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Was April Killed Off In Hope For Pam Return?

Discussion in 'Dallas - The Original Series' started by cardiff1984, Sep 26, 2018.

  1. Kenny Coyote

    Kenny Coyote Soap Chat Enthusiast EXP: 12 Years

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    Willie, that's a well thought out answer. Maybe you don't have The Answer but what you wrote makes a lot of sense. I also agree that if it ain't broke don't fix it. I think they try to fix thing anyway because they're afraid people will get tired of it if they don't change it. That's one problem. Another problem is that with success it's human nature to tend to grow complacent and not work as hard on producing the best product possible like they did before they had reached the heights of success such as having the #1 rated show on TV.

    When I say I've never met anyone who likes Cliff I'm referring to all the people who I personally have known who watched Dallas (some of them watched it with me).

    It does depend on what one is looking for in a TV character. On this thread or even on this entire forum, we're not all looking for the same things. Bitter people just turn me off but I realize some people aren't turned off by bitter people. Some people might say Cliff's almost constant bitterness is justified. Even if I agreed that it's justified, and I don't agree, still lots of people in the world have had bad things happen to their fathers or even themselves and could have chosen to remain bitter people because of what happened, but they chose to look at the good things in life that they are thankful for and they concentrate on those things rather than dwell on the negative things that have happened to them.
     
  2. Richard Channing

    Richard Channing Soap Chat Star EXP: 6 Years

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    Well sure, in real life I feel the same way about people who are bitter, but soaps are all about bitterness and vendettas, that's what provides the majority of the drama and makes for a good story.

    So by your standards I guess you should hate JR as well, who was also very bitter. He was bitter about his brother marrying a Barnes. Look at the lengths he went to to split them up, for years. He was bitter about Cliff and Sue Ellen having an affair. He was bitter about Miss Ellie marrying Clayton. He was bitter about Ray being a Ewing. He was bitter about Cliff's offshore wells coming in. The list goes on....And even if you were to say he was justified, you think he should have just looked at the good things in life and chosen to concentrate on them rather than dwell on the negative things? What a dull character he would have been, and how boring would Dallas have been if both Cliff and JR took your advice and just looked on the bright side.
     
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  3. Kenny Coyote

    Kenny Coyote Soap Chat Enthusiast EXP: 12 Years

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    Remember on an earlier post of mine on this thread I wrote about how I agreed with someone (maybe it's Barbara Fan) who said that JR and Bobby alone couldn't carry the show? I replied to her post and here's an excerpt from my post: "JR and Bobby alone couldn't carry the show because they were both too likable. You need someone who is going to create the conflict that drives the story. Since people loved the Ewing family and Cliff was obsessed with destroying the Ewings, there was tremendous conflict and so the early and middle seasons were great. Cliff eventually learned his lesson - revenge is a waste of time. It was good for Cliff but bad for the show. Then they had to replace Cliff as the bad guy with Carter McKay and he couldn't do nearly as good of a job."

    Sure, dramas often involve feuds and even very bitter feuds, but I think the above explains that just because a character is crucial to the show and he's very bitter doesn't mean I, or other people watching it will necessarily like someone who is bitter and crucial to the show. That character may be their most despised character on the show. You want people to feel strongly about the characters. If people love them, great. If they hate them, that's great too. If they feel indifferent about them, that's a problem.

    No, not even close. JR is going to defend Ewing Oil if somebody tries to bring harm to it and he'll defend his family if he senses a threat from the outside. Cliff was obsessed with hurting both, it's practically all Cliff thought about. As a result of his obsession, Cliff was almost always talking about the Ewings and often specifically JR Ewing. It got to the point where he had nothing else at all going on his life. Sure he married Jamie, but why? So he could get ahold of the share of Ewing Oil she was entitled to and that's how absolutely bitter and obsessed with trying to ruin the Ewings Cliff was. before Jamie he was going out with Mandy. What did he do with her? Used her as a sort of spy whose job was to pretend to befriend JR so that she could get information from him to give to Cliff. Of course Mandy got tired of being used "like a puppet" as she put it and how did Cliff handle it when she got so fed up with his obsession that she was going to leave him? Cliff said "Mandy, I really need you now. I need you more than ever." The audience could tell she needed to be told this - to know that Cliff loved her and needed her for much better reasons than getting information from JR. You could see she was considering changing her mind about leaving until Cliff added that the reason he needed her more than ever was to keep pumping JR for information! The man was absolutely clueless, oblivious.

