The Dal-List: Classic ‘Dallas’s’ 5 Hottest Rolls in the Hay

AnnaLynne McCord, Christopher Ewing, Dallas, Heather, Jesse Metcalfe, Lifting the Veil

Barnburner

The only thing the Ewings love more than a dip in the pool is a roll in the hay. In “Lifting the Veil,” TNT’s most recent “Dallas” episode, Christopher and Heather (Jesse Metcalfe, AnnaLynne McCord) got romantic in the Southfork barn, continuing a tradition that goes back to “Dallas’s” earliest days. Here’s a look at the five hottest hayloft scenes from the original series.

Charlene Tilton, Dallas, James Canning, Jimmy Monahan, Lucy Ewing, Pam Ewing, Victoria Principal

Pammus interruptus

5. Lucy and Jimmy. Lucy (Charlene Tilton) was hot to trot for Camaro-driving Jimmy (James Canning) when he attended a Ewing Barbecue with his Uncle Digger. But as soon as she lured Jimmy to the hayloft, killjoy Pam arrived and told Jimmy he had to take Digger home before he drunkenly belted out any more verses to “The Yellow Rose of Texas” on the dance floor. Pam then hung around the hayloft for some alone time, which turned out be a big mistake: J.R. showed up and tried to mend fences with her, which ended in a different kind of hay roll for poor Pammy.

Dallas, Jenna Wade, Priscilla Beaulieu Presley, Ray Krebbs, Steve Kanaly

Power tools. Grrr.

4. Ray and Jenna. Not long after Jenna (Priscilla Beaulieu Presley) started shacking up with the newly divorced Ray (Steve Kanaly), she went roaming around his house and eventually wound up in the barn, where she found him doing manly Ray things. The next thing you knew, these two were undressing each other in one of the stables. Was it the sight of the shirtless Ray working with power tools that turned on Jenna? Or was this her way of thanking him for taking in her and her two bratty kids? We never found out. Maybe it’s better that way.

Dallas, Dusty Farlow, Jared Martin, Linda Gray, Sue Ellen Ewing

Stacked

3. Sue Ellen and Dusty. Hey, look everyone: Sue Ellen (Linda Gray) is home from the sanitarium — and just in time for the annual Ewing Rodeo. Hooray! How is she going to celebrate her return to Southfork? Well, for starters, she’s going to tell off J.R.’s latest tramp, Mandy, and then she’s going to head over to the barn for a little extra-marital lovin’ of her own with Dusty (Jared Martin). Good plan, Sue Ellen! I suppose it’s kind of shocking to see this uptown lady cavorting in such a down-home setting, but let’s be honest: When Sue Ellen rolls in the hay, she makes it look classy.

Bethany Wright, Dallas, Dallas: The Early Years, J.R. Ewing, Kevin Wixted, Laurette

Virgin territory

2. J.R. and Laurette. “Dallas: The Early Years” is full of historic moments, but the biggest event of all might be when the teenaged J.R. (Kevin Wixted) loses his virginity to his poodle-skirted girlfriend Laurette (Bethany Wright) in the Southfork barn. It’s a kick to see J.R. learning how to charm a lady — he calls her “sugar” and brings along a bottle of beer to get her in the mood — and even though this isn’t exactly the kind of romantic setting we’re used to seeing our hero in, it beats that time he seduced a different floozy (cough, cough Afton) in his own marital bed.

Charlene Tilton, Dallas, Lucy Ewing, Ray Krebbs, Steve Kanaly

Head games

1. Lucy and Ray. “Dallas’s” first roll in the hay is still the kinkest — and the ickiest, in retrospect. On the day Bobby brought home his new bride Pam, Lucy was in the hayloft getting chummy with Ray, who was still carrying a torch for Pam, his ex-girlfriend. Naughty Lucy even made Ray call her by Pam’s name during their encounter, which is pretty darn twisted. Years later, the audience discovered Ray is Lucy’s uncle, which rendered their past relationship into the Storyline No One Dare Speak of Again. Maybe the producers forgot about it, but the fans never did. (Do we ever?)

What’s your favorite “Dallas” hayloft scene? Share your comments below and read more “Dal-Lists.”

Goodbye, J.R.

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

R.I.P., J.R.

I don’t know who came up with the idea that J.R. Ewing was the man we loved to hate, but nothing could have been further from the truth. Do you know anyone who hated J.R., ever? He was always the “Dallas” character we cared about most. The “Who Shot J.R.?” hysteria didn’t occur because people thought he got what was coming to him. We didn’t spend seven months trying to guess the identity of J.R.’s assailant because we wanted to shake that person’s hand. We wanted to know who to shake our fist at. Who dare harm our hero?

