Friday, August 29, 2008

Hair Dare: It's all about the hair

Wowzers, what a week. We round out our full week of coverage of the 2008 Hair Dare Dukes Weekend with a look at the cause at the heart of it all: the fight against cancer.

Traditionally, the show has raised money for the work of the Canadian Cancer Society. This year, the funds zeroed in on a scholarship fund for a student who is surviving cancer.

Some folks took pledges to make their own "hair dare." Every year, show organizer Paul Harrington vows to shave his head to raise funds, and his friend Glenn Call of Massachusetts generally follows suit, as he did again this year. Tanya, fiancee of Paul's son Lance (and shown on the left in the photo below), added her own dare: she wanted to get her hair cut, anyway, but she kicked it up a notch by saying she'd actually shave her head if she could collect $500. It was close! Was that a bit of relief in her voice, as she told BRBTV the amount fell a little short, her hair so sweetly nipped into the bob she wanted? Hmmm ....

At the very end of the event, at 4:30 p.m. Sunday, Paul invited Felix Silla to the stage to do the honors on his annual balding ...

Is there something ironic about having Cousin Itt of "The Addams Family" cut your hair? We won't say that Silla didn't seem to enjoy it!

Byron Cherry is amused! He got his turn when it came time for Glenn's hair to be cut. In fact, all the event's special guests took a shot: Silla and Cherry, and Don Pedro Colley and BRB.

Here, Paul's parents (his mother a cancer survivor) join him for a special shot.

Photos by Billie Rae Bates / BRBTV
Copying with credit is OK; a link would be grand
More event photos can always be found in BRB's Yahoo group

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Hair Dare: Other great stuff

In today's post we take a glimpse at some of the other fun stuff that went on over the weekend in Leamington, Ontario, Canada, for the Hair Dare Dukes Weekend. Tomorrow, to round out this special week of coverage, we highlight the cause: the benefit for a student scholarship.

Country music singer Traci Kennedy was part of the entertainment on Sunday.

Charles Harling of Ontario is the man behind the pocket bikes, including these little "01" cuties, one of which has been featured in the past on this blog. A Detroit native who also owned a home in Saginaw, Michigan, Harling is about to relocate his business to British Columbia. To inquire about the pocket bikes, you can reach him at

Will "The Voice Man" Rodgers and singer Billy Stephenson, both of Tennessee, took the stage on Saturday and Sunday, returning to the show from last year.

Rodgers, who's been mentioned on this blog a couple times and who served as the editor of BRB's recently published "Destination: Dallas" reference guide, has a wealth of knowledge about a lot of great classic TV shows, particularly animated series. He can voice any character from "The Dukes of Hazzard," "Dallas," "Batman: The Animated Series," "All in the Family" and a variety of other shows. He even perfected an impersonation of Heath Ledger's Joker for his performances this weekend. Look for more info soon on a special project he's been collaborating on with BRBTV!

Kevin Webb of Tennessee not only brought the Chickasaw County Sheriff's car you saw in yesterday's post, he also brought a couple other interesting items. Above, he poses with Byron Cherry and the specialty item he offers for sale. This custom item features photos, from left to right, of Cletus Hogg, Coy and Vance Duke, Sheriff Rosco P. Coltrane and Flash, Boss Hogg, Bo and Luke and Daisy Duke at the center, then Uncle Jesse Duke, Cooter Davenport, Deputy Enos Strate and Sheriff Ed Little. Along with the nice car photos below the character shots, there's a graphic treatment of the show's title and years of airing, along with the listing of the characters. All of the photos are quality, glossy and full-color, in custom matting, and the piece is designed for a fan to collect signatures on. Kevin starts you out with the signatures of the two deceased cast members, Sorrell Booke and Denver Pyle, which he electronically transferred to the photos from other items he owns (including the one you'll see below!). The piece comes in a sleek black frame (it's out of the frame here so Cherry can sign the photo of Coy and Vance). Kevin sells this unique piece for $75 -- email BRB if you're interested! It sure is a one-of-a-kind!

