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Southfork vs. Carrington Mansion

Discussion in 'Dallas original TV Series official forum' started by miliosr, May 29, 2004.

  1. miliosr

    miliosr Guest

    I want to pick up on something James from London wrote in another discussion thread.

    When you compare the interior sets of Southfork to the interior sets of the Carrington mansion on Dynasty, doesn't Southfork look and feel like a real place while the Carrington mansion looks and feels like a set on a soundstage? (I'm not referring to the exteriors although Southfork wins that battle as well.)

    In fact, I've often thought of Southfork itself as a character on Dallas (whereas the Carrington mansion had no dramatic personality of its own and added little to the forward dramatic momentum of Dynasty.)

    What do others think?
  2. rebeccabarnes

    rebeccabarnes New Member

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    I agree. If I had a choice I'd much rather live
    at Southfork, it had a more down-to-earth quality.
  3. mikerg

    mikerg New Member

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    Well, I agree and disagree here. Southfork is definately smaller, more intimate, and cozier. But the Carrington mansion is just that...a Mansion. It's big..period. No room for coziness or intimacy.

    Where would I rather live? Carrington mansion, hands down. Southfork is nice but it's all cows and dirt. I like the beautiful grounds of the mansion.
  4. B.J. Ewing

    B.J. Ewing Well-Known Member

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    Maybe this is a stupid thing to say, but wouldn't it be that Southfork is preferred because this house has a name and all the familymembers talked about it? They always talked about 'going to Southfork' instead of 'going home'. Maybe that's what miliosr was talking about, when he/she spoke of Southfork being a character.

    I mean, do you have the same feeling with Falcon Crest (the mansion)? And how about Belvedere (that's the Colby residence, right?)? I guess Falcon Crest is (almost) the same thing, although I have my doubts about Belvedere. I've never seen The Colbys, so I wouldn't even know what the place looks like!

    BJ
  5. [​IMG]

    SOUTHFORK sounds like home, CARRINGTONS' mansion is only a mansion among many others, another difference is that you could and still can visit real SOUTHFORK, not CARRINGTONS', I think it a big part of that "home personality".

    SOUTHFORK lives for itself and not only because EWINGS are here.

    And I do not agree with mikerg, there is nothing more clean, pretty and carefully maintained like SOUTHFORK.
  6. denvertrash

    denvertrash Guest

    well, don't you think this post is a little biased, of course dallas fans are going to perfer southfork, and dynasty fans are going to perfer the mansion. I would have to disagree the carrington mansion was as much a character in dynasty as southfork was in dallas, it represented the lavish lifestyle of the carringtons as it was desired by character and tormented others. It was the most important carringon possesion and if you remember it drove blake to violence when alexis took it. Also the carrington mansion feels like a set because it was a set. And to respond that you can't visit the carrington masion, of course you can, it is the famous filoli mansion south of San Fransisco. If i had to choose between the dynasty or dallas home i would hands down choose a 48 room mansion than a ranch and if we wern't biased fans trying to protect our favorite shows i am sure we all would perfer a 500 acre 48 room mansion than a cattle ranch
  7. sorry I did not know you could visit CARRINGTON'S mansion...but I guess, like many people ignored it...
    SOUTHFORK is worldwide famous, and everybody knows where it is...
    but I assume that CARRINGTON'S mansion ( why doesn't it have a name ? ) is more imposing & wealthy.
  8. haljordan28

    haljordan28 Guest

    come on....the southfork ranch was on how many acres of land? Didn't JR say you would have to pack a lunch if you wanted to drive across southfork? That must be huge..the Dynasty mansion grounds looked cramped. Give me southfork anyday.
    Anyone here besides me like to get drunk while watching Dallas? lol
  9. rebeccabarnes

    rebeccabarnes New Member

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    There's nothing wrong with cows, dirt and animals that's one of the why I love Southfork!

    Of course I'm a nature girl, I love nature.
    [​IMG]

    The Carrington mansion was too cold and sophisticated for my taste. Sorry. [​IMG]
  10. JazzMan

    JazzMan Active Member

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    To get picky, I remember a reference to Southfork being around 100,000 acres. That's about 316 acres squared.

    An acre is roughly 209' squared.

