Dynasty (2017 TV series)
Dynasty is an American prime time television soap opera reboot based on the 1980s series of the same name. Developed by Josh Schwartz, Stephanie Savage, and Sallie Patrick, the new series stars Grant Show as Blake Carrington, Nathalie Kelley as his new wife Cristal Flores Carrington, Elizabeth Gillies as Blake's daughter Fallon, and James Mackay as his son Steven. The pilot, which was announced in September 2016, was ordered to series in May 2017. Dynasty premiered on October 11, 2017, on The CW in the United States, and on Netflix internationally a day later.
by Richard and Esther Shapiro
|Theme music composer||Bill Conti
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||1|
|No. of episodes||13 (list of episodes)|
|Running time||42 minutes|
|Production company(s)||CBS Television Studios|
|Distributor||CBS Television Distribution|
|Original network||The CW|
|Original release||October 11, 2017– present|
On November 8, 2017, The CW picked up the series for a full season of 22 episodes.
Dynasty begins with heiress Fallon Carrington unhappy to find her billionaire father Blake engaged to Cristal, a rival employee at the family company. When Fallon's machinations to separate the couple backfire and cost her a promotion, she allies with Blake's nemesis and former employee, Jeff Colby, and strikes out on her own. Meanwhile, the arrival of Cristal's opportunistic nephew Sam—who becomes romantically involved with Fallon's wayward brother Steven—threatens to expose her shady past. The Carringtons form a united front in the wake of the suspicious death of Cristal's former lover, but things at the mansion do not remain harmonious for long.
The reboot updates several elements from the 1980s original, including moving the setting from Denver, Colorado to Atlanta, Georgia; making Steven's homosexuality a nonissue to Blake; and changing gold digger Sammy Jo from a woman to a gay man. Additionally, in the new series, both Blake's fiancée and her nephew are Hispanic, and both chauffeur Michael Culhane and the Colby family are African-American.
Cast and charactersEdit
- Elizabeth Gillies as Fallon Carrington, energy executive and heiress to an Atlanta energy fortune
- Nathalie Kelley as Cristal Flores Carrington, Fallon's new stepmother, a woman with a shady past
- James Mackay as Steven Carrington, Fallon's gay environmentalist brother, who is the older and more levelheaded of the two
- Robert Christopher Riley as Michael Culhane, the Carrington chauffeur and Fallon's former lover
- Sam Adegoke as Jeff Colby, a young business rival to Blake
- Rafael de la Fuente as Sam "Sammy Jo" Jones, Cristal's wayward nephew and Steven's former lover
- Alan Dale as Joseph Anders, the Carrington majordomo
- Grant Show as Blake Carrington, billionaire CEO of Carrington Atlantic, married to Cristal, and the father of Fallon and Steven by his first wife
- Nick Wechsler as Matthew Blaisdel, Cristal's former lover, a field engineer who dies in a suspicious explosion
- Brianna Brown as Claudia Blaisdel, Matthew's wife, a former engineer
- Wakeema Hollis as Monica Colby, Jeff's sister
- Dave Maldonado as Willy Santiago, Matthew's friend and coworker at Denver Atlantic
- Michael Beach as Police Chief Aaron Stansfield, a longtime friend of Blake's
- Elena Tovar as Iris Machado, Cristal's sister and Sam's mother
- KJ Smith as Kori Rucks, Michael's ex-girlfriend
- Michael Patrick Lane as Ted Dinard, Steven's ex-boyfriend
- Hakeem Kae-Kazim as Cesil Colby, Jeff and Monica's father
- Luis Fernández as Alejandro Silva, Sam's father who operates under the alias of Diego Calastana
- J. R. Cacia as Rick Morales, a journalist and old friend of Cristal's
- Bill Smitrovich as Thomas Carrington, Blake's father and Fallon and Steven's grandfather
- Arnetia Walker as Louella Culhane, Michael's mother
- Darryl Booker as James Culhane, Michael's father
- Kearran Giovanni as Police Chief Bobbi Johnson
- Rick Hearst as Senator Paul Daniels, a longtime contact of Blake's
- Kelly Rutherford as Melissa Daniels, Paul's trophy wife
- Steven Culp as Tim Meyers, a business associate of Jeff and Fallon
|No.||Title||Directed by||Written by||Original air date||U.S. viewers
|1||"I Hardly Recognized You"||Brad Silberling||Sallie Patrick, Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage||October 11, 2017||1.26|
