‘Dukes of Hazzard’: Bo Duke Actor John Schneider Said Show Was ‘One of the Last’ Family Shows

by John Jamison
(Photo by Paul Natkin/Getty Images)

Fans have fond memories of Bo and Luke Duke going toe to toe with the corrupt law of Hazzard County. Throw in Daisy and Uncle Jesse, and the adventures foiling Boss Hogg’s schemes became a family affair. And perhaps the greatest strength of “Dukes of Hazzard” was how that family-friendly tone came through to audiences.

John Schneider played Bo Duke for the duration of the show. Well, except for 19 episodes where a contract dispute led to his temporary replacement. But he was a welcome presence on the show. And the time he spent there inspired some of the career choices he made after “Dukes of Hazzard” came to an end.

Schneider felt that there was a lack of quality, family-friendly content on the airwaves after “Dukes” finished up in 1985. So he started his own production company. The company itself, called FaithWorks Productions, didn’t last very long. But the motivation behind it was what Schneider got from the “Dukes” impact.

‘Dukes of Hazzard’ Had Enough Entertainment Value for All Ages

In an interview on “Prime Time Country” in 1996, John Schneider talked about the value of a show like “Dukes of Hazzard.” He thought it was important that a younger audience have access to the messages and themes conveyed by a show like that.

“In years since ‘Dukes’- one of the last few shows you could sit down and watch as a family was ‘Dukes of Hazzard.’ It was entertaining,” Schneider said. “But there was- where else do you learn to say grace before your meal and where else do you learn to say ‘yes sir’ and ‘yes ma’am?'”

And he wasn’t wrong about the entertainment value. Regardless of whatever else was on the air at the time, “Dukes of Hazzard” was appropriate enough for adults and kids alike. And while the countless car chases didn’t necessarily set the best example, Schneider justified it easily.

“And we did have the cars and all but that was just good old-fashioned fun,” Schneider continued in the 1996 interview.

Right he was. The General Lee was pure entertainment, and production paid a steep price for making it that way. The number of Dodge Chargers chewed up and spit out by the Duke boys was astronomical. The figure? Well, John Schneider himself once estimated it to be more than 300 cars.