Larry Hagman, star of “Dallas” and “I Dream of Jeannie,” among other things, passed away this weekend. Heaven will never be the same once he gets his hands on the prime land up there. AND….if there’s any oil to be found there, God better have some big bucks on hand to out bid him for the drilling rights. You know how J.R. can be ruthless when making deals for oil rights.
Although I wasn’t a really huge fan of “Dallas” when it was on television originally back in 1978 to 1991, I did tune in faithfully to his appearances as Tony Nelson in the “I Dream of Jeannie” series also starring Barbara Eden. (1965 to 1970)
OK….YES….YES….for cripes sake! It was only because I had this big crush on Barbara. Well, what red-blooded guy wouldn’t! I mean, look at her.
Here was Hagman’s character, Major Tony Nelson, always getting into one predicament after another in that TV series and never completely utilizing the magic powers of Jeannie and her bottle. What the heck was wrong with that guy? You all know what we, as “sex on the brain slug” males were thinking don’t ya?
But, alas, he never did. Most likely because he did not want to tarnish his reputation as a Major in the armed forces, have an affair with Jeannie, and then have her write a tell all book about it later. Yeah, like that would have happened. We all know stuff like that only happens in real life and not on sitcoms.
But Hagman was best known for his role as “J.R.” on Dallas years later, 1978-1991. He was, to put it mildly, a real SOB in his role as J.R. I mean, when someone finally shot J.R. Ewing, we, as dummies, thought that would be it. Ya see, back in those days if you were shot, you were basically dead. Unlike today’s shows where the hero is shot a gazillion times but always manages to survive because producers of those shows know that if they kill off the hero nobody’s gonna watch the show anymore.
You can only use that plot a number of times in a single show before the viewing public says, “Alright already, whaddya think we’re freakin’ dummies. Shoot the bastard, dump him in a six-foot hole and let’s get on with it. Like some of the characters in “Justified,” with the exception of Raylan, who DO get shot and actually die. Then miraculously appear in other TV series. (Maggs)
Dallas not only brought much fame to Hagman, but to others in the show as well. Victoria Principal, who was realllly hot. (refer to “Playboy Magazine” 1973 issue) Linda Gray as “Sue Ellen,” Patrick Duffy as “Bobby Ewing,” Barbara Bel Geddes as “Miss Ellie,” Jim Davis as “Jock Ewing,” Ken Kercheval as “”Cliff Barnes,” Charlene Tilton as, “Lucy,” (no relation to Lucy, Linus and Charlie Brown) and Steve Kanaly as “Ray Krebbs.”
Contrary to popular opinion, Ray Krebbs was not and is in no way related to Maynard G. Krebs as far as I can determine. (Dobie Gillis Show) As is Cliff Barnes not the founder of the”Barnes & Nobles” book store chain. Sometimes ya have to make these things perfectly clear.
Hagman also starred in two other short-lived sitcoms, “The Good Life,” (NBC 1971-1972) and “Here We Go Again” (ABC 1973) He also appeared in a few movies, “The Group,” “Harry and Tonto,” (minus the Lone Ranger and any references to Indian casinos) and “Primary Colors.”
By the way, just in case you missed out on who actually shot J.R. in the original series, or you were just a gleam in your parent’s eyes at the time, it was J.R.’s sister-in-law, “Kristin,” (Mary Crosby) who shot him. WHY? Because as the plot went, J.R. had got her pregnant, (low down dirty cheatin’ Petraeus/Broadwell sex type scandal) then threatened to frame her as a prostitute unless she left town…..or got outta Dodge……or in her case, Dallas.
Lucky for Petraeus that Paula Broadwell and that other woman Jill Kelly didn’t get any ideas from remembering that Dallas episode. The again, it would really make for a good movie. Which we all know is gonna happen….with or without anyone being shot.
According to the write up by the AP and Lynn Elber, Hagman said that he already knew what he wanted on his tombstone. I would have chosen, “I wish I had made a wish to jump Jeannie’s bones while I had that damn genie’s lamp.” His actual thought on what it should say, “Here lies upright citizen J. R. Ewing. This is the only deal he ever lost.”
Hmmmm. How can ya be “upright” if you’re lying once they put you in the ground? Point to ponder there.
I always loved the idea of putting something prophetic on my tombstone once I buy the farm. Something like, “I told ya I was sick!”
The TV show Dallas will obviously continue although the network did not comment on how the series would deal with the passing of Hagman with the program set to begin airing on January 28th.
A fitting touch would be to begin the initial program this season with a memorial service for J.R. at the “Southfork Ranch” in Dallas with cameos of the various stars of the original show attending. Except for his sister-in-law Kristin who’s still serving time for attempting to shoot J.R.
Larry Hagman……1931-2012. You will be missed.
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