Here, Kevin shows his trunk lid, which is quite a rare item, as it includes not one but two signatures of Denver Pyle! Look to the right and you'll see that our beloved Uncle Jesse signed it once in 1991, then signed it again, right below, in 1993! "As far as I know," Kevin tells BRBTV, "this is the only one he's signed." Indeed ... if only Pyle and Booke could still be here enjoying "Dukes" shows like this, along with the other cast members ...

Photos by Billie Rae Bates / BRBTV
Copying with credit is OK; a link would be grand
More event photos can always be found in BRB's Yahoo group

BRBTV News Blog Blip: We've got to break into this weeklong "Dukes"-related coverage with an item that just can't seem to wait for Monday: We've joked before on this blog about how some of our BRBTV stars go on to daytime soaps ... well, that's not the only trend we're seeing. ABC has just released the roster for the next "Dancing With the Stars," and following in the footsteps of Priscilla Presley of "Dallas" (and really, Stephanie Beacham of "Dynasty" and "The Colbys," in the U.K.) are Ted McGinley of "Dynasty" and Susan Lucci of "Dallas." We might just have to tune in!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Hair Dare: Don Pedro Colley and Byron Cherry

Don Pedro Colley and Byron Cherry can always be counted on for two distinct things: Colley always has a good story on hand about his classic acting days, and Cherry never sits still. Our weeklong coverage of the sixth annual Hair Dare Dukes Weekend in Leamington, Ontario, Canada, continues with a closer look at our own Sheriff Ed Little and Coy Duke of "The Dukes of Hazzard."

Don Pedro Colley lives in Oregon, in an A-frame house his father built in the 1960s. Adding to his quality of life: a six-foot in diameter hot tub he built himself in the 1980s from California Redwood. No wonder he retreats to this oasis and only does a few of these kinds of shows a year nowadays.

We had a chance to chat with Colley at last year's show (see our August 15, 2007 post), but this year we found out more about how that whole Sheriff Little thing came about.

It was a 1967 episode of "Daktari" -- his very first screen credit -- that laid the groundwork. In the episode, "Killer Tribe," Colley was guest-starring as tribesman Mtola in "chest-high weeds." In one action-packed scene, he says, "I slide down the embankment, roll over, and the camera turns and sees what's chasing me." Things didn't go quite as planned, though, but the classically trained Colley improvised with the logistics and saved the scene.

Years later, he got a call from the show's producer, Leonard Kaufman. "I really didn't have an agent at the time," Colley says. Kaufman began to describe for Colley a part on this one particular little show, "The Dukes of Hazzard," a part that at the time was called Sheriff Lucas. "I never have forgotten what you did for me," Kaufman told him.

During his audition, Colley burst into the room strongly and took an "ice-cold" Sheriff Little stance. He didn't have the attention of the show's bigwigs, at first, though. They were still looking down at their papers. He waited. He wasn't going anywhere, after all. When one, executive producer Paul Picard, finally looked up and met his "gaze" (to put it politely), "the pen slipped out of his hand, the piece of paper fell on the floor," Colley laughs.

"After the interview was over, I took off my hat, shook his hand," Colley says. "The interview was over -- I was out of character now."

That regular gig put Colley's career into a more comfy position, but this is a man with a wealth of experience. He also reminisced about the two-hour episode of "Starsky and Hutch" that he did in 1977, "Starsky and Hutch on Playboy Island," featuring someone else we know, Joan Collins. And later, as our group had dinner, Colley regaled us with stories of Jack Palance and others from his earlier days in stage productions. Fun, indeed.

In Saturday morning's parade, Byron Cherry and Billie Rae Bates rode in the Hazzard County Sheriff's boat, while Felix Silla rode with event organizer Paul Harrington in the General Lee in the lead, and Colley rode in this most-appropriate number: a gleaming Chickasaw County Sheriff's car.

John Thomas Staton of Ontario had no trouble convincing Don to don his former garb (the helmet, of course -- not the shirt!).

Time to switch gears on the General ... Why, what's that? A sea of Coys? Evidently our show organizer got a good deal on them! How delightful, for an event featuring the real-life Coy Duke!

