Critique: ‘Dallas’ Episode 185 — ‘The Verdict’

Bobby Ewing fights to save Jenna in “The Verdict,” but the real man of the hour is Patrick Duffy. After an unusually long stretch of disappointing episodes, Duffy takes his 12th turn in the “Dallas” director’s chair and helps get the series back on track. His understanding of what the audience wants to see — […]

Critique: ‘Dallas’ Episode 181 — ‘The Brothers Ewing’

In “The Brothers Ewing,” J.R., Bobby and Ray join forces to protect the family business from the increasingly dangerous Cliff Barnes. You’d think by now we’d all be used to seeing the Ewings unite against their enemies, and yet it never seems to lose its punch, does it? Consider how the events of this episode […]

Critique: ‘Dallas’ Episode 176 — ‘Lockup in Laredo’

Jenna Wade goes to jail in “Lockup in Laredo,” which is cause for celebration as far as I’m concerned. This is when Stephen Elliott arrives as Scotty Demarest, the high-dollar super lawyer who defended Jock Ewing against murder charges during “Dallas’s” third season and returns here to do the same for Priscilla Beaulieu Presley’s character. […]

Critique: ‘Dallas’ Episode 154 — ‘Fools Rush In’

One reason Larry Hagman is so damn good is because he knows what the audience wants and how to give it to us. Take “Fools Rush In’s” most entertaining scene, when J.R. chews out Katherine for inadvertently making a Bobby/Pam reconciliation possible. It’s somewhat ridiculous to see a grown man so consumed with his brother’s love life, […]

Critique: ‘Dallas’ Episode 142 — ‘To Catch a Sly’

One of the reasons J.R. Ewing is so entertaining is because he’s always a few steps ahead of the “Dallas” audience. We watch him plot and scheme, never knowing what trick he’s going to pull out of his sleeve next. That’s why the show’s seventh-season corporate espionage storyline is so unusual. From the beginning, viewers […]

Critique: ‘Dallas’ Episode 140 — ‘Morning After’

The characters on “Dallas” usually have affairs when they fall in lust or in love, but neither scenario is true for Sue Ellen Ewing and Peter Richards. Their romance is based on their mutual neediness. Sue Ellen, having been betrayed by J.R. once too often, needs to be reminded of what life was like before […]

Critique: ‘Dallas’ Episode 137 — ‘Check and Mate’

“Check and Mate” brings J.R. and Bobby’s contest for control of Ewing Oil to a satisfying but somewhat silly conclusion. In the final scene, the brothers learn J.R. boosted the company’s profits by $40 million, making him the clear-cut winner. With his victory clenched, J.R. announces he’s reneging on his earlier promise to split the company […]

Critique: ‘Dallas’ Episode 117 — ‘The Ewing Blues’

“The Ewing Blues” includes one of “Dallas’s” cleverest scenes. J.R. appears on a local TV talk show to tout his new chain of cut-rate gas stations, which is turning him into a hero in the eyes of the public. Cliff is watching the interview from the living room of his new townhouse, where a deliveryman […]

Critique: ‘Dallas’ Episode 114 — ‘Post Nuptial’

“Post Nuptial” picks up where the previous “Dallas” episode left off, as the Ewings and their guests wait to see what will happen after Cliff stands up during the middle of J.R. and Sue Ellen’s wedding ceremony. The answer: Not much. After a few moments of cringe-worthy silence, Cliff walks to the bar and pours himself a […]

Critique: ‘Dallas’ Episode 108 — ‘Jock’s Will’

At the end of “Jock’s Will,” the Ewings gather in the Southfork living room to hear Harv Smithfield read the family patriarch’s last will and testament. Everyone is present — even Gary, who has flown in from “Knots Landing” for the occasion. The scene is tense, dramatic and historic. Besides being one of the few […]