Seasons One & Two
Dallas is the best example of a prime-time drama or soap opera. It ran for 13 seasons and was nominated for 18 Emmys and 15 Golden Globes.
The show started out as a five-part mini-series in 1978. It has the usual sex and hints of sex found in classic afternoon soap operas. It also has the freewheeling adventures of Texas wildcats and filthy rich capitalist oil barons.
The mix of business dealings and wild affairs worked well with both men and women, so CBS decided to make Dallas a regular part of its prime-time lineup. Because of this, one of the most popular T.V. shows ever was made.
In fact, the “Who shot J.R.?” episode (“A House Divided,” Air Date: 3-21-1980), also known as the “Who shot J.R.?” episode, is still the second most watched T.V. show in history. The season finale of MASH is the most-watched show ever.
Since the man everyone loves to hate is one of the most memorable characters ever made, it’s not surprising that Dallas was either the number one or number two show on Nielsen ratings for most of the 1980s.
Most of the time, Dallas was on T.V.; it was on Friday nights after The Dukes of Hazzard, a popular CBS show. David Jacobs wanted to make a show about a poor Texas girl, Pam Barnes (Victoria Principal), who marries a wealthy family, The Ewings, with whom her family has been at odds for a long time.
Most of the first five episodes are about the problems Pam and her husband, Bobby Ewing (Patrick Duffy), have with their families and how they try to make peace between them. But it took a little while for the show’s producers to realize that J.R. Ewing, the president of Ewing Oil and Bobby’s crooked brother, would be the show’s real star.
J.R. Ewing was the son of Ewing Oil’s founder, Jock Ewing (Jim Davis), and his wife, Ellie (Barbara Bel Geddes). He wanted Ewing Oil to be the biggest independent oil company in the world, and he was willing to do anything to get what he wanted.
And as you’ll see, J.R. always gets what he wants. Along the way, he fights with his lifelong rival Cliff Barnes (Ken Kercheval), drives his wife Sue Ellen (Linda Gray) to drink, and even mortgages the beloved Southfork Ranch, where Miss Ellie grew up where most of the Ewing family lives now.
Southfork foreman Ray Krebs (Steve Kanaly) and Lucy Ewing (Charlene Tilton) add interesting side stories to a show that is often about J.R.’s bad plans.
In short, Dallas has everything for its viewers: money, sex, violence, a conspiracy, complicated business deals, etc. You won’t be let down! If you haven’t seen it, start watching immediately with the first season’s episodes.
In the series’ first episode, “Digger’s Daughter,” Bobby, the youngest of the Ewing sons, introduces his wealthy family to Pamela Barnes, his new wife. But because their two families have fought for a long time, not everyone is happy. In fact, J.R., the older brother, starts planning immediately to break up the marriage. This episode is on the Dallas DVD.
In the episode “Election,” J.R.’s enemy Cliff Barnes’s hopes of becoming a congressman are ruined by an Ewing-funded campaign against him. In the season finale, “John Ewing III,” Sue Ellen’s drinking threatens the life of her unborn child.
On the Dallas (Season 3) DVD, there are a lot of exciting episodes, like “What Ever Happened to Baby John,” which is the season opener. In this episode, Sue Ellen returns to Southfork after recovering from the car accident from the previous season and gives birth to John Ross, the Ewings’ first grandson.
But Sue Ellen is not joyous. In fact, she falls into a deep depression that makes her drink a lot. Alan Beam, a skilled lawyer, has been hired as J.R.’s understudy. John Ross stays in the hospital to recover from being born early until his family finds out he was taken.
Everyone has a theory about who did it, but it takes Pam’s keen eye to figure it out. In “Ellie Saves the Day,” the family discovers J.R.’s sneaky plan to mortgage Southfork to drill for oil in Asia. In “A House Divided,” J.R.’s shady deal to give his friends the rights to Ewing Oil’s Asian wells (even though he knew they would soon be taken over by the government) comes back to haunt him when he is shot in the most famous cliffhanger in television history at the end of the season.
The Dallas (Season 4) DVD has a lot of exciting episodes, like “No More Mr. Nice Guy,” the first episode of the season, in which J.R. gets shot, and Bobby has to run Ewing Oil temporarily while his older brother gets better.
Bobby slowly turns into the vengeful brother he has always hated. While this is going on, Sue Ellen starts to wonder if she killed J.R. herself while she was drunk.
