24 November 2000 | richardmaitla82
That's just a little bit more than the law will allow....
'Just some good ol boys, never meanin' no harm - they been in trouble with the law since the day they wuz born...' So began the classiest of all hicksville county roadchase shows, where each week those loveable two modern day Robin Hoods, Beaureguard "Bo" Duke [John Schneider] & Lucas K. "Luke" Duke [Tom Wopat] would pit themselves against some ner do wells, probably from Chickasaw county, and inadvertently manage to rub Sherriff Roscoe P Coltrane [James Best] up the wrong way to boot. Cue slo-mo shots of an airborne General Lee [1969 Dodge Charger]flying down leaf littered byways with Roscoe's cruiser once again in hot pursuit.
This was a fantastic early Saturday evening kid's classic, mainly because of the shows hugely appealing basic premise -Bo & Luke are on probation for running moonshine, and they have the fastest motor in the county. So they're basically outlaws with hearts of gold who never really do anything particularly anti-social, they're just fighting the system that's run by corrupt town official Jefferson Davis Hogg, AKA "Boss Hogg" [Sorrell Booke]. He's fat, he's greedy and he wears a ridiculous white suit. And to make matters worse he's always trying to aquire the deeds to the Duke's farm, managed by his long time rival Uncle Jesse [Denver Pyle]with the help of Daisy Duke [Catherine Bach]. Show me a ten year old boy who, in 1981, didn't have a major Daisy Duke fixation - I mean, her legs were insured for two million dollars. Crikey.
So our renegade heroes would have at least a couple of car chases each week, they'd hang out with Cooter in the garage, take the p**s out of the educationally sub-normal deputy Cletus, stop some really bad guys from doing something dastardly and probably blow up a barn or something with a stick of dynamite fired from a bow and arrow. And that's just before lunch.
It all went pretty badly wrong in about '83 when the the boys were replaced by some pseudo Duke-lite wannabes named Coy and Vance. Their names alone speak volumes. This kind of signalled the beginning of the end, and I'm not sure the show ever quite recovered. Still, it's better not to dwell on this shamefully duff period in the show's history, instead it's better to fondly remember the Dukes in all their glory - flagrantly disregarding the law, and only ever climbing into and out of the General Lee via the windows, as the doors were soldered shut. Yee-haww.