12:36pm November 24, 2012

Larry Hagman, Greatest TV Villain of All Time on Dallas, Dies at 81


Larry Hagman, who played the role of one of the most notorious and conniving villians ever seen on the small screen died yesterday in Texas at 81.  Hagman played oil baron J.R. Ewing on television’s long-running nighttime drama Dallas. The original version of the show ran from 1978 to 1991 on CBS.  Hagman was the only actor on the show to appear in all 357 episodes.

Hagman was cast as J.R. once again 34 years after the original Dallas aired,  for a contemporary version of the show which aired on TNT in June.  The original version of Dallas became a symbol for 1980s greed and the TV ratings were through the roof.

The show debuted in 1978 and in 1980, 350 million people around the globe watched to find out who “shot J.R.” as the show became a popular cult obsession and phenomenon. The “Who Shot J.R.” episode was broadcast in March 1980 but the mystery revealing who did was not unveiled until November as producers kept the cliffhanger a secret for six months.  What resulted was some of the highest television ratings for any series in history.

In 1992, Hagman was diagnosed with cirrhosis of the liver as a result of a life of heavy drinking.  In 1995, a malignant tumor was discovered and he underwent a successful transplant.  Hagman was the son of broadway star Mary Martin.  His death yesterday was a result of complications from throat cancer.

About the Author

Lauren Victoria Burke
Lauren Victoria Burke
Lauren Victoria Burke is an opinion journalist, comms expert and political analyst focused on justice reform policy. She created Crewof42.com, a blog that covers the work of Black members of Congress, in 2009. Ms. Burke was a staffer for the Senate Democratic Policy Committee and Director of Communications for Rep. Andre Carson (D-IN). She has had a very diverse career in politics and media and appears regularly on NewsOneNow with Roland Martin, Hardball and Up on MSNBC, WVON in Chicago, WURD in Philadelphia and WOL and WHUR in Washington, D.C. She is currently the Managing Editor of Politic365 and a contributing writer for TheRoot and NBC Black where she writes opinion and analysis. Additionally, Ms. Burke has been a contract photographer for Associated Press since 2004. She has authored three books of photography including two on President Obama's 2008 campaign for the presidency and one with Marvel Comics publisher Stan Lee. Ms. Burke was born in the Bronx, New York and grew up on Long Island. She holds a B.A. in History from The American University. Here e-mail is: LBurke007@gmail.com. Twitter: @LVBurke. Instagram: LVB325.



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  1. [...] JR Ewing, dies aged 81The GuardianLarry Hagman, 'Dallas' Star, Dead at 81ABC NewsPolitic365 -KRGVall 1,516 news articles » Filed Under: Google News Top Stories Tagged [...]

  2. Why have the #99ers ALREADY been thrown over the so-called “FiscalCliff”? #WHEN will there be JOBS for the 23 MILLION {#legal) AMERICANS who are either UNemployed and IGNORED by the BLS, or UNDER-employed, by a-l-m-o-s-t EVERYONE in Congre$$ (Hou$e & $enate) as well as the WhiteHou$e? Fed Chair Ben Bernanke waffles and predicts a turnaround in 2015, or 2017, or 20?, and there is no OUTRAGE or palpable ACTION!

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