Saturday, August 31, 2013

Season 1, Episode 13: “Double Sting” – Originally Aired 5-11-1979

In which the season comes to a close, and the bank robbers dress like Laurel and Hardy…

Bo and Luke are driving around at what is supposed to be night time, but it’s obviously daytime with the brightness dropped down. Some asshole drives up beside them and rams the crap out of the General Lee, eventually running it off the road. Bo and Luke wonder what the fuck is going on as he drives off.

They get to the Boar’s Nest, where Luke has seen the car parked outside. The driver starts giving Daisy shit, and Bo punches the guy in his face.

A fight ensues, and the guy is arrested, along with Bo and Luke. The camera then pans over to these creepy guys who have been sitting and watching the whole thing. They are obviously going to be important later, BUT HOW?!

At the jail, Uncle Jesse pays the $200 to get Bo and Luke out of jail, and then proceeds to tear the boys a new one, as that money was supposed to go toward the mortgage payment. There was originally going to be a piece here where I figured out if that was a fair price for a farm payment in the location and era, but after an hour of digging, I came to the conclusion that I don’t have enough data. It was a fun exercise though, until it wasn’t. 

As they’re making to leave, Doc Petticord, the local physician, bursts in and tells everyone they are now under quarantine, as the guy Bo punched appears to have some sort of plague. He then fondly recalls the  “Hog Cholera Epidemic of ‘43, but that was mostly pigs!” Jesse is all “Well, great, if we don’t get the mortgage payment in by midnight, we lose the farm!” Outside, the doctor cheerily hangs the Quarantine sign up, observed by the creepers from the bar.

Boss bitches about there being nowhere to sleep that’s not down with the prisoners, and makes Rosco clean out a disused cell for him to sleep in. Boss Hogg accidentally gets locked in the cell, and the key breaks, trapping him in there for the rest of the episode. Luke calls Daisy and tells her about the situation, so she heads off to the bank to make the payment.

Outside the bank, one of the creepers sexually harasses Daisy, and she tells him to fuck off as she heads inside. The creepers proceed to put on scary-ass Laurel and Hardy masks and rob the bank. Daisy is able to slip outside in the confusion, and climbs on top of their RV to follow them.

As they drive by Hazzard Garage, Cooter sees Daisy on top of the RV and follows them. They see him, and shoot out his tire. I sure am glad Cooter followed them, he helped so much. At the jail, Rosco gets a phone call from the bank, and for once acts like a real cop, getting the details down while completely ignoring Boss Hogg’s constant cries of “How much money did they take?” Cooter calls and tells Rosco that he saw Daisy on top of the RV, and everyone fears the worst.

At the robbers’ hideout, the big guy watches a filmstrip of Laurel and Hardy and wistfully says “…funniest people in the world…” This is supremely unsettling; all that’s missing is a scary music track underneath it all.

Outside, Daisy breaks into the RV and tries to use the CB to call for help, when she’s grabbed by the skinny robber. The scene ends with her on the ground, the two guys standing over her, and the whole thing feels rather sexual assualt-y.

At the jail, Jesse tells the boys that he’s pretty sure the guy who was arrested, Colt, is faking the plague, and was probably in on the robbery to keep the cops occupied. Then he talks to a seemingly unconscious Colt about breaking out, inviting him to break out with them. They break out, and drive away in the General. Rosco  radios for help, and is answered by the hardass Sheriff of Choctaw County, Emmett “Hammerhand” Ragsdale. He agrees to be on the lookout for the boys and Colt. Being pursued by Hammerhand, they make this iconic jump over a huge river, a shot of which appears in the logo of this blog.

Stopping to rest, the boys convince Colt to take them to his boss under the pretext of joining up with the gang. He then tells them that he faked the plague by being allergic to poison ivy and covering the rash with duct tape until he was in jail, at which point he revealed the rash. He then faked all the other symptoms. So, is the Hazzard doctor just the worst, or what? Can’t even tell a poison ivy rash…

So Colt steal the General Lee and goes to the hideout, and everyone bickers while Daisy stands around looking pretty. When they all go inside, Cooter pops up from the General Lee’s trunk.

Inside, the robbers plan to throw Daisy in the RV and sink it, thus eliminating all evidence and witnesses. Cooter contacts the boys via CB and tells them where he is and what’s going on. Everyone else overhears and heads that way, too. Cooter lets the air out of the RV’s tires and is caught by Colt, who takes him inside. The big guy tells the little guy and Colt to sink them both in the RV, then they’ll escape in the General. Then all hell breaks loose.

