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Check out letters from those who agreed with us, and those who didn't on Ellen Barkin, Michael Bolton, and ''Dallas''

Mail from our readers

Barkin Relief
It's about time! Haven't all of us seen enough magazines with Julia Roberts and Michelle Pfeiffer on them to last a lifetime? I'm thankful someone at your magazine decided to make a Switch to Ellen Barkin (May 3). It's great that one magazine is brave enough to put Jennifer Connelly, Jasmine Guy, and Barkin on its cover.
Michael J. Charach
Detroit

Cry Bolton
Michael Bolton's ''(Sittin' on) The Dock of the Bay'' is a ''botch''? No way! Michael's soulful version of that song is a masterpiece that makes me cry and swoon at the same time. Bolton's hauntingly emotional voice can hardly be described as ''falsetto shrieks'' or ''huffs.'' He can shriek and huff a song to me anytime. The D- grade that your reviewer, Dave Marsh, gave to Bolton's album is insane.
Alisa Herrington
Laurel, Miss.

Adios to Big D on TV
After all these years, yours is the first magazine to give credit to the lesser-known actors on Dallas. As a big fan of the show, I always looked forward to seeing those familiar faces in their supporting roles. Your look back at the series was entertaining and well done. Thank you!
Ed Rodriguez
Albany, N.Y.

I enjoyed your story on Dallas. However, there was one omission in your notable quotes sidebar. To me, the best line J.R. ever delivered, and the one that absolutely personified his character, was uttered several seasons ago: ''Once you give up integrity, the rest is a piece of cake!'' This is J.R. Ewing in a nutshell.
Barbara Caudill
Greeneville, Tenn.

Although I knew it would never come to pass, several weeks ago I worked out the perfect ending for Dallas: Larry Hagman wakes up in Cocoa Beach, Fla., rouses Barbara Eden from sleep, and says, ''Jeannie! I just had this really strange dream. I was a really nasty oil tycoon and...''
James C. Pate
West Palm Beach, Fla.

Inspirations
We're always happy when our editorial ideas get attention, but I'm particularly flattered to see that Harper's Magazine is such a rich resource for Entertainment Weekly. In your April 26 issue, we were impressed to see that two standard Harper's features inspired you. To explain Hollywood's questionable accounting for Batman, you took our ''Annotation'' feature as your model. In the same issue, for a collection of factual, ironic, and silly statistics from Kitty Kelley's book, you adopted the style and format of our ''Harper's Index.'' Harper's editor Lewis Lapham, who invented them seven years ago, joins me in thanking you for recognizing their effectiveness.
John R. MacArthur
Publisher, Harper's Magazine
New York City

Ed. Note: Semi-guilty as charged, but we're certainly not the only ones. Dozens of magazines have been influenced by ''Annotation'' and the ''Harper's Index,'' among them Newsweek (''Periscope''), Spy (''The Fine Print'') and M inc. (''Cash Register''). Our ''Go Figure'' column is simply the latest editorial feature to honor the ''Index'' with this sincerest form of flattery.

Originally posted May 24, 1991 Published in issue #67 May 24, 1991 Order article reprints
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