|Heiress Fallon Carrington is unhappy to find her billionaire father Blake engaged to Cristal Flores, and plots to drive a wedge between them by giving her father photos of Cristal with her former lover Matthew Blaisdel. Fallon's plan backfires, pushing up the wedding and securing Cristal the promotion Fallon wanted for herself. Feeling underappreciated by Blake, Fallon sets herself up as his business rival, backed by Blake's nemesis, Jeff Colby. Anders, the Carrington family butler, makes his knowledge of Cristal's shady past known to her, and the arrival of her opportunistic nephew Sam—who has just slept with Fallon's brother, Steven—puts her in further jeopardy. Matthew is killed in the aftermath of a suspicious explosion, and his unstable wife Claudia appears at Blake's wedding to accuse him of her husband's murder.|
|2||"Spit It Out"||Michael A. Allowitz||Sallie Patrick||October 18, 2017||0.92|
|Cristal is devastated by Matthew's death, while Blake works to distance the Carringtons from him and his possible murder. Jeff helps Fallon delete all traces of the photos of Cristal and Matthew. Cristal proves her loyalty to Blake by relinquishing her keepsakes of her former lover, and staging a diversion for the press at Matthew's wake by declaring his love for her as one-sided. FBI agents arrive at the mansion, arresting Steven instead of Blake.|
|3||"Guilt is for Insecure People"||Kellie Cyrus||Ali Adler||October 25, 2017||0.72|
|Implicated in Matthew's death, Steven clashes with Blake, who he suspects may have been involved. When Blake blocks Fallon's use of the Carrington name for her new business venture, she looks for leverage over him. Sam's mother Iris is in trouble, but Anders has made it impossible for Cristal to send her money. Cristal remembers her past as Celia Machado, when the sisters stole a fortune, but only Cristal escaped Venezuela. Sam secretly arranges the theft of Cristal's engagement ring and other valuables during a charity gala to raise the money, but Matthew's phone and its incriminating contents, which Blake had acquired illegally, are stolen as well.|
|4||"Private as a Circus"||Kevin Sullivan||Jena Richman||November 1, 2017||0.74|
|While Cristal takes Blake on an impromptu honeymoon, Sam goes to Steven for help retrieving Matthew's phone. They get it back, but Fallon leaks the sex video of Matthew and Cristal that it contains. After her overconfidence costs her a lucrative contract, Fallon realizes she has to accept Jeff's input as well as his money. Steven is cleared of Matthew's death, but is furious when Sam admits his complicity in the robbery.|
|5||"Company Slut"||Cherie Nowlan||Christopher Fife||November 8, 2017||0.72|
|On Cristal's first day as COO, she faces the backlash from her sex video, and a lack of confidence from the rest of the Carrington Atlantic executives. She and Fallon compete for an award, which Fallon wins by subterfuge. Steven's ex-boyfriend Ted Dinard reappears, hoping to reconnect. Anders manipulates Sam to keep Steven from rekindling anything with Ted. Learning that Fallon leaked Cristal's video, Blake kicks her out of the mansion. Cristal apologizes to an irate Claudia, who chases Cristal into the street and is accidentally hit by Blake with his car.|
|6||"I Exist Only for Me"||Lee Rose||Kevin Garnett||November 15, 2017||0.64|
|Fallon and Jeff throw a launch party for Morell Corp. Fallon is jealous when Michael arrives with Kori, but their relationship withstands Fallon's meddling. Despite being drunk, Fallon helps secure important technology for the company. Claudia is pregnant, and Cristal insists that she stay at the mansion to convalesce. Sam and Claudia bond, but Claudia's erratic behavior convinces Blake and Cristal that she should leave. Sam and Cristal learn that Claudia has been taking the wrong medication.|
|7||"A Taste of Your Own Medicine"||Matt Earl Beesley||Jay Gibson||November 29, 2017||0.64|
|Kicked out of the Carrington Thanksgiving celebration by Blake, Fallon appears at Michael's church dinner and meets his parents. Steven confronts Blake about the suspicious funding for the athletic club. Claudia has been faking her memory problems, and while holding the Carringtons at gunpoint, she admits to causing the explosion that killed Matthew. Claudia wants Cristal to watch her kill Blake, but the rest of the family is able to overpower her. Fallon is welcomed back, but Blake's plan to send Claudia to a sanitarium in a coverup drives Steven to plot with Jeff against Police Chief Stansfield.|