    It really doesn't take a lot of discernment to see how different J.R. was from Cliff. J.R. talked about Cliff as little as possible. Instead of spending his time obsessed with Cliff and letting the rest of his life go to hell as a result, J.R. spent his time doing what he enjoyed and you could tell. He'd always wanted to run Ewing Oil just like Jock had and JR was living out his life's dream in doing so. Cliff went to law school because he din't want to work in the oil business. So why did he end up in the oil business despite wanting to be a lawyer? To fight yet another losing battle against the Ewings. It would be comical if it weren't so sad. In sharp contrast with Cliff's bitterness and the misery it caused Cliff, J.R. was always smiling. J.R. was loving life and it showed. I think most people like a happy person. I know I do.
     
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  4. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson SoapLand Battles Moderator EXP: 18 Years

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    But isn't that bitterness what made him such a fascinating and charateristic character?
    As long as I'm being entertained by that character I don't care what kind of person he or she is.
     
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  5. Kenny Coyote

    Kenny Coyote Soap Chat Enthusiast EXP: 12 Years

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    That bitterness gave the character of Cliff what he needed to make the Barnes-Ewing feud as intense and as entertaining to watch as it was. If they had made Cliff what I consider to be a likable character then I wouldn't have cared so much about the outcome of all their battles. If both sides of a feud are likable, it doesn't matter too much which side comes out on top because either way it's someone the audience likes. It's hard to care too much who wins a contest if both sides are equally likable or equally unlikable. So I do care what kind of person a character is regarding: Do I care which side prevails in the contest. One of them has to have at least something I like. I think it's crucial.

    Ideally you want the audience to love one side of a feud and hate the other side so that they have a big emotional investment in the outcome. That's my opinion on the psychology behind feuds and what made the Barnes-Ewing feud so good. It had the necessary elements and that bitterness Cliff had was certainly one of those elements.
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2018
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  6. Dr. Ellby's hair

    Dr. Ellby's hair Soap Chat Member

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    I find that statement incredible.
    For me April was a decent latter season supporting character but no more than that and had already overstayed her welcome. She should have stayed a single season or two at most.
    Katzman and co. really were clueless during late seasons and maybe they just cared less about quality and more about collecting their paychecks.
     
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  7. Kenny Coyote

    Kenny Coyote Soap Chat Enthusiast EXP: 12 Years

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    As the quality went down, ratings went down. That made the amount they could charge advertisers decrease! I don't know if Katzmann was paid on productivity or just had a guaranteed salary no matter what happened but if he'd been paid on productivity, which he should have been by the network, as revenue from advertisers went down his paycheck would have gone down as well. I hate guaranteed contracts because they provide no incentive for a man to give a 100% effort.
     
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  8. Kenny Coyote

    Kenny Coyote Soap Chat Enthusiast EXP: 12 Years

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    This is interesting. We have very different ideas on the subject of why we like a character and why it matters.

    To me it makes all the difference in the world whether a character is likable and admirable. I'm not sure how it's possible to like someone if you don't think they're likable or admirable.

    It makes all the difference in the world whether a character is likable or at last admirable when you have a fight or some type of conflict between a character who is likable and admirable and another character who is not. Suppose two characters in a show are fighting each other. If a viewer doesn't like either one, the fight might have some good action and be a brutal, bloody, battle but what would it matter who wins? It's just action for the sake of action where the outcome doesn't matter because there is no reason to want one specific character to win and see the other one lose.

    If it's not like that, and the viewer likes one and doesn't like the other, then it becomes far more than just an opportunity to see some exciting action because the outcome actually matters to the viewer. Then there is an emotional investment on the part of the viewer. Instead of action for the sake of action, the outcome means something to the viewer because they either see the one they like prevail, which makes them happy, or they see the one they don't like beat the one they don't like and it's disappointing.

    Ultimately, it makes the difference between solely providing visual excitement and also providing emotional excitement.
     
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  9. Sarah

    Sarah Super Moderator EXP: 21 Years Staff Member

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    No. This is quite an old thread so hasn’t probably been answered but Sheree was pregnant.

    I loved her and Patrick together. :)
     
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  10. southfork88

    southfork88 Soap Chat Addict

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    In an old Italian gossip newspaper it was claimed that Patrick was in love with Sheree and his jealous wife (about 10 years older than he ...) asked Kazman to remove the actress. Sharee had just given birth and liked this decision because she soon joined that other program, always under the "tutelage" of Leonard Katzman.
     
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  11. Ukdallasfan

    Ukdallasfan Soap Chat Newbie EXP: 13 Days

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    I agree that the show was at its best as a strong ensemble piece. Once key characters began to leave the storylines became diluted and less popular.
    JR almost became a pantomime villain towards the end which was a mistake in my view on the part of the writers. He could have become more insidiously despicable as he became older which would have been a more powerful character development.
    I hated the final season. The show had become a sad shadow of its former self and was painful to watch. Such a shame because it had been so inspiring at the beginning- like nothing I had ever watched before :)
     
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  12. Barbara Fan

    Barbara Fan Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Welcome @Ukdallasfan :123: I read this thinking that I dont remember posting this, then realised i hadnt! But i could have! My sentiments entirely and I have never watched the final series again. I bought the DVD to complete the set but its still in its wrapper. (And dont even get me started on the travesty that was Crap Cidre TNT Dallas, it was even worse)
     
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  13. southfork88

    southfork88 Soap Chat Addict

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    Josh Henderson was truly perfect for the adult John Ross character.
     
