Were The Barnes/Wentworths Mentality Stable?

Discussion in 'Dallas - The Original Series' started by Billy Wall, Feb 3, 2019.

  1. Billy Wall

    Billy Wall Soap Chat Member

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    At least to me, it seemed that anything will make them lose their minds. I’m on season 6/The Battle for Ewing Oil, and just saw the episode where Rebecca dies. Of course this causes Pam to blame JR and Bobby for Rebecca getting on a plane, in place of Cliff who was drowning in sorrow, yet again, to try and stop JR from buying an refinery. I swear, Rebecca had got just as obsessed with the Ewing’s as Cliff was.

    Again, Pam blames Bobby and JR for her mom fighting her brother’s battle? Then she leaves her husband over this? This on the heels of her going crazy over not having a child. Not too long before this, Rebecca blamed JR over Cliff’s suicide attempt. And we all know how Katherine ended up.

    The Ewings were far from perfect, but the Barnes/Wentworths were really a messed up bunch.
     
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  2. Kenny Coyote

    Kenny Coyote Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    That's a good example of the Barnes/Wentworth mentality. A healthy mentality would be focusing in building his own business instead of trying to hurt someone else's business.

    That was kind of hard to believe. It seems to me Pam would use any excuse, no matter how ridiculous, to leave. She had always been flighty.
     
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  3. Via The Void

    Via The Void Soap Chat Fan

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    The feud between the Barnes & the Ewing's seemed to have gone on for decades & both Cliff & JR kept the feud going despite both Pam & Rebecca's best efforts to stop it. It was JR's dirty dealings against Cliff who always behaved like a lost lamb most of the time which seemed to upset Pam & Rebecca. Even Afton wasn't immune but she could see through both JR & Katherine eventually for the manipulative users they were.

    On the Barnes side I don't think there was any strong noticeable unstable elements apart from when Pam discovered she wasn't really a Barnes, which did knock her for six and the strong maternal feelings for a child of her own did dent her usually strong mental state. I felt for Pam during the series run as she was caught between the Barnes Ewing feud in much the same way that Bobby was, although Bobby occasionally didn't mind getting his hands dirty like setting up poor Walt Driscoll which had fatal consequences for poor Mickey Trotter & Lucy & Sue Ellen's state of mind.

    To a certain extent Cliff had to have some mental issues because he made the Barnes Ewing feud his major goal in life in trying to outwit & better JR, who took a great delight in bringing him down. If we're to believe what happened later in the Cyntax Dallas poor Cliff's obsession with the feud sent him borderline psychotic! JR more times than most always seemed to get the better of Cliff, who only ever had small victories over him such as striking oil in the Gulf.

    Katherine was definitely unstable but she was a Wentworth. Rebecca always tried to do the right thing but unfortunately got caught up in the feud when one of JR's scheme's backfired & Cliff nearly killed himself. She swore she'd break the Ewing's & had the money to do it. It's a shame they killed Rebecca off so shortly after she joined in the feud when the Wentworth jet crashed with her on board when it should've been Cliff at that meeting. Her death cemented the continuation of the Barnes Ewing feud & ensured that Cliff would hate the Ewing's all the more which is probably why they killed her character off to allow the feud to carry on with new meaning & vigour. This is probably what contributed to Pam leaving Bobby when he got more interested in Ewing Oil & of course the return of a previous lover in the form of Jenna Wade.

    I don't think Bobby had any mental issues. JR however just relished the thought of torturing both Cliff & Pam & anybody else who got in his way. The Barnes Ewing feud kept the show very watchable & dramatic. However one scene which always sticks in my mind from the show's later years is where Cliff finally realises the error of his ways & admits to Miss Ellie that he got it all wrong & that the whole feud was dumb. Dallas really made you feel compassion for it's characters which was one of the show's strengths. Even when poor old Sue Ellen suffered the mental breakdown when she mistakenly believed she was responsible for Mickey Trotter's death. But where the Barnes more mental than the Ewings? Well if we believe JR it's the Barnes because he always used to go on about "The Idiot Barnes!" :)
     
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2019
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  4. Billy Wall

    Billy Wall Soap Chat Member

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    I would say absolutely. Rebecca wasn’t even in this feud all that long and it took her no time to hate the Ewings as much as Cliff. I never remember Miss Ellie ever going after Cliff, plus she more than welcomed Pam. With the Barnes/Wentworths, it just seemed that anything would send them over the top.
     
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2019
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  5. Karin Schill

    Karin Schill Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Well I think you need to look at what has caused the characters to act the way that they did.

    Like for instance, the reason why Rebecca started hating the Ewings and got involved with the fued was because JR pushed her son so far that he tried to commit suicide. So instead of laying blame on herself and wondering if her abandoning Cliff as a small child had caused this, she found a scapegoat JR Ewing and then decided to side with Cliff in the Barnes-Ewing fued. I don't think Rebecca was mentally unstable. There is nothing on the show that suggest that she was anything but a strong woman, a survivor. I guess in some ways she was a cold woman, considering that she was able to abandon her two young children for so many years. Yet she did love all her children. So she was not without emotions.

