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The Dukes Rock!
on August 5, 2008
This over-the-top 1979-80 Season was the first full season of the DUKES OF HAZZARD throughout it's whole 7-year run on CBS, since the Dukes didn't premiere on CBS for the first time until the Winter of 1979.
The DUKES OF HAZZARD's 2nd Season wasn't too shabby and was more upgraded with more action in it than the 1st Season was, although I don't think it was as great nor as exciting as the 1st Season or even 3rd Season was, due to the fact that James Best(Rosco)kept having different people sub for him as interim sheriff's like Dick Sargeant did as interim Hazzard County Sheriff(Grady Byrd) in the "Jude Emery" episode and like Boss Hogg's nephew Hughie Hogg(Jeffrey Altman) did in one episode in this season.
Therefore, you could say the Second Season of the Dukes was somewhat of a weak season for Rosco even though this was an over-the-top season for this series since Rosco seemed to come out a lot less in this season a lot less than he did in all the other seasons, but I really missed Deputy Enos Strate(Sonny Shroyer) when he was replaced by Boss Hogg's clutzy cousin Deputy Cletus Hogg(Rick Hurst) in the Third Season due to Sonny Shroyer starting his short-lived spin-off series ENOS which fizzled after only one season while leaving us to mourn the loss of Enos in the Dukes 3rd and 4th Seasons with Cletus as Rosco's fellow deputy in Enos's absence, which was another reason why this was my 2nd favorite season of this show throughout the DUKES OF HAZZARDs whole 1979-85 run on CBS.
In fact I like most other people always preferred Enos to Cletus along with the fact that Cletus was a bigger doofus than Enos ever was, which was another reason why I loved the Second Season of the Dukes and why I was so bummed out that they had kept Cletus for 2 consequetive seasons in a row throughout the DUKES OF HAZZARD's whole 3rd and 4th Seasons, but I was so glad that they ended up bringing Enos back to the show in the Dukes 5th Season, even though Cletus was still on the show during the first few episodes of the 1982-83 Season, since it was preferable to see both Enos and Cletus working together as partners than it was to have Cletus and no Enos, especially as Rosco's fellow deputy.
Overall, you could say that in the First Season of the DUKES OF HAZZARD, this show was kind of starting to crawl and then by the Second Season is when this show started to walk among other things, since the stunts with the General Lee were more upgraded than they were in the First Season, despite the fact that the DUKES OF HAZZARD was already an instant smash when it was in its First Season on CBS along with the fact that the Dukes 1st Season is still my very favorite season to this very day throughout its whole 7-year run on CBS.
This 1979-1980 Season of the Dukes also takes me all the way back to memory lane from the Fall of 1979 thru the Summer of 1980 when it was part of CBS's Friday night line-up starting with the INCREDIBLE HULK at 8PM followed by the DUKES OF HAZZARD at 9PM which was on at the same time-slot as the ROCKFORD FILES on CBS's rival network NBC, and then CBS's Friday night line-up was topped off by DALLAS at 10PM.
As a matter of fact, that reminds me that the Dukes 2nd Season was also the season when the DUKES OF HAZZARD ended up overshadowing the ROCKFORD FILES too since Rockford started getting K.O.'d by the Dukes in the ratings when the DUKES OF HAZZARD made it's debut on CBS on Friday January 26, 1979 which partly led to NBC cancelling the ROCKFORD FILES all of the sudden in January of 1980, which was a year later after the DUKES OF HAZZARD premiered on NBC's rival network CBS along with the fact that the Dukes were soaring big time in the ratings during this season on CBS too while Rockford was gradually weakening in the ratings despite the fact that the main reason for the ROCKFORD FILES sudden cancellation in the middle of its 6th Season wasn't due to low ratings in general, but was unfortunately due to James Garner(Rockford) having back & knee problems.