Here, Cherry watches a video with Kevin Webb of Tennessee (owner of that aforementioned -- and twice pictured -- Chickasaw County car), while Cherry's charming blond assistant, Brooke, looks on! (The video? It depicts Kevin jumping a clunker car. You know how it is.)

The amazing Zealand (known to some as Andrew Watt -- but not to us!!!) has made the trip all the way from New Zealand two years in a row to hang out with us.

"I bet Bo and Luke never signed a cracker!" Cherry quipped at Friday night's dinner with the stars.

If you ask us, the boat was the primo ride of Saturday morning's parade down the main street of town.

Remember that thing we said about not sitting still?

On Sunday afternoon, Cherry took a turn in the dunk tank. Kids lined up from all around (especially the tiny, tiny ones!). "C'mon!" Cherry taunted from the tank. "I wanna go swimming! It's hot out here!"

"Dunk a Duke! Dunk a Duke!" he continued. "C'mon, you little Dukes -- dunk a big Duke!"

... And he was down for the count. Right away. By a little kid, no less. Of course, we can't say that every single kid in line didn't get a little help from the show organizer! Anything for a good cause.

Photos by Billie Rae Bates / BRBTV
Copying with credit is OK; a link would be grand
More event photos can always be found in BRB's Yahoo group

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Hair Dare: Felix Silla

Our weeklong coverage of this past weekend's Hair Dare Dukes event in Leamington, Ontario, Canada, continues ...

Felix Silla is a new face to this 6-year-old charity event. Perhaps best-known as Cousin Itt of "The Addams Family," as well as Twiki on "Buck Rogers in the 25th Century," Silla also starred in an episode of a little show we call "The Dukes of Hazzard."

BRBTV got a chance to chat with Silla a bit over the weekend, at the next table over in the fairgrounds building. Born in Rome, Silla lives in Las Vegas these days, he told us. He's had quite an amazing career, portraying everything from a Talosian on the classic "Star Trek" episode "The Cage" to a child gorilla on "Planet of the Apes" and Baby New Year on an episode of the classic "Night Gallery." Did you know he was the polka-dotted horse in "H.R. Pufnstuf"?

Silla also appeared at this year's Motor City Comic Con, where Hair Dare organizer Paul Harrington was able (after "a couple years," of asking, actually, he said) to convince him to come to Canada for the show. Silla brought an array of fun photos to sign, from many of his popular roles.

Silla poses for us outside the host hotel, the Comfort Inn of Leamington, on Friday evening.

Here, Silla gets set up at the dinner with the stars on Friday night, joined by Don Pedro Colley ("Sheriff Little"), left, and Byron Cherry ("Coy Duke").

Silla brought his own camera to the show to get some good shots. He's shown here with Billy Stephenson, a Tennessee-based singer who performed at the show, on Saturday morning before the parade got underway.

Silla's table display included his original call sheet from his episode of "The Dukes," which was called "Strange Visitor to Hazzard" and was at the tail-end of the show's run. In the episode he plays an alien visitor who hides out in the back of the General Lee as the three Duke cousins are out crabapple-picking in Skunk Hollow (believe it!). The threesome fondly call him "Little Cousin" and take him back to the Duke farm.

Silla said it took four days to shoot the episode, and it was a chilly December. The date on the call sheet is December 7, 1984. The episode aired on January 25, 1985. Silla reminisced with us about that tannish alien getup he had to wear, which included some careful matching makeup around his eyes.

(You've gotta love a call sheet that lists Flash as playing ... Flash! Rawfff!!!!!!!)

BRBTV asked if he's still got a lot of these kind of call sheets from "The Addams Family." No, actually, he doesn't, though he does have quite a few from "Star Wars: Return of the Jedi," where he was an Ewok.

Silla remains in contact with his "Addams Family" co-stars. "There are only four of us left," he pointed out, himself, John Astin, "and the two kids," Lisa Loring and Ken Weatherwax.

You can learn more about Silla, and even purchase his photos, at his official website.

Photos by Billie Rae Bates / BRBTV
Copying with credit is OK; a link would be grand
More event photos can always be found in BRB's Yahoo group

Monday, August 25, 2008

Hair Dare: Yes, there were cars!

