Dallas Recap: “Victims of Love”

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We open to the sickening sight of Elena in bed with Trevino – her brother’s murderer. It amazes me that she can go on and on about the evil Ewings (as if “evil” is their new name) and yet she is absolutely clueless about this guy.  Cliff calls to congratulate them both for helping him win his freedom and his company back.  Cliff is sure that even though Elena gave Cliff’s pardon to Pamela, his daughter will see the error of her ways and set him free. Elena prides herself on seeking justice against the Ewings and not “revenge.” While the clueless couple embraces, neither seems to be aware that they are being photographed.

Christopher stops at the Omni to talk with an exhausted Mama Ramos. He appeals to her sentimentality to tell her that SouthFork is her home.  She is not having it, the ranch is no longer her home.  He has a stack of old letters from Elena when she was younger and visiting family in Mexico.  She mentions her friend “Joaquin”.  He wants to know if Nicolas was that friend.  Mama Ramos lies and says it was not him.  It’s clear where Elena and Drew inherited their poor judgment.  Christopher knows that she wouldn’t have turned on the family on her own, that Trevino was behind it all.  He says the words I’d hoped he would never say, though I knew they were inevitable. He tells her that despite all that has happened he will always love Elena (the soapgods hate me).  He is angry because he knows that Nicolas is using her for his own purposes.  Mama Ramos defends Nicolas as a good man and tells Christopher to leave him and Elena alone. Trevino would pretty much have to sprout horns and walk on hooves before the Ramos family was able to figure him out.

Speaking of horns and hooves, Jr. enters a child’s birthday party carrying a boxed gift. We see that it is Cal’s grandson’s party.  Someone should check that gift to make sure it is age appropriate and not blackmail pictures.  Cal tells Jr. that he is not going to be able to strong arm him before the IPO is released the next day.  Blackmail pictures are not needed.  John Ross has learned that Cal lost everything on bad investments and needs cash. He offers him 10 million dollars for his help.  All Cal has to do is make sure the 48% of shares in Ewing Global go to Sheik Ali.  Cal balks at betraying Bobby… John Ross tells him that Bobby will be fine, to think of his own family and the fact that they will be set for life.  That John Ross, securing the future for another family all while destroying his own.

Pamela is listening to another message from Cliff.  She discusses with Sue Ellen her anger at Cliff for everything he’s taken from her and his lack of regard for the lives of her children.  She doesn’t know if he should pay for the crime he got away with by sitting in prison for a murder he didn’t commit.  Sue Ellen tells her that she wishes she could have confronted JR about his sense of entitlement and the things he’s done to hurt others.  She reminds Pamela that she still has the chance to talk to her father about why he behaved the way he has.

Harris and his handler are meeting.  The handler is not happy with Emma’s deal to double the flow of drugs in exchange for sending her father back to prison. Harris is doing what he can to keep Emma safe by ask the CIA to keep the deal she made with the cartel.  No dice.  It’s clear that this plan would put the cartel’s plan in action sooner and there is no way the CIA is going to let that happen. His only choice?  Re-negotiate the deal.  While Harris is trying to save Emma, Anne is visiting with her. Emma wants to know if her mother works for the FBI.  She states that she is still angry because her father has taken the one relationship that made her feel like she mattered and destroyed it.  She faults her father for Drew’s “suicide”.  Unless I’m mistaken, I don’t recall Emma giving Drew a second thought while befriending Pamela and working to win over John Ross.  Emma’s anger at Ryland over Drew seems to be as pointless as the Ramos’ family being angry at the Ewings instead of JR.  Anne tells Emma that learning that her father is not a monster, and that he’s helping the CIA, doesn’t mean she has to absolve him of the pain he caused her – sort of odd for a woman who wants forgiveness for abandoning her daughter.  Even still, Anne doesn’t want Emma to share his CIA status with Granny Ryland.  She wants Emma to trust her when she says that nothing good could come of it.  Anne and Emma make a plan for dinner, to talk more.  I like the softer side of Emma.

OH DAMN!  Bobby gets a call from Cal who tells Bobby that he was right about John Ross and that he let Jr think he’d taken the bait.  No offers from Cliff or John Ross will be entertained.  How could you not love Bobby and Cal?!?!?  Even more?  Carlos Del Sol put the pieces in place to help the Ewings figure out the Joaquin / Nicolas link.  They realize that he is in league with the cartel.  Christopher tires to call Elena, not realizing that Nicolas has her phone.  Don’t bother wishing, it all happens exactly as you think it will when read that line.  Christopher leaves a message alerting Elena to the fact that she might be in danger – telling her via voicemail about Nicolas/Joaquin’s connection to the cartel.  Yup, because it’s not like they aren’t close enough for him to have access to her phone and voicemail.  Smart character, dumb move.
Smart character, unpredictable move… I should have known things were going too smoothly for the Ewings.  Cal is sacked just before the Ewing Global IPO is launched.  My guess is that if you use your company’s phone, while sitting in your company’s office, knowing how many dirty tricks take place, it’s not a surprise when one of the bosses comes into your company office to sack you just before you can help your friend save his family business.  Who is standing behind the man who fires Cal?  Nicolas / Joaquin.  My stomach is in knots!  I need Bobby to win this one!  Sometimes?  Good guys FIRST!  I hope this is one of those times.