In “Start the Revolution with Me,” J.R. tries to lead a counter-revolution to get back the Ewings’ Asian oil wells, which were taken over by the government just before he was shot. In the season finale, “Ewing-Gate,” J.R.’s shady dealings in the Asian oil deals threaten to bring down all of Ewing Oil.
Without a doubt, Larry Hagman’s performance as J.R. Ewing was a big reason why Dallas was so successful and well-liked. Hagman’s real-life Texas roots, unique charm, and wholehearted dedication to his craft helped him create one of the most loveable villains in history, and his treachery is on full display in season five.
Even though J.R. is a ruthless, revenge-seeking businessman, the audience grows to love his sinister smile after a one-sided business deal or a selfish act of revenge. Bobby Ewing, J.R.’s brother, is played by Patrick Duffy. His all-American smile and perfect character bring the Ewings back into balance. Patrick Duffy has his way of being charming on T.V., making for an exciting mix of personalities.
Dallas (Season 5) DVD has some of the best episodes. In the first ones, Sue Ellen tries to escape J.R. for good. Sue Ellen (Linda Grey) starts a new life at the Southern Cross ranch in San Angelo. Dusty and Clayton Farlow are with her. The fight that ends up happening between them over John Ross makes for some of the best prime-time dramas ever made.
The way Hagman and Grey get along on screen is just magic. They do an excellent job of showing how a husband and wife can love and hate each other. This is one of the ongoing conflicts that helped the show stay at the top of the Nielsen ratings for almost 14 years (making it the longest-running prime-time drama in television history).
Below is a list of episodes included on the Dallas DVD set:
Episode 1 (Digger’s Daughter) Air Date: 04-02-1978
Episode 2 (Lessons) Air Date: 04-09-1978
Episode 3 (Spy in the House) Air Date: 04-16-1978
Episode 4 (Winds of Vengeance) Air Date: 04-23-1978
Episode 5 (Barbecue) Air Date: 04-30-1978
Episode 6 (Reunion Part One) Air Date: 09-23-1978
Episode 7 (Reunion Part Two) Air Date: 09-30-1978
Episode 8 (Old Acquaintance) Air Date: 10-07-1978
Episode 9 (Bypass) Air Date: 10-14-1978
Episode 10 (Black Market Baby) Air Date: 10-15-1978
Episode 11 (Double Wedding) Air Date: 10-21-1978
Episode 12 (Runaway) Air Date: 10-28-1978
Episode 13 (Election) Air Date: 11-05-1978
Episode 14 (Survival) Air Date: 11-12-1978
Episode 15 (Act of Love) Air Date: 11-19-1978
Episode 16 (Triangle) Air Date: 11-26-1978
Episode 17 (Fallen Idol) Air Date: 12-03-1978
Episode 18 (Kidnapped) Air Date: 12-17-1978
Episode 19 (Home Again) Air Date: 01-07-1979
Episode 20 (For Love or Money) Air Date: 01-14-1979
Episode 21 (Julie’s Return) Air Date: 01-26-1979
Episode 22 (The Red File Part One) Air Date: 02-02-1979
Episode 23 (The Red File Part Two) Air Date: 02-09-1979
Episode 24 (Sue Ellen’s Sister) Air Date: 02-16-1979
Episode 25 (Call Girl) Air Date: 02-23-1979
Episode 26 (Royal Marriage) Air Date: 03-09-1979
Episode 27 (The Outsiders) Air Date: 03-16-1979
Episode 28 (John Ewing III Part One) Air Date: 03-23-1979
Episode 29 (John Ewing III Part Two) Air Date: 04-06-1979
Episode 30 (What Ever Happened to Baby John?: Part 1) Air Date: 09-21-1979
Episode 31 (What Ever Happened to Baby John?: Part 2) Air Date: 09-28-1979
Episode 32 (The Silent Killer) Air Date: 10-05-1979
Episode 33 (Secrets) Air Date: 10-12-1979
Episode 34 (The Kristin Affair) Air Date: 10-19-1979