Everyone else gets there and Luke starts shooting dynamite arrows all over the damn place, and Bo pushes the building into the lake with Cooter’s truck! That is fucking astonishing that a ‘69 Chevy C-10 could move an entire building, but hey, it’s the season finale, and my ability to be shocked by this show is waning every week. Rosco prepares to arrest the crooks, but is shot down by Hammerhand! He makes the arrest, and flirts with Daisy. And with that, Season 1 is over.

I want to sincerely thank everyone who’s been reading along and occasionally commenting, I hope I hjaven’t bored anyone to tears yet. A very special thanks to Billy Superstar over at Full House Reviewed for linking to me, I really appreciate it.

There’s still six seasons to go, and it only gets more ridiculous from here on out, so stick around!There will be a little something special next week, and after that, Season 2! Thanks again!

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Season 1, Episode 12: “Route 7-11” – Originally Aired 5-4-1979

In which the Dukes’ friend gets took, so they take the takers…

The Dukes take the General Lee over to Cooter, who informs them that the car is going to need $180 worth of repairs. They freak out, as they need the General to be in top shape for the big race that they seem to enter every damn week. They can’t afford that, so Cooter tells them to get a job, and tells them about a job he heard about, driving a semi truck.

Meanwhile, Boss Hogg is drinking mint juleps while talking to Rosco, because how stereotypical can you get? They see a semi drive through, containing one Helen Hogan, who is known to both Boss and Rosco as a swindler extraordinaire. He tells Rosco to tail her.

Bo and Luke convince her to hire them, after Luke pulls some fancy maneuvers with the truck.  On their way home, they run into an old family friend, Dewey Stovall, and invite him over to dinner the next night.

The next morning, Helen Hogan explains that she runs a company that makes shock absorbers, and that all the people piling into the tractor trailer are potential investors wanting to check out the product in action. As they’re driving around, Luke says he doesn’t believe the story about the shocks, and climbs onto the trailer to peek into the vents. He does so, an sees that they're really running an illegal casino out of the trailer. Not only that, they’re running a CROOKED illegal casino! Luke also sees that Dewey is being taken in by Helen Hogan and Co.

Back at the farm, Daisy is talking to Dewey, who has arrived for dinner, and the camera shows us a nice shot of her ass.

Dewey explains that he was gambling his money to fix up his hardware store so he could compete with a chain store that had moved in near him. Luke comes up with a plan to steal back the money that Helen Hogan stole from Dewey, which really isn’t much of a plan.

After a failed attempt to steal the safe from the truck, which was so uneventful I’m not even going to recap it, they go to Uncle Jesse for help, asking him to pose as a high roller gambler. He refuses, as the Dukes don’t hold with no gambling. Luke says that Jesse probably couldn’t pull it off anyway, and he rightly schools everyone with his awesome card-handling abilities. Anyway, he reluctantly agrees to help. Note: According to David Hofstede’s The Dukes of Hazzard: The Unofficial Companion, John Schneider is actually doing Jesse’s card tricks.

So, the next morning, Luke rigs up a switch in the cab of the truck that will override the wheel switch in the trailer. Jesse and Daisy arrive, dressed to the nines, and Daisy is posing as Jesse’s floozy.

Once they’re on the road, Cooter swings by in the General Lee, and Luke jumps into the car, driving off to chase Rosco, who has been tailing the trailer the entire episode. Bo honks the horn of the truck, which gives Jesse the signal to bet on roulette. He wins, because of the switch override Bo is using. Rosco confronts Luke, who tells them where the truck is heading, and they speed away to head it off.

In the truck, Jesse moves to the poker table, where he is seated between the dealer and the house shill. He’s dealt a great hand, but is smart enough to know that the house is making to fuck him over in the next hand. He throws away two cards of his hand, an ace high full house. Helen Hogan gets nervous and tries to dissuade him, but he insists, and so the dealer gives him the cards meant for the shill. Jesse wins!

Everyone convenes at the crossroads, and the casino is busted up. Boss makes to take Jesse’s winnings, but the Dukes say it’s their winnings, and throw the bag into a passing General Lee. Jesse explains that the state police have been alerted to the operation, and that they told the police that Boss deserves all the credit. He’s understandably dismayed.

Luke meets up with Dewey at the county line, who explains that he is going to use the money to try and win at a reputable casino in another county.

