by Elizabeth Stoddard
You can tell that King of the Hill had been on for a good period of time given the episodes in this 12th season, its second to last. Hank (voiced by show creator Mike Judge) is often a supporting character, with many episodes based around son Bobby (Pamela Adlon, Louie) and wife Peggy (Kathy Najimy). A few are even built around Hank’s friend Dale (Austinite Johnny Hardwick) and the Souphanousinphones, who live next door to the Hills.
Season 12, which aired 2007–8, includes a number of memorable episodes: Hank’s bitter father Cotton dies in “Death Picks Cotton,” Peggy’s murder-mystery train birthday is almost ruined in “Strangeness on a Train,” Hank accidentally wins a game for Nebraska in “Suite Smells of Excess,” Kahn (Toby Huss, Halt and Catch Fire) discovers the fun of karaoke in “Pour Some Sugar on Kahn,” and Minh (Lauren Tom, Futurama) joins the Arlen gun club in “The Minh Who Knew Too Much.”
For me, the standout episode is “Lady and Gentrification,” in which Hank’s co-worker Enrique’s neighborhood is gentrified by hipsters Peggy sells houses to. It was timely when it originally aired, and it’s still relevant now.
There are also a few duds in this bunch, but even a bad episode of King of the Hill has some redeemable quality. It may be a subtle dig at Austin (sometimes a more obvious hit), a secondary storyline, or one laugh-out-loud hilarious comment. Now as far as how LuAnne can be pregnant through this entire season and not show by the end of it… well, that’s a bit more questionable.
No special features on the Olive Films DVD set, just the 22 episodes.
King of the Hill season 12 is now available on DVD from Olive Films.