Edgar Buchanan thought Petticoat Junction was more realistic than The Beverly Hillbillies

Although The Beverly Hillbillies was based on producer Paul Henning's experiences, Buchanan thought ''the Junction'' was more real.

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Both Petticoat Junction and The Beverly Hillbillies were similar in a few ways. They were both produced by Paul Henning and included rural characters. Although The Beverly Hillbillies was based on Hennings' past experiences camping in the Ozarks, Edgar Buchanan believed that Petticoat Junction was more realistic.

Buchanan played uncle Joe Carson, the guy who was supposed to help Kate Bradley and her daughters take care of the Shady Rest Hotel. Instead, he always thought of schemes to make more money and bring in visitors.

In an interview with The Morning Call in 1964, the actor shared his feelings about the two shows. "Beverly Hillbillies is a caricature while Petticoat Junction is a little more realistic," he said.

Buchanan also told the newspaper that he was surprised "the Junction" was a hit. "I think there's more small town in most of us than people realize. The small town is the heritage of the American people, and evidently, fans like to relive it."

While viewers saw uncle Joe Carson as a troublemaker, Buchanan saw him as a simple guy who wanted the hotel to thrive.

"Joe is a little simple," he added. "with his plans to give the hotel class, his heated swimming pool, his elevator that doesn't work, his telephone without wires. He's a bumbler, and he's no cynic."

The article also talks about the nature of the characters in each show. Petticoat Junction had little conflict "because the characters are basically all good." While in The Beverly Hillbillies, there was always something going on, and Granny, for example, had no problem calling it out.

There were still no major conflicts in either series because the focus was rural comedy; they weren't dramas. Sometimes, this made Buchanan second guess whether the episode scripts would turn into a 27-minute production. He said, "You read a script and wonder how you're going to get 27 minutes out of it. Then you do it, and the show comes out fine."

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38 Comments

trogg888 7 months ago
I think a lot of those shows would not have made it had it not been for the fact ct you only had three choices of what to watch each half hour or hour back then
trogg888 7 months ago
I hope noone thought either of those shows had a thing to do with realism
spudmonkey 12 months ago
Wasn't Petticoat Junction a spinoff of Beverly Hillbillies and Green Acres a spinoff of Petticoat Junction?
Nala92129 12 months ago
Would somebody tell me why Johnny Carson was so hostile toward Buchanan? I never understood this.
15inchBlackandWhite 12 months ago
He's probably right. The NIMBY crowd in Beverly Hills would surely find some way to force the Clampetts out if that really happened.
Note how fast the white elites got rid of the illegals from the Hamptons!
cperrynaples 12 months ago
Well if he hated TBH for lacking realism, I wonder what he thought of Green Acres! I'm certain he never talked to Arnold....LOL!
Lantern 12 months ago
Just two days ago saw a young Edgar Buchanan in the film "Penny Serenade" with Cary Grant and Irene Dunne.
cperrynaples Lantern 12 months ago
That's an oldie, but then again so was Buchanan...LOL!
Buchanan said Petticoat Junction was a success because people were nostalgic for small towns. I think it was simply that guys enjoyed looking at three pretty girls for half-an-hour.
Made me chuckle out loud, so am responding to your clever observation.

Well, IMO that formula is the secret-sauce for all successful comedies. I don't know what it's about now. But, back in the day, most of those programing decisions, etc. were made by men. Except for LB, of course. And, for that time, she was an incredibly savvy exception. We can thank her programing instinct for many of our classic TV show favorites.
Thats the only reason i watched it.it sure wasnt for thos awful sing alongs
MrsPhilHarris 12 months ago
He is right about the Hillbillies. They are somewhat dim. They are always eating hog jowls and gopher gravy. Where is the rest of the hog? 🤔 The never seem to eat ham or bacon or ribs.
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Pacificsun LoveMETV22 10 months ago

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The link took me to an interesting site, which speaks of the threat of a writers strike. And by their admission will affect streaming services (meaning new content). Strikes also have a tendency to turn people, off.

Not that there has to be a "reason" for everything. But my hunch is MeTV is cashing in on the opportunity of some viewers being annoyed by the strike. And for them to "sally" on over to MeTV for a look-see. What better visible/accessible time-slot than 6:00pm. And what stronger show to appeal to many, than MASH. Which (probably) has more mass appeal than the rural comedies. Because (IMO) there's no danger in losing those kinds of viewers. Of course, it's not just about watching the show, but being exposed to MeTV's promos in general. And getting a feel for classic TV.

What's the point? Is my guess why they upped their strategy instead of "Mayberry Days." And now we have MAySH Nights instead.
LoveMETV22 Pacificsun 10 months ago
OK, so I heard about the impending writers strike on the news a few days ago. But did the:
"MeTV Adds More ‘M*A*S*H’ In May /By Michael Malone/ ( Broadcasting & Cable )/ published 8 days ago." also show on your end? As that's why I sent the link.
LoveMETV22 Pacificsun 10 months ago
PS Add: Interesting point there, I never thought of that. However the timestamp on the link was 8 days ago. I only heard about the impending writers strike at best 3 days ago.( That doesn't mean that news of that strike hasn't circulated before that. Also it seems Me has theme weeks all planned out, again not that they can't pull select episodes quickly, we've all seen that with tribute blocks. But yes I agree/intrigued with your thought as well.
Pacificsun LoveMETV22 10 months ago

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This is the first I've heard about MASH-in-MAY which was a promo'd after Barnaby Jones. Caught my attention, because it's the end of A-Team. And the Writer's Strike, only through the courtesy of your link. No doubt, I confess to easily over-thinking the idea of a strategy. Although in terms of planning, as an Industry, they would know about a pending writer's strike. Via the link you offered, apparently writers have been threatening for a long time.

I haven't paid attention to "Themed Months", except for obvious holidays and Mayberry month, then Summer of Me. They do change the Three Stooges' promo monthly. And Sven if it's a big deal.

I do know, in living through the previous, very extensive writers strike, it changed a lot of things, and threw programming off, as well. Very inconvenient. I don't know if this one is for compensation or more benefits / advantages.
James9 12 months ago
I always liked "Petticoat Junction" better than "The Beverly Hillbillies," especially the earlier episodes.
Mblack 12 months ago
I've never lived in a small town.
McGillahooala Mblack 12 months ago
You’ve missed out.
Runeshaper Mblack 12 months ago
My wife is from a small town. I really like when we visit.
15inchBlackandWhite Mblack 12 months ago
I lived in a town of 600 people once. For a city kid that required some real adjustments.
LoveMETV22 12 months ago
Edgar Buchanan played his roles well. There was a bit of that scheming character in him as Uncle Billy on Leave it Beaver as well.
trogg888 LoveMETV22 7 months ago
I think edgar was one of the most versatile actors of his generation
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