April Was Underrated

Discussion in 'Dallas - The Original Series' started by Kenny Coyote, Oct 3, 2018.

  1. Kenny Coyote

    Kenny Coyote Soap Chat Fan

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    In the waning years of Dallas there were plenty of new characters who added either no value or next to no value to the show.

    In a terrible decision to try to make the show look younger, they brought in the characters of James Beaumont and Michelle Stevens. How many people thought they added anything significant to the show? They couldn't act, especially Sasha Mitchell, and I think the storyline between him and JR was lame.

    Before them they had Tommy McKay and his sister Tracy. Again these people could not act well at all, and they cheapened the show. Then there was Liz who they brought in as Cliff's love interest. She wasn't as bad at acting as some of the others I've just named but Cliff had finally done something smart. He learned that revenge was a waste of time. He said exactly those words to Sue Ellen who was still obsessed with revenge. When Liz sold her brother's company to JR, Cliff lost his mind and became the same old bitter, obsessed with revenge man he'd been before. His self destructiveness cost him a chance at marriage and happiness with Liz and left him on the same situation he was in for most of Dallas - back on the outside and looking in the door again.

    April was the one bright spot in the waning years of Dallas. She could play a bad girl or a good girl and was equally good at both. She had a great sense of playfulness and fun about her (mainly when she was playing a good girl) that just made you feel happy to watch her. No other actress in the main cast of Dallas had ever exuded those qualities before. She also accomplished something no character in Dallas ever had before, at least not to my recollection. She had this rare ability (for Dallas anyway) of being able to find something good in almost everybody. Because of this she was simultaneously friends with JR, Bobby and Cliff! What woman in Dallas had ever managed to do that before? An added perk was she was beautiful. That beauty combined all the other attributes I've just named made her by far the best character to be added to the show in its waning years and unfortunately the rapidly declining quality of the show at that time caused her to be very underrated as a character and Sheree J. Wilson to be very underrated as an actress.
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2018
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  2. KayLloyd

    KayLloyd Soap Chat Fan

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    Good description of why you liked April. Have to respectfully disagree with the depiction of the character and Sheree Wilson's acting though. April was fine while she was serving her intended purpose as Jack's gold digging ex-wife out to get her half of his shares of Ewing Oil, and Wilson's portrayal of that incarnation of April was certainly decent, but both overstayed their welcome. Katzman embarrassed himself by keeping both of them around because of his obsession with Wlison. Bobby would never have given April the time of day, and her "Love me or else!" stalking of him was annoying. She needed to be hit over the head with a copy of "He's Just Not That Into You!" and a restraining order, but Bobby was too worn out and polite to do it. The preposterous reincarnation of April as Snow White that was necessary in order to keep Wilson around and forced romance between Bobby and April was painful to watch, and Wilson's performance in the "I'm going to unfold for you like a mystery novel." dream love scene after April's death was especially cringe worthy.
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2018
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  3. Miss Piggy and Toni's Very Glamorous Christmas

    Miss Piggy and Toni's Very Glamorous Christmas Soap Chat Dream Maker

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    [​IMG]

    She acted a LOT better than Ms. Wilson.
    And even could move her face more expressively!​
     
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  4. Karin Schill

    Karin Schill Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I agree that April was underrated. I think a lot of fans doesn't like her simply because she wasn't Pam. But I never saw her as a Pam replacement as the characters were really different to begin with and I enjoyed Bobby & April's love story. It was not the same thing as what Bobby and Pam had, as they had a marriage while Bobby and April had a courtship. Yet I wish we would have gotten to watch their marriage and that April hadn't been killed on the honeymoon. It was such a horrible ending to their story. :(

    Also I liked the fact that April and Michelle had a normal sister's relationship. :)
     
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  5. Clubsoda

    Clubsoda Soap Chat Member

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    I agree with every word Kay Lloyd wrote.

    Only liked April her first season. After that just no and she and Patrick just had no chemistry together whatsoever and after watching his sizzling chemistry with Victoria for 9 years it was terrible. Why settle for corned beef hash when we'd already been treated with years of sizzling steak.

    Btw what else could she have been considered as other than Pam's replacement? She was forced upon her man and become a sister figure to her brother.

    You can't force onscreen chemistry however it's either there or its not. With Wilson it was not.
     
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  6. Treeviewer

    Treeviewer Soap Chat TV Fanatic

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    Well reasoned opinion, but then again I liked Tracy so it's all a matter of personal taste really.

    That did give rise to one of my favourite freeze-frames. The three of them outside her hospital room after she'd been beaten up. The only time they were all united.
     
