'Dallas' Recap: Dude, Where's My Tanker?
'Dallas' Recap:  Dude, Where's My Tanker?
This week on Dallas, it's all about crazy exes and making deals with the devil. While everyone else is scheming, discovering giant butcher knives and looking through obscure legal documents, JR Ewing is in Las Vegas getting mani-pedis. It's delightful.

I could have watched an hour of JR and his eyebrows going to a Celine Dion concert in Vegas and then hitting on her after the show. (Considering its' Celine Dion, he might have a chance!) But sadly we get minimal JR this week in favor of watching the other characters scramble over Southfork and all its marvelous oil.

Thankfully, the episode has so many plot lines moving along at a brisk pace, that I barely had time to miss my favorite old coot too much. Jon Ross, Christopher, Bobby and even Rebecca kept things moving this week. With Rebecca's discovery of the mineral trust, the fight for Southfork has just gotten more complicated than ever before. This is bad news for Jon Ross, who is going to be killed either by his shady business partners or by fake Marta slipping him a roofie and then axe-murdering him. If he had a bunny, it would have been boiled by now if you get my Fatal Attraction drift.

As per usual, Elena is mostly useless this week, relegated to making confused faces at various people. I generally like Jordana Brewster; I thought she was effective on Chuck, so I think Dallas is seriously wasting her potential right now.

Last week I complained about the lack of interesting female characters on this show and while this week took a step in a more interesting direction for some of the female cast, it wasn't a large step. Rebecca continues to be almost interesting, but her storyline is always desperately predictable at every turn. This really undercuts her possibility of being a more interesting player on the Southfork scene.

As usual on Dallas it's the older generation I'm most interested in. Why did Ann break down crying so violently when she saw the locket from her ex-husband and why did she wear it later? I want to see more of Sue Ellen's relationship with Jon Ross and her political aspirations. I also want to know why she feels it necessary to hang giant color block art on her wall, as its brightness makes my eyes bleed.

This week redefined the stakes in the fight for Southfork. Will one half of the Ewing family get the land and the other half the oil? We'll have to wait to find out, but you can be sure the dastardly duo of Jon Ross and JR aren't giving up without a fight.

Tanker Trouble

Jon Ross has a lot on his plate this week. Despite having gotten back together with Elena, all is not rosy in his personal life. That's mostly because of Veronica, aka Fake Marta, who is screwing him over in a variety of ways. First is the blackmail Christopher tries to pull, threatening to send his cousin to jail if he doesn't help get Southfork back. Of course, Jon Ross calls his bluff because being menaced by Christopher is like when a tiny puppy growls at you. It's just more cute than scary. Then Veronica shows up on his doorstep in a slinky dress, ready to make amends. "Sorry about that time I drugged you and made a secret sex tape! We good?" she asks. The answer is no, they are not good. Jon Ross tells her to scram, which is maybe not the best thing to tell someone with eyes that crazy.

Later in Elena's apartment, Jon Ross spots a gigantic butcher knife stabbed into one of the spy pictures of him and Elena and he freaks out. He has his father's minion to track Veronica down, but how safe are they really from her crazy Swimfan ways? A crazy, knife-wielding one night stand isn't the only thing out to kill or maim Jon Ross. He also has to deal with JR's shady business partners, who are angry their 14 percent of the oil might not come in as planned. This snag is due to Ann's interference with her ex-husband last week. Harris Ryland, the largest tanker truck supplier in all the land, has refused to help out the Ewings. Without the only tanker trucks in all of oil-rich Texas, Jon Ross can't possibly start drilling. Without drilling there's no oil and without oil there's no 14 percent, which leaves Jon Ross in the precarious position of pissing off some powerful people.

So, like most competent businessmen in a tough situation, Jon Ross runs to his mommy. Sue Ellen doesn't want any part of this noise, but Jon Ross pouts and stamps his feet and she finally relents. She goes to oily Mr. Ryland and offers him some political position if she gets into office, but he says it's not necessary. After Bobby's face-punching earlier in the day, Ryland is more than happy to turn from villain into hero, at least for one branch of the Ewing family. So the tankers are back, but Jon Ross' problems are far from over.

Minerals and Land

Rebecca has been spending all her time putting her extremely large Precious Moments eyes to good use by going through all the stolen Ewing documents. And she's found something! She drives it over to Bobby and Christopher post-haste in the hope of getting back into the Ewing good graces. Bobby is more willing to forgive, but Christopher is still making his angry puppy face at her. The piece of information Rebecca brought just might solve all the family's problems though.

It turns out that Southfork has two different trusts, one for the land and one for the minerals. If they can find the original copy of the document Rebecca found, they can stop the drilling on Southfork before it even begins. So Bobby and Christopher head off to do some more father-son bonding while going through antique furniture and safety deposit boxes. They eventually find the old document and Bobby is happy they didn't have to resort to shoddy blackmail, but won the property back honestly.

It seems to me like they actually did very little to win the property, since Rebecca basically gave them their whole case on a platter. But Christopher and Bobby are so pleased with themselves they practically do one of those football player chest-bumps. Less happy is Jon Ross, whose chances of ending up dead in a ditch somewhere just doubled.

On the way out of the house from handing over the best piece of get-rich material she and Tommy had, Rebecca gets a nosebleed and almost passes out. I immediately came up with two scenarios for why this happened. Either Rebecca was dying or she was pregnant. I pegged pregnant, even though I wasn't aware nosebleeds were a symptom of pregnancy. But on television, nosebleeds are a symptom of everything, so I'm not sure why I was shocked.

As the episode ends, Rebecca finally tells Tommy she's done with his foolish games. She takes off her wedding rings and tells him to pawn them for money. He was right, she really did fall in love with Christopher and what's more, she's pregnant with his baby! This is what I meant about Rebecca's potentially interesting character development constantly being undercut with the most obvious plot twists available.

The House Always Wins

Meanwhile, JR is definitely having the best time of anyone else this episode. He's just hanging around Vegas, getting massages and trying to get himself into a high-stakes poker game. JR really knows how to have a vacation.

He wants to get into Cliff's poker game for some nefarious reason, which we will undoubtedly see the fallout from next week. Until then, I like to imagine JR takes his eyebrows for a whirl about town. He visits Donald Trump and they argue about which is more distracting, JR's eyebrows or Trump's "hair". Then JR takes in a Cirque du Soleil show before getting drunk and stealing Mike Tyson's tiger. Just normal Las Vegas stuff.

What did you think of this week's episode? Will Jon Ross find a way around the mineral rights? What is with Ann and the locket? What is JR up to? Sound off in the comments!

Morgan Glennon
Contributing Writer