|8||"The Best Things in Life"||Pascal Verschooris||Francisca X. Hu||December 6, 2017||0.64|
|Cristal's pursuers have found her, and Anders helps her pay them off. When Blake catches her in a lie, Cristal confesses her secrets to him. Michael's relationship with Kori implodes over his lingering feelings for Fallon, who rebounds with Jeff. Steven's plan to neutralize Stansfield blows up in his face when he learns that he was responsible for a man's death in an oil rig accident, and that Stansfield helped Blake cover it up.|
|9||"Rotten Things"||Brad Silberling||Paul Sabbaga||December 13, 2017||0.69|
|Blake brings Iris to Atlanta for the holidays, and is surprised when his domineering father Thomas arrives as well. Steven, fresh from a drug-fueled bender in New York with Ted, clashes with Blake, whose management of his company and family is already being criticized by Thomas. Cristal and Anders discover that Iris was behind the extortion plot, and a confrontation with her sister causes Cristal to admit to Sam that she killed his father to defend Iris. Fallon and Monica have a falling out. Jeff visits his father Cesil in jail, where they discuss their vendetta against Blake, who slept with Cesil's wife and framed him on drug charges. Blake meets a new business partner, unaware that he is Sam's father Alejandro using an assumed name.|
|10||"A Well-Dressed Tarantula"||Kenny Leon||Adele Lim||January 17, 2018||0.63|
|Cristal is a pariah at the mansion. Alejandro reveals himself to her, threatening to expose Blake's father's past crimes if she does not help him close a deal with Carrington-Atlantic. A guilty Steven pawns an expensive watch and gives the money to the wife of the man who died because of his mistake. Fallon throws herself a 25th birthday party as she gains control of her $100 million trust fund, and overcomes her reluctance to fully commit herself and her money to Jeff. Meanwhile, Jeff tells his father he plans to marry Fallon to secure her assets for himself, including her shares of Blake's company. Cristal, Blake, Fallon, and Sam work together to turn the tables on Alejandro and Iris. After getting into her new car, Fallon is chloroformed by Iris.|
|11||"I Answer to No Man"||Steven A. Adelson||Gladys Rodriguez||January 24, 2018||0.56|
|Alejandro and Iris hold Fallon hostage in a warehouse, demanding $15 million dollars and safe passage from Blake. He tries to handle the situation without alerting the new police chief, whom Cristal has invited to dinner. With the ransom now up to $25 million, Cristal sneaks off to make the drop, but is taken as a hostage as well. Blake, Jeff, and Michael track them down; Cristal helps Fallon escape, but is whisked away in a truck by Alejandro and Iris. Cristal convinces Iris that Alejandro is bad and will only turn on her, and as Alejandro tries to strangle Cristal, Iris shoots and kills him. The sisters reconcile. Cristal sends Iris off with some cash, and tells the police she shot Alejandro in self-defense, not Iris.|
|12||"Promises You Can't Keep"||Matt Earl Beesley||Jenna Richman||January 31, 2018||0.65|
|As the Carringtons prepare for a Casino Night fundraiser they are throwing for Senator Paul Daniels, Cristal learns from a journalist friend, Rick Morales, that Blake regularly bribed Daniels when he was a judge. To avoid the truth coming out, she gives Rick an alternative story about Daniels' many extramarital affairs. When the price of an important Morell Corp. property lease doubles, Fallon has the opportunity to retain her old price if she can win a poker game. Knowing she would be expected to sleep with the owner if she lost, Fallon bluffs for the win. Monica is horrified when Jeff reveals his plan to destroy Blake by using Fallon, but later agrees to help him.|
|13||"Nothing But Trouble"||Matt Earl Beesley||Jenna Richman||February 7, 2018||0.65|
|On Blake's behalf, Anders bribes a prison guard to stage an attack that will prevent Cesil getting paroled. The parole board votes against his release, but Jeff sleeps with the parole commisioner, who sets Cesil free. Monica manipulate Fallon into accepting Jeff's marriage proposal, but Fallon discovers their duplicity and enlists Michael to help her against the Colbys. Steven decides to run for city council, and lets Ted know that tales of their wild past may become public. Still using drugs and believing that Steven and Sam are romantically involved, Ted stages a scuffle with Sam and leaps out of an upper story window.|
