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Although we don't get this show in India, I managed to get a couple of episodes from the net. Let me tell you, this is a fine show. It deals with an upright, honest and sometimes down-on-his-luck propane salesman from Texas, Hank Hill and his quirky family and friends. But what makes this show different is that it does not have a frantic pace at which things take place. Although, I thoroughly enjoy 'The Simpsons' and 'Family Guy', yet these shows have everything happening at a breakneck speed; the gags, the animation, etc. King of the Hill somehow has a certain calmness to it. It deals with real people (5 fingers, not 4) and fairly real situations. It always puts a smile on my face and it's nice to hear Hank's pearls of wisdom. It was a pleasant surprise coming from the creators of Beavis and Butthead. I definitely recommend this show. Two thumbs up.
Hank Hill, the hero of "King of the Hill", is the last of a dying breed
in many ways. He's reasonably honest, reasonably moral, he works hard,
he believes in American craftsmanship, and he loves his dysfunctional
family. And he's a conservative. He's a bit repressed emotionally
though; annoying him or getting him mad is easy, but expressing those
tender emotions like love is hard for him, due mostly to his upbringing
by his dysfunctional and tyrannical dad Cotton, an obnoxious old man
who lost his shins in WWII and somehow had his feet sewn into his
knees. Hank's conservative point of view doesn't always make him easily
sympathetic in some cases though.
Hank's wife, Peggy, is a warm, loving and caring person at heart, but she's also a megalomaniac. Peggy is an over confident and under educated substitute Spanish teacher, quite rare in this day and age of "Women power". Peggy always strives to do her best, which isn't bad in and of itself, but her pride tends to exude control over her decisions which leads to Peggy making a fool of herself.
Hank's son Bobby is a dense, effeminate couch potato who's watched too much TV. Full of under developed desires and longings, Bobby is easily impressionable and easily gets caught up in fads when they shove their message in his face hard enough. As Hank puts it, "That boy ain't right." His initial goal is to be a stand up comic, but he later decides to be a magician. His friends are Connie (later a girlfriend) and Joseph.
Hank also has a live in niece, Luanne. She was raised to be trailer trash by her dysfunctional parents (her dad is Peggy's brother) and initially longs to be a Hollywood hair stylist. Like Bobby, Luanne can be easily caught up in fads.
Hanks friends are Dale, Bill and Boomhauer. Boomhauer is a motor mouth Lothario whom no one can really understand. Bill is a faded high school football star turned army barber who's wife has left him and appears to have a thing for Peggy. Dale is an exterminator and conspiracy theorist who's so wrapped up in his conspiracy theories that he would never suspect that his newscaster wife Nancy is having an affair with her Indian therapist John Redcorn and/or that his son Joseph is actually the son of John Redcorn and Nancy. The only other person who doesn't seem to notice this is Joseph himself. Hank's neighbor is an Asian man named Kahn (Connie's dad), the classic feuding neighbor scenario.
Despite the many frustrations Hank endures and the compromises he has to make, he trudges on, clinging to his ideals and doing the best he can.
Part of why this is still better than the Simpsons is that unlike the Simpsons, this show doesn't rely on anyone character to supply all the laughs and it doesn't rely on larger than life animated sight gags for all the laughs either. Hank is also probably the only TV Dad to have the dignity of being right anymore. And unlike Homer, even when Hank's efforts get ridiculous they're never as outlandish and moronic as the former's.
After "Beavis & Butthead" (which I loved), I was really surprised what an
affectionate portrait Mike Judge put together. I know well how ripe Texas
rednecks are for satire (being a native Texan), though the target is SO
easy, it would get a bit tiresome to watch it week after week for years.
Hank Hill turned out to be a realistic redneck: worshipful of tradition,
fearful of variety and progress, but not really quite as conservative as he
thinks he is. My parents are very much like that, too. As I've watched the
series, I've been tickled by different characters at different times: first
Bobby (almost zen in his bizarre but internally consistent individuality),
then Hank's buddies (where the sillier satire comes in), then Hank himself
(eternally thwarted by life, but always strong and loving in the end).
