1 9 7 4 – 1 9 7 5 (USA)
8 x 30 minute episodes
“I spent my whole life avoidin’ work,” said Zack Wheeler. “Don’t underestimate the power of laziness.” Words to live by. And Zack did, much to the disgust of his children.
The kindest things his kids had to say about him was that he was “a worthless no-good bum”.
Zack abandoned his kids after their mother died, then came back home (Lamont, Texas) to sponge off them.
Still, as he said, “Lord knows I love you kids more’n anything in the world – even a stiff drink,” and deep down they thought he was pretty terrific too.
The ABC series debuted on Friday 13 September 1974, and veteran character actor Jack Elam snorted, belched, whined and guffawed his way through eight 30-minute episodes as Zack.
Gary Busey, Mark Hamill (pre-Star Wars), Karen Oberdiear and Tony Becker played the four Wheeler children who were all in a hurry to grow up – Truckie, Doobie, Boo and T.J.
The theme tune, Illegal Smile, was composed and sung by John Prine.
Wailin’ Wheeler Is Dead | The X-Rated Movie | The Accident | The Twister | The Bookmobile | The Music Box | The Call | The Rebel