|14||"The Gospel According to Blake Carrington"||Dawn Wilkinson||Francisca X. Hu & Paula Sabbaga||March 9, 2018||TBD|
In September 2016, it was announced that a reboot of the 1980s prime time soap opera Dynasty was in development at The CW, co-written by Josh Schwartz, Stephanie Savage, and Sallie Patrick. Savage said, "All of us have worked on shows that owe a huge debt to Dynasty, so it's kind of in our writing DNA to do this show." The trio discussed what they found unique and attractive about the original series, and how best to preserve those elements in an update. They also met with Richard and Esther Shapiro, the creators of Dynasty, who were ultimately attached as producers. Schwartz said, "We are definitely living in an age of dynasties. Whether it's the Trumps or the Clintons or the Kardashians or the Murdochs, our news is filled with the worlds of family dynasties and that was exciting for us." Savage added, "When we first sat down with the Shapiros to talk about rebooting the show, they talked a lot about family. No matter the villainous things that they did, they never stopped loving each other. I think we took that core concept and then just talked about how to place the idea in the historical context of our day." Patrick noted that the 1980s series was progressive for its time, dealing with issues like race, women in the workplace, and gay acceptance. She said, "We're trying to figure out how do we respect what that show was doing then and pushing it even farther in our version."
The new series finds heiress Fallon Carrington facing off against her soon-to-be stepmother Cristal, a Hispanic woman. Patrick said, "It was important to me as a working woman to have two women fighting over the future of the dynasty." Schwartz said of the rival characters:
Even when you watch the original, Fallon is a character who feels as if she can exist in 2017. She just pops off the screen, and she can take on Krystle, who, in the original, was pure and the moral center of the show. With this new Cristal, we liked the idea of not letting her be quite as pure and raising some questions about her past and having her stir the pot—making her more formidable. That really let us lean into this rivalry between Fallon and Cristal.
Patrick said, "We knew in our version—2017—we wanted Steven's conflict with Blake to be not about him being gay, but about him being liberal." Savage noted, "With Steven Carrington out and proud, it makes sense for Sammy Jo to be a man." Patrick said in August 2017 that Blake's first wife Alexis would be introduced during the first season, but that the role had yet to be cast. Schwartz noted, "We do refer to her a lot. We're building up the spirit of Alexis. She's definitely there in the other characters." The role was cast with Nicollette Sheridan in November 2017.
The setting was also moved from Denver to Atlanta, in part because of Atlanta's diversity. Schwartz called the city "a realistic location of this family to be based out of", noting that the Shapiros had arbitrarily picked Denver for the original series and were not creatively attached to it. Patrick said that Atlanta is "a super diverse population and a great mixture—where there's conflict between old money and new money." Kelley said, "This modern version represents a more current picture of what's happening in America. The diversity of the cast really represents that." In the update, chauffeur Michael Culhane and the Colby family are African-American. Also, Cristal's Venezuelan origins will allow the show to explore the current geopolitics of that country.
We loved the original Dynasty—the camp and the big, surprising soapy twists. We also felt very strongly that we needed to earn those. It would have been hard to come out of the gate with an episode like this. You have to be with the characters long enough to start caring about them. We're cranking up the crazy moving forward.
The episode titles are lines of dialogue from the original series. In addition to reworked characters and plotlines, the reboot contains multiple visual homages to the 1980s series, including props and wardrobe.
The pilot was filmed in Atlanta. On May 10, 2017, the Dynasty reboot received a series order at The CW. A preview trailer was released on May 18, 2017. On November 8, 2017, The CW picked up the series for a full season of 22 episodes.