Episode 35 (The Dove Hunt) Air Date: 10-26-1979
Episode 36 (The Lost Child) Air Date: 11-02-1979
Episode 37 (Rodeo) Air Date: 11-09-1979
Episode 38 (Mastectomy: Part 1) Air Date: 11-16-1979
Episode 39 (Mastectomy: Part 2) Air Date: 11-16-1979
Episode 40 (The Heiress) Air Date: 11-23-1979
Episode 41 (Ellie Saves the Day) Air Date: 11-30-1979
Episode 42 (Mother of the Year) Air Date: 12-14-1979
Episode 43 (Return Engagements) Air Date: 12-20-1979
Episode 44 (Love and Marriage) Air Date: 12-21-1979
Episode 45 (Power Play) Air Date: 01-04-1980
Episode 46 (Paternity Suit) Air Date: 01-11-1980
Episode 47 (Jenna’s Return) Air Date: 01-18-1980
Episode 48 (Sue Ellen’s Choice) Air Date: 02-01-1980
Episode 49 (Second Thoughts) Air Date: 02-08-1980
Episode 50 (Divorce – Ewing Style) Air Date: 02-15-1980
Episode 51 (Jock’s Trial: Part 1) Air Date: 02-22-1980
Episode 52 (Jock’s Trial: Part 2) Air Date: 02-29-1980
Episode 53 (The Wheeler Dealer) Air Date: 03-14-1980
Episode 54 (A House Divided) Air Date: 03-21-1980
Episode 55 (No More Mister Nice Guy: Part 1) Air Date: 11-07-1980
Episode 56 (No More Mister Nice Guy: Part 2) Air Date: 11-09-1980
Episode 57 (Nightmare) Air Date: 11-14-1980
Episode 58 (Who Done It?) Air Date: 11-21-1980
Episode 59 (Taste of Success) Air Date: 11-28-1980
Episode 60 (The Venezuelan Connection) Air Date: 12-05-1980
Episode 61 (The Fourth Son) Air Date: 12-12-1980
Episode 62 (Trouble at Ewing 23) Air Date: 12-19-1980
Episode 63 (The Prodigal Mother) Air Date: 01-02-1981
Episode 64 (Executive Wife) Air Date: 01-09-1981
Episode 65 (End of the Road: Part 1) Air Date: 01-16-1981
Episode 66 (End of the Road: Part 2) Air Date: 01-23-1981
Episode 67 (Making of a President) Air Date: 01-30-1981
Episode 68 (Start the Revolution with Me) Air Date: 02-06-1981
Episode 69 (The Quest) Air Date: 02-13-1981
Episode 70 (Lover, Come Back) Air Date: 02-20-1981
Episode 71 (The New Mrs. Ewing) Air Date: 02-27-1981
Episode 72 (Mark of Cain) Air Date: 03-13-1981
Episode 73 (The Gathering Storm) Air Date: 03-27-1981
Episode 74 (Ewing vs. Ewing) Air Date: 04-03-1981
Episode 75 (New Beginnings) Air Date: 04-10-1981
Episode 76 (Full Circle) Air Date: 04-17-1981
Episode 77 (Ewing-Gate) Air Date: 05-01-1981
Episode 78 (Missing Heir) Air Date: 10-09-1981
Episode 79 (Gone, But Not Forgotten) Air Date: 10-16-1981
Episode 80 (Showdown at San Angelo) Air Date: 10-23-1981
Episode 81 (Little Boy Lost) Air Date: 10-30-1981
Episode 82 (The Sweet Smell of Revenge) Air Date: 11-06-1981
Episode 83 (The Big Shut Down) Air Date: 11-13-1981
Episode 84 (Blocked) Air Date: 11-20-1981
Episode 85 (The Split) Air Date: 11-27-1981
Episode 86 (Five Dollars a Barrel) Air Date: 12-04-1981
Episode 87 (Starting Over) Air Date: 12-11-1981
Episode 88 (Waterloo at Southfork) Air Date: 12-18-1981
Episode 89 (Barbecue Two) Air Date: 01-01-1982
Episode 90 (The Search) Air Date: 01-08-1982
Episode 91 (Denial) Air Date: 01-15-1982
Episode 92 (Head of the Family) Air Date: 01-22-1982
Episode 93 (The Phoenix) Air Date: 01-29-1982
Episode 94 (My Father, My Son) Air Date: 02-05-1982
Episode 95 (Anniversary) Air Date: 02-12-1982
Episode 96 (Adoption) Air Date: 02-19-1982
Episode 97 (The Maelstrom) Air Date: 02-26-1982
Episode 98 (The Prodigal) Air Date: 03-05-1982
Episode 99 (Vengeance) Air Date: 03-12-1982
Episode 100 (Blackmail) Air Date: 03-19-1982
Episode 101 (The Investigation) Air Date: 03-26-1982
Episode 102 (Acceptance) Air Date: 04-02-1982
Episode 103 (Goodbye, Cliff Barnes) Air Date: 04-09-1982