In addition to that, the DUKES OF HAZZARD was also blamed for the cancellation of the ROCKFORD FILES in the Winter of 1980 was because for one thing, Rockford(James Garner) was outclassed by Bo(John Schneider) & Luke(Tom Wopat), since Bo & Luke Duke were like eyecandy along with the fact that Bo & Luke were a lot younger, spunkier, & better looking than Rockford was, especially since James Garner was already an old-fart while John Schneider and Tom Wopat were still just young-farts just getting started and famous in their showbiz careers.
For another, The General Lee had outclassed Rockford's bronze Firebird, especially the General Lee was the hottest car on Friday nights at the time.
For another, the DUKES OF HAZZARD was a lot more hilarious than the ROCKFORD FILES was.
For another, the car chases and stunts on the DUKES OF HAZZARD were a lot more impressive and amusing than they were on the ROCKFORD FILES, especially since the Dukes were still in their honeymoon phase of this show in this season while the honeymoon phase on Rockford was already long gone.
Therefore you could say that the Dukes were killing Rockford & practically beating him to a pulp and that the Duke boys were peaking while Rockford was creaking along with the fact that James Garner had to quit doing the ROCKFORD FILES when age caught up with Garner while Bo(John Schneider) & Luke(Tom Wopat) were still very young with lots of years and energy left in them, unlike Garner who was getting tired and ran out of steam playing his often festidious private investigator(Jim Rockford)character after 5 1/2 years.
It was also interesting seeing guest stars like
*John Shearin in the "Jude Emery" episode before his co-starring days as Hunter & McCall's streetwise fellow officer(Lt. Ambrose Finn) on the police drama HUNTER
*Peter Brown in the "Officer Daisy Duke" episode before his co-starring days on THE BOLD & THE BEAUTIFUL and YOUNG & THE RESTLESS
*Gerald McRaney in "The Hazzard Connection" episode before his co-starring days as the short-tempered gonzo private-eye(Rick Simon) on the detective drama SIMON & SIMON and before his co-starring days on MAJOR DAD, TOUCHED BY AN ANGEL, and PROMISED LAND.
*Morgan Woodward in "The Mason Dixon Girls" episode during his co-starring days on DALLAS
*Lance LeGault in "The Runaway" episode before his co-starring days as the bitter Army nemesis(Col. Decker)on THE A-TEAM and Magnum's ornery nemesis(Col. Greene)on the detective drama MAGNUM, PI
*Loretta Lynn's cameo appearance in the "Find Loretta Lynn" episode
*The Oak Ridge Boys doing a cameo appearance in the "Granny Annie" episode
*Dick Sargent as the interim Hazzard County Sheriff Grady Byrd in the "Officer Daisey Duke", "Jude Emery" episodes after his co-starring days as the second Darren Stephens on BEWITCHED
*Pat Buttram in the "Days Of Shine & Roses" episode after his co-starring days as the dishonest, oily salesman(Mr. Haney) on GREEN ACRES
*Jeannie Wilson in the "Treasure Of Hazzard" episode before her co-starring days as Rick & AJ's attorney friend(Janet Fowler) on the detective drama SIMON & SIMON and before her co-starring days as Rachel Adams on the short-lived STREET HAWK
Something else I found intriguing about this 1979-1980 Season of the Dukes is not only did Gerald McRaney make a guest starring apperance on this show in "The Hazzard Connection" episode, but it just so happens that Gerald McRaney had auditoned for the role of Luke Duke back in the Fall of 1978, but got rejected since the producers decided to give it to Tom Wopat.
The Dukes Second Season also takes me all the way back to memory lane when CBS's motto was "Looking Good", which was their slogan on CBS from the Fall of 1979 thru the Summer of 1980, which also takes me all the way back to memory lane to my childhood years of living in the Imperial Valley since I was living in my hometown(El Centro, CA) at the time where I grew up at.
Another thing that rocks about this Dukes DVD is you get to see them complete & uncut without all those additional commercial disruptions you'd get watching this show in reruns on TV Land, CMT, and TNN.