Paramount // 1986 // 1279 Minutes // Not Rated
Reviewed by Judge David Johnson // August 17th, 2013
In the heyday of the '80s, when prime-time soaps ruled the airwaves, few were as successful and soapy as Dynasty, ABC's answer to fellow melodramatic titan Dallas. Telling the story of the Carrington family, headed by oil tycoon patriarch Blake Carrington (John Forsythe), Dynasty unfurls dense, multi-arc storytelling over nine seasons. The differentiator between this and your run-of-the-mill soap? Higher budgets, car crashes, location shooting and Joan Collins.
I knew next to nothing when I first spooled up Dynasty: The Fifth Season a while back there. Actually, I did enjoy the opening theme quite a bit for some reason (perhaps my grandmother was a devotee of the show and had it playing in the background while I ate ice cream). I picked the right season to plug in, as it boasted one of the most memorable cliffhanger finales ever broadcast: the infamous "Moldavian Massacre," where terrorists laid siege to a wedding.
Who knows what happened after that, because I missed Season Six, But if the premiere episode of Season Seven is any indication, the shenanigans kept rolling with aplomb. Also, most everyone survived the massacre.
As this season opens, Blake has Alexis, his ex-wife (Joan Collins) in a headlock, and the rest of the gang are scrambling to escape a burning hotel. Not bad. As things continue: Alexis makes her play for the empire, a long-serving housemaid gets fired, Steve Carrington (Jack Coleman, Heroes) doesn't know what to do with his intense feelings for Sammy Jo (Heather Locklear), Blake attempts to maintain is power through natural gas exploration and another wedding eventually ends with guns pointed at people. Plus a whole lot more.
That would be 28 episodes on seven discs and two sets, more than enough to keep you entertained, if this is your sort of thing. And, yes, despite its advanced age, I could envision soap-lovers who missed the boat thirty years ago jumping aboard Dynasty. It's ostentatious, nostalgic, and often time over-the-top, but that's what makes it fun.
Plus, you have Joan Collins' hair, which continues to defy the natural laws of our planet.
The discs: full frame and mono and nothing else. You're paying for content here, folks.
Not guilty. Two more seasons to go. As ratings declined I'm praying for an
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Scales of Justice
* Full Frame
* Dolby Digital 1.0 Mono (English)
* English (SDH)
Running Time: 1279 Minutes
Release Year: 1986
MPAA Rating: Not Rated