Buddy Ebsen once said that the corniness of ''The Beverly Hillbillies'' was intentional
Ebsen was confident in his series.
Intent in comedy is an incredibly important thing, even if you think it's barely noticeable to your audience. If someone falls over on accident and someone watching laughs, the person who's fallen over is obviously being laughed at. However, if you're falling over on purpose to try and make someone laugh, your success can feel unifying.
No longer is someone laughing at you when you're in on the joke; they're laughing with you, all by your design. Intent can give you direction and power, putting you in the driver's seat of your own life.
A show like The Beverly Hillbillies can sometimes be judged too quickly by people too self-important to actually watch the series long enough to give it proper consideration. It's been written off in the past as irritating and trite, unworthy of today's time and consideration.
However, according to one of the series stars, Buddy Ebsen, the banal nature of the show was actually an intentional decision from the creators. In an interview with the Times-Tribune, Ebsen revealed that even today, The Beverly Hillbillies would still be considered a good show, especially in comparison to other shows that were currently on air. Ebsen said, "The Hillbillies looks pretty good today, particularly when you compare it to what some of the current half-hour comedy shows offer."
Ebsen argued that there was one key difference between his shows and others; he said, "We were designed to be corny. That was part of our charm. Many of today's comedy series are just plain corny."
But intent alone is nothing if you don't have the freedom to express it. That freedom can come from one of two places: First, it can come from those above you, like a network or distributor. These people are your bosses, who are, in a sense, in charge of you. The other place that freedom can come from is through the receptiveness of your audience, who have understood your intent and responded with enthusiasm.
However, in an interview with the Cincinnati Enquirer, Ebsen once said, "Sometimes you have to impose taste on people." He continued, "When it becomes apparent there is a lack of taste I think censorship is indicated."