J.R.’s funeral on tonight’s edition of TNT’s “Dallas” will bring an end to one of the most enduring figures in our popular culture. J.R. arrived in the era of pet rocks; he leaves in the age of Angry Birds. He has been as much a fixture in our living rooms as any president. Jimmy Carter held the office when CBS flung open the doors to J.R.’s white house, Southfork, in 1978. J.R. outlasted him and Reagan and made it halfway through Bush I, then took a break and came back with reunion movies and specials during Clinton and Bush II. Finally, under Obama, J.R. began making weekly visits again.

Like Superman, James Bond and Mr. Spock, J.R. spanned decades. One big difference: Those characters have all been played by multiple actors, but for 35 years there’s been only one J.R.: Larry Hagman. (Yes, Kevin Wixted had a small role as a teenaged J.R. in the 1986 “Dallas: The Early Years” prequel, but Hagman’s appearance at the beginning of that movie is the one we remember.) Hagman logged almost 400 hours of prime-time television inhabiting J.R.’s skin. He appeared in every “Dallas” episode, movie and clip show, plus a few hours of “Knots Landing.” For awhile in the 1980s, Hagman even donned J.R.’s Stetson and hawked BVD underwear in TV commercials. His memorable tag line: “Now where else would I put my personal assets?”

Hagman’s irresistible charisma made it impossible to dislike his character. J.R. did awful things, but Hagman was clearly having so much fun doing them, we couldn’t help but have fun too. J.R. bribed, blackmailed and backstabbed. He cheated on his wives and his mistresses. Most entertainingly, he never bit his tongue when it came to letting his family know how he felt about them. To Pam: “I don’t give a damn about you or your happiness, honey. But I do care about what’s good for me.” To Lucy: “Say, why don’t you have that junior plastic surgeon you married design you a new face – one without a mouth?” To Bobby: “You’re a whole lot dumber than I ever thought a brother of mine could be – with the exception of Ray and Gary, of course.”

As mean as he was, “Dallas” never lost sight of J.R.’s humanity. More than anything, he wanted Daddy to be proud of him, but Jock loved Bobby best. In the beginning, every one of J.R.’s schemes stemmed from his desperate desire to win the old man’s approval. This made J.R. enormously sympathetic. After all, who among us hasn’t felt unloved at some point? There were other flashes of J.R.’s softer side, like the time he recalled falling in love with Sue Ellen and the tears he shed at Bobby’s burial. But nothing made J.R. more relatable than fatherhood. When Jock died, J.R. made John Ross the center of his universe. Every time we saw him doting on that little boy, our hearts melted. Forget Bill Cosby; J.R. Ewing was the best TV dad in the ’80s.

In old age, J.R. became even more complex. He still schemed, but now he was just as likely to use his powers to help others as he was for his own selfish ends. J.R. plotted with John Ross to take over Ewing Energies, but he also blackmailed a smug prosecutor to save Sue Ellen from going to jail and vowed to help Bobby bring down Harris Ryland. We also discovered there were lines that J.R. wouldn’t cross. He stole Southfork from Bobby, then returned it when his conscience revealed itself. And when John Ross wanted to take advantage of one of Bobby’s misfortunes, J.R. put the young man in his place: “You still got a lot to learn, boy. When the family’s in trouble, we don’t take advantage.”

Perhaps most movingly, the elderly J.R. also became a teller of hard truths. To John Ross: “I spent most of your childhood chasing after women I didn’t love and making deals that didn’t really matter.” To Sue Ellen: “The best decision you ever made was the day you walked away from me.” To Bobby: “I love you … and I don’t know who I’d be without you.”

It’s true that daytime soap operas have given us many characters who have endured for decades, but almost no one in prime time can match J.R.’s longevity or evolution. James Arness played Marshal Dillon on “Gunsmoke” for 20 seasons, and even though that character grew less brooding as the show progressed, he was essentially the same good-hearted hero in the last episode that he was in the first. Archie Bunker, immortalized by Hagman’s friend Carroll O’Connor, grew more tolerant during his 11-year run, but frankly that made him a little less interesting. You can’t say the same thing about J.R.’s journey through life.

If Hagman hadn’t died last fall, J.R. would still be here, captivating us. Quite appropriately – and quite courageously, when you think about it – the “Dallas” producers are allowing J.R. to die, sending him off with a brand-new “Who Killed J.R.?” mystery. The character’s death marks the end of an era, although his legacy is plain for all to see. Before “Dallas,” the people who made television drama were afraid to let storylines continue from week to week. They insisted protagonists be good. Now the prime-time landscape is populated with flawed heroes whose stories never end. Don Draper. Walter White. Carrie Mathison. J.R. didn’t just touch the lives of his fans; he helped shape an entire medium.

Maybe you feel differently, but I never loved to hate J.R. I just loved him. The only thing I hate is that now he’s gone.

What are your favorite memories of J.R. Ewing? Share your comments below and read more opinions from Dallas Decoder.