Restaurants started closing, the Police had little to do, the streets were empty and supermarkets were closed by six. Childrens homework was always finished, dinner was cooked served and dishes washed and packed away by nine. The whole of South Africa were in their homes. During the height of apartheid South Africa was unified and by nine-o-clock on a Tuesday – why????? It was DALLAS night.
Now 9.00 pm was my bedtime in the 80’s, and every Tuesday night I would beg, be an angel, do lots of chores in order to watch JR, his cahoots and ladies with LARGE shoulder pads plod across our screens. We NEVER called it Dallas, it was aptly named the “Doings and the screwings of the Ewings”
On the nights I wasn’t allowed to stay up I would lie next to my bedroom door waiting for the opening – Da Da da da Daaaaaaaaa music and listen to every word of the show. Picturing the immaculate Southfork Ranch, mooning over Bobby, hating JR, willing Sue-Ellen not to have a dop and lusting to look just like Pamela.
A lot of you may or may not remember, there were no PVR’s, Video machines, DVD machines, no playback, tape or record. The programme would come on once a week and that was it! If you missed an episode it was tough tekkie. We didn’t have a choice of a gazillion channels – we had one, and the crown in the SAUK crown was Dallas.
To this day when I hear the sound of the Dallas theme a quiver of anticipation goes up and down my spine.
And now tonight – Tuesday night, at nine-o-clock – twenty plus plus plus plus years later Dallas is back! I am soooooooooooo excited and cannot wait to watch it.
But a few things have changed. It is now going to be screened on the mighty MNet. So only a few of the privileged paying few can watch it. Will it bring a country to a standstill – I think not! Will the kids be discussing the “Doings and the screwings of the Ewings”? – I don’t think it will even register in their stratosphere. Are we going to lust after the Ewing lifestyle? – Nope.
Because life has changed.
Watching something on a box at the moment is more about what to choose. The biggest arguements at the moment in Loots Land is about who has control over the TV remote (Jamie normally wins and Rosie comes in at a sloppy second). If you miss something in its original time slot, no worries there is always repeats, pvr, playback and the wonderful DSTV catch up. Your choice in what to watch will make the mighty Dallas a tiny little spot on the monsters backside.
If we wanted to record music in the Good-Ole-Days, we would wait for the Sunday morning Top Twenty and then get as close to the speaker of the Hi-Fi with our portable cassette player and press the record button. The clever people worked out how to pause during ad breaks and we hated it when a song was overplayed with an ad. Heaven forbid that anyone should utter a sound during the Top Twenty and ruin our recording. These precious cassettes were played over and over again when we would rush home to play the latest songs. Some lucky kids had walkmans – but we would never consider taking them to school.
Our kids will never know the excitement that Tuesday night brought to us …………. I wish they could.