'Dallas' Burning Questions: Will Pamela and John Ross Last? Does Christopher's Mother Return? Who Shot J.R.?
Julie Gonzalo and Patrick Duffy give THR the scoop on what’s to come in the TNT series’ season ender.
While Patrick Duffy promises answers in the season two finale of TNT’s Dallas, including revealing the identity of J.R. (Larry Hagman)’s killer, cliffhangers will still abound.
“We’re going to completely tie up that mystery about what [J.R.] was doing and all of these elements to his plan. That’s going to be history,” Duffy tells The Hollywood Reporter. “But the way that we resolve the J.R. thing puts so many plots into place for next season; that’s why I think it’s such good writing.
“When the audience sees who did it, where they end up and why, it blows your mind,” he promises.
And while “next season” remains in limbo, TNT has not yet renewed the Cynthia Cidre drama, the cast is feeling good about their prospects.
“I’m just being positive,” says Julie Gonzalo, after referencing season three multiple times during an interview with THR. “To be honest with you, I would be shocked if we didn’t. At the end of the day, worse things have happened, so who knows, maybe we won’t come back, but I don’t see why not.”
Season two of the Texas-set drama concludes with a two-hour finale beginning Monday at 9 p.m., showcasing Pamela (Gonzalo) and John Ross (Josh Henderson) as newlyweds while the hunt for Christopher (Jesse Metcalfe)’s mother -- also named Pamela -- continues. The late J.R. will also have a heavy hand in the action as his “masterpiece” unfolds.
The Hollywood Reporter: So, what is J.R.’s plan?
Patrick Duffy: Well I can’t tell you what it entails. We’ve been giving little hints, you know. What I love about the writing of this show and how the writing staff does these things is you realize once some big revelation has been made you think back you go, “Oh, I should’ve seen that because that person did that when they came in the room.” There’s a moment the very first time Christopher took Pamela to see Cliff Barnes in season one in about the third episode. Julie, who plays Pamela, was the only one of the entire cast that knew she was Cliff Barnes’ daughter [at the time], but when you go back and look at that scene you see her reaction to him and you think, “Oh my God, there’s something going on there” and you realize they planted that seed way back then. The wonderful thing about the end of the show, especially episode 15, is the audience is going to immediately start going back three, four, five, six episodes and start to see all the little clues that we gave them hints about and that’s what’s going to be fun. It’s just so good and it’s so Dallas. It’s so old-school but done in such a new fun way that it’s a great cliffhanger and resolution.
THR: How does Pamela’s marriage to John Ross factor into the plan?
Julie Gonzalo: Her father had something to do with what happened to her and her babies. … She wants justice. At the end of the day, she has always been her father’s daughter. She’s always been a daddy’s girl, and I feel like now it’s finally turning to see that there’s something more. Like maybe her father wasn’t the good father that she thought he was. She’s trying to make amends. I feel like she’s just trying to bring justice to what happened to her, and if her father had something to do with it, then she’s going to align with whoever is trying to put him down.
THR: In the last episode, Elena (Jordana Brewster) said that Pamela and John Ross deserve each other. Do you agree?
Gonzalo: I do! (laughs) I think it’s a fun duo. They’re two characters that are cut from the same cloth, you know? To me, it’s funny because when I watch the show and I see their dynamic, I’m like, “Wow that’s so awesome! They’re so cool together!” But I see it as not me, which is kind of a weird thing to do. Because I mean I love Josh, Josh is like one of my best buds on set right now, and we have a great time. And I think that that also translates on screen. But I really do. And it’s funny because we actually do have a lot of similarities in real life, and now we’ve put it on screen. And it just works. I really do think that the writers did a really good job pairing us up together.
Duffy: You can take the definition of that phrase both ways. You deserve each other means you didn’t ruin two families, or you deserve each other you finally found somebody that’s right for you. If you think back, the character of J.R. with Sue Ellen, it was a marriage, they got married twice as a matter of fact on the show, where you realize they actually love each other and they’re the worst two people in the world for each other. That’s a great dynamic and that could work for Josh and Julie as well playing their characters. Yeah I think they do deserve each other. It was fun to watch who slept with who over the last two years to get to this point. Boy, there’s a lot going on. Except not with Bobby.
THR: How long will the marriage last?
Gonzalo: I don’t know! I mean, I keep on winking to Patrick saying, “Hey, season three. You know, I like the Ewings.” I don’t know! I have no idea what the plan is, to be honest. When I first read the script and that they were getting married, I think my jaw dropped, and I was like, “What!? No! So soon!” And then it dawned on me like two episodes ago, I had just gotten my annulment and I’m like “Whoa, I move quick!” But I don’t know. To be honest, I feel like it’s kind of mirroring what J.R. and Sue Ellen once were. And I feel that maybe that’s where they’re heading with it.
THR: But do you think John Ross and Pamela are capable of loving anyone other than themselves?
Gonzalo: I do believe that they may have real feelings for each other. I don’t know what’s going to happen next season. As of right now, I feel that they do. I think that there is something real between them. I think that they smelled each other’s bullsh--, and they’re calling it. And there could be something … like there could be a real love between them. I don’t know how long it would last, but I think that there is something genuine, especially after the loss that she suffered, and he was there for her.
THR: Speaking of Pamelas, will we see Christopher’s mother in the finale?
Duffy: The question of Pamela in terms of Dallas has so many benefits to keeping the conversation. It’s not just the character and what that means. The huge multibillion-dollar company is divided into three parts. If there is a Pamela out there, then she owns a third of Cliff Barnes’ company and she was Bobby’s ex-wife, that’s a great plot. If there’s no Pamela out there it would mean that Christopher inherits a third of Barnes Global, so no matter what the resolution is, story-wise it’s great. Then, the fact that Victoria has a character playing Pamela has a huge fan base. That Pamela character has devoted fans out there and for that reason, if that character came back, it would be huge for the show. All those things are very exciting -- and I know the answer to them and I’m not telling.
THR: Bobby and Ann have really been put through the ringer this season. Is it possible they can overcome anything the writing team throws at them?
Duffy: Yes and that’s just because that’s the description of their marriage, quite honestly. Bobby and Ann have to be the lynchpin in terms of the right thing to do, the proper relationship, the strength. It’s Barbara Bel Geddes and Jim Davis. They were always at each other nitpicking, but you knew that it was the best marriage in the history of the world as far as the viewers were concerned. That’s what I think Bobby and Ann’s function is on the show, so yeah we’re going to weather it. It’s not that we’re not going to get beat up a bit, cause that’s kind of fun. I enjoyed that scene with her this season where I just blew up at her, and then we end up in each other’s arms saying how much we love each other. So here we are.
Email: Sophie.Schillaci@THR.com; Twitter: @SophieSchillaci
Sundance: On the Scene