Dallas - Season 3, Episode 6
Recap: Bobby and Ray are rounding up the Southfork cattle while Miss Ellie is at the doctor's office, looking into whether or not a lump in her breast is malignant. The doctor tells her it's probably a cyst, but will do further testing to make sure...and Miss Ellie says she's been keeping this potential cancer scare a secret from Jock 'cause she doesn't want him to worry until there's something to actually worry about.
JR is on the phone, barking in annoyance at someone regarding the Southeast Asia deal he foolishly leaped into (after mortgaging Southfork) during the previous episode. Kristin wanders into his office and starts massaging his shoulders...and after he finishes the call, she cooingly invites him to share with her whatever's stressing him out. Before he can respond, another call comes through with more troubling Southeast Asia related news - just as Jock arrives. Kristin's all, "Ack!" and tells him that JR's super busy at the moment, but Jock ignores her and barges into JR's office. JR hastily finishes the call and tells him he's just been dealing with the usual OLM harassment, and Jock says he's been working too hard lately and insists he take a break so they can go to lunch together...and JR obediently replies, "Yes daddy sir."
That evening, Lucy excitedly tells Bobby that Val told her she's been in touch with Gary, and that the two might rekindle their stupid rollercoaster of a relationship. JR frowns disapprovingly and says, "Don't count on that" and reminds her that her idiot parents have broken her heart before. Bobby concurs and advises her to not get her hopes up...and, fortunately, this tedious will Val and Gary?/won't Val and Gary? subplot gets wrapped up for the time being when Miss Ellie steps into the room to announce that dinner is ready.
Jock wonders aloud why everyone's quieter at the dinner table than usual, then remarks to Miss Ellie that she's looking especially spacey. She assures him she's fine, then suggests that he and the rest of the Ewing menfolk get away for awhile - by going on a hunting trip in Louisiana, for example. Jock perks up at the idea and says he'd like to invite Ray along...and JR rolls his eyes at the prospect of having to rough it in nature in the company of Ray.
As the Ewing menfolk (plus Ray) prepare to board the Southfork helicopter, JR grumbles to Bobby that he doesn't get why Jock always has to invite Ranch Hand Ray along. Bobby just shrugs and says that Ray's practically family...and by practically, he means that eventually Ray will get outed as Jock's illegitimate son and expect to be treated as an equal.
Jock et al. arrive in a tiny Louisiana town named Landowne and quickly head over to the general store to load up on supplies. While chit-chatting with the store clerk, Jock needlessly but proudly identifies himself as Jock Ewing - as in, the dickwad patriarch behind Ewing Oil...and the clerk's all, "Wha-a-a?" as he visibly processes that fascinating nugget. When Jock et al. leave the store, the clerk immediately calls up a grizzled yokel named Tom Owens to report that Jock Ewing and his sons are in town and that they plan to hunt in some nearby woods. Tom narrows his eyes, mutely stares into space for several seconds, then growls, "I've waited thirty-two years to face this man." Yeech...sounds like another Digger who can't let go of a decades old grudge in response to whatever Jock once did to piss him off.
Jock et al. are at a local bar, drinking and gruffly cackling about something or other when Tom Owens, his fresh-faced son Dan, and another yokelly looking guy named Ben enter the bar. Tom sneeringly tells Jock that the Ewing name doesn't mean shit in these parts, and Jock just shrugs amiably and says he didn't claim it did. Tom orders him to look him in the eye, so Jock glares back and him and derisively says he has absolutely no clue who he is. After a few more seconds of hostile sniping, the two suddenly lunge at each other, and this prompts Bobby and Ray to leap into action and start punching Dan and Ben. JR remains safely seated, clutching his beer...but effectively ends the rumble when he smashes his beer mug over Dan's (or was it Ben's?) head after he comes sliding head first across the table. After a full asskicking has been administered, Jock et. al. saunter out of the bar, snickering about the big swinging dicks they each fancy themselves to be.
Miss Ellie tells Pam she's off to a routine doctor's appointment, and Pam scrunches her face concernedly and points out that she just saw her doctor for a routine appointment a day ago. She asks if anything is amiss, but Miss Ellie assures her that all is well, then heads out.
Ben suggests to Tom that they head to the woods and terrorize Jock et al. in their campsite...and Tom nods solemnly and vows that, one way or another, Jock is going to remember who in blazes he is.
Miss Ellie is in the sitting room at Southfork, worriedly reading a pamphlet about breast cancer. Pam invites her to join her in the nursery while she feeds Baby John Ross...and as the two head upstairs, they run into Sue Ellen on the staircase. When Baby John Ross starts mewling from his crib, Pam's like, "Er, that's your baby crying", and Sue Ellen shoots her the stink-eye and sassily retorts, "No shit. Good thing I hired a baby nurse...plus, there's the two of you." Pam refrains from telling her where to shove it and continues on to the nursery with Miss Ellie...and as Miss Ellie cuddles her grandson, Pam asks her again what's wrong. Miss Ellie assures her it's nothing, gives her a quick hug, and volunteers to go warm the baby's bottle.
