Joan Collins (photo shoot for season 5)
|Series||Dynasty, The Reunion|
|First appearance||"Enter Alexis" (1981)|
|Last appearance||"The Reunion" (1991)|
|Portrayed by||Joan Collins|
Roger Grimes (in the 50's)
Shortly before World War II, Alexis Colby (born Morell; formerly Carrington, Dexter, and Rowan) was born in England. She grew up to be a classy, beautiful, sensual woman with great taste within art, culture and men. At the age of 17, she fell desperately in love with Blake Carrington and married him in 1955. Their first child, Adam, was born in 1956, and in 1957 came Fallon. The tragic kidnapping of Adam in 1957 was devastating to Alexis and Blake, and was the first thing that started tearing their marriage apart. They tried to forget the big loss, but never quite succeeded. In 1958, they had another son, Steven. Blake was very attached to his work at this time, and he spent more time at Denver-Carrington than home.
Alexis started feeling lonely, and the result was an affair with the estate manager, Roger Grimes. Blake discovered this, and beat up and destroyed Grimes. Next, he bribed a great number of people, including Grimes and Alexis, to make sure this affair was never publicized. In 1964, Alexis was driven from her children by Blake, and settled down in Acapulco, living on a $250,000-a-year trust fund from Blake. At this time, she was actually pregnant again, but she never told Blake. She gave birth to another daughter, Amanda, who she placed in England to be raised by her cousin Rosalind Bedford.
Suddenly, in 1981, Alexis was back in Denver, with two intentions: To get back at Blake, and see her children again. She married Blake's business competitor, Cecil Colby, and after his death, she took over his giant oil empire, ColbyCo., and became Blake's arch rival.
Through the series, she caused him, and many other persons who stepped in her way, a lot of pain and loss. And though she hated Blake for what he'd done, she never really could get over that she still cared for him. She married Farnsworth "Dex" Dexter, who despite all the terrible things she did, loved her, and then later Sean Rowan, who turned out to have one intention: To kill her. Both Adam and Amanda returned to their family (see further down for details), and this created an even closer bond between Blake and Alexis.
Krystle once said about Alexis:
|“||You either love her or hate her. And she seems to enjoy it either way.||”|
In Dynasty's first season finale episode, "The Testimony", Blake Carrington is on trial for killing his son Steven's male lover, Ted Dinard. A veiled surprise witness for the prosecution appears, and Blake angrily asks his lawyer: "What's she doing here?" Blake's daughter Fallon gasps in recognition, "Oh my God, that's my mother."
As the second season opens with the episode "Enter Alexis", the character has not only a face but a name: Alexis Morell Carrington. She had been exiled from Denver by Blake after an affair with Carrington estate manager Roger Grimes; her testimony, that Blake has a violent temper, proves damaging to his case. At odds with his father, Steven is drawn to the mother he hardly remembers; Fallon, however, is devoted to Blake and has long held a grudge against Alexis, a grudge further fueled by her testimony. Fallon says to her mother:
|“||You're even more beautiful and more ugly than that grand English lady I vaguely remember, and whom I've tried very hard to forget existed these past sixteen years.||”|
— Fallon Carrington Colby, "Enter Alexis"
Alexis soon sparks the ire of Blake's wife Krystle, and brazenly moves into a cottage on the Carrington estate: her former art studio which she still owns, thanks to a technicality (Blake gave her the deed to the studio as a reward for giving birth to Steven). The household staff remembers the first Mrs. Carrington all too well — especially longtime Carrington majordomo Joseph Anders. Staunchly loyal to Blake, Joseph has a particular dislike for socialite Alexis and has followed her scandalous adventures for years through the tabloids. Fallon, though not openly hostile, keeps an icy distance from Alexis and the two trade subtle barbs; Steven is seduced by his mother's apparent devotion to him, but soon gets a taste of her poison. According to Alexis, Fallon is not Blake's daughter at all: her father is really Blake's longtime friend and business rival, Cecil Colby. The secret eats at Steven, and Fallon eventually finds out. Ultimately, it is proven untrue.
Alexis' consistent meddling and intrusions help improve Krystle's relationship with Fallon, Joseph, and the rest of the household staff and they soon accept her unconditionally as Blake's wife.
Alexis makes an enemy in Krystle when she purposefully fires a shotgun to make Krystle's horse throw her; a pregnant Krystle loses her baby, and is told she will probably be unable to have more. Alexis becomes romantically involved with Cecil, now Blake's adversary, but Cecil has a heart attack while in bed with her.
In 1982, Alexis and Cecil marry on his deathbed (episode 40), Cecil exacting a promise from Alexis that she will use his company ColbyCo to ruin Blake.
