Wherein every episode of DALLAS is recapped and reviewed in chronological order. Updates Fridays.

Friday, April 25, 2014

2.4 - BYPASS

Hey now reader, don't bypass this episode. Battles are battled, you see, and I wouldn't want you to miss a moment of Bobby vs J.R., Pam vs Sue Ellen, Pam vs boredom, or Jock vs Jock's heart. Yes indeed, episode 2.4 is full of things that happen!

We begin with a good look at the disparate lives led by Southfork men and Southfork women. The men are active and they get dirty and have rugged ranch fun:

The ladies, however, are relegated to lunching and sitting in on committee meetings.

kill me now

The highlight of this meeting comes courtesy of Sue Ellen, who delivers one of the most subversive lines in Dallas history, written by someone taking a sly potshot at these rich asshole Ewings.
We have to think of a theme for our dance that will show our concern for the underprivileged...but, uh, something not too depressing.
Bravo, writer. Bra. Vo.

The meeting of The Awful Women Club is adjourned until the following day, and Pam decides to call Bobby to see if he's free for lunch. Sue Ellen tries to dissuade her, though, reminding her that men don't like it when their women call them at the office and ahhhhh geeeeeez I start to cry thinking about how different things might be for all of these people if someone left a copy of Ms. Magazine on a Southfork coffee table.

Turns out that Bobby doesn't mind when Pam calls, but he's unavailable for lunch because he's got a big meeting with Ewing Oil homies Jeb Ames and Willie Joe Garr.

"Jeb Ames" and "Willie Joe Garr".

Bravo, writer. Bra. Vo.

However, J.R. puts the kibosh on Bobby sitting in on the meeting as well as on Bobby's plans to develop some of the Ewing land holdings, and boy is Bobby mad! Look at that mad face!

The next morning, tensions run high around the ranch. Pam has decided to skip the second committee meeting before she dies from boredom, and Sue Ellen is glad of it. I mean, she tries to help Pam, but Pam just doesn't fit in. All this tells us is that although she's a Ewing now, Pam is still a rational human being.

Oh, and just to put your mind at ease, let me tell you that The Awful Women Club decided on "Pioneers" as the theme for their dance. And they've formed several committees to handle dance matters, including a punch committee. A committee for punch. I hope whomever's in charge of that ends up making some Jonestown punch and puts them all out of their miserable, pointless existences.

Whoa, this episode's got me all fired up! The gendered bullshit doesn't get any better when Pam tells Bobby of her lunch plans. She's eating with Liz, her ex-boss from "the store". Apparently they've had lunch together a lot recently, and Bobby's worried that Pam might want to work there again...and if that's what she wants, "we'll have to think about that". Better she should sit around all day, I guess, bored to death with a bunch of a-holes than do something she actually enjoys. Pam's face says it for me:

"Are you fucking kidding me with this?"

Bobby talks to Jock about the sitch at Ewing Oil, that J.R. basically cockblocks him at every turn and so he wants to explore opportunities for all that unused land, you know, maybe start a separate company for development and construction. As you might guess, Jock is not at all thrilled when a family member shows any signs of independence. Bobby needs to be a part of Ewing Oil, end of. Bobby's all "not end of!", though, and heads to Houston for a meeting anyway.

Jock immediately goes to have it out with J.R., who is nursing a wicked hangover after carousing with Jeb and Willie Joe until the wee hours.

trust me, you do not want to know what he put in that drink

Jock goes on and on about "the family bidness" as J.R. dodges and weaves, putting the blame for everything squarely on Bobby. And then...AND THEN...




Jock has a heart attack! J.R. quickly calls an ambulance and off they go, Jock's fate hanging in the air like a Black Ice automobile freshener. That doesn't really make sense, but I've always wondered what Black Ice smells like.

Lucy sees the ambulance speed away and is terribly upset. She seeks solace in the arms of Ray...and lest you think she's actually worried about her grandfather, she cries "I don't wanna grow old!" and I'm reminded that this is the best show ever.


Apparently Jock ended up at some podunk hospital and needs to be transferred to a hospital that has more equipment than, like, leeches or something. Precious time has been lost! Will Jock survive?