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  7. ArchieLucasCarringtonEwing1989

    ArchieLucasCarringtonEwing1989 Soap Chat Addict

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    Sheree J Wilson I'm sure is a nice person, but I could never take to April, and not so.much because she replaced Pam, but the fact that she was shoe horned from season 11 onwards, and went from gold digger to a nun overnight.

    Bobby in truth should never have gotten into a relationship with anyone after Pam, at least not for a fair few years, Bobby only got together with April because he was lonely and wanted a mother figure for Christopher.
     
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  8. Kenny Coyote

    Kenny Coyote Soap Chat Fan

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    You hit the nail on the head when you said you think a lot of fans don't like April simply because she isn't Pam! If Bobby had married Tracy McKay then Tracy would have been the one who was hated instead of April. To me it seems like they're being jealous for Pam, as if Pam wouldn't want Bobby to ever remarry. That's not the kind of woman Pam was. She wouldn't Bobby to have to be alone for the rest of his life. He was still a young man when she divorced him for the last time.

    I was so sad when April got shot on her honeymoon. Seeing the red blood on her white dress was a very powerful image. I felt very bad for both April and Bobby.

    Another great reply! Yes, it is a matter of taste and we all have our own tastes which is one of the things that makes this forum fun.

    I remember that scene where Bobby, JR, and Cliff were all outside April's hospital room. I loved the scene where Bobby beat up Tommy McKay for what he did to April. I think everyone did except of course Carter McKay! Carter walked up to the three of them and he pushed Bobby against the wall. Bobby said "I'll give you that one but you're not getting another one." McKay then said "You nearly killed my boy"! Bobby said something about he should see what Tommy did to April and McKay replied "And who made you the damned hanging judge"? He went on to say words to the effect of Tommy and Tracy are the only 2 things in the world that matter to him and Bobby has hurt them both. That was such a powerful scene! I loved how April was able to be friends with JR, Bobby and Cliff. She always tried to see the good things in people instead of looking for their flaws. I thought she was a really good young woman.

    It's been said that he married her too soon but Bobby had already had a relationship with Tracy McKay which did not work out, and then Bobby saw that blonde haired woman he knew from college - I think her name was Tammy. Then Bobby saw April but interrupted that to see the woman who was a real estate agent and looked like Pam. But Bobby ended that as well and went back to April so I don't think his marriage to April was too sudden or too early. Any of those women could have been stepmothers for Christopher if that had been all Bobby was looking for. None of them were bad women; they just weren't as special as April in my opinion.
     
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  9. Barbara Belle of The Ball

    Barbara Belle of The Ball Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Not in the fan club of either the character or actress playing her as she was pretty poor.

    I also hated tramp to saint in 2 series and oh how i cheered when she met her maker in Paris, always thought it was a pity it didnt happen about 3 seasons earlier

    Also used to wonder what hold she had on Uncle Lennie and his "favouring" her.

    April for me is about the dumbing down and beginning of the end for dallas
    A second rate character who could in NO WAY Hold a candle to the other females on the show and ESPECIALLY NOT Victoria Principal. I would have been happy for Bobby to marry Jenna but he had absolutely NO CHEMISTRY with SJW and their scenes are ones to FWD, also that whiny, simpering voice - shudder!

    And then came the annoying little sister and the writing was on the wall. Neither were fit to lick the boots of LG, VP, SH and BBG.



    yes its fair to say I wasnt a fan! :eck: :fp:
     
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  10. Miss Piggy and Toni's Very Glamorous Christmas

    Miss Piggy and Toni's Very Glamorous Christmas Soap Chat Dream Maker

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    First of all here´s this for the very lovely @Karin Schill::love8:

    Let´s move on. I believe it´s too simplistic to think that all of us fans would act or think the same way, and also that an adult person would react to a TV show like a teenager. We may have an "initial" opinion of a character from our first watch which may completely change with the passing of years.

    I dislike all about April for the abovementioned reasons but also because she kind of represents the decline of "Dallas". I don´t mean the obvious: her role of replacement for Pam. I mean a few things that are part of April´s character development and subplots. For one, she was introduced as the ex-wife of the son of a character who didn´t exist in the Ewingverse until Donna Reed´s appearance (go figure!): Jason Ewing. So she was part of one of the (least harmful) retcons in the show´s history, but April´s time on "Dallas" is full of them. Actually we could say she is a walking retcon...

    [​IMG]

    1) She was a gold-digger who could even sleep with creepy Jeremy Wendell to get big bucks. Can you go any low? Well, yes, if we remember that she also flirted with Cliff Barnes and Wes Parmalee in one occasion. So she was clearly into older men. Retcon: She became obsessed with the (very hot) prince of yuppies Bobby James Ewing.

