It will go down in American culture as the last hoorah for television legend Larry Hagman. The second season of the reboot of Dallas saw the villainous and conniving J.R. Ewing’s death coinciding with the real-life passing of Hagman. And it set up an ongoing new search–not for who shot J.R.–but who killed J.R., as the series begins its third season on TNT on February 24, 2014. Averaging 4 million viewers per episode last year, it’s clear viewers still want to know what’s going on at Southfork, even 36 years since we first met the Ewings. And the new series is one of the best retro treatments any TV series has seen–how many classic shows have gotten a second chance?
What is actually the sixteenth season of Dallas is in stores everywhere tomorrow, and reboot Season 2 features not only the 15 episodes from 2013, but several deleted scenes and other bonus features, including an extended cut of the series farewell to J.R. and Hagman in “J.R.’s Masterpiece.” Fans of Hagman in particular will appreciate two features, “Memories of Larry Hagman: A Cast and Crew Tribute,” including some good light-hearted discussions with Josh Henderson, who plays J.R.’s son, and a season one press interview with Hagman discussing the series, “One Last Conversation with Larry Hagman.” The feature “The Battle for Ewing Energies” is an overview of the season and the fast-moving plot twists. “Dallas at Paleyfest 2013,” unlike many Paley Center presentation features, is a well-filmed, quality panel from late season that includes the seven key cast members and the show’s writers. Costume designer Rachel Sage Kunin discusses wardrobe and jewelry selection decisions with actress Jordana Brewster in a series of featurettes on each disc.
We reviewed last season at borg.com here, and recounted J.R. Ewing and the show’s significance in the realm of classic TV watching. Not just a stale prime time soap opera, the writers of Dallas have managed to keep the store zipping along, often creating and resolving key crises in a single episode, to move right on to the next challenge for the Ewing family.
Pick up the four-disc DVD of Dallas Season Two tomorrow, February 11, 2014 at stores everywhere, and pre-order it today at a discount at Amazon.com.