Dallas Character Afton-- smarter then given credit

Discussion in 'Dallas - The Original Series' started by Soaplover, Jan 14, 2017.

  1. Soaplover

    Soaplover Soap Chat Active Member

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    Even though Dallas preferred writing for the men over the women...I have to say that they still created some memorable female characters at least in the early years of the show.

    Afton was a unique character in that she wasn't all good nor all bad...she was a grey character with a lot of potential and avenues to explore.

    She was probably the best pairing for Cliff and while it was a shame for them to break up, it showed that she knew she was worth more then what Cliff thought.

    Even though most of the characters viewed her as a typical dumb blonde...what she lacked in book smarts, she more then made up for in street smarts.

    She could hold her own against JR ( including a very telling scene in season 4 where she picked up on JR'S weak spot...sue Ellen with Cliff)...as well as pegging fairly early that Katherine had designs on Bobby. The few times that Katherine would try to demise Afton, Afton would fire back with a veiled reply that she knew more about what was going on then people thought. Two such scenes were in the ladies room at oil barons ball plus the scene where she sticks up for cliff when Katherine is furious at cliff for thwarting her orders to have Bobby use a drill.

    Seeing the closeness that she had with Rebecca and Pam makes me truly think hack Cidre didn't truly study up on the show'some history since Bobby accused Afton of causing trouble in the new series..yet it made no sense since Aston was close to pam and even tried to warn them of Katherine.

    Odd that she was introduced as Mitch sister...yet had more of a presence in the long run then Mitch. It's a combination of writing and acting.
     
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  2. Karin Schill

    Karin Schill Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I agree, Afton's character evolved over time and she was definitely smarter than people gave her credits for.

    I wish she would have stuck around and become a regular when she came back to the show in 1989. But I guess Audrey really wanted to focus on her singing career at that point.
     
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  3. Tatianna

    Tatianna Soap Chat Fan

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    I believe both Afton and Lucy had street smarts that enabled them to see the dark and devious side of people, understood their motives to cause problems and pain to others to achieve whatever they desired.

    In the beginning, Lucy was a conniving and manipulative spoiled brat who did whatever it took to get what she wanted, even plotting against her teacher and accusing him of attempted rape. Afton arrived for her brother's wedding inquiring about the Ewing wealth and seducing J.R. to bankroll her lifestyle.

    Neither Afton nor Lucy were saints and they could spot that trait in others in a heartbeat.:clap:
     
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  4. Presea

    Presea Soap Chat Addict

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    Afton's name should have been Cassandra. It means, "One whose warnings are ignored." Afton tried to warn everybody about things, and they never listened to her. She also saved Cliff and Bobby's lives by finding them when they were laying unconscious on the floor, but they never even bothered to thank her for it! I always thought that Afton started out as a clone of Kristin, but then changed into one of the smartest characters on the show. I also thought that she was the only woman Cliff was with who truly understood him. I never thought his other girlfriends (Mandy, Jamie, Liz) ever really did.
     
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  5. Presea

    Presea Soap Chat Addict

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    A lot of the female characters had drastic character changes like this. And they weren't always just from bad to good like Lucy and Afton, either.
     
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  6. Sarah

    Sarah Super Moderator Staff Member Original Member Since 1998

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    Afton could be smart but she was certainly one the most hypocritical characters on the show. Sleeping with JR and then attacking Sue Ellen when she finds out Cliff has feelings for her is hardly smart. I didn't like Afton at all. Nasty. As @Tatianna says, she recognised her own flaws in others - ie spotting Katherine's antics a mile off!
     
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  7. Barbara Fan

    Barbara Fan Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Afton started out as a gold digger who saw $$$$ when her brother married into the Ewing family
    But as time evolved and she developed a relationship with Cliff, she changed and she really did love and care for him and looked out for him, despite the fact he treated her dreadfully at times.
    She was perceptive, could see though Katherine, sussed that Clayton had feelings for Sue Ellen and after she slept with JR could see that he used and abused people for his own enjoyment
     
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  8. Ms Southworth

    Ms Southworth Soap Chat Dream Maker

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    I second that ... ... you're spot on :yep:
     
  9. Tatianna

    Tatianna Soap Chat Fan

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    I have to agree, that Afton was never a favorite of mine either. The word "Nasty" is an accurate description of what she was early on. Getting in bed with J.R. at Southfork, while Sue Ellen was at Lucy and Mitch's wedding reception was beyond slutty and low. While JR did "use" her for his own purposes, she deserved it, but then she was doing the same thing.

