Season without Victoria Principal

Herofan

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Over the years, I have rewatched the seasons through the Wes Parmalee season. For whatever reason, I really enjoyed the Wes/Jock season really well, and all seasons up to it.

I don’t believe I have watched the remaining seasons in their entirety since the original airing. Recently, I rewatched the Wes season, and now I’m on the next season, and I must say, it’s just not keeping my attention. I’m not sure how to explain it. It just seems like the pace is slower, and it’s just not as I retesting. Anyone else feel that way?
 

southfork88

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The Dreams Season 1985-86 might have been the last truly great season :D
 

Kenny Coyote

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The Dreams Season 1985-86 might have been the last truly great season :D
I liked about the first 8 episodes of that season. I think the episodes up through Winds Of Change were good. The rest of it didn't seem up to par for Dallas though - all that stuff about the emerald mine seemed so contrived. As for Donna's interest in adopting a disabled kid, I was indifferent to it. What did that have to do with Dallas?

Dallas was at its best when it was about the mud, the blood, and the beer. When they tried to make Dallas less gritty, it lost a lot - it's identity. At heart it was a rough, tough, modern day western told in the form of a soap opera.

It's very hard to agree on a "last great season" because it's so subjective. Different people like different things. Someone else will probably say season 8 was the last great one and then someone will say that had someone else playing Miss Ellie, so season 7 was the last great one.
 
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southfork88

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I love all Dallas seasons, movies, etc., but season 1985-1986 was very interesting.
 

Snarky's Ghost

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The 1985/86 season started out okay, but it soon became obvious that the new writing team didn't really know what they want to do, so the plots began spinning and wandering and it all became quite elaborately boring.

Despite the dream resolution opening, the 1986/87 season, with BD Calhoun and Wes Parmalee, was one of the great seasons in DALLAS history -- and the most self-satirical year which actually worked.

But the 1987/88 season, the first year without Victoria, indeed has a weird vibe. In one way, it's the last season which almost felt like "classic DALLAS" but the pacing is way off -- due undoubtedly to the fact that they had no spring hiatus period during which to plan the year's plotlines (Katzman thought a writers' strike was coming that summer, one which was ultimately delayed a year, so they just kept shooting while they wrote in the spring of '87). As a result, Pam's exit felt a bit too soapy, and the Jack Scalia story wound up getting too much screen time.

And it was the last time the magic trio of Katzman/Paulsen/Art Lewis were together behind the camera.
 

JR Ewing Fan

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I don't even remember. It's had to have been over a decade though.
The Parmelee/Jock season might have been the last truly great season.
I agree. If you get over the season premiere fiasco it was a pretty good season. It was also the last season that the whole cast ( besides Lucy) was on. I think that was the downfall of Dallas. Every season afterwards more and more of the core cast left.
 

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1986/87 season (DVD series 10) was one of the strongest, certainly the strongest series of the last few by far.

Swami
 

southfork88

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Ben Stivers (Season 1985-1986) was more interesting of Wes Parmalee (Season 1986-1987) and more

... in the 1985-1986 season Jamie's death was more interesting than in 1986-1987,

... the life of Ray and Donna had consistency,

... the character of Sue Ellen was to be rewarded with Oscar,

... Miss Ellie showed all her courage and strength.

... John Ross was an intelligent child,

... etc.

Certainly Angelica Nero was not the best character, but surely Sheila Foley (Season 1990-1991) was more ridiculous.
 

southfork88

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I forgot ... the main role of Pamela in the 1985-1986 Season.

If this season wasn't a nightmare of 31 episodes, we probably wouldn't have lost Victoria Principal.

I'm a fan of Bobby Ewing, but I would have preferred to leave him dead just to have good stories.
 

Kenny Coyote

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I agree. If you get over the season premiere fiasco it was a pretty good season. It was also the last season that the whole cast ( besides Lucy) was on. I think that was the downfall of Dallas. Every season afterwards more and more of the core cast left.
Clearly fans were far more forgiving of unrealistic storylines than they were of their favorite cast members leaving. The 2 main storylines of that season were a plan to blow up oil wells in Saudi Arabia and a man who looked nothing like Jock, sounded nothing like Jock, and had an entirely different regional accent (or lack of one) but was claiming that he was Jock. Yet they had most of their original cast and so people watched. imagine how big the audience would have been if along with the season 10 cast, they'd had believable storylines.
 

Kenny Coyote

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I forgot ... the main role of Pamela in the 1985-1986 Season.

If this season wasn't a nightmare of 31 episodes, we probably wouldn't have lost Victoria Principal.

I'm a fan of Bobby Ewing, but I would have preferred to leave him dead just to have good stories.
Losing either of them was equally bad for the series. They're both one half of the fan favorite couple on Dallas because they're the nicest and best looking couple on the show. In fact, originally David Jacobs wanted the show to center around Bobby and Pambut when JR's acting and character outshine their acting and characters, JR was made the central figure.

Without either Bobby or Pam you don't have the favorite Dallas couple anymore, the "Romeo and Juliet of Dallas." So what's the difference whether Bobby dies and Pam lives or Pam dies and Bobby lives? Either way you lose the most popular couple on the show. Either way you lose one of the two nicest, best liked people on the show. It's kind of like saying Romeo and Juliet could have had a good sequel if only Romeo died and Juliet survived but if Romeo lived and Juliet died then a sequel would have been bad.

Bobby and Pam were equally integral so why is one dying , or left dead, as you put it supposed to result in better stories? We saw what happened when Pam, for all practical purposes died. It did not result in better stories. No!

