Despite the reviews hardly weighing in its favor, the new series of Dallas, starring Larry Hagman and Jesse Metcalfe, clocked up some pretty impressive viewer ratings last night. The debut episode of the new series aired on TNT and drew in an average of 6.9 million viewers across the two hour opener. Impressively, this makes it the biggest scripted series premiere on US cable so far this year. According to TV Line, 1.93 million of those viewers were within the sought-after 18 - 49 demographic.
Whether or not those viewers will stay tuned in for the rest of the series, of course, remains to be seen. Larry Hagman may have described returning to the role of JR Ewing as "like coming home" and Access Hollywood may have described Jesse Metcalfe's performance in the show as "his best work to date" but the reviews that came in after major media outlets caught a glimpse of the preview reel were less than complimentary, on the most part. Even those that weren't wholly negative weren't exactly brimming with enthusiasm. The over-riding opinion of the show appears to be that its producers are flogging a horse that died quite some time ago.
USA Today were particularly damning with their review, saying "TNT hasn't so much revived Dallas as exhumed it", followed by the statement that "you can find mummies who look fresher than this mold-encrusted relic and who have newer ideas in their empty, embalmed heads." Jesse, Larry and co. will have to hope that they managed to impress the show's viewers, even if the critics haven't exactly taken a shine to their work.