As for Helen Hogan, she went on to raise her deceased sister’s children, including her oldest son, Michael Bluth.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Season 1, Episode 11: “Money to Burn” – Originally Aired 4-20-1979

In which the Dukes are actually not in the wrong at all! That’s refreshing…

After nearly three real-world minutes of Enos chasing the Dukes around, we open at the Hazzard bank, where Boss Hogg is counting out one million dollars in bills that have become too tattered so he can send them to be burned and exchanged with fresh bills by the Atlanta branch of the Federal Reserve.
Boss then tells Rosco his plan, which is to have the armored car driven by his cousin, Cletus, to burn up in an accident while transporting the money, and that the money bag will be filled with old phone books instead of money. Again, he’s doing this out in the middle of the bank floor, instead of his office.
So, Cletus pulls off to the side of some back road and explodes the truck. Bo and Luke happen to be in the area and turn around to go see what’s up. They come upon Cletus, who claims that the truck just blew up, and that he was thrown clear of the blast. Bo and Luke believe him, even though he doesn’t have a scratch or scorch mark on him. He feebly protests as they put the fire out and retrieve the remains of the phone books. After Boss yells at Cletus, he resolves to frame the Dukes for the theft and collect the insurance money.

At the farm, the Dukes are in a tight spot, money-wise (aren’t they always?), and Bo says he and Luke will get some if they win the Hazzard Derby, but they need $5 to enter. Jesse goes to check the rainy day fund, and finds that it’s full of money! Daisy calls them all into her room, where there’s a ton of money just spread out on her bed. Did somebody (probably Bo) acquire a mysterious severed hand and make a wish with it?
So, they’re all celebrating when Rosco and Enos pull up, telling them that someone hijacked the armored truck, and making it super obvious that he planted the money. He goes to pour himself some coffee, and, surprise surprise, it’s full of money! Rosco arrests the boys, while I wonder how he got into the house and planted the money. Surely someone must have been home, and it’s only been a few hours since the truck incident.
A scuffle ensues, and the boys get away, despite Enos Hulking out and smashing his way through their back door in pursuit.

The boys make their way over to Cooter’s, where he’s painting a hearse for Boss, as he apparently runs moonshine in hearses up to Nashville. This is a brilliant move, as who’s gonna pull over a hearse? Nobody, that’s who. They hide when Rosco arrives, asking Cooter to hang up one of these sweet wanted posters of Bo and Luke.
The boys overhear Boss telling Rosco (via the CB radio) to meet him at “the place,” and decide to follow him, borrowing Cooter’s truck to do so, as the General Lee is too conspicuous. This may be true, but Cooter’s gotta be pretty well known. Wouldn’t Rosco wonder why Cooter was following him and get suspicious?

Anyway, they follow Rosco to the Hazzard County Coffin Works. For a rural backwater, Hazzard seems to have just about everything: a bank, an armored car company, and a coffin works. What’s next, a regional outpost of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police?
They see Boss meet Rosco and take a money bag filled with something inside, and sneak in after them, climbing up to the roof, Batman-style!
They peek in a hole in the roof, where Boss reveals that he’s going to bury the ratty million dollars in a coffin under the name Don McDougall, to collect an additional insurance premium, and then dig it up when everything blows over. I bet the Federal Reserve would log the serial numbers of the bills, so when he spent the money, he'd get busted, but it’s just a TV show, I should really just relax. Anyway, Bo and Luke take off.

Back at the farm, Jesse yells at them for coming back there, as that’s the first place the cops and federal agents will look. Luke explains that he has a plan, and tells Jesse to have any federal agents that might come calling meet Bo and Luke in the town square, where they’ll get their money back.
Bo and Luke go to the Coffin Works in a hearse, while Daisy, driving the General Lee and wearing a helmet that says “Bo Duke” on it, distracts Rosco and Co. into chasing her, thinking it’s Bo.

While they’re chasing her, Bo and Luke tell the guard they’re new guys, here to make a run to Atlanta. He believes them until he checks his paperwork, and there IS no run to Atlanta today! The boys respond by locking the poor guy into a coffin and grabbing the money.

They get to the meeting place with the bonding agents, only to find that they grabbed a coffin full of moonshine instead of the money! Uh oh!

The agents are suspicious, especially when the boys speed off, so they follow, eventually leading them back to the coffin works, where Boss is getting ready to bury the coffin full of money. He conducts the fake eulogy for McDougall, slipping sly references to the coffin being full of money. The coroner pipes up and says this person’s named McDonald, and that McDougall is being cremated right that instant.

