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DALLAS Invites Deborah Shelton and Cathy Podewell as J.R. Ewings EX's For On-Screen Funeral!

Photo Credit: CBS/Getty

Photo Credit: CBS/Getty

Now here’s a real blast from the past and for those who know their historical DALLAS info!  News today out of TV Guide has former J.R. Ewing flame and wife, Mandy Winger and Cally Harper Ewing, on their way back to make appearances on J.R Ewing’s funeral episode to pay homage and tribute to the late Larry Hagman (J.R.)!

Deborah Shelton, who played J.R.’s No. 1 mistress Mandy Winger has accepted an invitation from TNT’s DALLAS to say a few words at the memorial service that Bobby and Sue Ellen will throw for the departed Ewing patriarch.  Meanwhile, Cathy Podewell, who played good ole’ J.R.’s country bumpkin wife, Cally Harper Ewing from 1988-1991 will also take part in the episode!

The funeral episode will air on March 11th with the new season of DALLAS set to kick-off on January 28th.  So far: Ted Shackelford, Joan Van Ark, Steve Kanaly, and Charlene Tilton will be back for the big event, and word has it that Ken Kercheval may show up and give one swift kick to J.R.’s  coffin too!

Are you looking forward to J.R.’s funeral episode? Let us know!

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Dmitri
Dmitri

So sad that JR and Larry have passed away. I am exited fo the retun of Dallas, though. It’s a fantastic series!

danny
danny

JR had a kid with Callie….another son, right?

sean
sean

I forgot about that. It would also be great if they could get the man who played JR’s oldest son James…or at least mention him.

toscanti
toscanti

Very sad over LH’s death. I hope the show will continue with its current success.

Don
Don

I agree Sean. One thing Larry was always right about that show. He said that even though the show had been off the air for 20+ years, the fan base was always there. He was right about that. I’m glad he lived long enough to see it happen

sean
sean

Yes i am very much looking forward to it especially now that Mandy and Cally are going to be apart of it. It’s sad because we know it’s not a fake funeral. He’s really gone. I hope TNT really uses these old characters well for the episode to give him a proper farewell. it would be great if it could do flashbacks too.

robyn s fletcher
robyn s fletcher

THE most eagerly awaited episode since, well, J.R. was shot.

Barbara
Barbara

I watched most of the piliot episode and was not impressed. I guess I expected it to be more like the original series. Didn’t not watch any more episodes, but since so many of the original cast will be returning for the tribute to Larry Hagman, I will mark my calendar to also be in attendence.

SZima
SZima

Barbara, I wasn’t too impressed with the pilot episode either, but I kept watching and the show really got good. If there’s any way you can catch the first season, you should. I’m sure you will get hooked 😉

Don
Don

It is out on DVD, now.

Barbara
Barbara

Thanks, maybe I will try to see the 1st season. Thanks Don, will check it out on DVD

Rodd
Rodd

So Sad about Mr. Hagman’s passing. As for DALLAS, I will be very interested in seeing how things play out. Loved sesaon one and hope they can continue to sustain it.

Iakovos
Iakovos

These details are why the DALLAS reboot works for me. The show will have these new characters and plot lines and be different than the original, of course (it has to be)… but… this attention to the histories of the family and the core characters is important and appreciated by this fan.

We all will die some day, but some… like Larry Hagman and JR Ewing… you thought would go on forever. In a way, they do.

Go DALLAS!

MBmomof3
MBmomof3

Agreed.

All My Children

ABC and PEOPLE’s ‘The Story of Soaps’: What Was Your Review Of It?

Tuesday’s night airing of ABC and PEOPLE’s two-hour special The Story of Soaps featured many notable daytime and primetime soap stars, past and present, clips from backstage to classic memorable moments, and some participants who were providing commentary on the erosion of the daytime soaps in our culture.  Still others, maintained and realized that everything today is serialized from the news we watch, to some of Netflix’s most binge-watchable series, and of course, the birth of reality-programming.

Throughout the airing of the special, The Story of Soaps was trending on Twitter and social media either at the #2, #3 or #4 spots for the entire duration of the broadcast presentation, and the cancelled and beloved All My Children was also at one point trending.

However, known soap writers, journalists, ardent fans, and actors of the genre, were all on Twitter last night live-tweeting their thoughts as the special went down, and there was definitely mixed reactions and reviews, when all was said and done.

What the special did not shy away from, but tackled, was Luke’s rape of Laura at the campus disco on General Hospital. and how that moment now, as Genie Francis (Laura), so eloquently put, would be considered as ‘date rape’ in our culture.  The series even included a pivotal moment where Laura addresses Luke (Tony Geary) about the rape years later, after helping Elizabeth (Rebecca Herbst) through her rape ordeal.

John Stamos (Ex-Blackie Parrish, GH) got a bevy of “Right On’s!” for his comment that the soaps do not get the credit that they deserve and clearly came through as one of the soaps greatest supporters, as did former The Doctors and Knots Landing star, Alec Baldwin.

