Like many pop culture milestones it’s hard to believe it’s been 35 years since the Dukes of Hazzard premiered on CBS. Doing the math that means one thing; we Gen X’ers are getting old! But we did have a lot of fun.
I was in kindergarten when the show premiered and quite frankly I had no interest in it until two things happened: 1. The other kids started talking about it and 2. I saw the Mego figures that were created. My six year old mind rationed that it must be worth watching if it was worth of a series of action figures.
For a six year old I was pretty sharp, perhaps a little limited in my world scope but I knew fun when I saw it and this show had tons of it! Drinking, fighting, tires that squealed on dirt roads AND the occasional guest appearance by the Oak Ridge Boys! What, no mention of the “Daisy Dukes”? Dude, I was six. I found Flash far more eye catching. Perverts.
My fondest memory of the show of course was the Mego action figures. Bo, Luke and Boss (No, Daisy? Dude, she was a girl and as such, a doll. Duh.)
The only thing that sucked however was the giant whole in this product line was the General Lee. How could this possibly have happened? For whatever reason it did and it sucked. Except of course for one saving grace; me having the best Dad ever!
My Dad, while not a toy guy and not a huge fan of the show he also saw this glaring hole in playtime, ( he did however like the Oak Ridge Boys and Waylon Jennings though, so that eased the pain of watching the weekly broadcast with me). To remedy this, one Friday evening he came home with a big box under his arm that featured a picture of the General Lee on it. Excitement erupted from me as I dashed down the hall to get Bo and Luke and show then their new ride. Upon returning however I was surprised to find that actually Dad had to put it together first. That’s right, the only fix for the situation was the big 1/16 scale mpc model kit. But by golly, that was good enough for me. Even if they didn’t fit in it.
So for the rest of my Dukes of Hazzard playtime and adventures Bo and Luke hung out the windows of the General Lee. And it was perfect. Especially since Boss didn’t have his car to chase ’em and Roscoe was no where to be seen. For modern audiences however that could be a little more problematic as Figures Toy Company has done Mego never did and really screwed up on in not doing FTC has made a Roscoe! I won’t go into the other balls that were dropped by Mego in regards to not releasing an 8 inch version of Uncle Jesse, Enos and Cooter. But then again it may be best. Save a little embarrassment from the memories of all the adults laughing at you as a child, running through the house screaming; “I’m gonna go play with my Cooter!” or “Has anyone seen my Enos? I’ve lost my Enos!” To which of course YOUR Uncle Jesse says; “Then stay out of Vegas and for the love of all things holy, leave your Cooter alone before you go blind.”
Today which marks the 35th anniversary of the show is also significant in that it marks the day that the all new 12 inch Dukes of Hazzard Mego Style figures begin shipping. The 8 inchers are still set to be released in March. The series one Dallas 12 inch figure of JR Ewing is also going but I personally could care less. In its heyday I was a wee lad of elementary age who could care less about a dysfunctional family of Texas oil tycoons however I was a little troubled when I learned that Major Nelson had been shot. I always hoped Jeanie would pop out and blink the culprits into oblivion. Dude, I was six. Cut me some slack.
Now, Go Play! – Jim 01/27/14