    So, if the ranch were in the shape of a large square, each side would be 316 x 209' which comes out to around only 12.5 miles of road frontage.

    Maybe a horse ride around the ranch would require packing lunch and dinner.

    I've been to Southfork, and love the wide open spaces, as they were in '93. Not sure how built up it is there now. I'm sure it's still beautiful, based on aerial photos I've seen of the area.
  11. gravy47

    gravy47 Active Member

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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> Anyone here besides me like to get drunk while watching Dallas? <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
    [​IMG]
  12. JazzMan

    JazzMan Active Member

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    Well, a little bourbon helps you ponder things like the road frontage of Southfork!
  13. JazzMan

    JazzMan Active Member

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    Funny tho', off the subject of the ranch. When I decided to select a 'drink' to learn to enjoy, everyone I knew drank Scotch. Well, based on Dallas, I said to myself "Self, I'm going to learn to enjoy bourbon. And I have. My friends snicker, but I tell 'em it's a MAN's drink, not that soda pop from Scotland.
  14. gravy47

    gravy47 Active Member

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    I enjoy a bourbon and branch daily.....

    Wild Turkey is the best in my opinon.....Those people have made a lot of money off of me over the years...LOL [​IMG]
  15. CarlD

    CarlD Well-Known Member

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    Been watching Dynasty reruns on Sat nights, they seemed to follow Dallas' footsteps with scenes shot outside the mansion, at least for the first season, still not as recognizable as SF.
  16. James from London

    James from London Well-Known Member

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    Southfork plays a bigger part in the DALLAS backstory, or "mythology", than the Carrington mansion does in DYNASTY's. Part of the Barnes/Ewing feud hinges on the fact that Ellie married Jock to save the ranch during the depression. Also, the untapped oil under Section 40 of Southfork is a running theme throughout the series. The ranch also evokes the folklore of Texas, and the Western mythology the show is steeped in. The DYNASTY mansion, impressive though it is, is simply where the Carringtons live. It is not linked to the Carrington family history in quite the same way that Southfork is to the Ewings, or to the rest of Colarado the way Southfork is to Texas.

    Obviously, DYNASTY is more realistic in depicting a group of multi-millionaires living in a 48-bedroom mansion as opposed to a seven bedroom ranch house, but what it sacrifices for that opulence, is the sense of place and intimacy that Southfork has. The very fact that the Carringtons and Colbys lead such a jet set life means that there is a feeling of anonimity about the various foreign hotel rooms they find themselves in. Add to this that the show never went on location to any of the foreign locations depicted, (or even Denver itself after the pilot season) means that there is a sense of DYNASTY taking place in a vacuum, rather than being firmly rooted in Texas soil the way DALLAS was. I would say, though, that this was part of DYNASTY's charm. However, when DALLAS tried to go international during the dream season, its Texan atmosphere was lost, and the show did not have DYNASTY's sense of grandeur and flamboyance to compensate.

    I think it's hard to get a sense of Southfork's splendour from the way it was photographed onscreen. Aside from early in Season 1 and the beginning of Season 8, the ranch house exterior was always filmed in the same unimaginative way. It was never photographed as gorgeously as Gary's ranch on KNOTS LANDING was during KL Season 5, for instance - although I understand from Pisces that, as Gary's was not a working cattle ranch, it probably was prettier anyway.

    In the first two seasons of DYNASTY, when Alexis lived like a troll at the bottom of the garden, there was a greater sense of atmosphere and place about the Carrington mansion. There was something wonderfully gothic about the house in FALCON CREST during the first few seasons, complete with a "Mad Woman in the Attic" right out of JANE EYRE - i.e. Emma. However, when the show then went in a more comedic direction, the house was literally lightened up, and a lot of that sinister atmosphere was lost.

