‘Dallas’: Did Larry Hagman’s Final Scene Involve Angry Birds?

Larry Hagman in Season 2 of "Dallas" (Skip Bolen/TNT)

This was a strange episode of “Dallas.” J.R. was only in one brief scene that I suspect was supposed to air in the previous episode. I think the out of nowhere return of Vicente was hastily inserted as a lead up to the final “Who Shot J.R.?” storyline, especially since the preview for next week’s episode doesn’t have any new footage of J.R. in it. It will be very disappointing if he dies off camera, but given how sudden Larry Hagman’s death was, and how quickly the writers and producers had to rewrite the rest of the season, what they came up with at least has some continuity and is fairly clever. J.R. wasn’t just the villain of “Dallas,” he was its heart. I will always regret that we will never get to see J.R. take down Harris, which I suspect was going to be a major part of this season.  As it stands, J.R.’s final act involves emailing a cute animal video. Here are the highlights.

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“Honey I Don’t Need Anymore Angry Birds.” – J.R, to his assistant

An assistant shows J.R. how to use his new tablet. It’s an obvious  continuity error, since he had it in the last episode. That’s why I think it was supposed to be a part of it. She tells him she hooked him up with Angry Birds, inspiring what may now be his final bon mot.  J.R. goes nuts sending Bobby videos of a dog playing basketball and I.Ming hm to make sure he looks at them. It’s what everyone;’s grandparents do when they figure out the internet. Since we just see Bobby reacting to it, without J.R. sending the videos, the writers clearly wrote it after his death. I think Bobby’s wistful expression is Patrick Duffy reacting to his best friend’s death. But this scene actually turns out to be a fairly awesome set up for something that happens later. way to make lemonade out of very sad lemons, writers.

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In Texas, Sometimes People Just Need a Good Shooting

Ann is nervous about her sentencing hearing since the same jury that convicted her will decide her fate.  Bobby talks about how he met Ann when she was therapist using horses to help battered women. There are a couple shots of J.R. watching his testimony, but those could have been edited in from last week’s courtroom scenes. The judge calls a recess until the next day for no reason other than that it will serve the later action.  On day two, Ann makes a moving speech about how she broke after years of torture and she’s so sorry. She begs Emma and the jury for a second chance. Harris (Mitch Pileggi)testifies that she has no remorse and should be locked up for a long time. Ann is sentenced to probation even though she  absolutely is guilty of premeditated attempted murder and Harris was pretty much telling the truth about her continued desire to see him dead. It’s Texas. The state is pro shooting people. Judith (Judith Light) hilariously stands up and demands a mistrial. The judge lectures her and Harris for all their wrongdoing, saying he would have shot him too if he took his kid away.  Texas justice, folks. At least for Caucasian millionaires.

“I shouldn’t have to keep asking for something that’s mine .” Sue Ellen Turns Into J.R.,Minus the Eyebrows

Sue Ellen (Linda Grey)  bitchily chides Elena (Jordanna Brewster) for not updating her on the Henderson oil field. She tells John Ross, “I shouldn’t have to keep asking for something that’s mine.” Let’s just assume losing out on becoming governor has finally made her snap. John Ross asks her, “How’dyou like to stop asking and just take it?” He explains that Drew’s arrest violates the morality clause and will allow her to take over all of Elena’s assets. He gives Sue Ellen a Don Draper worthy spiel about partnering with her to build Ewing Energies. He needs her help  to fight Christopher and Elena. She asks if he set up Drew. He says Drew was legitimately guilty. He just made sure he got caught. Sue Ellen says he is his father’s son. It’s kind of a compliment.

Never Trust a Basketball Playing Dog

Drew basically draws Christopher a map so he will figure out that John Ross had someone smash his tail light and discover the morality clause in Elena’s contract with Sue Ellen.  As Drew is about to plead guilty, aware that if attempted murder gets you probation receiving stolen goods will get you a key to the city, Christopher phones Elena to explain everything and warn her not to let Drew sign that plea. But because Christopher is a loser, he’s too late. Sue Ellen is still in Head Bitch In Charge mode, to Bobby’s shock. Bobby yells to J.R. to come down and explain his role in the scheme. But his room is empty. We know it’s because Hagman is dead. Bobby shows Sue Ellen the cloud drive with incriminating evidence about John Ross working with Marta. It instantly erases. The email J.R. sent of the dog contained a virus. John Ross was in on it. I’m not sure why they knew Bobby would decide to break out the cloud drive nobody remembers from last season, but it’s pretty funny.

“Please tell me that look is just morning sickness at night.” — John Ross to Pamela

Christopher and Pamela come to an agreement. She gets ten percent of Ewing Energy in exchange for joint custody and annulment. hey compromise on 10 percent. Pamela phones Cliff to say she got into Ewing Energies just like he wanted. She seems sad, not triumphant. John Ross reminds him of their deal, saying  “Please tell me that look is just morning sickness at night.” She tells him she has to hold on to the shares for the twins sake.  He tells her he should have let J.R. take her down.

“You Ewing boys like to share after all. I love it.” — Vicente

Vicente is spending a few days locked up at the Counsel General’s mansion while awaiting extradition. When he leave in a car as prearranged, a henchman he has working for him removes his handcuffs and gives him a gun. A helicopter will arrive in an hour. But first he is going to pay back the Ewings for sending him to prison. He and his men bust into Southfork.

He bitch slaps John Ross then demands all of Christopher’s methane patented thingamajiggies. He will kill Pamela if he doesn’t have it in an hour. Vicente doesn’t initially realize that Christopher dumped Pamela until John Ross is the one who attempts to protect her. Christopher really does’;t give a damn about his unborn twins. Vicente hilariously figures out that the cousins have swapped girlfriends, inspiring the hilarious quote above, Then he points the gun at Elena.

Elena asks John Ross why he screwed her over. He says “You broke my heart. The day you sopped seeing the good in me is the day that it died.”  Oh, John Ross, that’s a Creepy Nice Guy thing to say.

Then John Ross asks Pamela why she went back on their deal. She says her father is still the head of Barnes Oil. This is the first time she has done something to please his father. John Ross claimed he quit trying. She asks if she was just revenge sex. “Revenge sex was all I could afford,” he retorts.

Then everything gets nuts. The henchman has taken Christopher to retrieve the methane whatever. If he does’t come through, he will text Vicente to kill Elena. Christopher tries to jump him. They fight. But the henchman prevails and brings him back. Vicente takes the methane gizmo and announces he is taking Elena as an insurance policy adding, “Who knows maybe we have something in common.” Don’t leave Vicente. Prison has made you funny. As the helicopter arrives, all of the Ewing men spring into action. Everyone fights with everyone, Every gun is Southfork is pulled out. Drew, of all people, kills Vicente, thereby redeeming himself. That probably violated his probation. Speaking of which,  Ann returns home, is not as surprised as she should be by the carnage, and happily tells him she’s free. If she had been home sooner, she’d have taken care of Vicente the moment he busted through the door.

“I never go looking for a fight, but when one finds me, I sure as hell finish it. And they are in for the fight of their lives.” —  Bobby

John Ross introduces Sue Ellen as the newest Ewing board member. Bobby self righteously lectures her about how the Showdown at Southfork should have inspired her to give Elena back her shares. Sure Ellen says she is just looking out for her son. That inspires Bobby to vow to take down his own family.

The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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