In “Killer at Large,” “Dallas’s” eighth-season opener, a cheerful Cliff (Ken Kercheval) comes home and begins opening a bottle of champagne when Afton (Audrey Landers) enters carrying a suitcase.
CLIFF: We gotta celebrate.
AFTON: I’ve gotten permission from the police to visit my mother in Biloxi.
CLIFF: You’ve gotten permission from the police? What are you talking about?
AFTON: I need permission from them to leave the state.
AFTON: [Sets down the suitcase] Cliff, where have you been? Didn’t you hear that Bobby was shot?
CLIFF: Yeah, I heard that he was shot but I don’t know what that’s got to do with us. Why do you have to have permission from the police?
AFTON: I found him just after he was shot. You don’t seem to understand, do you? Bobby was shot in J.R.’s office.
AFTON: Doesn’t that mean something to you?
CLIFF: No. No, why should it? [A beat] Oh, now wait a minute. Unless you think I had something to do with Bobby being shot.
AFTON: Yes. I think you went to the Ewing offices to kill J.R. and you shot Bobby by mistake.
CLIFF: Well, that’s ridiculous. That is absolutely ridiculous. Is that why you went there — to stop me?
CLIFF: Well, I hope you didn’t tell the police that crazy story. I could be in a lot of trouble!
AFTON: Cliff, where were you last night?
CLIFF: [Chuckles] I got drunk. I slept it off in my car.
AFTON: But where were you drinking?
CLIFF: Uh, I don’t know. I don’t know. Two or three places.
AFTON: You don’t know. You’ve blacked out before so I guess you blacked out again last night.
CLIFF: So I blacked out.
AFTON: Then you could have done the shooting.
CLIFF: Look, if that’s what you want to think, that’s fine. But I got a rich oil strike to celebrate. [Pops the cork]
AFTON: Doesn’t it even bother you that Bobby was shot?
CLIFF: No, not really. No. He’s not married to Pam anymore. He’s a Ewing. [Pours a glass, raises it] Want a drink?
AFTON: I’m not drinking with you. You are the coldest man I have ever met. You make J.R. Ewing look like a saint. [Turns, grabs her suitcase, heads toward the door]
CLIFF: [Laughs] Well, say hello to your mama in her new house. When you coming back? [Grabs the bottle, follows her to the door]
AFTON: [Stops, turns to face him] I’m not.
CLIFF: [Scoffs] Now that’s ridiculous.
AFTON: No. No, Cliff, our relationship is ridiculous. It’s over. I just wish I could say it’s been terrific. I’ll send for the rest of my things. [Turns away]
CLIFF: Just when everything is going great.
AFTON: [Turns back] Great? Great for whom? For you. The only one you’ve ever cared about: Cliff Barnes. [Exits, leaving Cliff standing alone]
CLIFF: [Walks back into the room, takes a sip] Who needs her?