It's Monday on the BRBTV News Blog, and that means, for this particular week, that it's the very first day of coverage of the annual Hair Dare Dukes Weekend fundraising event in beautiful Leamington, Ontario, Canada. The event happened this past weekend, celebrating "The Dukes of Hazzard" and raising scholarship cash for a student surviving cancer.

We're starting out the week with the obvious. The show is subtitled a "car show and swap meet," after all. And yes, the interesting show cars were in abundance. Now, you've all seen General Lees before (and often on this very blog!), and there were certainly some General Lees at this event, but we're going to go with the diversity angle this time, highlighting a few of the other cars we beheld ...

How's this for interesting? The owner of this little cutie had an blazin' orange "01" van at last year's Hair Dare show (you can see it in our August 17, 2007 post). He tells BRBTV the van has been scrapped, but his fabulous "Dukes" memorabilia now lines the inside of this "Baby General Lee." You can see ... it's an impressive assortment, and we were mighty impressed by the raised lettering on the doors ...

Cuz' Don of western Michigan (whose police cruiser is featured on page 176 of BRB's "Them Dukes! Them Dukes!" reference guide, he's quick to point out!) was kind enough to give BRB a lift from the hotel to the Leamington Fairgrounds in his General. Now, BRB doesn't own her own General, you understand, so it's always a thrill.

The inside of this Lee? Yea, it's a work in progress ...

Natalie of Buffalo, New York, was at the show with her "Starsky and Hutch" Torino. Here she chats with Don Pedro Colley, Sheriff Little of "The Dukes."

Cue the "Magnum, P.I." theme song ... and we wouldn't have minded seeing its hunky star, too!

There were a couple Chickasaw County sheriff's cars in attendance: this one, along with a beauty on display right next to Don Pedro Colley inside the fairgrounds building.

And we had to mention the return of the smack-a-wreck, so aptly billed as a form of "anger management." All for the cause, you know, all for the cause ...

Stay tuned all week long, when we'll take a closer look at the show and even talk with special guests Felix Silla, the aforementioned Colley and the always-entertaining Byron ("Coy Duke") Cherry!

Photos by Billie Rae Bates / BRBTV
Copying with credit is OK; a link would be grand
More event photos can always be found in BRB's Yahoo group

Friday, August 22, 2008

Come on out to the Hair Dare Dukes Weekend

BRB is at the Hair Dare Dukes event for the weekend, in lovely Ontario, Canada! If you are an Ontario resident, come out and join us! If you're not, make the drive! And look for a whole week's worth of coverage of this fabulous charity event, all next week in the BRBTV News Blog ...

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Bits 'n' Pieces: "Dukes" and a little Bat-animated

Some "Dukes of Hazzard" analogies in the review of the new Dodge Challenger in Merry Ole England:

Al Gore as Boss Hogg? Them Duke boys in a Toyota Prius? It's just two of the playful notes in this "Dukes of Hazzard" spoof:

Bruce Timm and Andrea Romano of our beloved "Batman: The Animated Series" et. al. discuss the upcoming animated "Wonder Woman" flick (watch the trailer -- it's sa-weet):

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Chiller Theatre looks like a thriller with its roster of classic stars

Holy-heckin'-cow, it's like a classic TV star extravaganza! And fans of the BRBTV shows have lots to love! It's the Chiller Theatre, and it's coming up soon, in October. Here's a look at who's planning to be at the New Jersey expo to meet and greet:

- Linda Evans: OK, how wild is that? Since when does our own Krystle Carrington of "Dynasty" ever do an event like this? Crazy good, we say.

- George Kennedy: Our commanding Carter McKay of "Dallas" doesn't exactly do the con thing, either. Fab!

- Morgan Fairchild: She was one of our Jenna Wades on "Dallas," if only for a second! She certainly ups the wattage of the event.

- John Schneider: Our own Bo Duke of "The Dukes of Hazzard." Meow.

- Catherine Bach: Sweet little Daisy Duke plans to make the trip, too.

- David Hedison: Sam Dexter of "Dynasty" and the striking Roger Langdon of its spinoff "The Colbys."

