I’m not hooked on “must see” T.V. shows. I don’t get excited about the new season of Mad Men. (Although I was intrigued about Jon Hamm’s recent wardrobe issue.) I never saw an episode of The Bachelor. (If I wanted to see a player in action, I’d hang out with my ex-boyfriend.) And I would absolutely never watch an episode of The Kardashians. (I’d rather regain my “will I ever get rid of it” freshman fifteen than watch that nonsense.)
But the other day I had a dirty hankering to plop own on the sofa and zone out to mindless T.V. There I was, wishing I had some Cheetos, flipping through the channels. And just when I was about to prove myself right, that there was never anything good on T.V., what is this? A bunch of rednecks sitting in a bluff talking smack and shooting ducks? I was hooked. H-O-O-K-E-D on Duck Dynasty.
If you haven’t seen this show, I’ll break it down for you. The Robertsons, a family of Louisiana rednecks, patented a duck call and turned it into a million dollar family business. There are three brothers, but the two we see most often are Willie, the CEO of the company, and Jase. Their mother, Kay, and their father, Phil, also have roles in the show, as do the brothers’ wives and children. But the real kick in the pants is Uncle Si.
Si is the off-his-rocker, sweet tea drinking, Vietnam vet whose down home simplicity is unexpectedly charming. He’s as salt of the earth as they come. He stumps everyone with his rolodex of off beat analogies. His straight faced delivery of “everybody’s running around like chickens with their legs cut off” and “I sting like a butterfly and punch like a flea” made my cheeks ache from laughing.
I watched six episodes of the Duck Dynasty marathon, and I wondered why I liked it so much. Don’t hold this against me, but I’m not a redneck. I’m a Yankee who grew up in Ohio. I don’t own anything camouflage. Even when it’s in style, it’s better worn by people with guns. And I don’t know the first thing about hunting ducks. Heck, the only thing I know about ducks is that they’re cute and that I would never kill one intentionally.
Turns out I’m not the only one who’s hooked on Duck Dynasty. The show is the highest rated cable show on T.V. and regularly beats out shows like American Idol. What gives? Why are people obsessed with a family of redneck duck hunters? I’ll tell you why.
The Robertsons might be rolling in the proverbial dough but they sure don’t act like it. They haven’t fallen prey to the nouveau riche ways of flashing this and bragging about that. Instead they don camo and argue over whose beard is the longest. They love life. And it shows.
They razz each other like adolescent boys and deadpan to the camera things like, “I’m picking creatures out of my beard on a regular basis.” Even the wives join in on the fun. In one episode, they decided to make an apron for their well-endowed mother-in-law, Kay, that would fully cover both her boobs. None of them knew how to sew, so Uncle Si stepped in and saved the day by making a perfectly sized apron. A skill he says he learned in Vietnam. Huh?
The Robertsons remind us how simple it is to have fun. If you forgot how to have fun without spending a lot of money, the Robertsons can teach you a thing or two.
In one of my favorite episodes, Jase tells us how he lost his wedding ring over twenty years ago. And now for some reason, his wife is insisting that he get another one. Jase is uneasy about this. He doesn’t want to wear jewelry – it’s unmanly. And what’s the point of a ring anyway? With steely eyes and dry wit, he looks at the camera and says, “I can think of only twelve women, all of them ex-cons, who might look at me and say, ‘I’ll give that a shot!'”
I’m here to tell you Jase, that your wife wants you to get a ring because you are sexy as hell. (And no, I’m not an ex-con.) These guys eat what they kill and tell it like it is. They’re manly men who have calluses on their palms and smell sweaty at the end of a long day. If you’ve ever dated a guy whose hands were softer than yours, you too would appreciate the thrill of watching these guys lock and load. Their ruggedness is only over shadowed by their desire to make their wives happy.
Which brings me back to Jase and his wedding ring saga. He and his wife go to the jewelry store, where he begrudgingly buys the only suitable ring in the store – one that’s made out of gun metal. Regardless of the manliness of his ring, he is still razzed by Willie, who says, “First it’s a wedding ring, next it’s a fanny pack.”
Later that day, Jase, Willie, and Si go duck hunting. While sitting in the bluff, Jase loses his new ring. After fretting for hours about how he’s going to tell his wife that he lost yet another wedding ring, he considers getting, at Willie’s suggestion, a tattooed wedding ring. Jase is worried that it will be painful. But after weighing his wife’s likely reaction over him losing his new wedding ring, he decides to get the tattoo ring. He then reaches in his pocket for his wallet. He can’t find it, but low and behold, he finds his ring. He’s so relieved, he doesn’t care how mad Willie is that they spent the entire day looking for his ring.
It’s not about the ring – losing it or finding it. It’s that he worried about his wife’s reaction and how he could keep smooth waters between them. These guys love their wives and want for their happiness. What’s sexier than that?
The Robertsons are Christian. They don’t cuss and they end each show by sitting around the dinner table, praying. As Jase says, “Our faith is first. Faith. Family. Ducks.”
But their sense of religion and spirituality reaches beyond what’s portrayed on the show. Recently, I saw a video of Willie speaking at a religious event. He shared the heartfelt story of how he and his wife adopted their third child. Their hearts seem to be full of gratitude for everything that God’s given to them.
Millions of people love Duck Dynasty because the Robertsons are who we all want to be. No, we don’t all want to be rednecks. But we do want to have the time of our lives being nothing but ourselves. And ducks or no ducks, it doesn’t get any better than that.
Your Fun, Sexy, Spiritual Homework:
- Want to know more about the show? Check out the A&E site.
- Uncle Si always makes me laugh. Get your daily dose of Uncle Si by liking this Facebook page.
- Want to know more about the family business – Duck Commander? Click here.
- Check out Willie’s inspirational speech about his faith and adopting his son.
- Don’t you think the guys should drive the sexiest pickup truck out there – the F-150?