Two episodes before, after their infant grandson L.B. Colby (son of Fallon and Jeff Colby) is kidnapped, former spouses Blake and Alexis make a televised plea that he be returned. Alexis confesses a dark secret from their past: their firstborn son, Adam, had been kidnapped as a baby and had never been returned. Traumatized by the event, they had hidden his existence from their subsequent children Fallon and Steven. Meanwhile, in Billings, Montana, an old woman named Kate Torrance tearfully tells her grandson Michael that he is really the Carrington heir. Armed with items from Adam Carrington's baby carriage, lawyer "Michael" comes to Denver and is eventually accepted as a Carrington; but like Alexis, his selfishness, greed and ambition put him at odds with all of his relatives at one time or another.
In episode 42, Alexis offers Adam a job at ColbyCo. When she also recruits Fallon's husband Jeff, Adam is jealous. Revealing his devious nature, Adam has Jeff's office painted with toxic paint. Gradually, Jeff's behavior becomes increasingly erratic. In episode 51, Alexis sends Jeff away on a vacation. Realizing that Jeff will "recover" when he's not breathing toxic fumes every day, Adam confesses to Alexis. Alexis orders Adam to have the paint removed from Jeff's office. Adam warns his mother that if she betrays him, he will implicate her in the scheme, since Alexis used Jeff's poor health to trick him into signing over his son's shares in Denver-Carrington to her.
In episode 66, Alexis learns that Fallon is investigating about Jeff's mysterious illness and warns Adam that if Fallon learns the truth that he's on his own. In return, Adam tricks Alexis into signing documents that make it look like she ordered the office to be painted. Alexis travels to Montana to investigate her son's background and learns from Dr. Edwards that Adam had experimented with drugs as a teen and suffered a psychotic breakdown. Alexis is somewhat more sympathetic to Adam at this point, feeling guilty that they gave up the search for their lost son so many years ago, condemning him to such a tragic life. As she doesn't want his past drug addiction to be widely known, Alexis is resigned to suffer the consequences of his actions. Therefore, she gave up her control of Denver-Carrington.
Later, in 1983, she becomes romantically involved with Farnsworth "Dex" Dexter). Son of Denver-Carrington's board member Sam Dexter, an old friend of Blake Carrington's, Dex has been sent by his father to understand why ColbyCo. abruptly abandoned its plans to acquire Denver-Carrington. In episode 69, Dex confronts Blake and his ex-wife Alexis Colby. Dex and Alexis are immediately drawn to each other. Dex gets the best of Alexis in a business deal (he discovers information in her office and acts on it before she can) and offers her a 60-40 split so they can work together. Although Alexis resists, by episode 72 they become lovers.
Their relationship is tempestuous and passionate. In episodes 82 & 83, Dex learns that Alexis has slept with Rashid Ahmed in order to sabotage a deal he has with Blake. A furious Dex confronts Alexis. She slaps him - and much to her shock, he slaps her back. Their fight soon turns to lovemaking. However, Alexis continues to demand independence from Dex and he turns to Denver-Carrington PR Director Tracy Kendall for solace in a one-night stand. Tracy tells Alexis about their affair, and Alexis ends their relationship.
After Alexis was arrested for the murder of Mark Jennings in episode 88, Dex rallies to her defense and bails her out of jail. Once she is found guilty because Steven testified against her, Dex and Adam desperately try to clear her name. They eventually uncover evidence that Neal McVane was the killer and Alexis is freed.
Soon after, in 1984, a young woman named Amanda Bedford appears on Alexis' doorstep; she is Alexis' daughter, and as news of her spreads, Blake takes a special interest. He soon learns that Alexis was pregnant when he banished her decades before. Though Alexis insists that Amanda's father is a ski instructor with whom she was involved, it is eventually revealed that she is indeed Blake's daughter.
Unaware of the brief affair Amanda had with Dex when they found themselves snowed in together in a remote cabin, Alexis proposes Dex to marry her and, as he regrets his actions, he accepts the proposal. Later, Alexis becomes suspicious and tries to keeps Amanda out from Dex by marrying her to Prince Michael of Moldavia, son of King Galen that she had known years ago. But during the wedding celebration which takes place in the 15 May 1985 season finale "Royal Wedding", terrorists interrupt the ceremony in an attempt to kill Galen and spray the chapel with gunfire, leaving the entire wedding party seemingly dead or dying on the floor.
