Knots Landing

Knots LandingNetwork: CBS
Episodes: 344 (hour)
Seasons: 14

TV show dates: December 27, 1979 — May 13, 1993
Series status: Cancelled/ended

Performers include: Michele Lee, Ted Shackelford, Joan Van Ark, Kevin Dobson, William Devane, Donna Mills, Constance McCashin, Nicollette Sheridan, Pat Petersen, Julie Harris, Tonya Crowe, Larry Riley, Doug Sheehan, Lisa Hartman, Teri Austin, John Pleshette, Michelle Phillips, Victoria Ann Lewis, Kim Lankford, Stacy Galina, James Houghton, Kathleen Noone, Claudia Lonow, Kent King, Hunt Block, Steve Shaw, Lynne Moody, Alec Baldwin, Joseph Gian, and Lar Park-Lincoln.

knots landing past TV show

TV show description:
CBS initially turned down the idea for this series, wanting a series about the very wealthy instead. Following the success of Dallas, creator David Jacobs and producer Michael Filerman reworked the original Knots concept into a spin-off.

Gary Ewing (Ted Shackelford) is the brother of Dallas’ J.R. and Bobby Ewing and is more or less the black sheep of the family. An insecure alcoholic, Gary had married Valene (Jon Van Ark) and they had a baby together when they were both very young. He left her and the baby, and the child was taken from Val and raised by Gary’s parents.

Gary and Val eventually get back together and remarried, with his mother buying them a house in the Knots Landing cul-de-sac in California. Their daughter, Lucy (Charlene Tilton), stays at the Southfork estate in Dallas.

Gary finds employment with Knots Landing Motors and is quickly promoted. The business is owned by Sid and Karen Fairgate (Don Murray and Michele Lee), Gary and Val’s neighbors. The Fairgates have three teenage children together; Eric (Steve Shaw), Diana (Claudia Lonow), and Michael (Patrick Petersen).

Richard and Laura Avery (John Pleshette and Constance McCashin) also live in the cul-de-sac. They are the parents to a young boy named Jason.

Sid’s much-younger sister, Abby (Donna Mills), also takes a job at the car dealership. She spends a lot of time meddling and makes sure that Val finds out that Gary had an affair with Judy Trent (Jane Elliott), the wife of the man he was sponsoring in AA. Abby wants Gary for herself but settles on an affair with the very willing Richard.

Kenny and Ginger Ward (James Houghton and Kim Lankford) are young newlyweds, living in the Knots Landing cul-de-sac as well. Kenny is a record producer who is prone to having affairs.

During its run, the show explores several social issues that were usually not explored by primetime soaps of the day. They include prescription drug abuse, abortion, homelessness, the environment, illiteracy, the Special Olympics and child abuse.

Canceled and renewed TV show

3 Comments · Read them below or add one

  1. Dalton says

    Unfortunately, I don’t think any of the classics 1980s soaps, execpt Dallas will be coming back. I love to watch them all: Dallas, Knots Landing, Dynasty, and Falcon Crest. But let’s face it, Dallas was undoubtedly the most-popular of the lot. In the early 1980s, Dallas swept the nation by storm. But the others were equally respected and drew high ratings. Around the 1982─86 era, all four of the soaps were in the top ten. Yes, all four of the shows. Dallas was usually first, with Dynasty or Knots Landing varying in second, and Falcon Crest in fourth place. Dynasty hit #1 in the spring of 1985 with its famous “Moldavian massacre” wedding, during the fifth season finale. When the soaps returned in the fall of 1985, Dynasty routinely placed in the top five, while Dallas continued to place in the top ten, Knots Landing in the top fifteen, and Falcon Crest in the top twenty. It wasn’t long, however, that all the shows took a nosedive in popularity. Yes, all of them. Dynasty and Falcon Crest dropped off the deep end first. The problem with Dynasty was: I mean, let’s face it, Dynasty didn’t have great storylines from the start, and after Moldavia, it got weaker and sillier each season. By its seventh year, it barely placed in the top twenty-five, and Falcon Crest was struggling to make the top thirty. Dynasty was the first of the primetime soaps to leave the air: in 1989, after nine seasons and 220 episodes. Falcon Crest followed in 1990, ending a nine season run after airing 227 episodes. Dallas ended in 1991, after 13 seasons (plus the initial miniseries) and 357 episodes. Knots Landing ended up lasting the longest: airing 14 seasons and 344 episodes. Knots Landing did, also, continue to draw respectable ratings well into its final season, even though most of the core stars appeared in just a few episodes that season. Knots Landing placed 35th in the ratings for the 1992─93 season, with an average 11.5 rating and a 19% share of the audience. The ratings for Knots Landing on Wikipedia and on such other websites (like, etc.) are incorrect. The ratings were actually higher than most websites make them out to be. The series was a top twenty show from 1982 to 1986, and the show did not fall out of the top thirty in season three, it actually placed 30th for the season. Also, the series peaked in season six, when it placed in 6th place for the year. But, to clear up any confusion, I don’t Knots Landing or any of the other soaps will be coming back. I think the TV networks think Dallas is enough. I do wish, though, that TNT’s new Dallas would bring back Gary and Val more frequently and in bigger roles. There is no room for any other Knots Landing characters, because they never had any ties with any of the Dallas characters, except Abby who had a brief fling with J.R., but he’s dead now, so there’s really no room for her.

    • gloria says

      I would love that too. Was so upset that on the new Dallas that Gary and Valene did not have such big parts. I hope they come back on Dallas if Knots wont come back

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