Was Mandy responsible for SE's transformation and her own demise?

CeeCee72

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Sue Ellen was on a downward spiral at the end of season 8 (DVD). Season 10 picks up right where that left off, with SE perpetually drunk and JR bound and determined to get her back into a sanitarium and into divorce court.

But then, Mandy and SE have a chance encounter at a restaurant. Mandy taunts SE, reminding her that she is “years younger” and informs her coldly that SHE is the one JR wants - “in bed and out.”

It seems like something snapped inside of SE at that moment. She stops drinking, successfully seduces JR just to prove she can, and sets the Valentine plan into motion to get rid of Mandy and teach JR a lesson. She builds a career for herself and a life that has meaning beyond being Mrs. JR Ewing, causing JR to take notice and develop a new appreciation for his wife eventually leading to him turning away from Mandy completely and ending back up in SE’s arms.

So, my question is this:

Is Mandy responsible for SE’s transformation and her own demise? If she had walked out of that restaurant without confronting SE, would things have turned out differently for her? Would SE have continued drinking, leading to a divorce for her and a marriage for Mandy? If Mandy hadn't felt the need to humiliate SE that day, would she have been the next Mrs. J
R Ewing?
 

tommie

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I dunno
Well, yes. While it's somewhat unrealistic that a chronic alcoholic like Sue Ellen would just change in that moment, I do give them credit for writing two ways for Sue Ellen to get sober at least - one version where she hit the literal rock bottom and one where she just had a bit of a more quiet "life-changing" moment.
 

Jock Ewing Fan

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Sue Ellen was on a downward spiral at the end of season 8 (DVD). Season 10 picks up right where that left off, with SE perpetually drunk and JR bound and determined to get her back into a sanitarium and into divorce court.

But then, Mandy and SE have a chance encounter at a restaurant. Mandy taunts SE, reminding her that she is “years younger” and informs her coldly that SHE is the one JR wants - “in bed and out.”

It seems like something snapped inside of SE at that moment. She stops drinking, successfully seduces JR just to prove she can, and sets the Valentine plan into motion to get rid of Mandy and teach JR a lesson. She builds a career for herself and a life that has meaning beyond being Mrs. JR Ewing, causing JR to take notice and develop a new appreciation for his wife eventually leading to him turning away from Mandy completely and ending back up in SE’s arms.

So, my question is this:

Is Mandy responsible for SE’s transformation and her own demise? If she had walked out of that restaurant without confronting SE, would things have turned out differently for her? Would SE have continued drinking, leading to a divorce for her and a marriage for Mandy? If Mandy hadn't felt the need to humiliate SE that day, would she have been the next Mrs. J
R Ewing?
That is quite a perceptive observation on your part, an underrated positive in season 10, which was the last good season of Dallas IMHO
 

Sarah Danner

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Mandy had gotten too far on the cocky side at that point taking the fact she was J.R.'s eye candy and bed meat for granted.
Too bad one of Sue Ellen's greatest lines was dreamed away.
"Isn’t it strange how the mistress always thinks she’s smarter than the wife? If she’s so smart, why is she the mistress"?
 

Luke_Krebbs_Ewing

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Well, yes. While it's somewhat unrealistic that a chronic alcoholic like Sue Ellen would just change in that moment, I do give them credit for writing two ways for Sue Ellen to get sober at least - one version where she hit the literal rock bottom and one where she just had a bit of a more quiet "life-changing" moment.

Yeah it was very unlike Dallas to not reuse the same storyline twice! :)
 

Jock Ewing Fan

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Mandy had gotten too far on the cocky side at that point taking the fact she was J.R.'s eye candy and bed meat for granted.
Too bad one of Sue Ellen's greatest lines was dreamed away.
"Isn’t it strange how the mistress always thinks she’s smarter than the wife? If she’s so smart, why is she the mistress"?
It is interesting how the JR/Sue Ellen/Mandy story developed.
Sue Ellen did seem to become a stronger character, in large part because Linda Gray was so good in the role.
 

Mustard

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Mandy was better with Cliff than J.R., in my opinion. She was an interesting contrast to Afton in personality as Cliff's girlfriend. Afton was always worrying, always concerned, always cared a lot and almost too much, while Mandy was chilled out and laid back but even she had limits to that in the end.
 

DallasFanForever

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I don’t think Mandy and J.R. would’ve lasted regardless of whether they ended up getting married or not. J.R. would’ve become tired and bored with her just like he did every other woman and Sue Ellen had to know that better than Mandy did given her experience.

Mandy was better with Cliff than J.R., in my opinion. She was an interesting contrast to Afton in personality as Cliff's girlfriend. Afton was always worrying, always concerned, always cared a lot and almost too much,
I guess I preferred Afton and Cliff as a couple but I do see where you’re going with this. Mandy was the polar opposite of Afton and for the most part just let Cliff be Cliff, whereas Afton wanted to kill him more than once. Of course Mandy did tire of him eventually as you pointed out but that had a lot to do with J.R. as well.


Mandy was chilled out and laid back
Yes, always laid back. Either that or laying on her back so I agree either way.
 
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