The Beverly Hillbillies episode with Scruggs and Flatt: Jed Throws A Wingding

The Beverly Hillbillies: Jed Throws A Wingding

Uploaded by on Feb 23, 2012

The Beverly Hillbillies is one of the funniest and most inspired TV comedies of all time! The show was ranked #1 and attracted as many as 60 million viewers per week! The Clampett Clan includes Buddy Ebsen (Jed), Irene Ryan (“Granny”), Max Baer Jr. (Jethro), Donna Douglas (Elly May). Also stars Raymond Bailey (Milburn Drysdale), and Nancy Kulp (Jane Hathaway).

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The theme song “The Ballad of Jed Clampett” was written by producer and writer Paul Henning and originally performed by bluegrass artists Flatt and Scruggs. The song was sung by Jerry Scoggins (backed by Flatt and Scruggs) over the opening and end credits of each episode. It was #44 on the music charts in 1962 and a #1 country hit. Flatt and Scruggs also had another Billboard country top ten hit with the comic “Pearl, Pearl, Pearl,” an ode to the feminine charms of Miss Pearl Bodine who was featured in the episode “Jed Throws a Wingding,” the first of several Flatt and Scruggs appearances on the show.

The six main cast members participated on a 1963 Columbia Records soundtrack album which featured original song numbers in character. Additionally, Ebsen, Ryan and Douglas each made a few solo recordings following the show’s success, including Ryan’s 1966 novelty single, “Granny’s Miniskirt”.

The series generally featured no country music beyond the bluegrass banjo theme song, although country star Roy Clark and the team of Flatt and Scruggs occasionally played on the program. Pop singer Pat Boone appeared on one episode as himself, with the premise that he hailed from the same area of the country as the Clampetts (Boone is, in fact, a native of Jacksonville, Florida although he spent most of his childhood in Tennessee).

The 1989 film UHF featured a “Weird Al” Yankovic parody music video, “Money for Nothing/Beverly Hillbillies*”, combining “The Ballad of Jed Clampett” and Dire Straits’ “Money for Nothing”.

Because of the show’s high ratings, CBS asked creator Paul Henning to pen two more folksy comedies, spawning a mini-genre of rural sitcoms during the 1960s. Petticoat Junction featured an extended family, including three pretty young women of marrying age, running a small hotel in the isolated rural town of Hooterville. Green Acres flipped the Clampetts’ fish-out-of-water concept by depicting two city sophisticates moving to Hooterville, which was populated by oddball country bumpkins.

Certain actors appeared on more than one of these series: * Bea Benaderet, who had played Jethro’s mother during the first season of The Beverly Hillbillies, was the mother of the family on Petticoat Junction. * Linda Kaye Henning, who provided the voiceover for the Beverly Hillbillies character Jethrine, portrayed Benaderet’s daughter Betty Jo Bradley on Petticoat Junction (the only female who remained all seven seasons). * Edgar Buchanan, who starred in all 222 episodes of Petticoat Junction and guest-starred in 17 episodes of Green Acres, also guested in three episodes of The Beverly Hillbillies, always as the character Uncle Joe Carson. * Charles Lane played Homer Bedloe, vice president of the C. & F. W. Railroad, on both shows. He also played an apartment landlord to Jane Hathaway (“Foster Phinney”) during the 1970–71 season. * Sam Drucker, played by Frank Cady, of both Petticoat Junction and Green Acres, also appeared in several episodes of the Beverly Hillbillies. * Several animal actors trained by Frank Inn, including Higgins the dog, also moved between series as needed.

Despite the actor cross-overs and the character Uncle Joe Carson’s multiple appearances (which made it clear that the three shows were set in the same fictional universe), the two Hooterville series retained identities that were distinct from The Beverly Hillbillies.

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