Hace poco se cumplieron 30 años de la emisión del primer capítulo de la serie DALLAS, la historia de intrigas y ambición dentro de una rica familia de magnates petroleros tejanos. Tal como sucedió con la película Las Uvas de la Ira (940) de John Ford que se suponía mostraba la desgarradora realidad del capitalismo (salvaje), Dallas fue aireada en los países del entonces bloque comunista con la idea de combatir el capitalismo mostrando su peor cara. En ambos casos el tiro les salió por la culata, y Dallas se convirtió en la mejor propaganda del estilo de vida occidental:
Joseph Stalin is said to have screened the 1940 movie "The Grapes of Wrath" in the Soviet Union to showcase the depredations of life under capitalism. Russian audiences watched the final scenes of the Okies' westward trek aboard overladen, broken-down jalopies -- and marveled that in the United States, even poor people had cars. "Dallas" functioned similarly.
"I think we were directly or indirectly responsible for the fall of the [Soviet] empire," Hagman told the Associated Press a decade ago. "They would see the wealthy Ewings and say, 'Hey, we don't have all this stuff.' I think it was good old-fashioned greed that got them to question their authority."
In Romania, "Dallas" was the last Western show allowed during the nightmare 1980s because President Nicolae Ceausescu was persuaded that it was sufficiently anti-capitalistic. By the time he changed his mind, it was already too late -- he had paid for the full run in precious hard currency. Meanwhile, the show provided a luxuriant alternative to a communism that was forcing people to wait more than a decade to buy the most rattletrap Romanian car.
After the dictator and his wife were shot on Christmas Eve 1989, the pilot episode of "Dallas" -- with a previously censored sex scene edited back in -- was one of the first foreign shows broadcast on the liberated Romanian TV. Over the next few years, Hagman became a ubiquitous pitchman in the country for firms such as the Russian petroleum company Lukoil ("The Choice of a True Texan").
Del artículo How 'Dallas' Won the Cold War, vía The Washington Post.
Tags: Dallas, guerra fria, televisión.