New series of Dallas is ratings hit – but divides critics

‘Dallas’ returned to US television this week after a 20 year break, garnering high ratings but dividing opinions among critics.

Wednesday night’s debut enjoyed the highest ratings of any premiere for a new scripted show on a cable channel this year, averaging 6.8 million viewers.

The cast of the old Dallas (Credit: Getty)

The show mixes members of the old cast, including Larry Hagman as JR and Linda Gray as Sue Ellen Ewing, with a cast of new faces playing out the continued Ewing family feuds.

USA Today’s Robert Bianco didn’t pull any punches, describing the performances as wooden and saying the show had nothing to offer beyond a “desire to cash in on the standard-setting success of the CBS original in the 1980s".

Lori Rackl of the Chicago Sun-Times was more of a fan, stating that show offers something different. She said it was “a nostalgic romp in a dysfunctional ranch that was a Friday night fixture on many a TV set”.

The New York Times was critical however, saying the new cast were "old and even stodgy".

The Knoxville News Sentinel said the new series “has all the charms of the original while giving a sleeker and darker tone to the proceedings".

Channel 5 will air the new 10-part series of ‘Dallas’ in September.