Rewatching 87-88

Discussion in 'Dallas - The Original Series' started by Chris2, Nov 27, 2019.

  1. Chris2

    Chris2 Soap Chat Fan

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    Nope, just one that works with the child’s mother on the problem, instead of one who declares himself the decision maker because he’s the man of the house. Ray had been Charlie’s stepfather for a very short time, so Jenna should have been leading on parenting decisions.
     
  2. TJames03

    TJames03 Soap Chat TV Fanatic

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    This is when Hagman’s ego was at its zenith and was destroying the show. The second VP left the show it was OVER.......
     
  3. Kenny Coyote

    Kenny Coyote Soap Chat TV Fanatic

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    If Hagman's ego was what you say, how do you explain he allowed them to have Sue Ellen, with her mountain of knowledge about business, wreck JR's plans to take over West Star? If his ego was what you say, he would have demanded JR prevail in that situation, to never allow JR to be humiliated like he was in Haleyville, to never let JR be humiliated like he was in the sanitarium. JR would have been doing nothing but winning because he'd want his character to look as impressive as possible. Instead, Hagman gave and gave to make other characters look strong at JR's expense. That indicates anything but an out of control ego.
     
  4. Snarky's Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come

    Snarky's Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come Soap Chat Oracle

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    Having a big ego doesn't necessarily mean demanding your character prevail in every scenario. At one point, Larry even suggested to Katzman that JR "lose everything" because Hagman thought it would make a good storyline.

    People's egos work differently, and you can have a big one without being totally subjective.
     
  5. Kenny Coyote

    Kenny Coyote Soap Chat TV Fanatic

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    That's a possibility, as counter-intuitive as it is. I have never been in the acting business so I certainly can't say their egos don't work that way.

    The thing that makes it seem kind of unlikely to me is that with an ego problem, people tend to want to be the center of attention and are not too .concerned with anyone else. So the opposite of that - being generous - is to give to other people. To think: I'l allow my character to get humiliated by Sue Ellen and that woman who just joined the show,the Creider woman, both make me look like crap so they can look impressive and smart and all of that, because I want to make sure their characters get respect from the audience" - Honestly, that sounds pretty generous of him to allow their characters to get the benefit of having foiled him and achieving their goal, while JR is now somewhat diminished in the eyes of the audience -" maybe he's not as smart as we thought." This are generous actions, and I can't say I've ever heard any complain about anyone with a big ego: "When his ego gets big, he has no regard for himself because he's so busy giving to others, he's just too generous"! That goes against everything I ever read about human psychology.

    So while I'm not sure about that, here's something I do think is very accurate: Larry Hagman was given an executive position and his response was he didn't know anything about how to do that -he was an actor. They responded: Don't worry, you won't have to actually do anything, and the job-title means your paycheck will be bigger." OK, I'm being offered a bigger paycheck with no added responsibilities; who would turn that down"?

    I don't expect anybody to turn that down, but from other things forum members have posted, it turned out they actually did give him some new responsibilities regarding storylines and the directions in which they were taking his character and others. Larry Hagman was a brilliant actor, and remarkable at coming up with quick ad-libs for JR to say. He wasn't a writer though, he didn't know how to help produce a show and he even said so but Katzmann gave him writing and producing responsibilities anyway.

    If anyone was "destroying the show" as an earlier posts claims Hagman's ego was, I blame Katzmann for taking someone who isn't a writer, doesn't claim to be one, or even want to be one, and lets him dictate when his character is going to prevail and when he's going to fall flat on his face. When you've got one of the most popular TV characters fall time on your show, you have to treat it seriously, because it's such a valuable commodity. People don't like JR because he's nice; they liked him because he was so good at what he did. They were impressed at the things he could get done witch nobody else could pull off! How can you risk having that character and its value tarnished, because the actor thinks it would be amusing to slip on a banana peel and then wink at the audience?!?!

    You've got a character who became the biggest star on TV, a character who the audience things is one cold, calculating, SOB - a badass in the boardroom, and you're going to let him look like a clown because he thinks it would be amusing??? Just to give him laughs during his "day at the office"? Whoever allowed that to happen, whoever thought Hagman could and should make those decisions and then gave him that particular the of responsibility and creative control, that's the person to blame!

    If Hagman were phoning in his perfromnces(which he never did, even in the worst seasons), that's on Hagman. If the executives put Hagman in a position of a writer or producer - that's on whoever had the dumb idea to give him that job.
     
  6. TJames03

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    Hagman was NOT a writer or a producer and shouldn’t have had say in what happened to any character on the show. He had no talent in that and he and PD killed Dallas with the egos. Just look at the quality of the show as their egos grew.
     
  7. Snarky's Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come

    Snarky's Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come Soap Chat Oracle

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    The quality of the show spiraled because David Paulsen left. For the 11 years after JR was shot, even when Katzman was there, DALLAS didn't work whenever Paulsen was gone.

    Yeah, the 87/88 season wasn't the best, and it was Paulsen's last year, but he wanted to leave the series, and he may have had his reasons (like being essentially demoted when Art Lewis came back this year) and Lenny's apparent plans to make DALLAS lighter and more facetious (which seems likely since Larry snipped in the press that Paulsen leaving was probably a good thing because he "doesn't have a sense of humor.")

    Nobody came close to Paulsen story-wise, not even Katzman.