    You should ask this question on the DYNASTY forum, Milosr. As Denvertrash says, you'd most likely get a very different response!
  17. denvertrash

    denvertrash Guest

    i think you also have to take into consideration that the name of the show was DALLAS so of course the dallas setting was important to dallas because the show was also a saga of a texan family which aparently in not like a regular family(LOL!). The name of dynasty was dynasty which emphisized more of wealth and glittering things, the denver setting was not that important dynasty would have been the same show either in a midwest setting or an urban metropolis.I would agree that the city of dallas was more important to the show dallas than the city of denver to the show dynasty. But i have to disagree that the mansion was not as much a character on dynasty than on dallas, it was all about possesion the homes on these two shows signified a haven but they were mostly about possesion and these were the two most important possesions to the ewings and the carringtons. Also i heard that the filoli mansion has about 550 acres which is not small.
  18. memphis

    memphis Guest

    I never toured the Fioli Mansion where Dynasty was set but I have toured Southfork and was surprised to find the pool appears much larger on TV. I always felt like Southfork did appear to suit Ewing/country tastes and looks like what a "real" working ranch might look like, but I liked the grandiose glamor of the Carrington estate.
    It always appeared as if the well-heeled Carringtons were richer and thier mansion showed it. It is a bit museum-like but it WAS the 80's after all and over done hair/excessive furnishings were the in thing. I think the individual suites were more suited to distinct family members personalities but the common area rooms like the Library and Dining Rooms had to have a showplace look about them to carry off the 80's adage of your home being your calling card for business. After all, Blake and Krystle hosted more parties, fundraisers andbusiness dinners there than JR and Sue Ellen ever did at thier place (to be fair though, it was actually Mama's place). Too bad really, JR could have used Southfork as a tax write off (assuming he paid taxes!)
    To quote another 80's (real life) soap villian :
    "Only the little people pay taxes" - Leona (even sounds like a soap name) Helmsley
  19. Two Stick

    Two Stick Guest

    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by james from london:
    Southfork plays a bigger part in the DALLAS backstory, or "mythology", than the Carrington mansion does in DYNASTY's. Part of the Barnes/Ewing feud hinges on the fact that Ellie married Jock to save the ranch during the depression. Also, the untapped oil under Section 40 of Southfork is a running theme throughout the series. The ranch also evokes the folklore of Texas, and the Western mythology the show is steeped in. The DYNASTY mansion, impressive though it is, is simply where the Carringtons live. It is not linked to the Carrington family history in quite the same way that Southfork is to the Ewings, or to the rest of Colarado the way Southfork is to Texas.

    Obviously, DYNASTY is more realistic in depicting a group of multi-millionaires living in a 48-bedroom mansion as opposed to a seven bedroom ranch house, but what it sacrifices for that opulence, is the sense of _place_ and intimacy that Southfork has. The very fact that the Carringtons and Colbys lead such a jet set life means that there is a feeling of anonimity about the various foreign hotel rooms they find themselves in. Add to this that the show never went on location to any of the foreign locations depicted, (or even Denver itself after the pilot season) means that there is a sense of DYNASTY taking place in a vacuum, rather than being firmly rooted in Texas soil the way DALLAS was. I would say, though, that this was part of DYNASTY's charm. However, when DALLAS tried to go international during the dream season, its Texan atmosphere was lost, and the show did not have DYNASTY's sense of grandeur and flamboyance to compensate.

    I think it's hard to get a sense of Southfork's splendour from the way it was photographed onscreen. Aside from early in Season 1 and the beginning of Season 8, the ranch house exterior was always filmed in the same unimaginative way. It was never photographed as gorgeously as Gary's ranch on KNOTS LANDING was during KL Season 5, for instance - although I understand from Pisces that, as Gary's was not a working cattle ranch, it probably _was_ prettier anyway.

    In the first two seasons of DYNASTY, when Alexis lived like a troll at the bottom of the garden, there was a greater sense of atmosphere and place about the Carrington mansion. There was something wonderfully gothic about the house in FALCON CREST during the first few seasons, complete with a "Mad Woman in the Attic" right out of JANE EYRE - i.e. Emma. However, when the show then went in a more comedic direction, the house was literally lightened up, and a lot of that sinister atmosphere was lost.

    You should ask this question on the DYNASTY forum, Milosr. As Denvertrash says, you'd most likely get a very different response! <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Mr James has a way of summing up everything very nicely. Rarely misses a note.
  20. miliosr

    miliosr Guest

    Thanks to one and all for the interesting responses. I suppose trying to determine which house is superior is similar to trying to determine which band is superior, The Beatles or The Rolling Stones. They're both wonderful -- they're just different brands of wonderful.

    (And, for the record, my favorite TV soap opera house is neither Southfork nor the Carrington mansion but Collinwood on Dark Shadows.)

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