Dallas recap: Trial and Error
I haven’t wanted to read any articles about how Dallas will handle Larry Hagman’s passing, but knowing we’re getting close to his last episode, I suppose I’m happy that he’s taking Sue Ellen’s advice to forgive John Ross (even if he doesn’t deserve it) and nervous that Vicente has all of the sudden resurfaced. You?
As the episode began, Ann stormed into the hospital to see Harris. “Wake up, you sick son of a bitch,” she said. Naturally the Ice Queen wanted her gone: “You best leave if you know what’s good for you,” Judith said. But Ann gave it to Harris about him trying to frame Bobby for attempted murder when she was prepared to take responsibility for wanting him dead. Emma was outside and heard everything, including the pleasure Harris took in making Ann suffer. Outside the hospital, the always frazzled Ann dropped her keys, and when she went to pick them up, she noticed blood splatter on her cowboy boots. She marched into the police and said, “My name is Ann Ewing, and I shot Harris Ryland.” Emma, meanwhile, asked her father why he’d lied to police about Bobby. He and his mother blamed it on the coma and medication.
Across town, Cliff was being brutally honest with Rebecca: He said she’s desperately looking for love with men who can only use her. Considering how Cliff uses her, he should probably pipe down. But he did raise a good question: Why does she want to play another Ewing, especially when John Ross is as Machiavellian as his father? She told him there would be no more emotions to get in the way. Cliff had his doubts.
The police confirmed the blood and carpet fibers on Ann’s boots were from Harris and his home. Good thing they didn’t decide the two of them were in it together: They cleared Bobby and indicted Ann. They were going to go with a “sudden passion defense,” which everyone tried to tell Ann was a good thing because Emma would have to hear the story she’s been refusing to listen to in court.
J.R. made his entrance sitting outside, sipping his coffee, and reading on his tablet. His phone rang and it was Cliff, happy to tell J.R. that “Good morning” was the nicest thing he’d ever said to him — and also that it was John Ross who told him about J.R.’s deal with Frank. “You go to hell, Barnes,” J.R. said. “I would, but seems like you’ve cornered that market,” Cliff said.
NEXT: Judith Light rules
A quick time jump, and it was one month later and the start of Ann’s trial. With Harris still recovering, Judith testified that early in the marriage, Ann began spending their money, staying out late, and picking up men. Harris thought a baby would tame her, but Ann wanted an abortion. Ann had supposedly used manipulation, “sexual and otherwise,” against Harris. She was so angry and awful, the judge agreed that she needed to step off the stand. That woman is not likable. I think the jury and Emma had to be swayed to Ann’s side at that point.
We had to check in with Drew Ramos, who’d made four runs in that mysterious rig of his. John Ross knows there’s a moral clause in Elena’s contract with Sue Ellen that not only covers Elena but also her employees, so he told Clyde to go get him. Later, we watched as Clyde broke one of the truck’s taillights so the cops would stop Drew. They looked inside, of course, and instead of finding automotive supplies, they found women’s purses and shoes. No! Not even drugs? It was really just that he was smuggling? Boring! Let’s just knock this out now: Elena got the call and was none too pleased with her brother. He said this time it was trouble finding him — never drive a truck when you don’t know what’s inside, A-hole. It hasn’t hit Elena yet, what kind of drama this will cause for her.
Then, we found out Ann wanted Pamela to be a character witness. What? The woman is a known con artist, even if, in the eyes of the court, she’s been redeemed. But Pamela assured Christopher that Ann is the only Ewing who never turned on her so she wouldn’t betray her. And also, she added, she knows what Ann went through: If she was involved in Tommy’s murder, it was because he abused her and she was protecting herself and Christopher’s babies. If Christopher was going to keep vilifying her, she threatened to take Barnes Global and his children to Bermuda. Outside the courthouse, Pamela thanked John Ross for going to her father about Frank. (She hasn’t seen John Ross for a month to do that?) He wanted to get dinner, but taking her father’s advice, she said no. She needs to protect their business arrangement.
