‘The Beverly Hillbillies’ Star Max Baer Jr. Named the Costar Who ‘Never’ Swore

by Joe Rutland

“The Beverly Hillbillies” was a family-friendly show, meaning no cuss words. Max Baer Jr. says one actor was that way in real life.

Baer Jr., who played Jethro Bodine on the CBS sitcom, said Donna Douglas, who played Elly May, would not say any dirty words at all.

“But Donna was always sweet,” he said during a 2015 interview with The Five Count radio show. “I have one thing I remember about her and I told other people the same thing. In all the years that I knew her, I never heard her swear ever. She would go ‘golly-gee-darn,’ ‘dang.’ She’d whistle. ‘Son of a gun.’ She never used four-letter words at all. Never did.”

That’s pretty amazing since Douglas and, of course, Baer Jr. were around some veteran actors in their own right in “The Beverly HIllbillies.”

‘The Beverly Hillbillies’ Actor Recalls Last Time Seeing Douglas

In the interview, Baer Jr. recalls the last time he saw Douglas before she died.

“The last time I saw her was a year ago, actually two years ago today,” he said in the 2015 interview. “We were in Los Angeles for the only autograph signing I’ve been to. She’d done some before but they called and tried to put the two of us together for once. And I said OK.

“Then I had to go there for something else because I live in Lake Tahoe,” Baer Jr. said. “But I drove down to Los Angeles and we went to Century Boulevard at some hotel, I can’t remember. And we were there for two days. We did very well and Donna seemed fine.”

Donna Douglas died on Jan. 1, 2015, at 82 years old. Baer Jr. is the last remaining original cast member from “The Beverly Hillbillies” to be alive.

‘Jethro’ Actor Says Resemblance To James Garner Helped Him Get Role

Baer Jr. happened to be in the right place, at the right time, for “The Beverly Hillbillies.” But we’ll let Max tell the story.

“That was just an accident,” he said about getting the “Jethro” part. “I was at lunch at Warner Brothers one day. Somebody took me over there, a friend of mine.

“They saw me on the lot, and James Garner had just left ‘Maverick,'” Baer Jr. said. “And I resembled Jimmy a little bit because somebody from ABC saw me and thought I was him at a distance. So they asked me if I ever wanted to act and I said, ‘I don’t know. What does it pay?’

“I think it was $250 a week, this was in 1960,” he said. “So I said ‘OK, I’ll try.’ And I went ahead and I did a reading for them. No screen test. I just did a reading for them and they signed me.”

That’s it. That is the whole story around Max Baer Jr. becoming a part of “The Beverly Hillbillies.” Pretty good story, huh? Best part of it is that it’s all true.