Sketchbook Update: Duck Dynasty

Duck Dynstay "Si Robertson" sketch by Cedric Hohnstadt

Lately I’ve been enjoying A&E’s hit show Duck Dynasty. We “cut the cord” and dropped cable a couple of years ago but I recently caught some episodes in a hotel room and watched a few more on the show’s website. I think I’m hooked, and might have to pick up a season on DVD.

Normally I’m not much of a fan of “reality” TV shows but this one is different. I recently read an article that described Duck Dynasty as a reality show that feels almost like a sitcom, and I have to agree. There are colorful characters, sitcom-y storylines, and lots of funny zingers, all wrapped up in a wholesome family-friendly package. The main difference is that the characters appear to be real people more or less playing themselves. Despite their scruffy beards and redneck ways, for the most part you laugh with them rather than at them.

I know that “reality” TV is often an illusion, with lots of writers and producers orchestrating things behind the scenes. This is the first time, at least that I’ve noticed, that the two formulas of “reality TV” and “sitcom” have been blended so successfully.

The most popular character seems to be the eccentric, cranky-but-loveable Uncle Si. He never goes anywhere without his plastic tea glass, which was given to him by his mother when he left to serve in Vietnam. He is constantly saying “Hey!” and calling everybody Jack. How can you resist drawing a guy like that?

I’ve noticed Si is one of those people who “talks with his hands”, but often while keeping his elbows in. So I tried to incorporate that into the pose.