|Index||6 reviews in total|
In the craze of truck-driver shows that came out in the '70s, none had a
more original premise than that of "B.J. and the Bear", with its mixture of
good ol' boy farce, action, romance and, of course, a monkey!
The plot stayed more or less the same all through the show's run: B.J. McKay (Evigan) worked as a truck driver who constantly dealt with inept lawmen (namely Akins' Sheriff Lobo, who got his own series!), crooked truckers and, usually, bevy after bevy of beautiful women in tight clothes. Who said this show was sexist?
The women worked so well, in fact, that they stayed on for the long haul as "The Seven Lady Truckers" who worked with B.J. and gave the show a big boost from the male part of the TV-viewing public. And who could blame them: women the likes of Landers (YIKES!), Holleran, Julia, McCullough and the Brough sisters were definitely worth tuning in for every week.
And the series, helmed by TV maestro Glen Larson (also of "The Fall Guy" fame) knew what worked in a series and kept action, tough guys and beautiful women in each episode. Oh yeah, and the monkey too. Can't forget him.
All in all, a great reminder of the glory that was truck driving, the heroism that was "B.J." and the monkey that was "the Bear".
Eight stars for "B.J. and the Bear" - keep on truckin'!
"BJ & The Bear" was one of my all time favorite shows as a young teen. Greg Evigan was great, and of course lets not forget Sam the chimp who played "The Bear". BJ was always a step ahead of the bungling lawmen, played most briliantly by Calude Akins (Sheriff Elroy P. Lobo) and Mills Watson (Deputy Perkins). I hated to see the show go off the air and wish they would do a TV-movie again or something. It would be nice to see that big red and white Kenworth on the road again.
Synopsis: A trucker and his pet monkey travel the highways of
America,getting into various adventures and misadventures along the way
within the watchful eyes of the very pesky and law-abinding county
"B.J. and The Bear",came out during the craze of the truck-driver shows that exploded during the mid-1970's and this show was a mixture of several formulas:It was part "Smokey and the Bandit",part "Every Which Way But Loose",part "Dukes Of Hazzard",and part "Convoy",with a mixture of three-fourths of "Hee Haw" for good measure. This show had a original premise since it was a mixture of the good ol'boy farce,romance with lots and lots of gorgeous girls,non-stop action,and of course,his pet monkey who was the sidekick and comical relief. The plot basically stayed the same during the show's run which lasted only two seasons. The show features B.J. McKay(Greg Evigan) who worked as a truck driver who constantly dealt with inept lawmen Sheriff Lobo(played Claude Akins who ineventually went on to get his own series,"The Misadventures Of Sheriff Lobo"),his lame deputy(Mills Watson) who were one step ahead of B.J. who would lose them in several of the episodes. Along the way,B.J. dealt with crooked truckers,outlandish hillbillies,and usually lots of beautiful women in tight clothes,which to some extent that this show was very sexist since the women worked so well especially when one of them were the object of every man's fantasy each week,who remembers the Borough sisters,Candi and Randi? How remembers Judy Landers?
The series was helmed by the TV maestro Glen Larson(of "It Takes A Thief","Alias Smith and Jones","Switch","Quincy,M.E.", "Battlestar Galactica","Buck Rogers","Mangum,PI","Murder,She Wrote","The Fall Guy")knew what basically worked in a series and kept the action going strong along with the tough guys and beautiful women in each episode,along with the monkey for comical support. However,in some syndicated markets
"B.J. and The Bear",would run alongside "The Misadventures of Sheriff Lobo" on a weekly basis,and during the series original run from 1978-81 it was shown at least once with one series coming after the other.
I was going to high school in Ukiah, California when this show was on the air, and one week they came to the town to film at the fairgrounds in that town. We didn't see much filming up there, so this was quite a lot of excitement for us! They filmed mostly at the fairgrounds, and a lot of students (including myself) cut school to go and watch. They filmed some shots with onlookers in the background so it was even more exciting for us to think we would be on TV! But my best memory of this time was one day as Greg Evigan was signing autographs (I had already got one from him the day before) and my mother and I were standing off to the side and talking about whether or not they may shoot somewhere else in town after they were finished at the fairgrounds. And Mr. Evigan talked to us, as he was signing an autograph for someone, joking that sometimes he was the last to know where they would be going next. I was about 16 and to have a TV star talking to me was really a big deal. And he was nice to all the fans who were there, and to this day when I see him on TV I think of him as this nice guy who gave a lot of people in a small town a good image of famous people.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
NO SPOILERS! I've ONLY SEEN SELECT EPISODES!!
I'm only 12 but this was my dad's favorite show. I watch BJ and the bear on YouTube all the time. BJ was so cool and it makes me mad and sad that this show won't come out on DVD. There used to be a TV channel out of Pittsburgh that used to show classic TV but they never showed BJ and the Bear. Now they've changed to like a OLD show channel. I'm talking Mary Tyler Moore (which is a good show) and M*A*S*H (love it!!). Going back to BJ. I wish I could find this show on DVD. And what's bad is that on YouTube not all of season 3 is on there. But I give the show a 25 on a scale of one to ten.
CLASSIC TV RULEZ!!!
Many,many,many,many years ago,NBC was proverbially a last place--fourth among the big three it seemed--network and it was being buoyed by arguably uber-lightweight fare such as "Real People","Sheriff Lobo" and this show,a frothy action/comedy/adventure show involving a cheerfully unweighted handsome trucker(Greg Evigan) and his traveling companion,an adult male chimpanzee named Bear. This show had a spirited but short run on the pre-TArtikoff,post-Silverman(Fred Silverman) Peacock network,paired often with the aforementioned "LObo",with their plots sometimes spilling over into each other. I recall that a fair amount of hot,giggly,jiggly would-be "Hee HAw" Honeys would pop in as either guests or recurring characters(among them,long time co-symbol of classic blonde hotness,Judy LAnders),outside of that and pre-requisite car/truck chases and crashes,I probably only recall a small amount of stuff about this show now.But almost thirty years ago,my family and I watched these shows pretty faithfully,for what reason I'm not entirely sure. I'd actually be curious to see these shows again to see how quaint and charming they may or may not be now. I figure that this it was harmless fun back in the tightly censored television of the late '70s/early '80s,it must seem REALLY gentle by today's viewing standards.
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