- Burt Reynolds: The man who took on the mantle of Boss Hogg in the 2005 "Dukes of Hazzard" movie.

See the rest of this divine smorgasbord here:

Chiller Theatre, which began in 1995, happens in Parsippany, New Jersey, on October 24-26. General admission is $25, but you save a lot by snagging tickets in advance.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Hazzard in the Hills: More of the fun

In our second of two parts of our coverage of the first-ever Hazzard in the Hills event in lovely Helen, Georgia, we offer a few more glimpses of the fun this past Saturday.

A Tennessee State Trooper, too? The event drew a wide variety of classic cars.

You can't call it the "Dukes" without a little Dixie presence!

BRB couldn't resist getting a shot of these two classic Camaros, since her bro has a beautiful dark-green and white '69 Camaro just like this second one!

Don Schisler, who served as transportation director of the series, was on hand to chat with fans. He is a kind and personable fellow, and he looooovvvves talking the "Dukes" (see our October 17, 2007 post). He also brought his lifelong friend, Don Toth, shown here on the left with him. Both have worked on a variety of Hollywood projects. Schisler even told BRBTV how he worked on five episodes of "Dallas." He couldn't recall the season or year, but he remembered meeting Larry Hagman. "He was so nice," Schisler said (echoing the sentiment of virtually everyone BRB spoke to in the production of the "Destination: Dallas" reference guide!). Schisler's job on "Dallas" was working the camera car, or insert car, as it's often referred to on the call sheet. He was towing vehicles that were holding actors in conversation for a scene.

Schisler's friend Don Toth, meanwhile, currently works for Channel 2 in Atlanta, and has worked for them for a number of years, ever since he helped them out technically in covering the Oklahoma City bombing in the mid-'90s. Toth also has worked on movies such as "Robocop" and the Jack Nicholson flicks "Terms of Endearment" and "The Witches of Eastwick." He remembers Nicholson being a "sweetheart," a genuinely nice celebrity when not every celebrity is. "He's such a personable fellow," Toth told BRBTV.

Toth lives in Metro Atlanta, as does Schisler and his wife. The two friends grew up together in Dearborn, Michigan, where Schisler worked for the Ford Motor Co. for more than two decades. It was more than appropriate, BRB told him on Saturday, that he was wearing a shirt depicting cars -- because this is a man who has made cars his life! And his contribution to the beautiful blazin' orange TV icon, the General Lee, will forever be appreciated!

Photos by Billie Rae Bates / BRBTV

Copying with credit is OK; a link would be grand!

For high-resolution copies, just email

Monday, August 18, 2008

Hazzard in the Hills: An overview

It was a great time on Saturday at the first-ever Hazzard in the Hills event, hosted by avid "Dukes of Hazzard" fan Chad Fullerton of northern Georgia. Set in the lovely "Alpine Village" of Helen, Georgia, the one-day event featured special guest Sonny ("Deputy Enos Strate") Shroyer signing autographs for fans and taking an honored seat in the parade down the main street of town. Also meeting and greeting were Tom Sarmento of the Hazzard County Stunt Team, authors Jon Holland and that silly redhead chick we know, Billie Rae Bates, as well as Don Schisler, transportation director for the series' first five episodes here in Georgia and a man who was instrumental in the choice of that fabulous Dodge Charger as the General Lee (see our October 17, 2007 post for more on Mr. Schisler).

Today on the BRBTV News Blog we offer you a photo glimpse of the fun, and it's part 1 of 2. Tune in tomorrow, because we'll have more, including a tidbit or two on Don Schisler!

Kindly host Chad Fullerton takes to the microphone to welcome folks to the Hazzard in the Hills event. Chad worked hard for many months to make this event a reality, and he was certainly blessed to be able to hold it in the sweet community of Helen.

It's not every day you see that rascally Boss Hogg in a crowd, but not only did the event feature one of him, it had a Hazzard County sheriff or two walking around, as well!

A parade of classic cars, with Sonny Shroyer as the guest of honor, made its way down the main street of Helen at noon.

Photos by Billie Rae Bates / BRBTV

Copying with credit is OK; a link would be grand!

For high-resolution copies, just email