19 Somethin’ – Daisy Duke

The 19 Somethin’ series continues after a hiatus. If you missed the previous articles, you can get caught up here.

Here is the next line in the song:

My first love was Daisy Duke
in them cut-off jeans

It was appointment TV on Friday nights in the late ’70s and early ’80s. Ah, The Dukes of Hazzard. It had comedy (Rosco P. Coltrane comes to mind) and tons of action with fights and car chases. It had the greatest car at the time – The General Lee, had the coolest theme song performed by the legendary Waylon Jennings, who also narrated the show. And of course, it had the woman – Catherine Bach as Daisy Duke.

Daisy worked as a waitress at the Boar’s Nest, the local bar owned by Boss Hogg, as part of an agreement with Boss Hogg so that he would give Uncle Jesse and Bo and Luke a loan for a lower interest rate so the boys could purchase the entry fee for a race that they wished to race General Lee in. The arrangement was supposed to be for an indefinite time, but there were several times throughout the series that Hogg fired her. However, he always ended up rehiring her at the end of each episode because of various circumstances.

Daisy was known for her high-cut jean shorts, which became known as Daisy Dukes. At one time Catherine Bach’s legs were insured for $1,000,000.

Jessica Simpson went on to play Daisy Duke in the most recent Dukes of Hazzard movie, but nobody can beat the original!

R.I.P. Tom Bosley – (October 1, 1927 – October 19, 2010)

This has been a tough week for television parents! We lost June Cleaver, Mrs. Brady was kicked of Dancing With the Stars, and Tom Bosley, one of our favorite television dads, died yesterday of heart failure Tuesday after a battle with lung cancer. He was 83. His wife, Patricia Carr, said that he had just completed chemotherapy treatment for lung cancer, which was diagnosed five months ago.

Of course, Bosley was best known for playing Mr. C – Howard Cunningham – on Happy Days from 1974-1984. Bosley’s professional acting career began on stage in the 1950s, including a Tony for his role as New York City Mayor LaGuardia in the 1959 musical “Fiorello!”

In addition to Happy Days, Bosley made several appearances on The Love Boat, and played a recurring character – Sheriff Amos Tupper – on Murder She Wrote. After Happy Days, he starred on Father Dowling Mysteries from 1987-1991 as Father Dowling.
And many of us remember his Glad Bags commercials:

Music Video of the Week – 10/20/10

This week’s selection is in honor of Tom Petty’s 60th birthday – “Don’t Come Around Here No More”:

“Don’t Come Around Here No More” was released off of Tom Petty and the Heartbreaker’s 1985 album, Southern Accents. The video was pretty cool with the Alice in Wonderland theme. That is Dave Stewart of The Eurythmics sitting on the mushroom at the beginning of the video. Stewart and Petty collaborated on the song.

R.I.P. Barbara Billingsley (December 22, 1915 – October 16, 2010)

Barbara Billingsley (June Cleaver, Airplane‘s Jive Lady, and the voice of Nanny on The Muppet Babies) died of polymyalgia at her home in Santa Monica, California this past weekend at the age of 94. Although she arguably had the funniest scene in a movie with nothing but funny scenes – Airplane! – of course she was best known as June Cleaver in the ’50s/’60s show Leave It To Beaver. She personified the stay-at-home mom.

The following is from The Morning Call:

“She was the ideal mother,” Billingsley said of her character in 1997 in TV Guide. “Some people think she was weakish, but I don’t. She was the love in that family. She set a good example for what a wife could be. I had two boys at home when I did the show. I think the character became kind of like me and vice versa. I’ve never known where one started and where one stopped.”

As for the idealized TV family on “Leave It to Beaver,” which continues in reruns on cable more than half a century after its debut, Billingsley had her own explanation for the Cleavers’ enduring appeal.

“Good grief,” she told TV Guide, “I think everybody would like a family like that. Wouldn’t it be nice if you came home from school and there was Mom standing there with her little apron and cookies waiting?”

Born Barbara Combes in Los Angeles on Dec. 22, 1915, she and her sister grew up in a single-parent household after her parents divorced when she was an infant.

She always wanted to be an actress. She was attending Los Angeles City College when she joined the cast of “Straw Hat,” a comedy that went to Broadway in late 1937. The show closed after four performances, but she “decided New York was more fun than college” and found work as a $60-a-week fashion model. She later toured with Billie Burke in a production of “Accidentally Yours.”

Her marriage in the early 1940s to restaurant operator Glenn Billingsley, nephew of Stork Club owner Sherman Billingsley, produced two sons and prompted her move back to Los Angeles, where her husband managed the Mocambo nightclub.

When the marriage ended in divorce in the late ’40s, Barbara Billingsley already had begun playing uncredited bit parts and small roles in a string of B movies. That continued into the ’50s, when she also began landing roles on “Four Star Playhouse” and other television anthology programs.

In 1955, she played co-star Stephen Dunne’s wife on the short-lived situation comedy “Professional Father,” and she portrayed Gale Gordon’s girlfriend on several episodes of the situation comedy “The Brothers.”

In 1953, Billingsley married director Roy Kellino, who died three years later of a heart attack at age 44.

“It’s a terrible blow, but you can’t wallow in your grief,” Billingsley said in a 1993 interview with The Times. “When Roy died, my agent made me work all the time. And six months later, they called me to start the series.”