However, throughout the two-hours, Andy Cohen’s commentary was thread throughout; mostly citing soap’s demise and the creation of reality-programming and his “Real Housewives” franchise, that the special touted as the new soap operas.  It continued on the narrative that people preferred to see real-life drama then made-up drama on a fictional soap.  And while, that has been a trend in American culture for decades, the commentary came off as often out of place in a celebration of the soaps; and bringing in a lot of negativity to the special that soap fans were tired of hearing.

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In a lighting rod moment, Cohen stated: “I know Susan Lucci doesn’t agree with me, but I think that the Housewives have replaced soap operas because truth is stranger than fiction. Soaps became kind of unnecessary because you could do it with real people, and they’re writing the drama themselves.”

The special did also address the cancellations of All My Children and One Life to Live, (which many were not sure they were going to do – given this special was airing on ABC), where One Life’s leading lady and six-time Daytime Emmy winner, Erika Slezak (Ex-Viki) said what we all wanted to sa ywhen the ax fell on the towns of Llanview and Pine Valley, “People were horrified”.

Clearly, OJ Simpson and his murder trial and reality-programming were also given a chunk of time to show where the once mighty landscape of daytime soaps which once had 13 shows on the air, dwindled town to 4.  But, it would have been nice to see more time spent on how in this day and age, the people in this current landscape of the genre work so hard to get episodes done at an unbelievable pace, and how in that climate the performers still deliver gut-wrenching performances.

Photo: ABC

Former Loving, OLTL and Breaking Bad star, Bryan Cranston, did point out how the once powerful soaps, just don’t have the dollars they used to, and need to, to help with production costs and their taping schedule.

Viewers were reminded of soaps’ socially relevant storylines including hankie-inducing moments from: Robin (Kimberly McCullough) and Stone’s (Michael Sutton) HIV/AIDS storyline on General Hospital, to Billy Douglas being a gay teen coming out on One Life to Live, played by a young Ryan Phillippe.

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There also did not seem time spent on the contributions of William J. Bell; one of the most prominent writers of the soap genre of all-time.

For many commenting on social media last night, there seemed to be a feeling of some glaring omissions of participants who could speak on this genre, who have been in the trenches as soap producers, soap writers, pundits, actors, and more, who were not included in the special.

So, what was your review of The Story of Soaps? How would you grade it? Do you feel it accurately reflected the history of the genre?  Were you happily surprised,  or when it came to the end where you over it, or somewhere in between? Sound off in the comment section below.  Below are some tweets from notables who have worked as an actor, a writer, and a journalist in the soaps.  

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Dallas

DALLAS Online Reunion Coming With Patrick Duffy, Linda Gray and More

Time to revisit Southfork during the coronavirus pandemic, with news on Friday that some of the cast from the original CBS primetime soap, Dallas will be participating in an online virtual chat next week!

According to Deadline, confirmed thus far are: Patrick Duffy (Ex-Bobby), Linda Gray (Ex-Sue Ellen), Charlene Tilton (Ex-Lucy) and Steve Kanaly (Ex-Ray).

They will all be part of the conversation on Friday, April 24th beginning at 8 p. m. EST.  The stars are taking part in the Stars in the House livestream series to raise money for The Actors Fund’s COVID-19 relief efforts.

Hosted by Seth Rudetsky and James Wesley, who have been bantering with cast members of several former and beloved shows, you can watch the virtual chat up on the Stars in the House website and on YouTube.

Since the first Stars in the House episode on March 16, the series has raised approximately $209,600 to benefit The Actors Fund.

So, will you be checking out the Dallas reunion next Friday? Comment below.

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Breaking News

‘Dallas’ star Ken Kercheval Dead At Age 83

Sad news to report for fans of the iconic primetime soap, Dallas.  Ken Kercheval, who played the thorn in J.R. Ewing’s (Larry Hagman) side, Cliff Barnes, has passed away.   The actor was 83 and died at his home in Indiana on Sunday.   The cause of death is under wraps.  He had been previously open about being a lung cancer survivor after years of smoking.

Kercheval was on Dallas for its entire run on CBS from 1978 to 1991, and returned to the TNT reboot from 2012 to 2014 to reprise his signature role.

On Dallas, Cliff Barnes was always the perennial loser when he went toe to toe with ruthless J.R, but in the final season, Cliff beats J.R at his own game and takes over Ewing Oil.  Cliff was also hopelessly in love with Sue Ellen Ewing (Linda Gray) and was the brother to Pam Barnes, played by Victoria Principal.

As for Ken’s first big acting breaks, that came on daytime soap operas when early in his career he appeared on Search for Tomorrow and How to Survive a Marriage.

Later, he appeared on episodic dramas such as Starsky & Hutch, and Crossing Jordan.  His final role was in a movie, 2019’s Surviving in L.A. said to be a comedy/drama in which he plays the business manager of a former teen sitcom star who trashed her life through drug abuse and is fresh out of rehab.

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Share your thoughts on the passing of Ken Kercheval in the comment section below.   But first, watch him as Cliff Barnes in this scene from TNT’s Dallas when he sees J.R. for the first time in years!

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It’s “Villains Week” on Y&R an that means some Sheila Carter, David Kimball, and Isabella Brana, Check out the promo from CBS Daytime here.  Leave A Comment

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