Inspired by the 'Town & Country' magazine, Esther Shapiro started developing 'Dynasty' for television in 1979 as a "creative response to the oil crisis." 'Dynasty' would, as noted, "provide the escapism of aspiration to a country starved on recession." In the beginning, John Forsythe recalled, "The critics thought we were a rip-off of 'Dallas'." 

Larry Hagman told the press in 2004 'Dallas' was created during "the heights of recession. People couldn't afford to go out and spend money on a baby sitter and dinner and a movie. That was $50, and in those days, that was a lot of money for people. They had to stay in. We saved people billions of dollars." In 1979, Nicolae Ceausescu allowed 'Dallas' to be shown on television. Instead of the Romanians opposing capitalism, one tearful Romanian told Larry Hagman, "J.R., you saved our country." 

Larry Hagman believed Romania and other Communist countries liked to watch 'Dallas' because it was all about family life. "A guy came up to me with tears in his eyes and said 'Thank you, J.R. for saving Romania.' I said 'What?' He said 'You saved this country. We were allowed to have 3 television shows a day and 2 were political speeches and the other was 'Dallas' to show how corrupt the morals of the United States was," Larry Hagman recounted. "Big mistake. People saw what was happening in America and they wanted that."

Marian Chiriac in Bucharest reporting for 'BalkanInsight' noted, "But Romanian viewers relished the change of tone from Communist propaganda, which was losing its force as the regime failed to deliver prosperity." Commentator Irina Nestor explained, "'Dallas' was a real mass phenomenon in Romania. People were not interested in the tales of blackmail, bribery and adultery but mainly in the wealth, intrigue, and power struggles.

"'Dallas' was the image of the 'American dream' in Romania." Fan Catalina Popescu acknowledged, "'Dallas' helped me to dream for a better life. I liked the glamor of the women, their hairstyles, ways of life." In 1985, 'Dynasty' went on air in the former Yugoslavia after Catherine Oxenberg, the daughter of Princess of Yugoslavia, joined the cast playing Joan Collins' on-screen daughter.

'Dynasty' was said to be the most popular program in the former Yugoslavia when the show went on air every Monday night at 9 o'clock. One critic made the comment at the time, "But where is Moldavia? Even though there really is a Moldavia - it's a region of Romania just east of Transylvania - the 'Dynasty' creators meant their Moldavia to be taken about as literally as Hollywood." 

Reporting for 'The New York Times' in 1985, Peter Kaplan observed, "'Dynasty' and 'Dallas' are already legends in commercial television, and they are two of the best-known American cultural exports, watched and analyzed around the world. Why are tales of the middle class becoming obsolete and tales of ostentation bringing happiness to producers? What has brought about this onslaught of econo-romantic determinism? 

"Some say it involves a kind of voyeurism. Some say it was the ultimate extension of Reagan Era values. Others see only raw escapism. And still others cite the rise of Yuppie-class materialism. And, finally, some maintain it's just another social evolution. Is 'Dynasty' endemic to the 1980s? Herbert J. Gans, a professor of sociology at Columbia University said 'Dallas' and 'Dynasty' could have existed almost anytime." 

"I'm not endorsing Reagan,'' Esther Shapiro made known, ''but there are certain things the Democrats could learn from him, like being effective.'' Esther Shapiro argued women watched 'Dynasty' because they liked seeing other, powerful women who could control events. ''I've always wanted control,'' Esther emphasized. ''And the program is about people fighting for control over their lives. Money helps you to get control of your life. I'm not sure money brings happiness but it does bring control."

When 'Dynasty' first went on air in 1981, John Forsythe told the 'Chicago Sun-Times', "I think some of the most successful shows of late may be due to a condition in the country. This show has to do with people who are well dressed, attractive, people whose lifestyles are extravagant. I think it's a kind of turnabout from the rejection of the '60s, the period of the anti-hero. It's escapism of a type. In the advanced stage of an actor's life, someone past 60 either accepts the challenge of character roles or runs for President of the United States – and I'm not ready for the latter. I must say that we in this business are inordinately proud of Reagan, even if we don't agree with his politics." 