Boss freaks out and runs inside to try and stop it. The bond agents, having recently arrived, follow Bo and Luke in after Boss. Bo shows them the money in the coffin, and while Boss is trying to explain, the money gets burned up.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Season 1, Episode 10: “Deputy Dukes” – Originally Aired 4-13-1979

In which the Dukes become deputies and meet a minor country singer…

The General Lee is tailing an unfamiliar convertible down some back road. This is weird, until it’s revealed that Bo and Luke are attempting to get some strange. The girls suggest going skinny dipping in the nearby lake, and the boys readily agree. Bo and Luke strip down and get in the water, only to have the girls run off with their clothes and the money that they had won in something called a “Snipe Hunting Contest.”

They hot-wire their car and chase after the thieves, who have just sped past Rosco. He gives chase, and Bo and Luke catch up to him and slam into Rosco’s car, causing the door to fall off. I’m not sure that this could actually happen, but hey, it’s funny. He arrests them for a whole bunch of charges, including indecent exposure. So, they end up stuck in jail, and our story can really begin

At the jail, Rosco receives a phone call from the chief of police of neighboring Springville County. He explains that the very deadly criminal Rocky Marlowe (Rosco refers to him as “Public Enemy One Through Ten”) has been granted a change of venue from Springville over to Hazzard, and request that Rosco send someone to get him. Shouldn’t they just bring him out there themselves? I mean, they’ve been around this guy, know if he’s gonna be a problem or not, etc. Is this how real changes of venue work?

Anyway, Rosco eventually sends the Dukes, deputizing them in the process. He threatens to sell the General Lee out from under them to pay their fines if they don’t cooperate. They refuse his offer to carry guns, citing their probation. I’m assuming Rosco was involved in setting their probation in the first place, couldn’t he waive it temporarily?

So, they’re both super embarrassed about the whole situation, and try to sneak out of town as quickly as possible to go pick up Marlowe. Unfortunately, they run into Daisy, who makes them explain the whole thing, and she swears not to tell Uncle Jesse.  They also are noticed by this old guy, who doesn’t say anything, he just sort of mugs for the camera. I don’t know why he’s even there, or why they felt the need to zoom in on him.
The boys arrive in Springville, which looks suspiciously like a slightly redressed Hazzard County.  The sheriff thre informs them that they’re taking Marlowe, which Rosco neglected to tell them, and they’re being assisted by one Officer Price, the best sharpshooter that the Springville PD has to offer!
So they all head off, only to be tailed by Marlowe’s goons, who are trying to use the change of venue to break their boss out. This leads to a car chase that lasts for literally three and a half minutes (I timed it), during which some guy repeatedly tries in vain to get out of his truck, only to have the cars speed by him, as they are doing a Daisy-style chase by driving around in a circle. Why he doesn’t just get out the passenger’s side door escapes me.
Back at Springville PD, the cops pull the real Officer Price out of the trunk of a car, which makes one wonder who the fuck that other lady is.
So, the real Officer Price explains that the Stella Parton knocked her out and stole her uniform and transfer papers, while Chief Lacey tries to get ahold of the Dukes, who are unresponsive. They have abandoned their cop car in favor of the Ecto-1, to try and escape the notice of Marlowe’s men.

The car breaks down, and while the boys are outside fixing it, Stella tells Marlowe that she’ll break him loose when the time is right. Meanwhile, back in Hazzard, boss and Rosco lay out plans to turn Hazzard into a tourist town for when Marlowe’s trial commences. Daisy has told Jesse what was going on, and he is furious that they’d send the boys unarmed, so he tears Boss and Rosco a new one. Rosco gets a phone call telling him about the whole fake Officer Price thing, and Jesse resolves to go help Rosco and Enos save them, finally letting Daisy come along. Cooter also tags along, as what else does he have to do?

Bo and Luke and Marlowe and Stella Parton take off on foot after being chased by the gunmen, and eventually come up on the girls who took their clothes and money from the beginning of the episode. Seems they’ve just fucked over the Springville equivalent of Bo and Luke, so the boys take their car as retribution.

They see their newly acquired car is out of gas, and stop into the local ghost town of Possum Hollow to get gas. Why would there be a gas station in a ghost town? They get to the gas station and the guy won’t fill them up without an account, so they go inside to fill out the paperwork. While they’re doing so, Stella Parton lets Marlowe go, and then, once he gets a little ways, confronts him. She’s the daughter of one of Marlowe’s former associates that Marlowe framed, and wants revenge!