    [​IMG]
    "April, we have so much in common:
    I also love Campari with soda!"​

    2) She didn´t only open her arms to old´ J.R. as part of the whole plot, but she did it several times. Why is this a retcon? Because when April was dating Bobby the following season, she confessed to him that she only did it ONCE, forced by J.R. to get what they both wanted. Just counting the times we saw J.R. walking into April´s bedroom, they were together in a couple of times. Or was the line to Bobby a way of implying that she was obviously lying to him in order to get into his pants?

    [​IMG]
    "J.R., I want to be a regular. Give it to me!"
    "Sweetie, let´s see your acting chops..."​


    3) So far, April was playing the victim role to attract the most shining knight in all Texas! And lying, because she was a big fat liar. She lied to the judge in her divorce hearing saying that she and Jack had bought a lot of things still unpaid (explained in April´s first scene); she lied to Bobby in her confession; she lied to Nicholas Pearce when she agreed to keep mum about his mysterious family (and caused indirectly the death of her detective because of that); she lied to her mother when got a call from her and told her she had a great life in Dallas, when actually she had a depression over the dumbest thing: not being invited to the Ewing BBQ. And then came her sister Michelle and April didn´t stop preaching her. St. April! Another retcon...Come on, Stevens woman! Grow up and fast!

    [​IMG]
    So she wanted to go to the BBQ
    to get dressed LIKE THAT?​


    4) Chasing Bobby became undeniable stalking when she followed her in his and J.R.´s trip to Austria. J.R. was in his honeymoon and Bobby was then available, yes, but when you chase someone you know from one country to another, and set up with him a Barbara Cartland-like appointment in a castle, without telling him who you are, in my book that´s stalking. Not to mention that April was recovering from a beating in Tommy McKay´s hands, which usually doesn´t make you feel like romancing and traveling around! But hey, Bobby, here´s a woman who is falling at your feet and wants to play the maid to rescue as you did with Pam in the good ol´ times. Let´s retcon Bobby now!

    [​IMG]
    And from now on,
    Patrick Duffy will be
    playing a goat...

    5) One of the nastiest things she did in the show was attacking Bobby´s other lovers (aka "the Bobbysuckers") verbally, no matter where they met. This was routine on series like "Dienasty" but not on "Dallas", where most women were a classy act (*cough cough* except you know who...). April was quite obviously a bitter loser, and she showed her manners in public (double shame!), even at OBB. Again, the latter seasons show April playing the model sister before Michelle, and well, again Bobby is shown as a passive, indecisive man who sees a double of her missing ex-wife and lets April go and begins to court the double! Formerly a man of honor, now he is retconned to become a total prick (not that April might be better than Margaret Michaels´ character!).

    upload_2018-10-5_19-58-38.jpeg
    When Pam met April:
    "Very nice. Cliff, who is that whore you are with?"​


    6) The top of retcons comes when April visits her mum at her hometown and the latter turns out to be a religious woman who supposedly tried to give her daughters a good education. Bad job, mommie dearest, in both cases! So April came from a conservative family and even finished high school, but somehow she ended up married to the Jacko (for Jack)...And the whole episode sort of implies that she always wanted to have a family and missed the peace and quietness of her town...She even has girlfriends there!! What does this have to do with the April that first came to Dallas and spent all the day getting tanned by the pool (and not getting hit by anyone there, really?)? At the end, she almost made me miss dear ol´ Afton and her "steal me away" tunes...! Retcon, retcon, retcon...

    upload_2018-10-5_19-54-22.jpeg
    "You got some hate mail?
    Who would want to hate me?"​


    One of the reasons that made me love "Dallas" was the fact that every turn and twist mattered, and nothing was ever forgotten (unless you slept with the foreman, of course...). It was like a big, pulpy American novel that was more and more absorbing, the saga CBS asked for, and even much more. I never watched the show to see good vs. bad, but to see the "greys" (pun intended) in every character, from Miss Ellie to Bobby to Jock and J.R. Seeing even Katherine´s real sweetness or compassion every once in awhile made me love the character even more.

    upload_2018-10-5_20-5-12.jpeg
    "Oh right now, I´d love to save those poor, poor whales..."​

    With so many retcons, especially after the dream solution (one whole year retconned, could it get worse? Oh yes, it could...), the show stopped being that big novel and became a big-budget daytime soap parody instead. One day you could end a season with Sue Ellen shooting J.R. a few bullets, and the next season, J.R. was perfect and no bullet had touched him (and Sue Ellen didn´t even cry for her dead lover for weeks...). It was like a total reset whenever they noticed the ratings were down as they did after Pam´s accident (really after Bobby´s death). And part of that was because of such characters as April...and Laurel Ellis, Lisa Alden, Kay Lloyd, Wilson Cryder, Dandy Dandridge, Tommy McKay, Tammy Kent, Vanessa Beaumont, Stephanie Rogers, etc.