Lately, Peggy's outrageous ego has me laughing the most. Since this is more
like a regular sitcom than "The Simpsons" is, I doubt it will hold up as
long, but for now I love it. "King of the Hill" may be the most realistic
portrait of Texans ever seen on TV.
In response to previous complaints:
1. While Texas does have many citizens who are members of ethnic minorities,
the area of the state in which the show is set (NW Texas--best reckoning has
Arlen based on Abilene or San Angelo) has very few of them.
2. If one finds the show boring, one need only change the
I just love this show! It took me a while to figure it out, but now I'm
addicted to it.
The characters are brilliant and a lot of the jokes are unexpectedly hilarious. This is one of the few shows that can take me by surprise with it's genius humor. Most of the characters are funny, but Peggy cracks me up with almost everything she says. She has an unshakable self-confidence and she'll sacrifice anybody (including her son) to win her silly little battles.
My favorite episode is the one in which the Hills go to Japan. Classic!
I hope "King of the Hill" sticks around for a long time.
Very excellent prime-time animated series from the highly creative and brilliant mind of Mike Judge ("Beavis and Butt-Head" fame). "King of the Hill" deals with a small town Texas family and their wild misadventures. Shades of "The Flintstones" and "The Simpsons" here as the show has vivid characters galore. Propane salesman Hank Hill and substitute Spanish teacher wife Peggy rear awkward adolescent son Bobby in the fictional town of Arlen. Hank has a wild World War II hero for a dad (Cotton), a niece who lives with him and his family (Luanne), a far from perfect boss (Buck Strickland), a slew of childhood friends (conspiracy theorist/bug exterminator Dale, lonely divorcée/Army barber Bill and often verbally incoherent swinging bachelor Boomhauer) and even Laotian neighbors. These vivid characters create a wholesome landscape of small-town Texas community life that accurately shows how lives intertwine and interweave. The situations in the series are hilarious and yet many times life-affirming as the show's brain trust do their best to have messages that center around family, friends and personal sacrifice. The running gags (Dale's wife having a torrid affair with a Native American new age healer who actually conceived her only son while her husband has no earthly clue) and the constant humanity and vulnerability of the featured characters make "King of the Hill" a real sight to behold. The art and science of television production combine to make a truly outstanding and intelligent sitcom for most all age groups. 5 stars out of 5.
King of the Hill is about Hank Hill, a proud propane salesman in Texas. When he isn't at work, he spends time with his family and three friends. The entire cast is great, and the writing is top notch. The show is funny without going over the top. In fact, this is probably quite a realistic portrayal of life in Texas. One worth watching.
Now that Mike Judge has made a fortune off Beavis and Butthead, he gets to do what he wants - thankfully his creativity extends far beyond the crude (though very funny) humor of his previous series. KOTH has its share of humor, but I think it shines because of the perceptiveness it displays about life. The series is full of very touching moments between Hank and his son Bobby, which rang very true with me, since I am an only child (Hank has a narrow urethra, so Bobby is his only offspring). All in all, this is a great show to watch, and I hope it stays on the air for a long time.
King of the Hill is probably one of the best shows that you're not watching. A very droll sense of humor abounds in this show about a propane salesman and his family. Along with extolling the virtues of propane and propane accessories, Hank reveres everything and anything Texan: steak, the Cowboys, Tom Landrey. Hank navigates life with the help of his Boggle playing wife Peggy, who is a substitute Spanish teacher. And then there's Bobby Hill, Hank's only son because of a narrow ureathra. The supporting players add color to this mix. You have paranoid, whacko Dale, lonesome Bill and Boomhauer. Then there's Hank's niece LuAnn, his neighbor Khan, and his father, Cotton. Throw them all together and you have a show that is worth watching. One could argue that this show could be done as live action, I think it benefits from being animated. Dream sequences are easier to pull off, and some of the more oddball things that Dale and Cotton Hill do could only be done on an animated show. Smartly written and full of humor.