Nathalie Kelley was cast as Cristal in January 2017, followed by Elizabeth Gillies as Fallon, Sam Adegoke as playboy Jeff Colby, and Robert Christopher Riley as Blake's chauffeur Michael Culhane in February. Next cast were Grant Show as Fallon's father Blake Carrington, and Rafael de la Fuente as Sam Jones, a gay male version of the original series' Sammy Jo Carrington, in March. The remaining main cast members are James Mackay as Fallon's gay brother Steven, and Alan Dale as Carrington majordomo Anders, Additional recurring performers include Nick Wechsler as Cristal's ex-lover Matthew Blaisdel, Brianna Brown as Matthew's wife Claudia, and Wakeema Hollis as Jeff's sister Monica Colby, In November 2017, Nicollette Sheridan was cast in the role of Blake's ex-wife Alexis Carrington. Other guest stars include Elena Tovar as Iris Machado, Cristal's sister and Sam's mother, Bill Smitrovich as Thomas Carrington, Blake's estranged father, and Hakeem Kae-Kazim as Cesil Colby, Jeff and Monica's father.
The pilot includes a flashback of a young Steven playing the original Dynasty theme by Bill Conti on piano. An updated, 15-second version debuted as an opening credits sequence in the 1980s-themed third episode, "Guilt is for Insecure People", but is only used in some episodes. Composer Paul Leonard-Morgan worked with Troy Nõka to get "an '80s-rock vibe" for the song, to match Leonard-Morgan's soundtrack for the series. The new theme was recorded with an orchestra at Capitol Records in Hollywood, featuring Los Angeles Philharmonic lead trumpet player Tom Hooten.
Dynasty premiered on The CW in the United States on October 11, 2017, with the season 2 premiere of Riverdale as its lead-in. Netflix acquired the exclusive international broadcast rights to Dynasty, making it available as an original series on the platform less than a day after their original U.S. broadcast.
Leslie Moonves, the head of CBS Corporation, said in 2017, "We own 100 percent of [Dynasty], and we’ve already licensed it to Netflix in 188 countries ... So this means Dynasty is profitable before it even hits the air."
|1||"I Hardly Recognized You"||October 11, 2017||0.3/1||1.26||0.2||N/A||0.5||N/A|
|2||"Spit It Out"||October 18, 2017||0.3/1||0.92||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|3||"Guilt is for Insecure People"||October 25, 2017||0.2/1||0.72||N/A||0.39||N/A||1.10|
|4||"Private as a Circus"||November 1, 2017||0.2/1||0.74||0.2||0.45||0.4||1.19|
|5||"Company Slut"||November 8, 2017||0.2/1||0.72||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|6||"I Exist Only for Me"||November 15, 2017||0.2/1||0.64||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|7||"A Taste of Your Own Medicine"||November 29, 2017||0.2/1||0.64||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|8||"The Best Things in Life"||December 6, 2017||0.2/1||0.64||N/A||0.33||N/A||0.97|
|9||"Rotten Things"||December 13, 2017||0.2/1||0.69||TBD||TBD||TBD||TBD|
|10||"A Well-Dressed Tarantula"||January 17, 2018||0.2/1||0.63||TBD||TBD||TBD||TBD|
|11||"I Answer to No Man"||January 24, 2018||0.2/1||0.56||TBD||TBD||TBD||TBD|
|12||"Promises You Can't Keep"||January 31, 2018||0.2/1||0.65||TBD||TBD||TBD||TBD|
|13||"Nothing But Trouble"||February 7, 2018||0.2/1||0.65||TBD||TBD||TBD||TBD|
The review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes reported a 53% approval rating with an average rating of 6.61/10 based on 40 reviews. The website's consensus reads, "Dynasty's revival retains enough of its predecessor's over-the-top allure to offer a glamorous guilty pleasure in its first season, even if it never quite recaptures the magic of the original." Metacritic, which uses a weighted average, assigned a score of 52 out of 100 based on 17 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".
Chris Harnick of E! Online called the pilot "soapy and fun", adding that the series is "a worthy heir to the original show and Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage's previous offering Gossip Girl and The O.C.". Adweek called the pilot inferior to Gossip Girl and the original Dynasty, but suggested that its pairing with Riverdale "could provide audiences a guilty-pleasure double-feature".
Tierney Bricker of E! Online dubbed Kelley "this season's breakout star", with Gillies "hot on her Louboutin heels".
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