Dynasty is back. Yes, those wealthy and dramatic Carrington’s are at it again. The CW’s reboot of the famed 1980’s series is a lot more modern and updated, but it sticks to the elements that made the original a major hit. That element being lots of drama. The new incarnation features Grant Show (Melrose Place) as the family patriarch, Blake Carrington. He’s the man with all the money. Also at the forefront of the Carrington family is daughter Fallon Carrington (Elizabeth Gillies) and to a lesser extent the son, Steven Carrington (James Mackay). Nathalie Kelley plays the controversial soon-to-be stepmother, Cristal Flores.
The show’s basis is focused around the wealthy Carrington family feuding with another wealthy family, the Colby’s. The main culprits creating the drama are Fallon and Cristal. Their feud is the hallmark of what the season will be centered around. Hard to pick favorites between these two scheming villains. Cristal is hiding a secret relationship with a married man, so good luck to Blake and his engagement and impending wedding to her. Meanwhile, Fallon is mainly focused on gaining control of her father’s empire and the frequent hookups with her chauffeur Michael Culhane (Robert Christopher Riley). On the outside of things there is Steven, who we discover in the pilot is gay and is hooking up with Cristal’s nephew, Sammy Joe (Rafael de la Fuente). Got all of that? Yeah, I’m not sure I even did. There is a lot going on in this show and at times it seems like an overload. At least it did for the pilot.
The original series and this version of it are very much fueled by drama. The problem evident from the premiere is that they try to cram so many things into one episode that it becomes confusing. Yes, the main characters have their planted storyline objective evident from the start, so that’s good. Hopefully, they won’t rush things like they did in the pilot and flesh out each character at the right pace. There is hope. Another potential issue I found was the lack of characters to root for. These characters seem so unlikable and non-relatable. Maybe that’s the main point? They are filthy rich, greedy, cunning and selfish. That’s wealthy and privileged for you, folks, and that’s why you’re probably watching this show to begin with.
The show does do a nice job of planting multiple storyline cliffhangers for the season and remainder of episodes. The casting is solid. Show, Gillies and Kelley do well in their roles and even look the part. Whether it’s the 1980’s version or the 2017 one, Dynasty is all about over-the-top drama and the reboot captures that essence. The Wednesday night time slot is a good one with the Riverdale lead-in. Credit the new version for incorporating and embracing diversity. The Colbys are the other wealthy family that happen to be African-American. There is a gay character, so that opens up another aspect of diversity. Women are the prominent characters on the show, so that’s another updated element from the original, which had the men as the staple of the family feud (not the Steve Harvey kind of Family Feud).
CW’s Dynasty deserves a shot. It’s fairly entertaining with guaranteed cliffhangers that are certain to remain throughout the season. For a freshman series, it did enough to keep my attention and warrant more invested time. The fans of the 80’s show won’t be able to relate to it much, as it’s more teen oriented than the original. Times change, so do shows, even if they are reboots. It’s still posh and fancy with an overload of drama and feuds. Embrace the new Dynasty. It’s finally here. It only took a few decades to arrive.
Dynasty airs on Wednesdays at 9/8c on The CW.