As Jock et al. spread out to hunt in the woods, an unseen man skulks nearby, tampers with the lantern in their campsite, then opens fire on Bobby. Jock, JR, and Ray rush over to see if he was hit, then decide that the flying bullets must have been some kind of freak hunting accident. A few minutes after they return to the campsite and crack open a few beers, the lantern that had been tampered with explodes...and Ray studies the charred remains and deduces that someone punctured a hole in the bottom of it. Jock decides to ignore that second red flag and chalks it up to another freak accident...and JR stares despondently into space and says he really really wishes he were back in his Ewing Oil office.
Late that night, the skulker reappears and quietly opens the hood of the rental vehicle and tampers with the engine. Jock hears the commotion so he grabs his rifle to investigate, and the skulker opens fire and shoots Jock in the abdomen.
After the commercial break, Bobby and Ray are firing back at the gunmen (aka Tom, Dan, and Ben) while JR cowers behind a tree. When Bobby and Ray yell, "They shot Jock!", JR stupidly leaves his safe spot to check on his father and immediately gets shot in the leg. Ray's all, "Noooooo!" and races in the direction of the gunmen, but by that time Tom, Dan, and Ben have hightailed it out of there. When Ray grimly discovers that the engine of their rental vehicle has been pooched, he and Bobby decide to go on foot to Landowne and get some help while a hobbled JR stays behind to guard the campsite with his rifle.
Bobby and Ray walk through the woods, their rifles raised. They find blood on a tree and correctly assume that their return gunfire injured at least one of the shooters.
Tom tells Ben and Dan (who's clutching his bleeding arm) that Jock and JR are sitting ducks and that he wants to return to their campsite, pronto, so he can finish them off.
As JR wipes a wet cloth over Jock's face, a contrite looking Jock invokes his heart attack in the Bypass episode and says that this shooting has reinforced for him how short life is...and that he has a huge confession he'd like to get off his chest. He tells JR he was once married to a woman named Amanda Lewis who had a nervous breakdown two years after their wedding. At the time she was confined to a state mental institution, but now lives in a private hospital, courtesy of Jock's secret payments to cover all of her medical expenses. He tells JR that if he dies this episode, he wants him to set up a trust fund for Amanda so she can continue to enjoy her cushy digs. JR looks weirded out by the startling confession and half-heartedly promises his father that if he doesn't make it out of this hunting trip alive, he'll be sure to get right on that trust fund request.
Bobby and Ray arrive in Landowne and are quickly unsettled by how quiet the podunk town is. They run over to a florist who just happens to be sweeping the street in front of his shop and implore him to summon help for their wounded hunting mates, but the florist tells them he couldn't give a rat's ass about their problems and snappishly orders them to get lost. Bobby and Ray decide that their best option is to "borrow" a vehicle so they can race back to the campsite and rescue Jock and JR...and the two find a pickup truck that the owner stupidly left his keys in.
JR has nodded off when Tom et al. return to the campsite to exact their revenge on Jock's decades old dickishness. Tom snarlingly informs Jock that thirty-two years ago he tried to strong arm him into selling his land...and when he refused, Jock leaned on him so hard (?) that no one wanted to buy his crops, which subsequently drove him into bankruptcy. Tom growls, "I waited a long time to get revenge", and Jock wearily retorts, "Fine, go ahead and kill me." Tom raises his rifle, stares stonily at his target for a few seconds...but then gets a stricken look on his face and lowers his weapon while muttering, "I can't...I'm not a killer." A few seconds later, Bobby and Ray return in the stolen truck, raise their rifles in ready-to-fire positions and order Tom et al. to drop their guns. Jock assures them it's all good, and that he doesn't want to involve the law for something he's going to classify as a hunting accident [as well as a completely pointless episode]. Jock then turns his attention back to Tom and admits that, yep, he he rode roughshod over a lot of people back in the day and feels kinda bad about it now. When he mumbles something about how all men deserve to go to their graves with dignity, Tom's like, "This doesn't mean you're still not going to hell", but then peacefully skedaddles with Dan and Ben. Jock tells JR that as soon as he gets home, he's going to carefully comb over their finances and sort out the secret situation they discussed earlier...and JR does his best to mask his panic as he nods in agreement.
Jock, Bobby, JR, and Ray return to Southfork by ambulance...and when Miss Ellie sees her beloved in a wheelchair, she's all, "Wha-at happened??" Jock assures her he's fine - and that, in fact, he finds the occasional gunshot injury rather stimulating. LOL. As everyone ambles toward the house, Jock pulls JR aside and reminds him about his promise to set up the trust fund for Amanda, and JR's like, "Uh huh" and stares concernedly into space.
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Recapper: Isabel K. French
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