Back inside the courthouse, J.R. shot John Ross daggers, and Sue Ellen told J.R. she wanted him to forgive his son because that’s what fathers do. She also told him she was the one who gave John Ross a direct line to Cliff, so he should blame her instead. Later, J.R. wanted to have a heart-to-heart with John Ross in the men’s room, but John Ross said he didn’t need his forgiveness. “You don’t need my wrath either. We dinosaurs are known to bite,” J.R. said. When John Ross got the call from Clyde about Drew’s arrest, father and son seemed to be on the side again, so all is well again.
The courthouse was certainly busy: Vicente came through with an escort, who told Bobby and Christopher that as a courtesy to the Venezuelan consulate, Vicente was getting an extradition hearing. Vicente made sure we knew he still has business to settle with the Ewings. (If that bastard touches J.R., I WILL not be happy. He’s not worthy.)
NEXT: Ann sets the record straight, to no avail
The trial continued, and it wasn’t looking good for Ann: A detective described it as premeditated murder and the trauma surgeon who treated Harris said most “sudden passion” crimes are messy, so there would have been multiple shots. This single shot to the chest was more like an execution. Pamela testified that Ann was kind and would only have fired on Harris if she’d felt cornered and had been seriously provoked.
Harris was finally well enough to testify and was wheeled to the stand. He told a story about Ann having abandoned young Emma at their house alone while she went out with friends. He came home to find Emma hungry, crying hysterically, and sitting in dirty diapers. Then he said he watched Ann walk away from Emma that day at the Texas State Fair.
Anna took the stand next and weaved a story of her own: She grew up poor and never felt pretty. Her mother took her to doctors to see if they could make her stop growing after she hit puberty. But then Harris came along, and they were happy — until his suffocating mother started to interfere. (Cut to a smartass look from Judith in the crowd.) Judith put ideas in Harris’ head about Ann being a gold digger and seeing other men. He then tried to control Ann like he’d been controlled, and he shouted at her if she did anything not to his liking. She felt trapped when she had Emma and was diagnosed with postpartum depression and put on medication.
She left Emma with Judith, so she could go see a divorce lawyer, and Judith lied to Harris and said Ann had abandoned her. Harris found out about Ann’s plans to divorce him and forced her to see a psychiatrist who put her on more medication. One day, she took a few more pills than she should have and took Emma to the State Fair to get out of the house. It was so hot, she left Emma in her stroller and went to get a soda. She was only gone a couple of minutes. She turned back, and Emma was gone. Harris looked uncomfortable in his seat, like he might believe Ann. She seemed convincing. (But seriously, Ann, take the stroller with you!)
Outside the courthouse, Christopher talked to Emma and urged her to tell the truth — her truth. On the stand, she hesitated when asked if she heard Ann say she shot Harris and she wished he was dead at the hospital. But then she confirmed it. Instead of saying what cruelty she’d heard coming out of her father’s mouth, she said she could think of no justification for Ann shooting him, that she loves her father and wakes up every morning grateful that he rescued her from her mother. Emma was clearly upset about having to say those words. Ann mouthed, “It’s okay.”
The best thing to come out the trial (or worst) was always level-headed Christopher seeing the kind of pain a child goes through when one parent brainwashes them against the other. He told Pamela he didn’t want their kids to be raised with their parents poisoning their minds against each other and he agreed to mediation. The babies kicked, and Pamela had Christopher feel them. He teared up. He’s such a crier! Afterward, Cliff congratulated Pamela on getting Christopher to the table. She really is just a pawn. Ugh, am I starting to like her again?
While at a restaurant with allegedly great pie, they got the call that a verdict had come in and would be read the next day. Ann was found guilty of attempted murder. Emma ran out of the courtroom crying. Will she tell the truth and help Ann appeal?
As Ann was being handcuffed and led off, Bobby told her, “We’ll figure it out,” and darn it if I didn’t believe him. He’s so calm and steady. Vicente was also being led somewhere at that moment. The smile on his face – he’s up to something. Again, if it involves J.R., I will toss my TV. (Okay, I won’t. I love my TV. But possibly a pillow.)
Your turn. Theories?