Film and TV

CNN Pits Dallas Versus Dallas

Julia Barton, with an assist from Schutze, covered much the same territory earlier this year in her American Icons piece about Dallas for Studio 360. But now that TNT's given the green light to that next-gen Dallas, CNN, as part of its Defining America series, takes a look at how the city stacks up to its fictional counterpart -- and how the original TV series defined Dallas, for better or worse, for years. And, man, CNN managed to gather quite the star-studded line-up for its look-see -- from Rafael Anchia to David Kunkle to Veletta Lill to Ed Bark to Darwin Payne.

It's a tolerant city, said David Kunkle, the city's former police chief and a recent mayoral candidate. He defies stereotypes, too. The Texas native is a wiry man, soft-spoken and thoughtful, the antithesis of a big-city police chief or a Texas lawman.

"We have one of the largest gay populations and one of the strongest gay communities of any city in the country," he said. "(And) the anti-immigrant movement hasn't gotten any traction in Dallas like it has in other Southwestern cities."

Indeed, maybe it's time to put the old stereotypes, reputations and images away once and for all.

There's even a passing reference to John Wiley Price ("the FBI is investigating local corruption that might affect some high-ranking politicians") and the Trinity River Corridor Project.

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Robert Wilonsky
Contact: Robert Wilonsky