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J.R. Ewing's Funeral Brings Big Turnout for 'Dallas' NY Times

The funeral for one of television's most memorable characters, the conniving oilman J.R. Ewing, brought "Dallas" its best overall audience of its second season on TNT, reports Bill Carter in The New York Times' Media Decoder.

The episode drew 3.6 million viewers, compared with the season's average of 2.6 million. It also was bigger than the last episode in which actor Larry Hagman portrayed Ewing, when 2.8 million people tuned in.

The program tapped into another "Who Shot J.R." storyline to explain the character's death, following Hagman's death in November after battling cancer. In the reboot, through, the oilman was fatally shot.

When the original program showed Ewing shot by an unknown assailant, the program became one of the most-watched and talked-about shows of all time, with 83 million viewers tuning in for the resolution, the story notes.