It wouldn't be Dallas without a good old-fashioned Ewing/Barnes feud. Although TNT's Dallas pilot, set to air in summer 2012, was Barnes-free, I've just learned that Ken Kercheval has signed on to reprise his role as J.R. Ewing's No. 1 nemesis, Cliff Barnes, in a multi-episode arc.
Ken, 76, will appear in the third, fourth and tenth episodes. He and Larry Hagman (J.R.) have the distinction of being the only Dallas actors who appeared on the prime time soap blockbuster throughout its entire 1978-1991 run. Ken also reprised the role in the 1996 reunion movie, Dallas: J.R. Returns, but was absent from 1998's War of the Ewings.
Amazingly, September 21 will mark Larry Hagman's 80th birthday — so I'd say getting Cliff Barnes back as a sparing partner is a sweet gift. Now I can't help wondering if Cliff will try to renew his romance with J.R.'s ex, Sue Ellen (Linda Gray).
For more on this story, pick up next week's issue of TV Guide Magazine.