Alexis survives the wedding massacre, as do most of the wedding guests, but she is kept as prisoner as the rebels want to sign a deal with ColbyCo. Eventually she is released when Blake pays ransom for her (and for Krystle who was also imprisoned). The King is missing and presumed dead, however, Alexis learns that he is being held for ransom. Dex agrees to help her rescue the King. They sneak into Moldavia where they are captured. In episode 125, Dex escapes and rescues Alexis and Galen. Upon returning to Denver, Dex refuses to let a paralyzed Galen recuperate in their home. Dex suspects (correctly) that Galen is feigning his paralysis and tries to force him to walk. When Alexis rushes to his defense, Dex is driven closer to Amanda. When Dex catches Alexis imagining herself as Queen of Moldavia (complete with crown) in episode 135, he is heartbroken.
Amanda finds a drunken Dex and they make love again - only to be caught in the act by Alexis in episode 136. Alexis immediately flies to St Thomas for a quick divorce.
In the meantime, Alexis' younger sister Cassandra Morell is released from a Caracas, Venezuela prison, having been incarcerated years before after an incident involving Alexis and her then-paramour, Zach Powers. Calling herself Caress, the younger Morell comes to Denver and hopes to make a fortune by writing a scathing tell-all book about Alexis and exposing her sister's darkest secrets. Alexis finds out about the book, secretly buys the publishing company and scuttles the project.
In 1986, Alexis turns on Blake as she wants him again in her life (episode 137). When he refuses to have an affair with her, she decides to destroy him for good. She flies to Australia and encourages Blake's brother Ben to come back in Denver and claim his share of his late father's estate. Alexis commits perjury on the stand and helps Ben to win over Blake during the trial (episodes 141 & 142). Wanting revenge, Blake mortgages his house and holdings on the hope that he will gain control over ColbyCo. Thanks to Ben and Alexis's interference, he loses both the house and the holdings and also his lucrative South China Sea oil leases. In the season finale, Alexis informs Blake she has bought his house. Furious, he grabs her by the throat and starts to strangle her.
Alexis is saved when Krystle pulls Blake off of her. Weeks after, Blake finds a way to force Alexis and Ben to relinquish their ownership of Denver-Carrington and all its holdings back to him. Later on, Blake, Alexis, and Ben are in southeast Asia visiting an oil rig when it catches on fire. Ben rescues a trapped Blake moments before the rig explodes. Blake awakens in the hospital with no memories of the last 25 years. Alexis has him discharged from the hospital and convinces him that they're still married. However, when Krystle finds them, Blake's memories return.
A handsome stranger saves Alexis from drowning in a river in 1987; dashing Sean Rowan soon sweeps her off her feet and they marry. Sean soon insinuates himself into her business, alienating Alexis' son Adam. It is revealed that Sean is actually the son of former Carrington majordomo Joseph Anders, and is bent on avenging his father and sister, Kirby, who had been ill-treated by Alexis and the Carringtons. Sean has an affair with Leslie Carrington and schemes to destroy the family, but is ultimately killed by Dex after he attempts to murder Alexis.
A body is found at the bottom of a lake on the Carrington property in 1988. The dead body turns out to be Roger Grimes, the man with whom Alexis was sleeping when she and Blake divorced. He had been dead for 20 years but the cold temperatures in the lake preserved his body. Ultimately, it is revealed that 8-year-old Fallon had shot Roger Grimes after finding him beating Alexis, and Blake's late father had hidden the body in a mine under the lake to protect Fallon. The situation is complicated by the fact that the mine is full of stolen Nazi treasure, hidden there by Blake's late father. Roger's body had been disturbed from its hiding place by a man looking for the treasure. The man happens to have been hired by Alexis's cousin, Sable Colby who was looking for some embarrassing information on her ex-husband Jason. But Sable has not come to Denver for having a revenge on Jason only but also on Alexis, who has betrayed her at several times in the past. Most of the season's action revolves around the battle between Alexis and Sable.
In the episode 220, the final episode of the series, at the Carlton Hotel Dex confronts Sable and Alexis for using him and throwing him aside. He mentions that Sable is pregnant, much to her chagrin. Alexis and Adam taunt Dex with the news, causing Dex to push Adam to the floor in frustration. When Dex turns his back, Adam rushes him. Dex falls backward into Alexis, sending them both crashing through a railing and falling off a second-story balcony while Adam, Sable, and Monica (Sable's daughter) watch in horror.
Two years after her fall at the Carlton, in 1991, Alexis (who managed to turn in mid-air and land on top of Dex, who "didn't fare that well") meets Jeremy Van Dorn, head of Trans-Media Relations, who convinces her she needs to diversify her business. However, Jeremy is actually working for an international consortium who has its eye on ColbyCo. When Alexis learns the truth and wants to put an end on their partnership, Jeremy tries to kill her but she gets saved at the last minute by Adam.
- In early development, Alexis' name was Madeline.
- At first, her character was meant to only have a 6-episodes arc.
- Among the actress considered to play Alexis were Sofia Lauren and Elizabeth Taylor.