    Cliff's biggest weakness was when he attempted suicide. I doubt he wanted to die though. It was merely a cry for help since he wanted his mother and Sue Ellen and everyone else who had turned their backs on him to release how badly they had hurt him.Then as for the fued with JR that wasn't one sided as JR went after Cliff too.

    Pam sometimes had depressions. I think what set it off was not knowing her true identity and feeling like she'd been lied to her whole life. The man who she thought was her father wasn't her biological father and that shook her to the core of her being. I think most adults would react badly to that kind of news. The most crazy thing Pam ever did was standing on that rooftop threatening to commit suicide. That was brought on by her feeling inadequete as a woman and wanting to have a child really badly. She needed to be a mother and the psychologist explained it with that Pam wanted to give a baby everything she had lacked as a child. She wanted her child to have the stable upbringing she was denied. So she needed to have a baby. Of course when she adopted Christopher Pam got well.

    Katherine well she was driven by jealousy. After having been her mother's only child for so many years she suddenly had two siblings to compete with for her mother's love. She didn't like that. Also when her mother died she blamed Cliff for her death and began to hate her brother. She also wanted Bobby and when she couldn't have him she tried to kill him since she didn't want anyone else to have him. I'd say out of them Katherine was the one who had the biggest mental issues. Maybe you could say she was temporary insane when she tried to kill Bobby. At the end of the day (since the dream season never happened) she backed off when she saw that Bobby and Pam had reconciled. She just disappeared and didn't reappear until Pam's accident. Then Pam disappears from the hospital and Bobby receives a letter. Considering that Katherine's faked one letter to Bobby before from Pam that ought to have been a warning flag but it wasn't...

    We are getting off topic here and although it can be argued that yes the Barnes/Wentworth clan all had some issues that could mean that they were mentally unstable. I don't think it's that black and white since there were reasons that explains why they felt that way and acted the way they did. I think this proves once again how well fleshed out the characters on the show were. They were complex just like people in real life are.
     
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2019
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  6. Taylor Bennett Jr.

    Taylor Bennett Jr. Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    they were completely bats, all of them!
     
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  7. Kenny Coyote

    Kenny Coyote Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    Rebecca and Katherine were the worst. Considering Katherine, Rebecca seemed like poison that just infected anyone she spent a long time raising. From what we see with her and Cliff, she did everything wrong.

    Abandoning Cliff and Pam to leave them in the care of an alcoholic.

    Effectively disowning Cliff because he embezzled. That's way too harsh.

    Then because Cliff attempted suicide she rewarded him by buying a 250 million dollar company for him to run. A good parent doesn't reward bad behavior.

    She was also a very nosy woman. If she'd kept out of other people's business, she never would have been on that plane to begin with.
     
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  8. Toni

    Toni Soap Chat Enthusiast

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    upload_2019-2-4_14-21-43.png
    The truth is out there. Or here. Look at her eyes, and she´s complaining about TNT Dallas cancellation!
    Besides, she abandoned such a pretty baby girl like Pam...A stable woman would have taken her kids and left him since he was drunk all the time. Rebeccabeech has no excuse, she was the seed of Katherine´s wackiness...
     
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  9. Lastkidpicked

    Lastkidpicked Soap Chat Fan

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    Its easy to forget that Cliff was smart enough, and also driven enough, that he put himself through law school. No easy task.

    His downfall was this obsession with getting even with the Ewings. Because of this obsession, his problems were self-inflicted. Same for Katherine.

    Yes! And look how much farther ahead Cliff would have been if he focused on his own life instead of battling the Ewings. Bringing this to a comical extreme, look how Cliff turned out in Conundrum. Cliff was Vice President of the United States!
     
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  10. Chris2

    Chris2 Soap Chat Active Member

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    They were all cuckoo. Except for Rebeccca, who was just a cold bitch.
     
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  11. Billy Wall

    Billy Wall Soap Chat Member

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    Lol...I’ll add another scenario. I’m on S6E26 and Pam come storming in like a bat out of hell from her romance with Mark Grayson in France to chastise Bobby over a phone call she received. In other words, in her world, it’s OK for her to vacation with another man, but Bobby can’t be seen in a restaurant with another woman.
     
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  12. Mustard

    Mustard Soap Chat Fan

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    When Rebecca was married to Digger, she got a lot of his bitterness about the Ewings, and he made her miserable with it. Rebecca thought that Digger was going way overboard with it. After what J.R. did to Cliff towards the end of Season 5 DVD, Rebecca seemed totally convinced that Digger was right all those years ago. For a while in Season 6 DVD, Rebecca hated the Ewings, not just J.R., and it was only shortly before her death that she toned it down to just hating J.R., but you can be sure that J.R. knows what buttons to press to get the Barnes family at war again.

