18. Like most of the world I learned who shot J. R. Ewing during the 1979-1980 season of Dallas. It was, of course, the beautiful but deadly Kristen Shepard, Sue Ellen's greedy sister, who felt scorned when J. R. went back on his promise to divorce Sue Ellen and marry her. Upon learning the identity of the shooter, J. R. said, from his hospital bed, "Nobody's going to jail ... I'll handle Kristen my own way." The "Who Shot J. R.?" episode is considered one of televisions Top 10 moments (along with the assassination of John F. Kennedy in 1963, the Beatles' performance on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1964, and the first moon landing in 1969). The episode won a 53.3 Nielsen rating and drew 86.3 million viewers. The final episode of M*A*S*H won an all-time high rating of 60.2 (106 million viewers); the final episode of Seinfeld won a mere 41.3 rating (76.3 million viewers). Larry Hagman, the actor who played J. R. is still alive. He did, however, have a liver transplant in 1995 and has since become politically involved, appealing to Congress to lift the limit on how long Medicare pays for the prohibitively expensive antirejection medications that are part of the post-surgical organ transplant program.

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