Ernest Scared Stupid (1991)

Know whut I mean?

movie poster Jim Varney invented his pea-brained Ernest character for a series of "Hey Vern!" tv-ads in the South. Then the ads found a national audience, then Hollywood movies.
The first was "Ernest Goes To Camp" (1987) as an inept camp counselor with Iron Eyes Cody as the camp's resident Indian, facing down real estate developers who wanted to level the camp.
Next was "Ernest Saves Christmas," then "Ernest Goes To Jail" - a prison-movie spoof with Randall Tex Cobb and B-movie great Charles Napier as the prison warden.

The following year "Ernest Scared Stupid" came out. Essentially the same plot as Troll movie posterTroll (1986), with little Harry Potter Jr. of that movie replaced by Ernest T. Worrel, who has accidentally released a 200-year-old curse in his home town. And where Harry Potter Jr. (Noah Hathaway) had help from magic and a good witch (June/Anne Lockhart) in 1986, Ernest is on his own, with only Eartha Kitt (Batman's 1966 Catwoman) around to help with the various monsters and demons.

Jim Varney's movies, mostly as Ernest:
* Hey, Vern It's My Family Album (1985 video) comic 1-hour look at the Wacky Worrell Clan, video included ten classic "Hey Vern" ads
* Dr. Otto & The Riddle of the Gloom Beam (1986) sci-fi spoof, with Varney playing all the characters including the hero & the villain.
* Ernest Goes To Camp (1987)
* Ernest Saves Christmas (1988)
* Fast Food (1989) Varney as the villain
* The Rousters (1990) about carny workers
* Ernest Goes To Jail (1990)
* Ernest Scared Stupid (1991)
* Ernest Rides Again (1993), on a Revolutionary War cannon!
* Wilder Napalm (1993) as a castmember in a Dennis Quaid, Arliss Howard movie
* The Beverly Hillbillies (1993) as Jed Clampett (Buddy Ebsen has a cameo as detective Barnaby Jones)
* Ernest Goes To School (1994) high school janitor Ernest goes back to school as a student to finally get his diploma, aided by an experimental brain-boosting potion from two science teachers
* Toy Story and Toy Story 2 (1995, 1999) voice of Slinky Dog
* Slam Dunk Ernest (1995 direct-to-video) magic shoes transform Ernest into a hoop star. Cast includes Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
* The Expert (1995) in cast of low-budget Jeff Speakman action/revenge film
* Snowboard Academy (1996) Corey Haim movie filmed at a resort near Montreal. Cast includes Varney, Brigitte Nielsen, Joe Flaherty
* 100 Proof (1996) two prostitutes go on killing rampage when one's nasty father (Varney) abuses her. Not a comedy
* 3 Ninjas: High Noon At Mega Mountain (1997, fourth in the Three Ninjas movie series) as bad guy employed by Medusa (Loni Anderson).
* Ernest In The Army (1997) assigned to drive a tank. What could go wrong?
* Ernest Goes To Africa (1997) accused of stealing a Prince's diamonds
* Daddy & Them (1999) in cast of R-rated comedy as Aunt Hazel
* Treehouse Hostage (1999) as an inept counterfeiter captured by a kid. But it turns out the school principal is the head of the ring. Richard Kline
* Atlantis, The Lost Empire (2001, voice only) as Jebidiah Allardyce 'Cookie' Farnsworth
Jim Varney died recently and I don't think he appeared in any other movies. All of the "Ernest" movies including "Dr. Otto" were directed by John R. Cherry III, who also directed the Mummy spoof "All New Adventures of Laurel & Hardy: For Love Or Mummy" (1998, starring Bronson Pinchot & Gailard Sartain as L&H), Elvira, Mistress Of The Dark (1988), and "Bug Buster" (1999, with Anne Lockhart, Randy Quaid, Bernie Kopell, George Takei & James Doohan

Thinking of getting a pickup truck?
Helpful hints from Varney's book, ASK ERNEST

Truck Bed:
* Chairs for the kids to sit on
* Several empty oil cans
* Jumper cables
* A coon hound
* Gun rack, with umbrella
* Four on the floor
* Decorative screen on back window, like a rodeo scene, migratin' geese, or an armadillo
* Mud flaps
* Side rails
* Lotsa runnin' lights
* Most important (read my lips): B-u-m-p-e-r S-t-i-c-k-e-r-s. Bumper stickers help a man make a statement about who he is. Two of the very best ones are "I brake for Vern" and "Redneck is right."

"Jim Varney" availability on video, and on DVD from

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Why do they call them mobile homes when nobody ever moves 'em around?

Complete list of TV & movies for Jim Varney, on the Internet Movie Data Base website

Happy Halloween

Bill Laidlaw. All rights reserved. Plagerized stuff clearly indicated. You might be a redneck if the richest person in your neighborhood lives in a double-wide