Dallas had a tough act to follow after the death of who could unquestionably be called its franchise character, and, despite having to rewrite the entire second half of the series, acquitted itself admirably.

Dallas Season 2, Finale Recap (4/15/13)

Dallas Guilt By Association Season2 Episode13

While returning from their quickie Vegas wedding at the end of last week’s episode, John Ross and Pamela discover Cliff’s itinerary for his private jet and that one of the stops was in Nuevo Laredo on the night of J. R.‘s murder.  Understandably Junior’s ready to grab his daddy’s gun (left to him in the will and one of the ingredients in J. R.’s Revenge Casserole — best served cold, of course) and pop a few caps into his new father-in-law, but Bobby’s cooler head prevails. Booby sends Bum to pick up the barmaid that J. R. kept company with on his last night on Earth, Rhonda, and she confirms that Cliff was indeed there.

Christopher and Elena are running out of time in the Land of Clocks, where they are hoping to find his mom Pam who seems to have cheated death and is withdrawing money from a hidden Zurich bank account. He tracks down a plastic surgeon, David Gordon, who claims that he is Pam’s husband. He tells Chris that he met her twenty-plus years ago down in Houston after her car accident and that Cliff tried to get her to return to her family in Dallas but she refused returning to the poisonous Barnes-Ewing feud. She and the doctor moved to Switzerland to escape her past, and she would appreciate if Chris left her alone. When he receives word that Pam and Doc Gordon are at the bank again making yet another withdrawal (the second in less than a week — she should have married an accountant, not a plastic surgeon), Chris tries confronting the mother who abandoned him only to discover it’s not Pam. When Chris threatens to charge the two with fraud, Gordon owns up: Pam did survive her crash, albeit with burns over 60% of her body. Gordon was able to restore her appearance, but before she could return to her son she discovered that she had cancer. She went to Abu Dhabi (one of J. R.’s stops earlier this season) for treatment, but it didn’t take, and so she — and all our hopes for the restoration of the One True Pamela Barnes on the show — died. Cliff had Pam’s nurse Carina pose as his sister to keep Pam’s shares from falling to Chris. Gordon and Carina give Chris a copy of Pam’s will, which leaves him her third of Barnes Global.

Sue Ellen tracks down Ken Richards to the Caymans. He reveals what Governor McConaughey has over him that got him to squash the report that initially cleared Ewing Energies (Richards using his clout as TESHA director to bury evidence of his own son’s environmental crimes). Sue Ellen offers him a choice of her protection or her turning him in herself. Armed with the true report, she flies to Austin and heads to the Capitol where she enjoys the satisfaction of wiping the smug smile off Gov’nor Sam’s face and getting him to call off taking over the Henderson ranch.

While in Switzerland, Chris discovers the secret cellphone that Elena has been using to keep in contact with her bro Drew. Since Drew was the architect of the bomb that killed his unborn twins, Chris views this as betrayal and gives Elena the bum’s rush. In Texas, Drew is still on the hunt for Ryland’s mook Roy Vickers and discovers the truth about what was really on board Ryland’s trucks by spraying some substance on one of the women’s shoes (reminding me of a German YouPorn video I saw once) which was the supposed cargo. Vickers chases Drew on his motorbike and the two get popped by highway police, only to discover that it’s not Drew, just a decoy to distract Roy while he planted a bag in his truck. The county mounties discover the half-dissolved shoe, which is actually compacted cocaine molded to look like a shoe (science!), and so now we know what the connection between Ryland Transport and the Mexican drug cartel is about. Drew calls Bobby with the news of bringing in Roy, but refuses to turn himself in, cruising off into the sunset on his chopper like a latter-day Lorenzo Lamas in Renegade.

Roy faces twenty for drug trafficking, but refuses to roll over on his boss Harris. When the Anti-Pam guilts him with her babies’ (a boy and a girl, we find out) deaths, he tells her that Cliff did indeed know that she was on the rig, but gave the order to blow it up anyway. For his trouble, Roy gets shanked in the throat by jailhouse thugs hired by Cliff to keep him from talking and dies.

With two-thirds of Barnes Global (Christopher’s share and Pamela’s share) under Ewing control and McConaughey calling off the state’s seizure of the Henderson land, Bobby’s ready to deploy the last remaining piece of J. R.’s Master Plan: the gun, which Bobby and Bum reveal is the weapon that Cliff used to kill him. The mugger story was made up to keep Barnes off his guard, while the family gathered together the evidence. Because Cliff (as old-school fans will remember is a former attorney) would likely fight extradition to Mexico for murder, the Anti-Pam tricks him into going to Nuevo Laredo on casino business and plants the gun in his trunk. The Dallas authorities swing into action: the exhumation of J. R.’s body, where the bullets found in his chest match those of the gun, and the discovery of J. R.’s WWE-grade belt buckle in Cliff’s safe-deposit box at a bank (earlier planted by John Ross and Pamela). When confronted by the Ewings and the Mexican police, Cliff says he was nowhere near Nuevo Laredo and pitifully cries frame-up.

The last remaining member of the He-Man Ewing Haters Club, Harris Ryland, receives his comeuppance courtesy of his daughter Emma. Emma gets her bail paid by Annie in return for agreeing to rehab but she returns to Harris’ house, seemingly preferring the whimsical world of pharmacological addiction and Electra complexes to that of sobriety. But this is a ruse to get into Ryland’s safe where she gets hold of his ledger that details his transactions with the drug cartels, and Sheriff Derrick and his deputies cart him off to jail where Annie gets a chance to see the ex-husband who tried to get her sent up the river now dressed in county orange himself.

With the Ewings triumphant over their enemies at last, Bobby and Bum reveal the truth of what really happened to J. R. while graveside with Junior and Chris. Turns out that the old guy had cancer, and knew his days were numbered. He held on long enough to get down to Mexico, during Cliff’s annual marlin fishing trip; he had ever-loyal Bum steal Cliff’s gun and shoot him with it, putting the frame-up in motion and adding yet another chapter to the mythos of J. R. Ewing. As his son John Ross declares to a tearful Bum, “the only person who could take down J. R. was J. R.”

And so it’s a brand new day for the Ewing clan, but trouble may yet be on the horizon at Southfork. Junior is still hooking up with Emma Ryland with the ink on his marriage certificate not yet dried. And Elena Ramos, acting on a tip from the ever-vengeful Cliff, discovers that J. R. bilked her late papi out of oil-rich land, trading his land title for a worthless one. Elena ventures into Mexico, seeking out a childhood friend who has done well for himself — as a powerful boss of a well-armed drug cartel which likely has its own score to settle with Dallas…

 

So that was what happened during “Guilt by Association” and “Legacies”, the final two episodes of Season Two!

I don’t know if I was the only one, but the last few minutes felt like the writers wrapped up enough of the show’s plot threads to end the Ewing saga, as there hasn’t been any official announcement as to the show’s future by TNT (although an interview with P-Duff claims that the show could return in mid-2014). In my opinion, TNT did the show harm by moving the show to Monday where The Big Bang Theory and The Voice -- and not to mention Duck Dynasty -- could run over it. Still Dallas had a tough act to follow after the death of who could unquestionably be called its franchise character, and, despite having to rewrite the entire second half of the series, acquitted itself admirably.

That said, I had an awesome time writing these recaps for y’all and I hope that y’all al had fun too. Hopefully I’ll see you again soon, maybe next summer. Take care, darlin’s!