Pamela Bellwood added, "'Dynasty' is high drama – almost more at times. It's not supposed to have a huge sense of reality about it and people don't watch it because it reflects their lives. They watch it to escape. No one really lives like the Carringtons. And that's why it's so successful." In 1982, Claudia Johnson's storyline on 'Dynasty' came to an end. Pamela Bellwood described the scene in which Claudia dropped a doll from the rooftop, "I thought that scene was dramatically spectacular and probably as far out as I've seen the show go (up until that time).

"It was the essence of what 'Dynasty' should be – bizarre almost to the point of being camp. Everyone who saw that baby (doll) falling must have said, 'That is outrageous! How can they do that?'" After she was taken off contract for half a season, Pamela Bellwood told 'People Weekly' she went traveling to Kenya, Thailand and Burma and made appearances in 5 TV movies. 

John Forsythe continued, "I see Blake Carrington as the quintessential American tycoon. He's not ruthless and arrogant in toto (in all). He's tender, loving and caring, too. A mixture. Acting has only a limited value in picture and on television. It's not as important as the physical and chemical reaction of the audience … obviously Marlon Brando, Robert Redford and Paul Newman … Olivia de Havilland had some elements of that.

"Shirley MacLaine, Jean Simmons and Jane Fonda, who's incredible because it's very tough for a woman past 40, but Fonda has sustained her stardom and she's a wonderful actress. I come from the stage and my heart still has a need for that. You always long to do stage work. It's much more gratifying but not financially (rewarding).

"It is incredible to me ('Dynasty' reaching 36 million viewers a night). I'd have to live to be 150 and appear every night in a sold-out play to reach that many people. It's very gratifying. It is so gratifying. Last year (1981 - first season) was difficult for us … We all decided to work hard as we could and, as it turns out, it's working splendidly. I didn't mean to crow, but our rating is so good. We are all elated."

"My input is minimal," Pamela Sue Martin stated at the end of the first season when she was asked about the next season of 'Dynasty'. "Sure, I have a feeling for what the character should or would do but mostly I don't interfere with the writers. Actually I was surprised when Fallon got married. I thought the writers would prefer to keep her wild. But I guess she's still got some sparks. Now that I think about it, it’s probably better that she’s married.

"Fallon is pretty much a pawn in the whole picture, but I have a vested interest in the character. Most people see my character as bitchy, conniving and ambitious. Hardly a perfect companion. But then again, a lot of people see the character simply as over-sexed. I like acting from a position of strength. Fallon is a sex object with brains. It would be so painful for me if I were playing a vacuous thing. I think we've got a pretty decent show. I just adore John Forsythe.

"That's good, because what comes out in 'Dynasty' is the ever-present subconscious attraction between daughter and father. But in this case, we're talking about an individual, a girl who's grown up without a mother, been surrounded by millions of dollars and tons of servants, and with a father as the only authoritative figure in her life." In the club circuit, Fallon learnt, ever since 3 days before her brother Steven's 7th birthday, their mother Alexis left Denver after accepting a divorce settlement offer of $250,000. Since 1965, viewers were told, Alexis had lived in Paris, then Rome, Monte Carlo and finally Acapulco before returning to Denver in 1981.

Pamela Bellwood insisted, "My commitment to coming back was really involved with wanting to resolve my character in a more satisfying way. The part I play is a great acting exercise, but what upset me was ending her on such a negative note (sent off to a sanatorium). People with emotional problems or mental illness identified with her and I thought it was really important to let them know you can still go on to recover and lead a productive life. I didn't know exactly what will happen, but I'd like to see her a little more fulfilled and not as frustrated as she's been on every level – professionally, mentally, emotionally and sexually. I mean this woman has just been thwarted everywhere she's turned. It's a miracle she's still walking around."

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