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  • Writer's pictureJoe Pace

Favorite Fictional Characters, #274: Boss Hogg

"Blood is thicker than water, but money is thicker than blood."

The gluttonous and grasping commissioner of Hazzard County and antagonist of the Duke family, Boss Hogg had his pudgy fingers in virtually every aspect of the territory under his sway. With an unquenchable thirst for money, Hogg took both a long and short approach to accruing wealth. He invested in land and legitimate enterprise, but also engaged in various get-rich-quick schemes, many not entirely legal. In this second category he frequently conspired with his bumbling underling, the buffoonish Sheriff Roscoe P. Coltrane. Naturally, many of these schemes were foiled by the Duke boys, only fueling Hogg's hatred of that inbred backwoods clan.

You have to enjoy a character like Hogg, a man of limitless appetites for all the world's pleasures. A good cigar, fine white clothes and cars, women, song, and of course a well-set table. He's a borderline criminal, but not a very dedicated one, and there's even a moral core to Hogg. Despite his rivalry with the Dukes (especially with his boyhood friend and Duke patriarch Uncle Jesse), he can't abide seeing anyone seriously hurt or killed by his plans, and that tender-heartedness ruined a good scheme more than once. He's sinful and corrupt, but he just doesn't have it in him to be a truly evil soul. it was this bumptious gentleness that made the Dukes of Hazzard a free-spirited comedy absent any consequences. The Dukes were never permanently arrested or jailed, and Boss Hogg never lost an election. It was a system that worked, dysfunctional and yet durable.

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