“They” were Joe Connelly and Bob Mosher, the creators of “Leave It to Beaver,” the first TV series to show life from a child’s point of view.

“Joe Connelly had seven children, and Bob Mosher had two, and they had a lot of material right there,” Billingsley told the Nashville Tennessean in 2003. “Every show was taken from some kernel of truth, something that had happened to their children or a relative.”

As for her trademark white-pearl necklace, Billingsley said in 2003 in The Times that she wore it “because I have a big hollow in my neck” and the necklace covered the spot perfectly.

“So no matter what I was doing — cleaning, cooking or answering the phone — I had those darn pearls on,” she said. And there was a practical reason she wore high heels on the show.

“In the beginning of the series I wore flat shoes, but then Wally and the Beaver began to get taller,” she said. “That’s why they put me in heels. The producers wanted me to be as tall or taller than the kids.”

But even with heels, Billingsley said, “sometimes I would stand on the stairs for a scene so I could have some more height.”

After “Leave It to Beaver” ended in 1963, Billingsley made occasional TV guest appearances. But she primarily maintained a low public profile with her third husband, Dr. William Mortensen, whom she had married in 1959. He died in 1981.

In 1980, Billingsley was firmly back in the public eye with her cameo in the disaster-movie spoof “Airplane!” — as the unlikely passenger who volunteers to translate the incomprehensible urban ghetto talk of an ailing black male passenger for the flustered flight attendant. (“Oh, stewardess, I speak ‘jive.'”)

In 1983, Billingsley returned as June Cleaver in “Still the Beaver,” a made-for-television film that reassembled the old series’ cast, with the notable exception of Beaumont, who died in 1982.

“No father on television was ever better than Hugh,” Billingsley once said.

Beaumont’s wise and caring father figure was there in spirit in the reunion film, however, as Billingsley’s June would visit his grave and say, “Ward, what would you do?”

The success of the “Still the Beaver” TV movie led to the series “Still the Beaver” on the Disney Channel from 1984 to 1986, with Billingsley returning as June. Retitled “The New Leave It to Beaver” when it was picked up by the cable superstation WTBS in 1986, the series ran until 1989.

Billingsley, who provided the voice of Nanny on the animated “Muppet Babies” series that aired from 1984 to 1991, appeared on television only sporadically in the ’90s. She also played a cameo — as Aunt Martha — in the 1997 feature film “Leave It to Beaver.”

Billingsley is survived by sons Drew Billingsley of Granada Hills and Glenn Billingsley of Phillips Ranch; stepson William Mortensen Jr. of Pacific Palisades; 16 grandchildren; and 23 great-grandchildren.

Trivia Tuesday – 10/19/10

Question: In the video for ‘Time After Time’, where do Cyndi Lauper and her boyfriend live?


Last Week’s Question: What actress played Laura and Almanzo’s niece on Little House on the Prairie?

Answer: Shannen Doherty

Pre-Beverly Hills 90210 star Shannen Doherty played Jenny Wilder from 1982-1983. This was Little House on the Prairie‘s jump-the-shark years, when Michael Landon was no longer on the show. After Almanzo’s brother’s died, Laura (Melissa Gilbert) and Almanzo (Dean Butler) took in his daughter Jenny. There’s no truth to the rumor that Shannen Doherty and Melissa Gilbert got into catfights on the set.

Pat Benatar to be on A&E’s Private Sessions this Sunday

Pat Benatar and her husband/guitarist Neil Giraldo will be on Private Sessions on A&E this Sunday, October 17 at 9am/8am Central. They will discuss how MTV changed their lives, sexism in the music industry, and their 30 year personal and musical relationship. And, they will be playing unplugged performances of Love Is a Battlefield,” “We Belong,” “You Better Run,” “Let’s Stay Together,” and “I Don’t Want to Be Your Friend.”

Here is a Behind the Scenes look:

Music Video of the Week – 10/13/10

This week’s selection is in honor of Sammy Hagar’s 63rd(!) birthday. Here is his classic “I Can’t Drive 55”:

Pre-Van Halen, “I Can’t Drive 55” was the lead single and first track from Sammy Hagar’s eighth studio album VOA in 1984. This song shot Sammy up to super stardom.

Trivia Tuesday – 10/12/10

Question: What actress played Laura and Almonzo’s niece on Little House on the Prairie?


Last Week’s Question: In “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off,” who plays the burnout at the police station that Jeanie kisses?

Answer: Charlie Sheen

This was a very funny scene in the movie. Ferris’s sister Jeanie (Dirty Dancing‘s Jennifer Grey) catches the principal, Mr. Rooney (Jeffrey Jones) sneaking around her house to bust Ferris. Jeanie kicked Mr. Rooney in the face, then ran upstairs to call the cops. Mr. Rooney took off, and Jeanie was arrested for prank calling the police.
While Mrs. Bueller is in the back of the station talking to the police, Jeanie is sitting next to Charlie Sheen’s drug addict, and annoys the crap out of her. And it didn’t help that he heard of Ferris, and implied that he admired him. Jeanie, got really annoyed, and Sheen tells her that she needs to stop worrying so much about Ferris and more about herself. All of a sudden they were kissing when the mother came out. Mrs. Bueller then dragged Jeanie out of the station.

80's Pop Culture and News

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