In 1981, Ertl Dukes of Hazzard diecasts were the biggest thing going. Stores couldn't keep them on the shelves. People trampled each other to get their hands on them on black Friday. Maybe. What do I know? I was a baby. I do know that they were popular enough to have all sorts of different four packs available back then. I do know a thing or two about what was released. The only two cars to have single-card packages were the General Lee and Boss Hogg's Caddy. So if you had a police car, Jeep, or Cooter's pickup from back then, they came from one of these four packs or the playset. There were also weird additions like a white Corvette and a blue van. These four variations I have shown aren't all of the ones out there. I'm not even sure if these are the only ones I have. I really need to get this stuff more organized. How is that app coming Elyse?
These four packs are pretty rare and demand rather high prices. They are also tough to store because of the back board that often gets bent down. None of mine are in perfect condition. This box design seems to be the more common of the two that are out there. It does not have the names of the cars printed on the box. I think this is so they could just add any cars to it. This combination of cars seems to be the most common. The General, Caddy, and two patrol cars. The 1981 Ertl cars never differentiated between Rosco's and Enos/Cletus' cars.
This combination is strange to me for two reasons. There is no General, and there were rarely ever more than two patrol cars shown in Hazzard on the show.
This set is odd because it has two Boss Hogg's Caddys. The Caddy was almost as iconic as the General Lee and almost never got damaged. More than one patrol car is excusable but another Caddy is weird. I have never come across a set that had two Generals, but I wouldn't be surprised if there are some out there.
I think this set was the original. It has different box art and more of a blister type plastic covering over the cars. It has a classic combination of two patrol cars, the General Lee, and Daisy's Jeep.
It also labels the cars in the set. Funny how they identified the drivers and not the cars.
Nearly everything about this box is different than the others.
The bottom of the set that I think was the first does not mention any Dukes.
The more common box lists the General and Boss Hogg's Caddy.
The back of the original box has this picture of the Dukes family. I never loved this picture. The black background and Uncle Jesse's stoic look always reminded me of a very negative backwoods kind of vibe. But that's just me.
The back of the more common box, however, has my all time favorite cast picture on it. It's just such a great photo. The blurb is the same on both packages.
The side of the more common box has this picture of the General on both sides. The other box doesn't have anything on the side. At least mine doesn't, but it is pretty damaged.
There are all kinds of different combinations of this set. I think the releases with the white Corvette and the blue van just included those cars as fillers. The same goes with the playset that includes the Corvette. Now that I am paying attention to the differences, I'll try to pick up any others that I see.
In other 1/64 news... A friend tipped me off that Hot Wheels is releasing a new set soon called Retro Entertainment. It will consist of popular Hot Wheels such as KITT, Ecto-1, the Delorean, and the A-Team van. They will be more detailed than the standard releases. They will include better paint, metal bases, and rubber wheels. These are exactly my complaints about Hot Wheels in this post. Now we will get a KITT comparable to Johnny Lightning's General Lee. The packages are also supposed to be TV Show/Movie specific. This set is very exciting. It also includes Bandit's Trans Am, KARR, and the Mystery Machine.
My friend said that Hot Wheels only announced the castings of the line. When they say Delorean, Trans Am, GMC van, and Cadillac Ambulance, it is obvious that it's the Time Machine, KITT, B.A.'s van and Ecto-1. But there are quite a few cars that aren't as specific and dealers, collectors, and fans are speculating which cars they are. One that I thought was funny was the '84 Pontiac Fiero that people are guessing is coming from How I Met Your Mother. Wouldn't really expect that but it sounds pretty cool. Marshall loved that car like I loved my Jeep. One wave of this line includes a '71 Plymouth Satellite. Speculation is that it will be Daisy's yellow car. Some retail sites are reporting and selling the car this way. I really don't think it will be Daisy's car. Ertl/RC/Tomy has really kept a tight hold on the Dukes license over the years. I don't see Hot Wheels getting it. And if they did, they would never release another car from the show before the most iconic TV/Movie car of all time. Sorry Delorean, KITT, and Ecto, you guys can't touch the General Lee. When they landed the Knight Rider license, they had KITT and David Hasselhoff at SDCC. They would do they same if they got Dukes. But I don't think they did or will because it is such a lucrative license for Tomy. Just my educated guess.