In the 1980s, every Friday night in the Robinson household we all would gather around the floor model television for a night of epic shows (after strategic maneuvering of a massive antenna with some man power and yelling through the window that the channel was in clear now). And on a clear night, the Lord blessed us with five channels but CBS was the channel that was always crystal clear no matter the weather. The Friday night prime time lineup included my favorite show, Dukes of Hazard, followed by Dallas.
The show is Iconic in Pop Culture history with a long run from 1978-1991. It was known for its grand storytelling and the cliffhangers that made you want to tune in the next week to see what would happen next. Of all the characters on the show, the one that stood out the most was a cocky, swaggering, callous Texan oil tycoon who went by the name J.R. Ewing.
J.R. was the most “love to hate sum-bitch” who ever donned a ten gallon hat with a million dollar shit-eating grin. He was that guy you loved to hate for he was filthy rich and would constantly plot scams against foes for wealth. Dallas was known for the epic cliffhangers such as “Who shot J.R” and “The Dream” in which the entire ninth season was a complete dream.
J.R. Ewing was one of the greatest villains of all time in the history of television. The extramarital affairs, the manic drive to make more profit, and the reek of pure evil were the formula of the success to make it good television. I recall even back then as a youngster how the storytelling would draw you in. The “Dream” season cliffhanger really stood out to me for having to wait a whole summer to see what happen. The buzz in my mom’s beauty shop (pre-internet) was lead to an exciting conversation on what would happen when the show came back on.
J.R.‘s riches were far and yonder from the Robinson household’s antenna, wood stove and well water. Two different worlds – even though it was entertainment. J.R. Ewing’s real name, of course, was Larry Hagman. Hagman first became well known on the hit show I Dream of Jeannie but will forever be remembered as the devious iconic Texas villain J.R. Ewing.
November 12, 2012 the credits faded to black for Mr. Larry Hagman who passed away from complications of throat cancer.
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~ Jason Robinson
Jason Wallace Robinson hails from Spartanburg, South Carolina. He’s a writer, storyteller, philosopher, single father raising two children, music lover, dreamer, joker. He writes to speak for the Common Man. He enjoys football and driving around in his ’96 Chevy Lumina adorned with an American Flag and decorative bird offerings.
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