This show chronicles the animated everyday adventures of Hank Hill, his
wife Peggy, son Bobby, and niece Luanne. Also featuring Hank's friends,
the sad Bill, the paranoid Dale, and the plain indecipherable
Boomhauer, as well as Hank's father and foreign neighbors every now and
then. The antithesis of all the "popular" cartoons of the day (the
Simpsons, Family guy, etcetera), and all the better for it. This
cartoon is well-voiced, heartfelt, and is great family fare. Oh yeah,
and it's frequently hilarious as well. Some blast this show for being a
tad more conservative then other's of it's ilk. I say so what? It's
refreshing to have one counter-point in a whole sea of one
viewpoint.And with the show ending it's 9 year run this season, it
still hasn't outstayed it's welcome like some others *cough* Simpsons
*cough* And I for one will miss spending time Sunday nights with the
Hill family (on the times it WASN'T preempted by Football, of course)
My Grade: A
Season 1 DVD Extras: Introductions by Hank Hill (on Disk1), Bobby on 2, and Dale on the third; Commentar on the Pilot and "Hank's Unmentionable Problem" by Co-creator Greg Daniels, "Order of the Straight Arrow" & "the Company Man" by Director Klay Hall, "Westie Side Story" & "King of the Ant Hill" with ' Dale Gribble' and 'Bill Dauterive' , "Shins of the Father" & "Plastic White Female" with 'Peggy' and 'Bobby'; a 24 minute Making of; 55 Deleted scenes & Animatics; Do's & Don'ts of animation; Meet the Hills (info & sketches); Barenakid Ladies Music Video; & 13 promos
2 Easter Eggs: On the first disk, go to 'Special Features', then to 'Commentaries' and highlight the lawn-tractor for "Mowing Lesson with Charlie" a short on lawnmower safety; On the third disk, in the main menu click on the map for Hank Hill thanking the people who worked on Season 1
I became addicted to KOTH at age eight. I was sitting on my dad's lap,
drinking grapefruit juice and club soda and trying to shake off my
migraine. Finally, after a lot of moaning on my part, Dad agreed to
stop watching "Law & Order". He put in a tape of eight KOTHs and said
that we could watch this instead.
I'm thirteen now, and I'm still hooked. The characters are memorable and extremely realistic. Being born and bred in the most ultra-prepster, WASP-ish town possible (with, ironically, liberal, agnostic parents) really made me appreciate Peggy and Bobby, because I interact with them daily, as well as Dale, Bill, and Hank (although I have a huge soft spot for Kahn, Minh, and Connie, as well as Kahn's mother. I have a friend how is the very epitome of Connie and with a Dad whose bigoted, holier-then-thou obnoxiousness makes Kahn look like Saint Pete.) The writing is more subtle then "The Simpsons", which was my earlier love and which now takes the back seat. Everything in this show could really happen, and often does. Even the bit-out-there affair of Nancy and John Redcorn isn't that far-fetched (with a husband as wacked an unsexy as Dale, what blonde D-cupped weather girl wouldn't go for a tall-dark-'n'-handsome Native American with sculpted biceps, perfect hair, and a New age healing center who gives massages for a living? Hmmm?) Some people may argue that this show is racist, bigoted, cynical, and Conservative. I was raised in a home where debates about original sin were allowed over vegan dinners and a dart board with Bill O'Reilly's image hangs on our dryer. I come from a mixed-race marriage with a bisexual uncle. And yet I can say that this show in fact tackles such important issues with dry wit and style. Those who act as though they are above Hank's mild "discomforts" with, for instance, gays and lesbians, are at least as hypocritical as Kahn. As for the Conservative argument, I think the show makes fun of Republicans as well, if not more, then left-wingers. Who doesn't laugh at Hank's utter devotion to his party? The argument that this show only has Anglo-Saxons in it is the most asinine I have ever heard. Does the beloved "Family Guy" in it's main cast list a Native American, several Hispanics, and an entire Laotian family? Sure, "The Simpsons" has more black people, but virtually no Asians and not a Hispanic in sight. Besides, Arlen is portrayed as remarkably diverse for a small Northern Texas community. Heck, i'm surprised it isn't pure Caucasian.
10/10. Brilliant writing, subtle but liberal amounts of dry humor, and a dose of humorous reality-blended satire. Curl up on a laid-back armchair, turn up the heat, and immerse yourself in "King of the Hill."
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