Saturday, May 31, 2014
I'm heading back to Nashville! June 14 and 15 is Rockabilly Saturday Night and Daisy Duke Day. And I'll be there. In addition to my normal wondering around and having a blast at Dukes events, I also have a very special role. I am hosting a question and answer session with Daisy Duke during the Sunday Brunch with Catherine Bach. I'm very excited about it. The Cooter's Place website has all the details and I even get a name drop and a website mention! Great stuff.
This is gonna be a great event that will be a lot of fun. You should really try to attend. I'll be taking tons of pictures and will surely share them here on the blog. If you can't make it but have a question for Daisy, you can email me, leave a comment, or send it to me on twitter. I can't wait to get back to Nashville and Cooter's Place!!
Friday, May 16, 2014
Just when I think I know everything about a particular subject, I'm proven wrong. Last year I wrote a blog claiming to contain information on every Dukes console video game available. I wrote about the ColecoVision game from the Golden Era, and the Playstation, Game Boy, PS2, and X-Box games from the Silver Era. I thought I covered them all. But I was wrong. I was talking with some fellow Dukes fans on twitter when Luxor the Moonprince (@Prince_Luxor) told me about a U.K. produced version of the Dukes on a system I wasn't aware of.
The system is called the Sinclair ZX Spectrum 48k. According to the ol' internets, the original Spectrum was among the first home computers in the United Kingdom and comparable to our Commodore 64s. The 48k was a later model with updated specs.
Luxor told me that the game isn't uncommon and pops up on ebay often. Somehow, after all these years of scouring the great bay filled with e, I've missed this particular piece of memorabilia. There was one on there when I checked and it wasn't in the best shape, but I'd never seen it before and it was cheap so I pounced on it.
Your first thought might be the same as mine...it's a cassette tape! I won't act like I know how this stuff works. I used to think that Michael Jackson was singing Thriller live somewhere every time I hit play on my little brown Fisher Price tape player. I was probably four. I do know from experience that you can unravel a VHS tape and it goes about the length of the Brownsville Area High School from the TV Lab down to the end of the Freshman building and about half way back. Remember that Jeff? The principle wasn't all that happy about that. But how you can get a video game on a cassette tape? I guess it just confuses me because I think of retro games being cartridges...thanks Atari and Nintendo.
The tape is in better shape than the package. The label has a few little stickers on it and something torn off the bottom left.
A logo or something was taken off the bottom. The proper copyright information is on the bottom along with a release year of 1985. The story, controls, scoring, and gameplay are all detailed on the inside of the label. The story mentions Rosco and his police force. Rosco is unfortunaly spelled wrong, (Roscoe) and his force includes Jethro, an ace helicopter pilot, Jake and his veteran monoplane, and Cletus the balloonist. What?!!? 1985 was the last year of the show. Cletus had been off the show for a few years. I wonder is it was just a coincidence that they made a character up named Cletus. It also mentions that you have to watch out for Boss Hogg in his station wagon. Weird stuff.
You know I had to put this cassette into a regular old tape player to see what happens. I uncovered the old stereo in the garage and popped the tape in. Nothing happened. The play button wouldn't press down and I could barley get the tray to open to get the tape back out. I don't know what I expected to happen. Perhaps some secret message containing the whereabouts of a long forgotten cache of hidden Dukes memorabilia would play. A collector can dream.
It only has a label on one side.
Thanks to the wonders of the Internet, I found the World of Spectrum which has ton of information on every game released for the system. They have a page dedicated to the Dukes game with ads, reviews, roms, and screenshots of the game. I borrowed quite a few below.
Here is an ad for the game. This is the same artwork as the Album, but poor Rosco got the boot. The game was apparently released on Saturday 23rd February. Silly non-American way of displaying a date.
The site has the sleeve for Spain's release of the game. It was in a clamshell box as opposed to a cassette box. It would be cool to find this version too.
In the last big video game post, I linked to videos that I made of each game's gameplay. I went to painstaking lengths to procure a driving wheel module for the ColecoVision, but I don't think I can find a Spectrum 48k at the Game Vault. They are opening another location nearby, but I still doubt it. The above gif showing the menu screen is from World of Spectrum. Given the release year, this game seems comparable to Nintendo games rather that Atari and Coleco. The graphics seem years ahead of the first Dukes game.
The General Lee has an 01 on it, and Rosco's car is recognizable. There seem to be a bunch of other random vehicles in the game like hot air balloons, dune buggys, motorcycles, and helicopters. It looks like it might have been another driving game first, and then the Dukes license was added to it.
Luckily, a like minded Dukes enthusiast recorded some gameplay and added it to youtube. The Dixie horn starts the game off. It's worlds above the Coleco game.
World of Spectrum also has several reviews of the game. These are great to read now knowing how far video games have come. Many reviews didn't like that you had to continuously tap a key on the keyboard to accelerate. Another reviewer said up until this game, the greatest achievement of Elite, the company behind the game, was the hologram on their packaging. That's pretty funny. Perhaps that's what was ripped off of my copy. Most reviewers didn't like the game.
Below are several reviews and ads from World of Spectrum.
Tuesday, May 13, 2014
As far as talent reality shows go, I used to like America's Got Talent, but lost interest after David Hasseloff left. But if someone on a talent reality show sings the theme song to our favorite show, by golly I'm gonna let the world know. Jake Worthington sang Waylon's Good Ol' Boys last night on NBC's The Voice. The video is above. I wasn't watching, but Chad text me about it right away. Twitter blew up and here we are. As far as Dukes covers go, this is a pretty darn good one. I now hope this dude wins the show. Good job Jake, we in the Dukes world always appreciate the publicity.
