Dallas was back on stateside screens last night with its first new episode since 1991 (and British audiences can return to Southfork when the series comes to Channel 5 later in the year).
So how has the return of JR Ewing and co been received in their home country? Here’s what the critics are saying over there…
The New York Daily News awarded the first episode three stars, and said: “When you aim to remake Dallas, partner, you’re putting on a big hat.” The review concludes by saying, “No one expects Dallas to have the kind of reach now that it had three decades ago. But between old fans who will enjoy a revisit and young folks who’ve never even heard of Miss Ellie, TNT is placing a sound bet.”
The Hollywood Reporter is less sympathetic, offering a scathing appraisal of the reboot: “If TNT believes that a younger generation who may have only heard of Dallas via Trivial Pursuit or some joke on Twitter will flock to this new version with unbridled enthusiasm, well, that’s some fantastic spin.”
“The writing is not there. Neither is the acting. And the plot – well, it’s not like that was a strong point of the original version anyway. But none of the elements is present, just soap bubbles and silliness. This is a remake that should never have been remade.”
The Los Angeles Times heralded the show as “a worthy return”, adding: “TNT’S version, which focuses on JR, Bobby and Sue Ellen Ewing, along with the next generation, is very much the heir of the CBS original, in spirit and execution.”
The San Francisco Chronicle said, “TNT’s new take on Dallas is so calculating, it’s almost worthy of JR Ewing himself, and I mean that in the most complimentary way.”
“Resist if you want to, but whether you were a fan of the original series, or still in utero when it went off the air in 1991, TNT’s Dallas will wear you down and pull you in with its mix of sex, intrigue, backstabbing, dirty dealing, blackmail and family secrets. The Ewing clan still makes the Medicis look like the Waltons, and there are even more of them 21 years later.”
Entertainment Weekly described new Dallas as “a rare example of an artistically – well, entertainingly, at least — successful TV-classic update”.
Listen to Radio Times reviewer David Brown talking about the Dallas re-make on Simon Mayo’s Drivetime.
Dallas will be screened on Channel 5 in the UK later this year