    [​IMG]
    The unpopular guest stars from "Dallas" were put on this bus
    and abandoned in some desert. It was the "Cheater Bus Company".
    "Mandy Winger, your topless driver."
    I´m not including here all the new characters because I think some of them worked well at first, and others like James and Michelle, really were needed in a soap of the 90´s. James was eye-candy and right for his role, especially and in his first season, and Michelle was hit-and-miss, but eye-candy anyway, and also well-cast, though she became too relevant in the final season. She might as well have ridden into the sunset after April´s wedding. Besides, Michelle, the sister we didn´t know that existed, gave April a "raison d´être" before Ms. Wilson got pregnant and asked to be axed (pun intended too). Brothers and sisters and exes and parents populate soaps and are what they are made of.

    I hope something of this makes any sense anyway...
    :h3:
     
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  11. Karin Schill

    Karin Schill Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Thank you for the flowers @Toni . I am not quite sure why I'm getting them though. Is it because you are about to disagree with me? ;)

    You know this I completely agree with. We all have our own interpretations of the show and the way we watch it depends on a number of factors such as age, gender, cultural and social background to mention some. I think because we are fans it is possible that we view the show in a more similar way than people who are non-fans since we all belong to the same posting community and sometimes our discussions can influence the way we perceive the show. For instance it is possible to notice new details if someone else points them out to us.

    Anyway as for the age thing, I have noticed that in myself that my perspective and opinions has changed as I have gotten older. When I first watched Dallas I was 11-13 and I only watched the final four seasons. So well the first I saw of April was when she was trying to console Bobby at the hospital after Pam had been in that accident. So obviously I came to the conclusion that she was a nice person. So I loved April back then. Other young characters like Lucy, Charlie, Christopher, John Ross, Cally, James and Michelle were also really easy for me to relate to. So they were my favorites back then.

    Then I watched the show from the beginning and the whole way through when I was about 14-16 years old. When I watched the show then and had seen April sleeping with JR and being a bit of a gold digger the previous season I liked the character less. Also knowing Bobby and Pam's story I was not too fond of anyone taking Pam's place. Because at that time Bobby and Pam were my favorite tv couple.

    Then I rewatched the final five seasons of the show in german as a language exercise when I was about 17 or 18 I guess. I began liking April again.

    Finally I rewatched the whole show when I was about 24-25 years old and that's when I joined this community to discuss with other fans. During my final rewatch I came to love JR and Sue Ellen even more than Bobby and Pam since well being an adult I now understood them better. So well we are getting off topic here.

    But anyway I am back to my original opinion of April. I love the character and yes I do think she was underrated. :)
     
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  12. Miss Piggy and Toni's Very Glamorous Christmas

    Miss Piggy and Toni's Very Glamorous Christmas Soap Chat Dream Maker

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    Does one need a reason to send you flowers? Though...yes, I just wanted you to know for sure it wasn´t personal. Miss Piggy whispered into my ear that "gentlemen gift flowers...and diamonds too!".

    upload_2018-10-7_0-1-30.jpeg
     
  13. Laurie Marr

    Laurie Marr Soap Chat Member

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    April was all things to all people because she was a poorly conceived character. We had no real idea who she was and neither did the writers. I cared not a joy when she met her slo mo demise in Paris. That was principally because I was still collecting my jaw from the floor at the spectacle of good ol’ boy turned international man of mystery Jordan Lee being assassinated in a telephone kiosk. Yes, the same drawling, lugubrious Jordan Lee of fond remembrance who needed Andy Bradley present to stiffen his resolve whenever he chastised JR. It was like discovering Mavis Anderson ran a brothel to wile away the hours when Punk was attending to his property investments in Tapaka.

    By this point Dallas didn’t tell stories with any kind of integrity - it just did stuff. A bit like April.
     
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  14. Taylor The Red-Nosed Guzzler Jr.

    Taylor The Red-Nosed Guzzler Jr. Soap Chat Fan

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    a Mavis Anderson brothel would have made for a tremendous spinoff..
     
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  15. Miss Piggy and Toni's Very Glamorous Christmas

    Miss Piggy and Toni's Very Glamorous Christmas Soap Chat Dream Maker

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    I agree. Besides, if Punk had a secretary-lover, why couldn´t she get into her own business and make money? She would be discreet, of course...

    [​IMG]
     
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  16. Taylor The Red-Nosed Guzzler Jr.

    Taylor The Red-Nosed Guzzler Jr. Soap Chat Fan

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    later on, Punk could find out... and be surprisingly accepting, even enthusiastic. The show could then be titled The Pimp and the Punk
     
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