I rented the Hee Haw Collection DVD, and found I have the same slightly sick feeling I had when I was 7 or 8 years old and watched it on Saturday nights, usually with Grendel, while a babysitter talked to her friends on a landline phone.
The sets were brashly lit and cheap, and the jokes were just... well, here are a few:
Hillbilly 1: I heard yer brother in law, Luke, up and done away with hisself last week. How’d he do it?
Hillbilly 2: Well, he laid down on the railroad tracks and he tied hisself to the rail.
Hillbilly 1: And then the train come along and ground him ta pieces, huh?
Hillbilly 2: No, he missed the train. Luke jest laid there waitin’ fer the next one and starved to death.
Junior Samples: I hate my mother in law.
Roy Clark: Well if it wasn’t fer yer mother in law, you wouldn’t have yer wife!
Junior: That’s another reason I hate ‘er.
Grandpa Jones in a doctor’s office:
Doc: Grandpa, you mean to tell me yer gonna marry a 18 year old girl? Why, don’t you know that could be fatal?
Grandpa: If she dies, she dies!
Hillbilly: Hey Junior, why you got that black eye?
Junior: I told my wife this mornin’ that her socks were wrankled and she weren’t wearin’ any.
Probably the strangest bit was Grandpa Jones washing windows, then resting his hands through the panes that weren’t there. An off-camera crowd of people yell in unison:
Crowd: HEY GRANDPA, WHAT’S FER SUPPER?!?!
Grandpa: Turtle stew with onions and crackers, wild greens, stewed auger holes, and bread puddin’!!
Crowd: YUM YUM!!!
And finally, the song those two guys sang, the first part of which changes each time:
You took off your peg leg your wig and your glass eye
You were surprised at the look on my face
I wanted to kiss and hug on you darlin’
But you were scattered all over the place
Where oh where are you tonight?
Why did you leave me here all alone?
I searched the world over and thought I found true love
You met another and pfffffft you was gone