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Dallas Review: "Changing of the Guard" (Episode 1.01)

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<i>Dallas</i> Review: "Changing of the Guard" (Episode 1.01)

It took me less than five minutes of watching the 2012 continuation of Dallas to realize Bobby Ewing will never pronounce his g’s, he will always love his mama and that he will give hell to anyone who wants to drill for oil on Southfork Ranch.

Like the original show, this one is billed as a primetime soap opera, so it’s expected to have lines delivered with way over-the-top and—as Joey Tribbiani would say —“smell the fart” acting. As a 23-year-old, I’ve only seen a few episodes of the original Dallas, but I do know that someone shot J.R. and there was an entire season that was a dream. (And they say Community is too weird…) So I was a little confused on who was who, but some quick research reveals that the two main characters: John Ross Ewing III (Josh Henderson) and Christopher Ewing (Jesse Metcalfe) are “carbon copies” of their fathers, J.R. and Bobby, respectively.

The pilot, which is also being called “Changing of the Guard,” deals with the rivalry between John Ross/J.R. and Christopher/Bobby. Lines were drawn pretty early and the usual, I’m assuming, Ewing shenanigans have started all over again.

There’s a tense moment when Bobby’s wife, Ann, jumps out of bed to get her husband some Pepto-Bismol and comes across a burglar. She loads and cocks a shotgun faster than I can even put pants on and proclaims, “I don’t miss, mister. Not from any range.” THEN SHE DOESN’T EVEN TRY TO SHOOT HIM. Of course the cops that come tell her matter-of-factly, “Next time he comes: shoot him.”

Hot dog! If this is how Dallas is going to work, then people gon’ be shootin’ like it’s nobody’s business—which makes me wonder how quickly the show will try to replicate the “Who shot J.R.?” pandemonium. My over/under is seven episodes. But if the show is smart, it’ll wait until the season finale on Aug. 15 to try to convince TNT to keep it around for a second…or 15th season.

The plot is thin, the acting is what you’d expect, but I have to commend the overly dramatic score, which does more acting than the entire Ewing gang. I also think this is the first time an Adele song actually felt out of place.

There is a way to enjoy the reboot/continuation of the show, and let’s be honest, we all know that’s the official Dallas Drinking Game. We’re now taking suggestions. Here are some rules so far:

-A drink every time Bobby or J.R. says “mama”
-A drink for every bug-eyed facial zoom with dramatic music
-A drink every time John Ross is mentioned by name
-Finish your drink if you gasp when someone gets slapped

Be sure to add your own rules in the comments section below, and stay tuned for next week’s installment of Drunkblogging Dallas.

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