I'd say it's worry and stress that drives everyone to start blaming each other for Jock's condition, but we all know that they would turn on each other in a hot second at the best of times. These assholes simply hate one another, and this time of strife only brings it out in spades. Bobby says that J.R. is at fault for taking Jock to the podunk hospital. J.R. says that Bobby is at fault for getting Jock all riled up. He also says that Pam is at fault for getting Bobby all riled up and urging him to quit Ewing Oil. Bobby says that J.R. is at fault because Jock with with him when he had the heart attack. I say they're all at fault for being terrible people!

"You're a jerk!"

"No, you are!"

Meanwhile, Jock "feels like a damn TV station" because of all the wires and contraptions hooked up to him, and it's such a weird thing to say that I almost end up liking him. Almost.

Pam worries that Bobby really does blame himself for the heart attack: he's been ranching more than usual (!) and he's stopped visiting his father in the hospital. They talk about it, they cry about it, everything is fine about it.

Everything is fine except that watch, WTF Bobby

Bobby finally goes to visit Jock again, and they talk a little business. Basically, it comes down to Jock wants Bobby at Ewing Oil, end of again, and I'm glad that I stopped myself from liking Jock earlier because he's a control freak weirdo jerk.

Then...this scene happens and I can't even describe how wonderful it is, you just need to watch it.

Where does one begin with that? I mean, the music! The saxophone! Sue Ellen's evil, conniving booze face in the wind! Pam's shitty fashion drawings! The snark! The "You have a disgusting mouth!"! THE EVERYTHING! And Miss Ellie just laughs it off. Southfork is full of sociopaths. I love it so much.

There's a scene in the barn where a mare gives birth (off-camera, bless) and it's supposed to be some kind of reminder about the circle of life and all that but who cares because Lucy's pants.

they have every button

Guys, Jock needs open heart surgery and it's a tough time for everyone. His potentially-dying wish to Miss Ellie is that she "keeps the family together", and so Dallas continues to morph into The Texas Chain Saw Massacre. There is reminiscing and crying and hugging and OH GOD WHAT'S WITH THE CHILD AND THE CREEPY DAD STATUE IN THE BACKGROUND?

But really, surgery on a fella Jock's age is no joke. There's so much tension, is he going to be okay? If he pulls through the operation, what about the long recovery time and the rehab and the- oh never mind, Jock's fine, the end.

No, really. It all wraps up quite tidily! There are some plot threads a-danglin': Bobby hasn't decided whether or not he's staying at Ewing Oil, J.R.'s shady dealings may still come home to roost, Pam continues to wrestle with the ennui that imbues a lifestyle of the rich and famous, Lucy has yet to come to terms with her mortality, etc. But those are problems for another day.The Ewing patriarch is Southfork bound.

Most WTF line of the episode is uttered by Miss Ellie (as usual) : "Jock gets peeved if I'm not around when he wakes up in the morning." I'm imagining her sitting by his side of the bed, unable to start her day lest Jock open his eyes and she's living her life not in the immediate vicinity. These people, I swear.

They're the best!


  1. Stacie,

    Your coverage continues to be spot-on and hi-larious. Thanks again for doing this. I can't wait to read your reviews for when the show finally properly serializes itself.

    Just a question: Have you ever seen Fresno? I watched it when it originally aired and remember loving it. (At that time I was a big Dynasty II: The Colbys fan.) I just got myself a DVD-R of the Fresno miniseries and am all set for a weekend in with it. If you haven't see it, you should probably. If you have already, you continue to be cool.

    Dan "This tastes like Fresno" Budnik

  2. Thanks so much, Dan!

    I'm looking forward to the really good stuff myself...there are some signs of life coming very soon- ep 7 or so- but I know that by the end of Season 2 everything has gone nutcake and I can't wait.

    That said, I have not seen Fresno, and I suddenly feel that my life is lacking by a wide margin. I did find my Models, Inc DVDs recently, though, and I was thinking that Dallas Reviewed should really be part of some kind of nighttime soap conglomerate...

  3. Congratulations on another dandy review. A few observations: (1) It seems that the fictional men of Southfork have all the power, but the real-life actresses of Southfork have all the acting chops. Patrick Duffy, in particular, should be thanking his lucky stars that Dallas came into his life. Or maybe he was just going for the Emmy in this episode. Who knows. ... (2) I think you're onto something with the Texas Chainsaw Massacre parallels. ... (3) I'm pretty sure the Statue Dad in that GIF is actually Slender Man. A monster's gotta work, right?