When Bobby was "dead' did it result in better stories" No! We got the Anjelica Nero story and the emerald mine. That was some riveting television!
So why would you expect the stories would have been better if they'd kept him dead for longer than they already did? Are you saying you consider Bobby more of a liability to Dallas than an asset to Dallas?

One of the most important part of Dallas is the home atmosphere, especially while having drinks before dinner and then eating dinner together. Pam had already left Southfork in season 6 so Bobby was the one still helping keep the home atmosphere interesting and keeping the conversation lively and the drama high. They're close brothers who love each other and are also highly competitive with each other. Take Bobby away and JR becomes similar to an only child. That wouldn't help the conversation at meals and when having drinks as they gather together to relax after a hard day of work. Take away either Bobby or JR and the other loses the person who pushes him to be his best - they thrive on the competition. It's a family saga but without Jock and Bobby and with Gary hiding somewhere, there is practically no Ewing family left.
 

Michael Torrance

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Losing either of them was equally bad for the series. They're both one half of the fan favorite couple on Dallas because they're the nicest and best looking couple on the show. In fact, originally David Jacobs wanted the show to center around Bobby and Pambut when JR's acting and character outshine their acting and characters, JR was made the central figure.
Jacobs has gone on record to say that on the page Bobby would die, and then Pam and J.R., good and evil would duke it out. After all, Romeo and Juliet is a tragedy. Kinda like what could have happened when Bobby did die.
But as soon as they started seeing the dailies with Duffy and his chemistry with both J.R. and Pam, they quickly changed their minds. J.R. was always a central figure in Jacobs' mind and he had said that Hagman nailed it on the audition. It was Duffy who was better than they thought (or than what he had auditioned).
 

Kenny Coyote

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Jacobs has gone on record to say that on the page Bobby would die, and then Pam and J.R., good and evil would duke it out. After all, Romeo and Juliet is a tragedy. Kinda like what could have happened when Bobby did die.
But as soon as they started seeing the dailies with Duffy and his chemistry with both J.R. and Pam, they quickly changed their minds. J.R. was always a central figure in Jacobs' mind and he had said that Hagman nailed it on the audition. It was Duffy who was better than they thought (or than what he had auditioned).
That's very interesting. Where did you find that interview with Jacobs? Were his plans at that time to stay with Dallas permanently instead of leaving to make Knots Landing?

So is that why they brought Duffy back, even though they had to resort to "it was all a dream" to do it? It was because they thought Duffy was just that good that they had to have him come back any way possible?

Regarding Jacobs original plan you described, for Bobby to die and JR and Pam to "duke it out", did Jacobs happen to say what it was they would fight each other for? The only thing I can see them having in common with Bobby dead is that each had a son who would likely want to run Ewing Oil when he grew up. With that goal in mind, both would want to build Ewing Oil up to be as strong as possible so they could leave something great for their children to run when they grew up. That means they're on the same page there. With that same goal in mind, what would there be to fight over? Did Jacobs say?
 

Michael Torrance

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That's very interesting. Where did you find that interview with Jacobs? Were his plans at that time to stay with Dallas permanently instead of leaving to make Knots Landing?

So is that why they brought Duffy back, even though they had to resort to "it was all a dream" to do it? It was because they thought Duffy was just that good that they had to have him come back any way possible?

Regarding Jacobs original plan you described, for Bobby to die and JR and Pam to "duke it out", did Jacobs happen to say what it was they would fight each other for? The only thing I can see them having in common with Bobby dead is that each had a son who would likely want to run Ewing Oil when he grew up. With that goal in mind, both would want to build Ewing Oil up to be as strong as possible so they could leave something great for their children to run when they grew up. That means they're on the same page there. With that same goal in mind, what would there be to fight over? Did Jacobs say?
Jacobs was talking about the mini-series in 1978 and his plans on paper then, so that was before KNOTS. I may have confused the issue by bringing up Bobby's eventual death in 1985. He has not talked about how it would work out, only that they quickly changed plans. I think there are some sites that still have that info.
 

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a man who looked nothing like Jock, sounded nothing like Jock, and had an entirely different regional accent (or lack of one) but was claiming that he was Jock.
You know, none of that bothered me. I know recasts are not popular here, but when one happens you kind of have to overlook those things. Ideally, of course, replacement actors should be as close to the originals as possible, although the plastic surgery excuse gives a little more leeway.
 

Kenny Coyote

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You know, none of that bothered me. I know recasts are not popular here, but when one happens you kind of have to overlook those things. Ideally, of course, replacement actors should be as close to the originals as possible, although the plastic surgery excuse gives a little more leeway.
I think it varies depending in what you're used to. I have heard that in daytime soaps, recasts happened all the time. They would put a caption at the bottom of the screen I think, saying "The character of (whoever) is now being played by (name of new actor).

I don't know if you have watched daytime soaps or not. I'm trying to explain how if someone did watch a lot of daytime soaps, then that person is so used to seeing recasts that when the Wes Parmalee storyline took place, they might be more willing to buy into the story even though the actor has a completely different build, a completely different way of speaking, and doesn't even have any scars. Hell, he didn't even look a day older than Jock looked 6 years earlier - the last time we saw him.

Show me a plastic surgeon who can operate on a man so badly burned that he needs an entirely new face and the plastic surgeon does such a good job that when he's done, the patient looks younger than he did to begin with and doesn't have any visible scars from all the burns he suffered and I'll show you the wealthiest plastic surgeon on the face of the earth! :)
 
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