    A young Cliff seems admirable. Through determination and love of his father, he put himself through law school and into politics on occasion to investigate Ewing Oil. Pam even said that Cliff was her hero when they were younger, as she was the bitter one and he was the disciplined, determined one. That dynamic flipped on its head not long after Pam married Bobby, as Pam grew up out of the Barnes-Ewing feud while Cliff became more and more bitter with each setback that J.R. or Cliff's own faults caused. I mean, the Cliff of the early episodes (until Election, especially) is a very nice guy. The fall out of that Election episode, and then later on, when J.R. tells Cliff why he's (Cliff's) going to call it off with Sue Ellen for the OLM leadership office, you can see that Cliff is changing, becoming bitter. The thing is, becoming more like J.R. and trying to beat J.R. at his own game is where Cliff went wrong. Cliff should have stayed as the guy from the early episodes and learned lessons from his setbacks in order to avoid the same mistakes in future, but he took the road of anger and bitterness, and selling out to the highest bidder to get at the Ewings.
     
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2019
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  13. stevew

    stevew Soap Chat Addict

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    I agree. And if Dallas TNT had just gone with that explanation it would have explained crazy Cliff and Pam just disappearing. Maybe instead of a Mexican prision Cliff ends up in a Mexican mental institution - Mexico because Cliff’s money couldn’t help him there and Bobby realizes the mental insanity and as Bobby does, he ends up doing the right thing.

    It also could made some sense of Pamela Rebecca going after Christopher with her father. And then her going off the deep end when John Ross is sleeping with Emma after Pamela made it very clear they had a business marriage. It could have been a good story of John Ross helping his wife find peace. Instead we couldn’t figure out what was going on.
     
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  14. stevew

    stevew Soap Chat Addict

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    I do believe Rebecca’s side was mentally unstable and crippled with an emotional impairment. It seems the only explanation for their behavior even as the writing got out of hand - say when Pam vanished. That is in no way saying JR was mentally stable - he was at least a sociopath racked with his own insecurities. Jock was just a poor kid who fought his way out of poverty only to see the horrors of war, but his influence on JR turned out a sociopath. Add Vietnam to the mix and I think JR was to be expected. So in a different way he was mentally ill.

    I also think that people like Bobby, Gary and Miss Ellie were terribly naive, in Bobby’s case it seemed more like he was trying to be so he didn’t have to see a messed up world as it is. Never to drill on Southfork - that was just childish. To think you can run a business like Ewing Oil and be clean - again childish. You might not need to cover the ranch with wells or destroy innocent people, which Bobby got, but they needed to grow up. Even if miss Ellie didn’t want the money the billion in oil sitting under South Fork - an environmental dream environment compared to off shore - could have changed the lives of countless kids. So not mentally ill but willfully naive.

    Sue Ellen struggled mentally after years of abuse from those around her and including self abuse. She was raised in an abusive and addictive environment, and like Bobby, Miss Ellie and Gary she desperately wanted to be naive.

    I guess in one way or another they could all use therapy and meds.
     
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  15. Kenny Coyote

    Kenny Coyote Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    It's not making money from that oil Miss Ellie, objected to, it was what drilling for it would have done to her property. It was her land and her right to keep it as pristine as possible. As for her kids, they didn't need the money; they were capable of earning their own money, as anyone ought to if he's going to feel good about himself. Any one of her children would feel embarrassed to say "Momma drill on Southfork even if it wrecks your land because I want a hand-out from you. I can't make it on my own." That would really be embarrassing to whoever asked for the handout.
     
  16. stevew

    stevew Soap Chat Addict

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    Her legal right certainly, but morally corrupt. She wasn’t keeping the land pristine - maybe way back when she was a child oil drilling and ranching clashed. But there are ways to get at that oil that would have been safe for the land, the cattle and not left all that money just sitting there. I’m also saying if she’s not going to give the money to her family, give it to charity - what she did wasn’t protecting the land but was hording billions. That’s wrong as a Christian woman.

    I’m also not sure about it being embarrassing to take a hand out. How do you think Miss Ellie made her money? She didn’t work the ranch in any capacity. She didn’t work for the oil company in any capacity. The one who said I need a hand out, I can’t make it on my own, was Miss Ellie. The rest all worked in some capacity. Add to that the fact that she horded billions of dollars which ended up doing no good for family, friend or community all to keep an out dated promise to one long dead man and yes I end up looking at her as naive.
     
  17. Toni

    Toni Soap Chat Enthusiast

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    So you mean that Donna Dread was the only Miss Ellie who was true to her inner self? Who hinted that she could be a beech inside? :eck:

    [​IMG]
     

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