DVD Review: Dynasty (The Final Season – Volume One & Volume Two)

All dynasties come to an end. Whether they be the Zhou, the Boston Celtics or the Today Show, things eventually come to an end. Thus is was for Dynasty during its ninth season. The series that began with the inauguration of Ronald Reagan would end shortly after he left the White House. But don’t blame the Carringtons for their demise. The show did its best to restore its prime-time soap opera legacy. David Paulsen was brought over from Dallas to restore the glamour and obsessive stories that made it a hit. The high cost of production forced him to be extra creative. Joan Collins was only being paid for 13 episodes. The series also couldn’t afford Linda Evans for all the episodes. Plus there was a Writer’s Guild strike which delayed the season. Paulsen created a compelling season with plenty of obstacles.

“Broken Krystle” kicks off the season with Krsytle (Evans) vanishing from the mansion. Blake (John Forsythe) can’t find her. What does get found is the hot lust between Alexis (Joan Collins) and Dex (Michael Nader). The duo split town and end up at the beach next to Jim Rockford’s trailer. Jeff Colby (John James) has his own problem when Sammy Jo (Heather Locklear) accepts his marriage proposal. But he’s also having a steamy time with Fallon (Emma Samms). Why must he choose? “A Touch of Sable” makes the family fear that the body floating in a nearby lake is Krystle. “She’s Back” uncovers the truth about Krystle. But then Alexis disappears. Dex doesn’t have to worry because Sable Colby (Stephanie Beacham) is all over him. “Alexis in Blunderland” looks like she’s about to lose her vast fortune again. Things aren’t so rosy for Blake since he’s about to get shafted on a pipeline deal.

“The Last Hurrah” has Dex stand up to Alexis. That’s not going to end well for him. Krystle has to get a major operation in “The Wedding.” Before she goes under the knife, she wants Blake to sign some rather troubling paperwork. “Ginger Snaps” has bad news for Blake as the operation doesn’t quite work as planned. There’s trouble in the ICU will she live? Blake has little time to worry since his darkest secret might leak out to the public. While Krystle is out of commission, Alexis returns to cause more mayhem. “House of the Falling Son” has her hiring commandos to retake one of her ships that’s been hijacked. There’s the usual power struggles along with the fear that Krystle is lost by the time “Catch 22” wraps up the series with plenty of strings dangling.

Even though Paulsen was able to breathe new life into Dynasty, ABC was done with the show. It had become too costly to produce. Issues with various stars made it a bigger burden. The prime-time soap opera wasn’t cool anymore. So the Carringtons lost their television empire in the spring of 1989. Dynasty: The Final Season – Volume One & Volume Two are those last days when the problems of rich people concerned America. Now we’re stuck with Duck Dynasty.

The video is 1.33:1 full frame. The color transfers bring out the wild fashion as the ’80s came toward the end. The audio is Dolby Digital mono. You can hear Krystle’s coma clearly.

No bonus features.

Dynasty: The Final Season – Volume One & Volume Two gathers together the end of the show that made America root for two rich women to have one more catfight. If you bailed on the show when it was originally broadcasted, you should be entertained by the season you skipped.

CBS DVD presents Dynasty: The Final Season – Volume One & Volume Two. Starring: John Forsythe, Linda Evans, Joan Collins & Heather Locklear. Boxset Contents: 22 episodes on 6 DVDs. Released: September 9, 2014

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