Dallas review – 1×03: ‘The Price You Pay’

Courtesy of TNT

Dallas 2.0 continues its reboot update as everyone decides to move back into Southfork like some kind of adult sleepover party. What brings this on? Oh, who cares? You just want to know if Jesse Metcalfe shows his male-underoos again (He doesn’t).

Let’s bitch it out…

So big thanks to everyone who read last week’s review and failed to mention that I missed the second hour! I thought we were in this together, readers! Just because I’m so caring, I’ll redirect you to this hi-larious slide recap from ‘Fug The Show’ so that you can get caught up and prepare you for the b*tchery to come.

Alright, so things that need to be addressed:

  • Rebecca (Julie Gonzalo) is clearly the dumbest character on the show. I have never seen a soap character – daytime, nighttime, ho-down time – who sees evidence that their spouse is cheating on them and immediately forgives them (in literally their next scene together). I get that her brother, Tommy-ranchhands (Callard Harris) is manipulating her and he shoots bottles better than her and they’re probably not even siblings, but let’s be real here: when you see a picture of your husband smooching the ex-gf that you artificially broke up with an email, your masterful plan has clearly broken down. This silly beyotch is either going to go ape-sh*t crazy and burn down Christopher’s (Jesse Metcalfe) dry-ice lab or she’s going to end up in the pool with her nightgown on, a bottle of JD in hand and a piece of paper stuck on her back that reads “Sue Ellen Jr.”
  • Speaking of Sue Ellen: where was Linda Gray in this episode? WTF? This show survives solely on the eyebrows of JR (Larry Hagman) and the hissing, bitchiness of Sue Ellen. Didn’t these producers do their homework?
  • In the plus column, hooray for the return of Cliff Barnes (Ken Kercheval). New viewers won’t be familiar with the long backstory, but suffice it to say that putting Cliff and JR in a room together is like tossing a couple of rabid cats into a garbage bin and then banging on it with a stick. I didn’t know that my life wasn’t complete until I saw the old man, crochety version of these two going at it (verbally…though I wouldn’t mind watching octogenarians engaging in fisticuffs)
  • Oh right, I completely forgot that Christopher would not only know Cliff, but that they’re “related” (quotations because the show is going to great pains to remind us over and over again that Christopher is adopted…which in Dallas appears to be on-par with being found on a doorstep with a satanic insignia and an endorsement from Hitler). I will give the show credit for continually bringing up Pam (an absent Victoria Principal, who would have been Christopher’s adopted mother). I love that Cliff would use the word “destroyed” to refer to what the Ewings “did” to his sister. So melodramatic and yet so appropriate for a possessive and vengeful brother

Courtesy of TNT

And now some things that should not be mentioned, but will be:

  • The executive producer of the show is a woman (Cynthia Cidre), so why are all the females on this show such vapid, one-dimensional characters? Brenda Strong’s Ann seems to exist only to carry a gun and walk-in on various people (intruders last week, JR this week), while Rebecca seems horribly ill-suited to play these adult reindeer games. And then there’s the insufferably gaunt Jordana Brewster, who graduated from the “Tara Reid school of actresses who play smart real good”. If you want a good approximation of how valuable or well integrated the women are in the show, simply look at the image above: Rebecca and Elena are in the background while the two empty seats, representing the men in their lives (John Ross and Christopher) take up the foreground. And their conversation reflects this as everything they discuss is in relation to Elena’s relationship with Christopher and Rebecca’s attempt not to feel threatened by it. Boo…
  • What’s up with Faux-Marta (Leonor Varela)? Last week she basically drugged John Ross and this week an encounter with JR’s eyebrows leaves her quaking and reaching for the pillbox. Slow down on the pharmaceuticals there, sister!
  • Bonus points for bringing Tony…oops, I mean Vicente Cano (24‘s Carlos Bernard) on as a creepy Venezuelan oil financier. I liked the back and forth volley of threats between Cano and JR, even if I did groan a bit at the woh-woh depiction of Latin characters (see also: Faux-Marta and cheaty-cheaty-Elena)
  • Finally, those stars above Ann and Bobby’s (Patrick Duffy) bed? Uggggly! Maybe now that JR AND Christopher AND Rebecca have all moved back into Southfork, they can do some light redecorations?

Best Lines:

  • Rebecca (after failing miserably to hit a target on the gun range): “Can’t we just go bake something?” AHHHHHHHHHH! AREYOUKIDDINGME???
  • JR (threatening Vicente): “If you want to know a man, talk to his friends and enemies. My friends are in the state house, My enemies are gonna be harder to find”
  • Bobby (about side effects for cancer pills): “Hair loss isn’t one of them is it?”
  • JR (upon seeing Cliff Barnes for the first time in years): “Time has not been kind to that face” Zing!
  • Christopher (to Rebecca, about Elena helping him when he found out about Bobby’s cancer): “She helped me through it”. Yes, that would be one way to describe infidelity. Another would be that you checked her molars for cavities…with your tongue!

So that’s episode three. Are you surprised that Rebecca sent the break-up email to Elena and Christopher? Do you think Cliff Barnes is going to continue to stir up trouble? Were you excited to see Christopher and Elena blather on about faux-science and resist the urge to suck face for a whole 35 minutes before caving in? And is John Ross (Josh Henderson) the worst villain or just the most naive? Sound off below

Dallas airs Wednesdays at 9pm EST on TNT

About cinephilactic

cinephilactic is a university contract instructor in Film Studies. He is an avid TV watcher, particularly science-fiction, fantasy and drama series. His favourite shows currently airing on TV include The Good Wife, Breaking Bad, Justified, Hannibal, Game Of Thrones and a smattering of shows on The CW. He has a tendency to "hate-watch" particular shows and likes to think that his sarcastic voice comes through in his reviews, though sometimes he's just being bitchy

One thought on “Dallas review – 1×03: ‘The Price You Pay’

  1. Loved this episode. The original series also dwelled on Christopher being adopted, particularly between the cousins, if I remember correctly…