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  14. CeeCee72

    CeeCee72 Soap Chat Active Member EXP: 3 Months

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    Late to the discussion, but wanted to make a couple of points.

    Yes, I think it was a mistake to kill off April. Mostly because as much as hardcore loyal fans from the beginning didn't care for her, she was a MUCH better character than a lot of the other "new faces." By the time she bit the bullet, we were pretty much down to JR, Bobby, Cliff and a bunch of also-rans.

    Also, the biggest mistake Katzman made was killing Bobby off on camera. That's what painted him into the corner of having to throw an entire season (a good season IMO) into the trash dump. That was the beginning of the end. Season 10 was hard to take mostly because some of the same storylines (Sue Ellen's drinking and stopping, getting rid of Mandy Winger, JR and Sue Ellen's reconciliation, Jenna's acceptance of losing Bobby to Pam, Donna and Ray's baby) all had to be done over again and NONE of them were done as well.
     
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  15. Kenny Coyote

    Kenny Coyote Soap Chat Enthusiast EXP: 12 Years

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    I agree with you for the most part. The only difference is I think his biggest mistake was hiring Patrick Duffy back. He said he was leaving for good and wanted Bobby to die so there would be no temptation for him to come back. He had committed to making a career in movies. The rest of the show then had to make the best decision they could think of as to how to proceed without Bobby. I think they should have told Duffy that he gave them his word that he leaving permanently and they made plans accordingly. They should have told him they can't turn the show upside down just because he wanted to come back. He'd given them his word that he was done and a man's word should mean something. It wasn't fair to the rest of the crew who stayed local to have the show turned into a joke just to placate Patrick Duffy.
     
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  16. CeeCee72

    CeeCee72 Soap Chat Active Member EXP: 3 Months

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    They were also placating Larry Hagman though. He seemed to want Duffy back on the show even more than Duffy wanted it.

    I think I read somewhere that it was Hagman that first approached Duffy about the possibility of coming back, not the other way around.
     
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  17. Kenny Coyote

    Kenny Coyote Soap Chat Enthusiast EXP: 12 Years

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    Nice post, CeeCee You're right, they were placating Hagman too, but a ship can only have one captain. Katzman was the captain of the ship. Hagman did it have the power to rehire Duffy. He could only make suggestions. Katzman had the power to rehire Duffy and did. The buck has to stop with the person who is running the show, with the person who actually rehired Duffy. Katzman no doubt wanted to make his friend Larry happy, but in business there needs to be a line separating friendship from business, otherwise you end up trying to please your friends but possibly hurting the business in the process.
     
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  18. Via The Void

    Via The Void Soap Chat Well-Known Member EXP: 3 Years

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    His worst mistake was altering the end of season nine to resurrect Bobby Ewing in that shower scene. :(
     
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  19. Via The Void

    Via The Void Soap Chat Well-Known Member EXP: 3 Years

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    What Katzman did by bringing Bobby back was irreparably damaging the integrity & popularity of the show.

    He shouldn't have done it. He should've told Larry Hagman that any attempt to bring Bobby back with Duffy returning would only alienate the show's fanbase & damage the long term reputation & viability of the show.

    That he didn't do that beggars belief. However with hindsight there is a reason why. He was off the show in season nine & only credited in an honorary capacity as Executive Consultant on the closing credits. One of the reasons he returned was so he could have total authority on Dallas as the main Producer. He agreed to come back only if the main productions heads on season nine were dropped. So Lorimar acquiesced to his demands & dropped James H. Brown as Producer & Peter Dunne as Supervising Producer.

    Lorimar should never have listened to Katzman or Hagman but by this time Hagman realised he could successfully make demands & get what he wanted, as a result of him being the key character & star. In this case it wasn't to the benefit of the show but done to placate him as he missed working with Patrick Duffy. Therefore on Katzman's return which was also a demand by Hagman, Katzman got Patrick Duffy back on the show. :(
     
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  20. Taylor Bennett Jr.

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    if only April hadn't been killed off, the latter part of Season 14 would have been good enough to warrant a renewal for Season 15. The positive momentum would have turned into a tidal wave, with the series regaining its lost quality and reaching the top again, never to fall even to this day. With James running Southfork and Ewing Oil, who knows what heights the extended Ewing family could have reached?
     
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