Dallas review – 1×05: ‘Truth And Consequences’

Courtesy of TNT

The newly renewed Dallas 2.0 hits the half-way point and resolves some of the issues that I was exploring / griping about last week.

Let’s bitch it out…The first few minutes of ‘Truth And Consequences’ are exemplary: everything that I wanted to see happen actually came true. I feared – like many viewers – that last week’s cliffhanger would be shrugged off and Rebecca (Julie Gonzalo) would chicken out of telling Christpher (Jesse Metcalfe) the truth about her role in the break-up email. Instead she tearfully confesses and he storms off…to punch Tommy (Callard Harris) in the face! That’s good fun. Adding to the drama is the news that JR’s (Larry Hagman) schemes have paid off when the new deed is delivered to Bobby (Patrick Duffy) bearing his name. It’s a one-two shot to the groin and it all happens within the first few minutes!

I wouldn’t argue that the show has been lacking excitement before now, but this feels like the first time that the stakes have been raised. There’s been a lot of lying, swindling, adultery, etc, but since no one has found out about anything, it’s felt inconsequential. Until now. Rebecca and Tommy get the boot off Southfork and the whole house of cards about who knew JR’s plans to take over starts tumbling down. My only complaint it that by having both revelations occur so close together, it feels as though one is less important and since JR and those devilish eyebrows usurp everything like a black hole, the dreaded e-mail of doom storyline is the fall-guy. Everyone is too busy freaking out about oil to care that Rebecca the ho-bag and her dirtbag brother lied their way into the family fortune.*

*Sidenote: I appreciate that Christopher wants to support his dad by tagging along to the lawyer’s to find a loophole, but shouldn’t be – I dunno – looking for a good divorce lawyer?

Courtesy of TNT

Perhaps it’s because the bar is raised so high so early, but the rest of the episode also suffers from a bit of a malaise. The excitement of the double reveals wears off and everyone is back to showing up in each other’s doorways (sometimes drunk, sometimes angry). The only real fascination is how Jordana Brewster’s Elena looks more and more gaunt in each scene, but that’s a different kind of fascination (so, seriously, no else sees her looking like that and thinks the anorexia/bulimia hotline should be on speed dial?)

Other Observations:

  • Rebecca’s plea that Christopher “has to believe her” is an example of what I like to call false logic. Umm…no sweetie. He doesn’t. And if that’s the best you can do to convince him, then there’s no way you would have survived in the Ewing family anyways. She needs a) more backbone or b) more sluttiness (see: Leonor Varela’s psycho/sl*t Marta Del Sol)
  • Speaking of the closest thing this soap has to an Amanda Lockwood, Marta does the worst thing a mistress can do: leave a sex tape lying around. Doesn’t this beyotch know anything about decorum? And all that yammer about how John Ross (Josh Henderson) tricked her and lied to her. Umm…sweetie – that molestache told you everything you needed to know before you got involved. You’re clearly delusional to think he was in love with you, so do something crazy so that the writers can kill you off.
  • Ann (Brenda Strong) visits Harris Ryland (The X-Files‘ wonderful Mitch Pileggi) with whom she used to touch sexy bits to ask him to pull out of his deal with JR. I’m intrigued because Ann has been far too goody two shoes thus far, so I want to know more about her backstory. Harris is clearly a sleazy dirtbag (like 90% of the characters on Dallas) so it’ll be fun to find out more about how these kids know each other
  • Anytime Elena and Christopher are in a scene together, I’m basic- zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz. Oh sorry…what was I writing? It’s the greatest Romeo & Juliet-esque love affair that no one cares about…By which I mean I hope they kill themselves (I’m so bad!)
  • Best Line of the night comes from JR (big surprise). After Ann suggests she never have imagined he’d stoop so low as to snatch the Southfork deed for himself: “Oh Anna, you’re just going to have to work on your imagination.” Well played JR
  • Finally: “This is JR Ewing. After the beep, tell me what you know.” That is a truly hilarious answering machine message.

And that’s the halfway mark for the first season (news broke late last week that TNT picked it up for a 15 episode second season. My big question: where (and why) has JR gone? Does the show realize it just sent its star away? Do you want to see Elena and Christopher together now that his marriage is dunzo? And how will John Ross squirm out of Christopher’s blackmail? Give me your theories 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

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