Friday, May 2, 2014
Before I get to the great things I recently bought from Cooter's Place, let's take a minute a think about how lucky we are as Dukes of Hazzard fans to have a place like Cooter's Place. Mickey Mouse fans have Disney World, Superman fans have Metropolis, IL, Steelers fans have Heinz Field, and Dukes of Hazzard fans have Cooter's Place. A museum, gathering place, event center, go-cart track, and gift shop owned by an actual cast member from our favorite show. How is that not mind blowing? There have been several locations, starting in Sperryville, VA, then heading further south to the original Gatlinburg store which has since moved to a bigger locale, and of course the Nashville location. On a normal day you can walk into Cooter's as be overwhelmed by the ammount of Golden Era memorabilia on display. You would also be surprised by the number of new items you can buy. Not just diecast General Lees, but hundreds of t-shirts, signs, golf balls...so many different items. Some days you might wander in and be greeted by Cletus or Enos. Rich Hurst and Sonny Shroyer make several appearances at each store throughout the year. You might even see Ben himself with the lovely Alma. If you you were there on a special day last June, you could see every cast member there. Every Dukes fan out there should visit Cooter's Place. Not just once, but often.
The next beg event to be held at Cooter's Place is coming up on June 14th and 15th, 2014. It's called Rockabilly Saturday Night with special guest Catherine Bach. Daisy and Cooter along with Alma honor Sun Records with stars of Rockabilly music. It will be a great event. I hope to see you there. More info on the event can be found on Cootersplace.com.
Along with great events and appearances, Cooter's Place also offers great Dukes items. They have creative people working hard on new projects. I recently bought a few new pieces that are great additions to the collection.
Contrary to most of the Dukes items I buy, I might actually use these things for what they are made for. I could display them, or I could use them and display them later. First is this Boars Nest beer mug. It's made of glass and printed on both sides.
It's a little hard to make out the logo. I inserted a piece of paper so you could see the printing. It's one of those items that makes you think you visited Hazzard and bought a souvenir. You know I love those. Visiting Cooter's Place is about as close as you can get to visiting Hazzard County.
This is a great 01 wallet. I love the items that only have the 01 on them. I can't wait to see what other items come out...in say June.
It has a big bold 01 on a orange background on both sides.
The inside has multiple pockets for all kind of good stuff. Though it looks somewhat empty.
Much better. Wonder if I could convince someone to add a Dukes Collector card into every wallet at Cooter's. Maybe I'll put one in them next time I go. Or perhaps Brad will do a covert mission for me.
Speaking of business cards. This is such a great piece. It's a Dukes of Hazzard 01 business card holder. If only I had Dukes of Hazzard 01 business cards to put inside it.
They look so great in there. I've actually been looking for a good card holder. Then this popped up on their site. Fate? Perhaps. I'll buy another one down the road to display. I'm using this thing everyday. It is just so perfect.
They just offered these new keychains for sale. These are such a good idea, you'd think they should have always been available.
The back of each keychain has Cooter's logo as well as the address and phone number of both locations.
The artwork used on each of these is very nice. The General Lee has its vector wheels, push bar, everything you's expect. This is a great representation of our favorite car.
What I like most about these kychains, is they didn't just stop at the General. Cooter's Tow Truck is the next obvious choice. It is Cooter's Place after all. Another great rendition.
Daisy's Dixie Jeep is another great keychain. No common mistakes on this one. Larger companies like Johnny Lightning often print "Daisy" on the hood, but people that know and love Dukes made these products and sure didn't make mistakes.
The last in the series is Rosco's patrol car. Sure, this isn't a diecast replica, but it is great to see Rosco's car in the correct 1978 Dodge Monaco. All of these keychains look great. If you have a full size replica of any of these cars, these would make the perfect add on to your keys. I'm talking to you Sam and Jim. You guys have to buy this Rosco keychain for your patrol car. And all you General Lee owners should buy the General Lee keychain, Heath, Matt, Dave, it's a no-brainer.
The next item is also a no-brainer. It's a musical Dixie horn keychain. Push the button, hear Dixie. Perfect. With the show coming back to TV (in glorious HD, thanks CMT!) new young fans are discovering the Dukes. They want to play too. Several people have asked me if an item like this is available. Recently Janessa contacted me about a bicycle horn for her daughter. This would work perfect. It is loud enough and the horn sounds good. If someone else hit this button around me, I would probably check my phone to see if I had a text message. Yup.
The final item I picked up is a doozy. This is the 35th Anniversary Dukes of Hazzard Cooter's Place Commemorative Coin. That's a long title. I may have made it up. The coin is dated 2014 and has an image of Ben on the front.
The back has a picture of Cooter's tow truck as well as the web address. This is a really cool unique collectible that Alma came up with. To my knowledge, this is the only item out there that commemorates the 35th anniversary.
This coin is much bigger than I expected. I was expecting it to be around the size of a quarter. As you can see this bad boy dwarfs a silver dollar. It is heavy and shiny. It is really a striking piece. I bet even coin collectors would love to add this to their collection. Doesn't Ben look great next to George Washington and Dwight Eisenhower? Three great Americans there.
A lot of the time the items I feature on the blog are rare and I fight tooth and nail to get them (outbid someone on ebay). All of these great pieces are readily available at both Cooter's Place locations as well as online at Cootersplace.com. You could call them at 615-872-8358 and Jacqueline, Michael, or any of the great staff would love to take great care of you. Tell 'em Larry sent you.