    Even though her character changed during the later years, my first impression as the gold digging tramp stuck with me forever.:slap:
     
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  10. Karin Schill

    Karin Schill Super Moderator Staff Member

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    You can tell I began to watch the show later on. Having watched the last four seasons first my first impression of Afton was when she came back into town with Pamela Rebecca and met Cliff at the club. I liked her more than Cliff's other girlfriend and thought she was the best match for him. This impression stuck with me as well.

    Later on of course I hated the stuff with JR and how she ruined JR/SE's happiness. It was very low how she slept with JR in his own bed. But at that point Afton was never meant to stick around. She was just a minor character there to serve a purpose. It wasn't until they learnt Audrey could sing that she somehow got invited to stay longer on the show.
     
  11. Ms Southworth

    Ms Southworth Soap Chat Dream Maker

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    I certainly didn't like the behavior Afton pulled off at the wedding. But I'm willing to excuse it due to her young age ... after all the couldn't have been more than 20 (since she was Mitch's younger sister, and he was still in medical school). Most likely, she was intrigued by the fact that someone so powerful as JR was paying attention to her! And at that age having sex with men (i.e. any man) was her ticket "somewhere"?

    As Afton matured, she turned into a much more likeable woman ... and the transformation, IMO, was trustworthy! Barbara Fan described it perfectly!
     
  12. Soaplover

    Soaplover Soap Chat Active Member

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    People do change..and it wasn't as if the show whitewashed Afton's early actions....there was always a tension between her and Sue Ellen that never went away. I do think the one consistent thing the new Dallas did was show Sue Ellen and afton had no love lost between them...though I do think afton and JR sleeping together at Southfork in their bed was probably what bothered Sue Ellen most of all....and why she never truly forgave Afton....while Mandy Winger...oddly..they got along at Jr's funeral...but I don't recall if Mandy slept with JR at south fork or not.
     
  13. Justine

    Justine Soap Chat Fan

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    Like most, I found it difficult to like Afton after she slept with J.R. in his and Sue Ellen's bed - talk about a new low :re: - but I did warm up to her eventually. I felt especially sorry for her when she slept with Gil Thurman to secure Cliff's business deal.
     
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  14. tommie

    tommie Soap Chat Star

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    I dunno
    I also think the reason why her ill will towards Afton stuck around versus those towards Mandy was because Sue Ellen really believed at that point that JR had changed - that they were going to be happy, he wouldn't cheat, yadda-yadda. When Mandy came around... well, Sue Ellen knew JR wasn't going to change at that point, so it probably hurt less.
     
  15. Chris2

    Chris2 Soap Chat Active Member

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    Afton had a high EQ, which set her apart from most of the other characters. But it was difficult at times to separate that from the gold digger she was early in the series.
     
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  16. Richard Channing

    Richard Channing Soap Chat Enthusiast

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    It's funny how characters like Afton get called trashy and a ho (and usually by women), yet JR gets a free pass. At least Afton was a free agent. JR was married, and was cheating with his wife in their bed! While she was outside!!
     
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  17. Jon Ewing Jr.

    Jon Ewing Jr. Soap Chat Member

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    Afton was a dirtbag, no other way around it. Sacking up with JR in Sue Ellens bed while she was outside was just uncalled for. Still cant believe Wentworth left her money. I would have been pissed personally
     
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  18. Mustard

    Mustard Soap Chat Fan

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    J.R. certainly had a respect for Afton's intuition, especially after she spotted that Clayton had fallen for Sue Ellen when J.R. himself never had a clue before she told him. The irony with Afton's relationship with Cliff is that Cliff was initially infatuated with her and she called him a "loser", but then it flipped the other way. Even though they had a certain something that made them special, I always sensed that Cliff never quite forgot that "loser" remark and it showed in his treatment of her a lot of the time.
     
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