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‘Dallas’ premieres big on TNT

By Yvonne Villarreal, Los Angeles Times –

LOS ANGELES — TNT’s reboot of “Dallas” struck oil. Its Wednesday premiere drew nearly 7 million viewers, making it the No. 1 scripted series premiere on all of cable so far this year.

The rebirth of the classic CBS series, which stars veterans Larry Hagman and Linda Gray reprising their roles as J.R. and Sue Ellen Ewing alongside younger brethren Jesse Metcalfe and Josh Henderson, garnered 6.8 million viewers. The debut unsurprisingly drew hefty numbers in the older demographic: Nearly 1.9 million folks who tuned-in were in the advertiser-coveted 18-49 demo and 2.5 million were 25-54. You can guess who made up the remaining million.

The two-hour premiere of the new “Dallas,” which Los Angeles Times critic Robert Lloyd said is “very much like the old” in his review, even outdid broadcast networks during its 9-11 p.m. EDT airing. But considering the numbers the soap generated during its original run, its Wednesday showing is extremely undersized. The last episode of the original series, which aired in 1991, brought in a whopping 33 million viewers — and even that was down significantly from the immortal “Who Shot J.R.?” episode in 1980.

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