Archive for Wednesday, August 1, 2012

‘Dallas’ continues to underwhelm

August 1, 2012


John Ross (Josh Henderson) must decide between family allegiance and a lucrative deal as the new, revived “Dallas” (8 p.m., TNT) continues its first season. For all of the hype surrounding the reboot of this classic prime-time soap, its strong debut has not translated into dominant ratings.

Some of this can be explained by the fact that younger viewers either don’t remember or don’t hold much affection for the old “Dallas.” They turn to “The Real Housewives” franchise or “Jersey Shore” for their share of shocking, selfish and rude soap opera antics.

It doesn’t help that the younger characters on “Dallas” 2.0 are so wishy-washy compared to their elders. Larry Hagman’s J.R. was a first-class schemer with a love-to-hate-him appeal. Not to give too much away here, but the very fact that his son, John Ross, even wavers between staying loyal to his family and looking out for himself demonstrates how far the apple has fallen from the tree.

• Tonight’s “American Greed: The Fugitives” (7 p.m., CNBC) focuses on white-collar criminals who manage to swindle corporate and personal assets and then disappear for years.

These tales of fraudsters are entertaining, addictive and, more to the point, distracting. When are programs like “Greed” going to focus on the biggest financial scandal of our time — possibly of all time? The scandal involving 16 banks accused of rigging interest rates under the London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR), used in trillions of dollars of contracts, is a tale of institutional “Greed” that deserves more in-depth coverage on cable “news.”

• Turner Classic Movies will spend August as it has for years: with its “Summer Under the Stars” festival. Every day will bring a 24-hour movie marathon focusing on one particular actor or actress. Things kick off at 6 a.m. with a celebration of 12 John Wayne movies, most notably, “The Searchers” (12:15 p.m.) and “She Wore a Yellow Ribbon” (7 p.m.), two of the great Westerns he made with director John Ford.

Tonight’s other highlights

• Tonight’s events at the XXX Summer Olympics (7 p.m., NBC) include swimming, gymnastics, beach volleyball and diving.

• Mother love on “Damages” (8 p.m., Audience Network, Direct TV).

• A victim’s mother perseveres on “Final Witness” (9 p.m., ABC).

• “Through the Wormhole With Morgan Freeman” (9 p.m., Science) ponders an end to time.


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