The Ewings meet and panic sets in when they realize that no one can get in touch with Cal.  Sue Ellen calls them into the conference room in time to hear a news announcement that Hunter McKay purchased the 48% of Ewing Global.  Pamela puts the pieces together for everyone, making it clear that John Ross got played.  If Cliff signs over just 3% and Nicolas signs them over to his puppet, Hunter, the company is lost.  The Ewings let John Ross, who put his greed over the family, have it with both barrels. The sweetest moment comes from Pamela, who tells him that everything he’s done was for nothing, he’s cost her father his life’s work.  She tells John Ross that lying and cheating were the only things he was good at and he failed at those, too.  She slaps him and storms off.  I had to rewind that moment… PRICELESS!  As the showdown is taking place, Hunter is gloating in interviews with reporters, Elena’s brain cells are firing, and Cliff realizes he is doomed.   A discussion between Nicolas/Joaquin and Hunter reveals that Hunter gets to run the company as long as he allows the cartel to launder money through it.

Nicolas/Joaquin feigns innocence when he sees Elena (more pictures are taken).  Bobby’s contacts confirm that the 3% has been signed over.  Christopher and John Ross begin arguing after John Ross pulls a cowboy move and acts as if he can save the family.  Bobby reminds them that they lost the company because their enemies tore them apart, if they want to win it back, it has to be together.  Scary words if you’re Hunter McKay since both men show up at his door. John Ross lets him know that he knows that he was set up.  Christopher tells him that they know he used cartel money to buy Ewing Global.  Hunter thinks he’s safe since he would be in jail if they could prove anything. He taunts John Ross with the irony of him losing the company the way his father did when Carter McKay tricked JR.  John Ross reacts violently, grabbing him and promising they’ll trace the source of that money.  Hunter stops gloating, and smiling. It was a moment to behold.

In what feels like a scene straight out of “The Godfather”, we meet the big boss in his garden tending to his tomato plants.  He waxes-on about how drugs destroy families and infrastructures and the sooner they can do that, the sooner they can gain power.  Sweet cookies and milk, he looks like someone’s kindly grandfather and he’s a violent crazed drug kingpin? Yikes.  Crazy Kingpin has been grooming Nicolas to take over since he took him in as a teenager, much to Luis’ chagrin and anger.  Nicolas’ debt has been paid, he will run Ewing Global (someone should warn Hunter to run, fast – that was not part of the deal).

Bobby stops in to meet with Tracey McKay to talk about Hunter.  He gives her the “fell in with a bad crowd” speech.  We re-live more family history as she talks about how her family has been raised to hate the Ewings (and, again, can’t we just say “hate JR”?)   She offers to help Bobby when he tells her he knows people who can keep Hunter out of jail and safe.  Not so safe is Cliff, who is visiting with Pamela.  She apologizes for helping the Ewings put him in jail and hands him what seems like his pardon.  It turns out that it’s the deed to Ewing 6 – the oil well stolen from Digger.  Pamela tells Cliff that he has spent his life hating the Ewings more than loving her.  He says that it’s not true.  She reminds him of what he did to her babies.  She will never forgive him for that.   Cliff apologizes for hurting her.  She tells him he’s avenged the wrongs done to his father and she tells him that she’s avenged the wrongs done by her father. She tells him goodbye and walks away.

John Ross shows up at camp Ryland.  He threatens to bring Candace out to testify against the Rylands for their prostitution ring unless Harris helps him get the info he needs to get his company back.  Mama Ryland sends the kids to the car as she taunts John Ross and tells him that he is free to come work for her, since he “has a good look”.  I hate myself for loving this woman.  John Ross has been eating it all day long.  She does not fear his threats.  She tells him to get off her lawn, if he knows what’s good for him, and sends him back to the “pit of broken marriages” he calls a home, at SouthFork.  It’s just the warm up she needs, Mama Ryland tells her son, to deal with the cartel.  They try to save Emma from her deal.  Mama Ryland tells Luis that she will agree to increase the product running through the pipeline by 25% if he takes care of their “whore” problem.  He seemingly takes the renegotiated deal and goes to find Candace.  Jr has punk looking for her at the same time.

Bobby and Tracey stop in at Hunter’s house to talk to him and find him hanging. My guess is that Luis found Hunter before finding Candace.  Punk gives Jr. two pieces of information.  The first is that Candace is nowhere to be found.  The second is that the flash drive Punk copied before returning it to Harris is encrypted with CIA-based technology.  Jr sees this as his lucky break and wants Punk to break the encryption so that he knows what kind of bomb it is he is about to set off. He thinks the cartel would be interested in knowing that Harris is CIA. Another break, of sorts, is taking place it is not good.  Luis has found Candace and delivers, gift wrapped, what is left of her – her hands.  He show the Mama and Harris images of Emma and Anne being held hostage and warns the Rylands that they will have to keep their (Emma’s) promises in order to see them again. Twenty-five percent increase?  No.  That won’t do. They want the doubled shipments Emma negotiated.

Does anyone think for a minute that either woman will be killed?  I see a Tracey/Bobby/Anne triangle coming and Emma is on the verge of redemption.  Since we heard the CIA agent refuse the terms of Emma’s negotiated deal, I can’t wait for the fallout.  Someone is going down, but who?

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