I sort of got away from the Johnny Lightning line recently. We'll pick up where we left off with Series 4.
I've said it before on this blog, I hate "the Beginning" movie. I wish it didn't exist. There was an old line of clothing from 2003 by Hang Ten that ripped off the Dukes. Their models did a better job as Bo, Luke, and Daisy than the ones in this movie.
Well, ok, they are both equally bad.
But, like it or not, "the Beginning" happened and we have to live with it. The first car in this series has the General from this movie and, therefore, the package reflects the design similar to the 2005 movie as well as the DVD for this movie.
All of the other cars in the series are from the show and feature the design we are used too. The package is similar to series 3.
The "add in" with this series are small cardboard boxes that, I guess, the cars are supposed to fit into. They feature different pictures and art on each side. "The Beginning" one has artwork from that movie and the other five are all the same except they have the name of each individual car on them. Most of the cars in the series do not fit into the boxes.
I don't like "the Beginning," but this is a great General Lee. If you don't count the package, this is the perfect representation of the 2005 movie General Lee. In the Cooter's garage escape scene and the trip to Atlanta, this is how the General looked. The Atlanta chase scene and beyond scuffed up the General horrendously. What makes this version different than the General we got in Series 3 is also the main difference between the movie and TV Generals, the white letters on the tires. There are other differences, like the passenger side- view mirror, the interior, and the font on the General Lee text, but those details are too fine to be reflected in 1/64 scale. To me, this is the movie car. And they did a great job on it.
The second car in the series is the second Zinger in the line. Daisy's Road Runner got the exaggerated hot rod treatment this time.
Everyone's favorite two-part episode is represented in this series. Carnival Of Thrills was the season premiere of season 3. The most memorable part of the episode is the fist fight between Bo and Luke. Only a woman could come between the Duke Boys. There were several stunt cars shown at the Carnival. One of them was this Chevy Vega. This is another out-of-the-box car that you would never expect in diecast. Another tip of the hat to you, Johnny Lightning.
They got a lot out of the police cars in this line. This one is the State Police car. It doesn't specifically say Georgia, but no one ever really did.
Series 2 had Boss Hogg's Grey Ghost Camaro from the episode "Days of Shine and Roses." Boss raced against Uncle Jesse's Black Tillie II. It's a rough black Mustang. The original Black Tillie was a '40s hot rod. It is mentioned several times that Jesse loved black race cars, the first time being all the way back in episode 5 "High Octane."
This #44 Buick National race car is also from a two-part episode. "Undercover Dukes" found Bo and Luke working for the U. S. Government to infiltrate and racketeering organization, run by a race team owner named Carver. The boys drive his car on the circuit.
Another indication that JL did their homework are the racing decals on this car. The zXz, wesco, and safety belt insignias are straight from the episode. An addition is the Hazzard County sign which is always welcome. I thought that mine was defective because one head light is was painted and one wasn't, but it is the same in the screenshot from the episode. Another slam dunk by JL.