    "Oh, poor Pelovitz --- nobody fully appreciated you, even as they profited from your labor..."
    [​IMG]
     
  8. TJames03

    TJames03 Soap Chat TV Fanatic

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    Yes! That’s it! Dallas became a sitcom!
     
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  9. Kenny Coyote

    Kenny Coyote Soap Chat TV Fanatic

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    What would you know about their egos? Did you personally know them then? You're the one who claims to know Victoria Principal, aren't you? Did her ego kill Dallas too, or did she have a humble, modest ego back then?

    I don't claim to know any of the three of them, and I'm no psychologist, but if any of the three were candidates for having an inflated ego, I'd have to say the one with the highest likelihood for an ego problem was the one kept writing testimonials on personal greatness.
     
  10. Kenny Coyote

    Kenny Coyote Soap Chat TV Fanatic

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    Didn't Larry Hagman also say something very similar about Phil Capice? Frankly, I think Hagman should have been grateful for Paulsen and Capice! Larry Hagman was fortunate enough to be on the most successful drama series on TV, he was the highest paid actor on TV, and his big concern was that he didn't think they were funny??? That's absurd. Talk about misplaced priorities! Maybe sense of humor was Hagman's criterion for stockbrokers too.
     
  11. Chris2

    Chris2 Soap Chat Fan

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    The Weststar plot is pretty bad. We invest a whole season in a storyline where Jeremy Wendell comes out on top? Who wants to see that? JR goes into the board meeting completely unprepared - he doesn’t really know if he has the votes, and he doesn’t know that Wendell owns a bunch of stock via a dummy corporation. C’mon - he’s way too smart for that. And we have all these random acquaintances buying stock and no one else? And how did Sue Ellen build her lingerie shop into a what is at least a 30 million dollar business (that’s how much she got a loan for) in a little over a year?

    Ridiculous.
     
  12. Kenny Coyote

    Kenny Coyote Soap Chat TV Fanatic

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    It was a very unsatisfying ending - to see JR do all that work, all that build-up and then - things just end up how they were originally. I never thought it mad sense to begin with to have JR try to take over West Star because they were supposed to be a massive company - much bigger than Ewing Oil, and then, after Ewing Oil has to pay a third of its net worth to the government, they're down to 1.3 billion dollars. even with the help from Cliff and April, there is just no way they should have been able to buy a company worth maybe 10 or 20 billion dollars.
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2019
  13. Snarky's Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come

    Snarky's Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come Soap Chat Oracle

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    Well, Larry criticized both men publicly, but for different reasons. Larry, like Lenny, thought Capice was an obstructionist to Katzman's vision for the show. But Larry apparently just snapped at Paulsen for leaving.
     
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  14. Kenny Coyote

    Kenny Coyote Soap Chat TV Fanatic

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    Do you happen to know who David Paulsen replaced when he started writing for Dallas?
     
  15. Snarky's Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come

    Snarky's Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come Soap Chat Oracle

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    Camille Marchetta, more or less, who was there from 1978 to 1981. Paulsen was there as a free-lance writer circa 1981 after 'WSJR?" and then became an official story editor in 1982. Other story editors worked on the show in the interim between Marchetta and Paulsen.

    But screen credits are tricky and contracts are, too. It seems obvious that Paulsen is exerting greater influence on the scripts and the story flow by the spring of 1982 before he gets his "story editor" title that fall.

    Katzman, Paulsen, Art Lewis and Charlene Tilton all left in 1985 when Patrick exited, and then Katzman and Paulsen both returned with Duffy in 1986. Art Lewis returned in 1987, and Charlene returned in 1988 just as Paulsen was leaving to go produce Season 9 of DYNASTY (a show sinking faster than DALLAS) where Paulsen gave them their best year in many seasons, although too late to save it.

    Paulsen said he was looking to leave DALLAS in 1988, and given the overly-satiric direction the show went in after that, one has to presume Paulsen didn't want to participate in a too-silly DALLAS (hence, Larry's snippy comment about Paulsen not having a sense of humor?). As David Jacobs has said, you can have humor and parody under the surface with these shows, but they have to be played absolutely straight on the face of it. And Leonard Katzman had apparently eventually decided he disagreed -- and so he brought in Howard Lakin (who I'd argue is the less serious dramatist) to replace Paulsen.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2019
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  16. Kenny Coyote

    Kenny Coyote Soap Chat TV Fanatic

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    Nice post! I read about David Paulsen on IMDb but they didn't go into that kind of detail. I remember seeing the name Camille Marchetta quite a few times on the credits of early episodes.
     
  17. Via The Void

    Via The Void Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    It certainly wouldn't be a pittance!! Geddit!!? :p
     
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  18. Rove

    Rove Soap Chat Star

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    Is there a consensus on this thread that the loss of Pam (Victoria Principle) is the greatest tragedy to befall on Dallas? Her departure certainly cast a long shadow over Dallas...right up until 2013.
     
  19. Kenny Coyote

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    No. I think the decline in the quality of the writing was worse.

    As for for loss of any single character, Bobby and Pam were both important. If Patrick Duffy had left when Victoria Principal left and she had left when he left, I don't think the quality of the show would have have turned out much different.
     
  20. Laurie Marr

    Laurie Marr Soap Chat Active Member

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    Digger’s Daughter’s demise should have heralded the demise of the show - at least insofar as fidelity to the overarching narrative of Dallas is concerned. There’s at least 3 periods of Dallas for me: 78-87; 87-91 and TNT. The last two periods have little claim on my affections - or recollection.
     
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