Duck Dynasty™ was a reality show that was on TV from 2012 through 2017. It was produced throughout the A&E cable network. It starred the Robertson family of Louisiana, the founders and owners of the ‘Duck Commander’™ duck call and other duck calls, some 20 + varieties to choose from. If you are a duck hunter and want to bring down a duck in hunting season, this is where you want to look for the best in duck calls.
Other than that, the Robertson’s are known for their highly popular and eclectic cable show, ‘Duck Dynasty’™. It was advertised as a look into a ‘rags to riches’ story of a man and his family who became millionaires in their own right through hard work of a superior product. I was intrigued and interested, how does one make a duck call ? What management principles were introduced to make this brand better than all the others ?
Well, I was fooled by the advertisements as usual, kind of like a click bait scheme on cable TV. Not to say that the producers were lying, just that I misinterpreted what was going to be shown. I would rather see them make and sell and distribute their product than the absolute garbage that was eventually presented…
What I saw was a bunch of good ole boys, acting like poor trash rednecks, which they are presumably not. They are for one thing, wealthy, living in extremely nice houses in southern Louisiana, right next to ‘duck hunting’ country. And as far as watching them work on duck calls, well that is another story, cause it is not part of this one. Each show presented a scripted situation that the family had to figure out, ‘Duck Dynasty’ style, while making fun of the Yankees and the Yuppies, which they did with joy. And the funny part is, without the beards and camo dress, they are the yuppies of the South.
The father was a football hero who decided to pursue the duck call business, which was right up his alley as he has a bachelors degree in business. He also has a masters degree in education. So much for the backwoods redneck white trash label. Although while growing up he claims to have been very poor, living without electricity, running water or indoor plumbing, and relying on hunting wild game to feed the family. So maybe he can make that claim of ‘white trash redneck’ stick. His favorite saying is “Happy Happy Happy”.
The rest of the cast is the sons of the father, the father’s ignorant brother, and a few co workers who wouldn’t last a minute in a McDonalds. Every now and then we are presented with the spouses and some children who wander around with their weekly problems or causes to show us what a real Southern family would do (especially if you have an unlimited bank account and don’t have to work).
So the boys and the coworkers and the stupid uncle really don’t do any work at all, they sit in a staged workshop and come up with some scheme or plan to try out for the week. Whether it be coaching the kid’s football team or making donuts or hunting alligators, they never actually do anything that resembles work. Not that I disapprove, I imagine a low paid workforce, without any benefits, slaving away somewhere, making the duck calls while the ‘boys’ and their wives and family enjoy the benefits.
So the main character is the son Willie, who runs the business with a good ole boy attitude. His role is to play the straight man to all the foibles and setups the other brothers and family throw his way. Every show he is shown rolling his eyes at the incredible stupidness the rest of the clan exhibits. Other than that, he spends time with his wife and kids being the perfect husband and father. None of them seem to drink or do drugs or smoke or break any laws, so that is a good example to show on TV. Their main source of entertainment is to hunt and fish and be an authentic male of the species.
The rest of the cast is Willie’s brothers and some other coworkers who would seem to be fired from any other job for their lack of ambition and goldbricking on the job. Willie’s uncle, named Si, is the essential ‘weird’ cast member, who portrays himself as the ultimate ignorant beard wearing redneck know it all who knows absolutely nothing. It is hard to believe anyone could be so stupid all the time, it is my assumption that when filming is over for the day, he changes into his $1000 suit, gets driven home in a limo, and spends the evening reading Shakespeare and listening to Chopin, while sipping champagne and eating lobster. And when they show these episodes on TV, I can see all the unemployed, broke because of child support, beer swillen’, retard rednecks in a dive bar cheering this ignorant, tea drinkin’ buffoon on as he wanders through his dementia proving how the South is King or something.
The rest of this extended family shows up now and then to have their 15 minutes of fame, several episodes showed Willie’s son starting a business, that I imagine was either shut down after filming, or delegated to a lackey to run for the rest of his miserable life. They also made a several segment episodes of the same son getting engaged, preparing for a wedding, and in the final special episode, getting married. Wouldn’t most folks rather it be a private affair rather than a ‘Duck Dynasty Special Marriage Episode’™. I wondered what the poor bride thought. Probably thought, “Might as well go through with this production as long as I never have to work in my life because my new husband is heir to a fortune”…
The father is most often seen dressed in camo, with the long beard, wearing his customized Duck Dynasty™ sunglasses, sitting in his camo chair, spouting with religious fervor some nonsense that the rest are forced to listen to so they are not cut out of the will. He constantly says “Happy Happy Happy” because he is rich and doesn’t have to worry about anything anymore. His wife is a babbling source of complete ignorance and confusion. I am hoping this is an act, please let it be an act.
And then probably the worst part of these morons is the trip to the local Wal Mart where you can buy anything from beach towels to hemorrhoid cream with their likeness on it. Luckily, that era of mass consumerism on their part is done, made me never want to see the inside of a Wal Mart ever again. But a trip into the internet shopping world is still alive with all kinds of DD™ bullshit aimed at the ignorant poor white trash redneck drunks who seem to think these guys are a gas.
One episode I watched that really stood out, was the one where a neighbor (read; paid extra), came over to one of the brother’s house, and asked if the brother could resolve the beaver problem he was having, he was willing to pay. The brother said sure, and later that night took his daughter out in the woods to ‘do’ something about the pesky beaver. So they go out and find the beaver in like 2 minutes and shoot it. I think the brother made his daughter shoot it. Why not trap it and send it along it’s way outside of town in a different part of the woods ? Well, I thought , OK, he made his girl (about 12 years old) shoot the beaver, and she seemed OK with it, they then pick up the beaver and go to the guys house and ask the guy what he wants to do with the dead beaver. The guy says he doesn’t care, just get rid of it. The brother says that will cost extra, and the guy refuses to pay and shuts the door. So the brother and his daughter just leave the dead, shot, bloody beaver on the guy’s porch, and they walk away, and he tells his girl that he taught her some kind of lesson. What a prick !!! And to somehow teach his girl that what he did was the right thing to do… If I was the neighbor I would have called the police to tell the brother to get rid of the beaver. Why not just leave it in the woods ? Why not skin it and eat it like a true redneck white trash fool would do ? Just unreal…..
At the end of each show, the family gathers around for a meal and the father says a prayer and then thanks the lord for helping him and his clan to make the right decision in this weeks episode. That is followed by a voiceover from one of the main characters from this weeks episode teaching us all a valuable lesson they learned from their experiences. All rather staged and scripted and in the end, just kinda goofy….
So they then to do a spin off about the youngest brother and his family. It seems to be about how they are adopting children, and the producers thought this looks good, so lets put it on TV for all the Southern folks to watch, as they raise an adopted child in the comforts of wealth and prosperity. Sorry, don’t care bud !!!
And the news is Uncle Crazy is coming out with his own spinoff…good Lord I’ll pass on that too.
And it was interesting that the wives of the brothers participated in the show somewhat, but the crazy uncle’s wife said no, as did his daughters. Makes you wonder why, so as not to be associated with a moron, so as not to look like morons ?
Some will inevitably ask, “Why did I watch this show in the first place?”… As I have said I was reeled in by the commercials for the show to see how these guys created a successful company, to see how duck calls are designed and produced, and to see how they ran this successful company of duck call merchandise… I saw none of the above and then stuck around a few years to write this review….
1 star out of 10✭… good editing, good production, that’s about it….