Bobby Ewing and Pamela Barnes shock their respective families when they reveal they have married. This revelation renews an age-old feud between the two families, and J.R. Ewing, Bobby’s older brother, schemes to break them up using ranch hand Ray Krebbs, who once dated Pamela.
Jock and Miss Ellie’s middle son, Gary, a recovering alcoholic, returns to Southfork after a long absence. Meanwhile, Lucy discovers her mother, Valene (Gary’s ex-wife), working at a diner outside of town.
Bobby’s college pal, Guzzler, shows up in Dallas and lights up Bobby’s eyes like he did when they were in college. But when they team up in a construction deal, it’s Pam who feels like she’s on the outside.
J.R. sees Lucy’s engagement to Kit Mainwaring as a way to serve the common interests of Ewing Oil and Mainwaring Oil, in spite of Kit’s revelation of his homosexuality.
Jenna Wade, Bobby’s former love, returns to his life. She is in trouble, and she and her daughter need his help. Bobby believes her daughter, Charlie, might be his, but Jenna will not confirm. J.R sees this as an opportunity to rid Southfork of Pam, and encourages Jenna to go after Bobby. Bobby’s help seems a little too much for Pam, who confronts Jenna and meets Charlie. Pam’s fears prove to be unfounded as Bobby loves her, and decides Jenna is only someone from his past.
A cleaning woman discovers J.R. sprawled across the floor of his office. He is rushed to the hospital, close to death. The Ewing family reassembles to wait for news of his fate and police search for clues and suspects in the shooting. The family hopes for J.R. to regain consciousness and be able to shed some light on the identity of his assailant.
Sue Ellen’s fingerprints are identified on the gun that was used to shoot J.R. She is arrested and jailed in the shooting of her husband. She is further devastated when the Ewings abandon her, leaving her to languish in jail. After bail is mysteriously posted from an unknown source, Sue Ellen seeks solace from her sister, Kristin. Sue Ellen seeks answers through hypnosis sessions with her psychiatrist, Dr. Ellby. These sessions lead to the answer of who shot J.R.
The Ewing family celebrates the successful adoption of Bobby and Pam’s baby, but J.R. becomes suspicious and determined to find out what became of Kristin’s child. He realizes that he may be a long way from getting his own son back because of Sue Ellen’s anger. Knowing that she is seeing Cliff Barnes, J.R. vows to destroy his business, and now personal, rival. Ray surprises Ellie and Donna with a complete turnaround from his recent behavior. Mitch asks Lucy for a divorce and she runs to Roger; flattered at his obsession and oblivious to its strange manifestations. Clayton warns Sue Ellen not to turn to Cliff just to get back at J.R.
Sue Ellen returns to her old habits after she discovers J.R. in Holly’s bedroom. Sue Ellen staggers to Clayton for help, and Miss Ellie can’t understand when she finds them together. Pam returns to confront Bobby, and faces the decision to either help her husband in his fight for Ewing Oil and possibly lose him forever or not help him and perhaps lose him to Katherine. Lucy and Mickey try to help Sue Ellen, with tragic results.
Tommy meets with Boomer, a pal of his, who turns out to be the one making the bothersome calls. Boomer’s other talents include gun-running…and explosives. Tommy asks him to prepare a briefcase-size bomb for a “friend”.
That morning, just after breakfast, Tommy angrily confronts Rose about latching on to Carter. Messing up her makeup, he tells her to get out of town if she knows what’s good for her. Getting impatient about his bomb going off, he calls Ewing Oil, posing as a jeweler, telling Bobby that the pendant he purchased may be flawed and should be checked immediately. Rose decides to cut her visit short and return to her beauty shop. Tommy’s counselor warns Carter that the younger McKay still has deep-rooted psychological problems and is capable of anything.
Bobby visits April at her apartment with his briefcase, still believing it contains her gift. April gets antsy over seeing it so Bobby holds the briefcase away from her, and they chase each other over to the balcony. The briefcase drops to the sidewalk below and explodes before their disbelieving eyes.