preserving his memory. The spirit of J.R. lives through props like his wristwatch and painting, as well as those J.R. Ewing Bourbon bottles that keep popping up. Mostly, J.R.’s presence is felt through costars like Gray and Henderson, whose performances honor Hagman and the remarkable legacy he left behind.

Why do you watch TNT’s “Dallas”? Share your comments below and read more “Dal-Lists.”


  1. My self I watch for Josh Henderson. Like Larry Hagman ,John keeps me interested week after week. The passion Josh brings to John Ross is wonderful. I also love Brenda Strong and Mitch and of course Linda Gray.

  2. #14 does not do it for me. Although Pamela is hotter than those hellfire habañero drops mentioned in “Dallas Drinks”.
    #1. I still miss Larry Hagman and seeing J.R. Ewing part of the “Dallas” storyline. They are doing a great job of keeping his legacy alive.

  3. I’ll give you a 16th reason boy! ALL NEW DALLAS DECODER REVIEWS OF EACH & EVERY EPISODE & THE MINUTIAE BEHIND THEM! all beyond excellent of course & we have C.B. to thank 4 them & his great hubby Andy for plying us with his stellar alcoholic beverage recipes! Please make a drink in honour of Miss Jenny “Jennifer” Irons, a super fellow fan to be sure!

  4. I had to laugh when I saw photos of Elena with this story. Elena and the Ramoses are reasons to NOT watch Dallas. And now Cidre is going to get Elena impregnated by Nicolas…give me a break! The cast salaries wasted on these characters could bring back one of the original Dallas stars. And Anna Lynne McCord was also wasted stunt casting that fell flat. How can viewers invest in her character when we’ve known from her first day on the show that she was on short-term contract. Linda Gray, Patrick Duffy and Kem Kercheval are the reasons to watch Dallas. The bad writing unfortunately ruins it all.


  1. […] and Facebook posts? To help you chat up “Dallas” on social media, check out my latest list of 15 reasons to watch “Dallas” in August and September. Now start talking up the […]

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