Everyone else arrives on the scene as the boys are in the midst of a rooftop shootout with Marlowe, who then jumps down and takes thee boys’ car. They shoot out the radiator with an arrow, and Marlowe’s men take Stella Parton and drive off, at which point Bo stops them with a dynamite arrow. The criminals are arrested and taken back to Hazzard. Marlowe gets another change of venue, so Boss doesn’t get to build his tourist town, and Bo and Luke go boar hunting. Somehow, Stella Parton doesn’t get in trouble for knocking out Officer Price.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Season 1, Episode 9: “Limo One is Missing” – Originally Aired 4-6-1979

In which Boss Hogg is cheated out of a call from the President of the United States of America...

We open with a limousine driving through Hazzard, and the Balladeer tells us that it’s the official limo of the President of the United States, who apparently sends the car ahead to wherever he’s going to be (I assume Atlanta, as why else would they be in Hazzard). They stop for gas at the Boar’s Nest, because where else are they going to go?

Inside, they order coffee and hit on Daisy, while Bo tries to get rid of a bad case of hiccups. This minor plotline runs through the episode, presumably to give John Schneider something to do. There was a similar plotline in last week’s show, where he had a pair of uncomfortable boots that finally split open on him. What’s next?
The boys head outside with Cooter and Cooter proceeds to steal the limo. Only then do the Secret Service guys realize they didn’t leave anyone watching the car. They rush off, fearing the wrath of the president, as there is nothing like an upset toddler.
Bo and Luke are driving home, and see Cooter in the limo, pursued by the Secret Service guys. They, not wanting to get in the president’s good graces and maybe get off probation, fuck around and end up getting the Servicemen tossed in the lake.
Back at the farm, Jesse chews the boys out over the whole thing, and rightfully so! He points out that they are now accessories to Cooter’s felony, and tells them to help Cooter make sure the Feds find the car, and tells Bo to get rid of his goddamned hiccups!
Cooter reveals to the boys that the limo is currently in the Dukes’ barn, as he had to push it there when it ran out of gas. He says he’s sorry, but he doesn’t seem very sorry, more like “yeah, I stole the car, what of it? I wonder what’s on the TV?” They resolve to try and dump the car somewhere, but just then, Enos pulls up asking to search the barn. Luke knocks on the barn door, so Bo and Cooter push it out the back door and Enos doesn’t see the car.
The boys and Cooter put a gallon of gas into the limo and take off to go dump it. They are pursued by Rosco, but manage to evade him. Boss is not pleased, as he seems convinced that the president will be so thankful that he will not only receive a phone call, but that the president will call on him personally to deliver thanks. I think Boss is delusional.

The limo runs out of gas, so they stow it in a barn and head back to the farm to get more gas, so they can leave it at a certain spot, and Jesse will call it in for the FBI to pick it up. I don’t see why it needs to be driven any farther, or why they even bothered to stash it. Couldn’t they have just left it where it was when they ran out of gas and told the FBI, “Yeah, it’s over on Dog Dick Hollow Road,” and that would be that? I guess not, as we still have half the episode to go.
Enos spies on Daisy, who was told to distract him, and she leads him off on a chase, giving the boys time to do what they have to do.
Meanwhile, the boys come upon what appears to be a dead body sprawled out of a car in the middle of the road. They pull over and check it out, only to discover the guy’s still alive, and has a gun! His partner appears, and they steal the limo. Cooter says “Oh well! We got rid of it!” because he doesn’t care about anyone but himself. Luke point out that Uncle Jesse is still calling the whereabouts in, and therefore is going to be in a bunch of trouble. They run off on foot and are picked up by Daisy.
They head off down a back road and see Boss Hogg’s Cadillac waiting to get into a gate in the middle of the woods. They follow him in and find the guys that stole the limo, who have a chop shop back there, which is secretly run by Boss (gasp!). They contact Jesse and have him bring some bow and arrows, as they are going to play another exciting game of Collateral Damage!
Daisy distracts the guard by flashing her ass at him, letting Bo and Luke slip right by and head inside. The guard won’t come outside, so she walks off and pretends to get assaulted. Only then does he come to her aid, leaving the gate unwatched.
Bo and Luke get inside the upper level and fire some dynamite arrows into the chop shop, causing yet another giant explosion. They then jump down to the floor, affording us a nice view of their stuntmen.
They then take the limo back to wherever they were going to drop it off, and Jesse gets a phone call from the president thanking him for everything. How nice!
Tune in next week when John Schneider, sick of having plotlines involving hiccups and sore feet, writes his OWN damn show: