Friday, April 27, 2012

Rexburg is the New Arlen and Mike and Carly Are the New Hank and Peggy Hill

I've been really obsessed with "King of the Hill" lately. I'm re-watching all of the episodes on Netflix, and you should, too. I may even like it better than the Simpsons, and that is saying something. Not only is it so dang hilarious, it's also such an interesting commentary on the American family.  Here's why I love it:

1. Hank Hill
So, on the surface he's just some redneck, right? I mean the show totally plays up that stereotype. But beneath that exterior, Hank is a pretty enlightened man.  I love the way he accepts his son Bobby, even though he is obviously somewhat baffled and a little disappointed by him. I love the way he respects Peggy, and we get to watch him grapple with the redneckiness of his upbringing (we'll get to his shinless father later) and his desire to do the right thing by his wife. I'm on episode 68, and I've learned that Hank Hill will always do the right thing, even if he does the wrong thing first. He makes it right. By about episode 12 I realized that I married Hank Hill. There are a few differences (Mike hates football), but for all intents and purposes, Mike=Hank.

2. If Mike=Hank, then I guess that means Carly=Peggy--I WISH!
Peggy is my new hero.  Like Hank, she is a stereotype on the outside, but much more complex and interesting beneath the surface.  I envy her self-assurance. I find her naivete refreshing and, ahem, easy to relate to. She is such a good feminist. In the episode where she quits working (and jeopardizes her substitute teach of the year award chances) because they think Bobby has ADHD (he just ate too much sugar), and she gets caught up in playing guitar with a bunch of other feminists who just hate men (stereotype), I think it's awesome that she sings about her love for Hank at the very end. She doesn't let herself get pushed around by those stereotypical "feminazis." She chooses love.  And she does a mean Fat Albert impression (hey, hey, hey!) Unlike Hank, Peggy can't always be counted on to do the selfless thing. Again, this is easy for me to relate to. Maybe I am a little like Peggy, after all.

3. Then there's Bobby. There is nothing funnier than Bobby Hill when he has gout from eating too much chicken liver at the Showbiz Deli. Nothing. Okay, maybe his love of fruit pies (again, relate-able).

4. Cotton Hill. The man who lost his shins in dubbya dubbya two. There is nothing funnier than him yelling at his grandson to get him his "shin jelly."

5. These guys:
I defy anyone who watches an episode to tells me that Dale Gribble, Bill Dauterive, and Boomhauer don't remind them of someone they know. Also, how fun is it to walk around talking like Boomhauer? Right now at our house it's "dang old" this and "man" that. What a riot.

6. Kahn and Minh Souphanousinphone. I love how racist and obnoxious they are. I love how the show turns racism on its head, making the rednecks less hateful toward the Laotians and the Laotians more hateful toward the rednecks. It's funny and ironic and goes against the stereotype. It's an interesting commentary.

7. Arlen: It's totally like Rexburg. Small town. Good ol' boys. But full of clearly complex and extremely loveable individuals. I love it.

If you haven't watched "King of the Hill" in a while, you should give it a try.


  1. This was such a good show. I like to talk like Bobby in my head. "Daaaaang."

  2. I failed to mention that Mike loves dog sledding and dog sledding accessories.

  3. Gimme some mustard and biscuits mmmhmmm. I realize that's Sling Blade but same diff. I love King of the Hill. Is Holden the new Bobby?