Here’s everything we know about the rumored ‘King of the Hill’ revival

king of the hill revival
King of the Hill / 20th Television

King of the Hill, the animated series created by Mike Judge and Greg Daniels, originally ran for 13 seasons on Fox from 1997 through 2010. And yet, despite that impressive run, fans have never stopped hoping that the beloved series would be brought back in some form — especially since Judge, Daniels, and company have been teasing a revival for years.

Now, it seems like a revival is closer than ever to fruition.

In a new Hollywood Reporter profile, Daniels and Judge discussed their newly-minted animation company, Bandera Entertainment, which currently has over a dozen animated series in the works. And while the piece states that “they’re not ready to share official details” yet, the slate does indeed include the return of King of the Hill.

Without the particulars, it’s impossible to know what stage of development the series is in, but in the meantime, we can glean over a timeline of everything that has previously been leaked about the series.

2017: The revival is first mentioned

The first rumblings of a King of the Hill revival happened back on Aug. 8, 2017, when Judge and Daniels revealed they had discussed the possibility with Fox executives.

“We have had preliminary conversations with Greg and Mike,” Fox Television Group chairman and CEO Dana Walden told Variety. “I would like to explore that. We had a very preliminary conversation about that. Given what’s going on in the country, I think they had a point of view about how those characters would respond.”

“It was really just a first, exploratory, ‘Are you excited about this?'” Walden added. “They were both excited about it, but they’re both very busy individually, so it’s about finding time.”

2018: Adult Bobby?

By March 2018, when reboot and revival mania was in full swing, Judge had a conversation with Rotten Tomatoes where he let it slip that he was planning to age up the characters — including, yes, an adult Bobby Hill.

“It would have to have a passage of time,” Judge explained. “People have grown up. I think The Simpsons are so iconic just the way they’re drawn, you can keep Bart that same age for 60 years. Our characters, it was starting to strain a little bit to have Bobby still be that age for that long.”

“Two hundred and seventy-five episodes wasn’t enough,” he joked. “We’ve talked about a way to bring it back. I think it would have to be different.”

2020: The project is in limbo

Daniels spoke with PopCulture.com in a March 25, 2020 interview in which he updated fans on the revival status. Unfortunately, he admitted that the previous discussions with Fox had fallen through because the network wasn’t prepared to move forward at the level he and Judge felt the show deserved.

“We thought that they would be excited to just order it,” Daniels elaborated. “At the moment, there is no plan for it. The studio was sold to Disney now, I guess, so it would be a Disney show, I think, in the future. But we do have a plan for it and it’s pretty funny. So maybe one day.”

“I mean, that was a wonderful show to work on,” he added. “Yeah, that would be a super fun reboot. I feel like that is easier to reboot because you can get all the characters and they all look the same.”

2021: A former writer lets it slip

During a March 17 Reddit AMA, former King of the Hill writer Brent Forrester — whose television writing credits include The Simpsons and The Office — was asked about the status of the revival. And his response certainly got King of the Hill fans worked into a frenzy.

“I am sure Greg Daniels and Mike Judge will murder me for sharing this but… HELL YES,” wrote Forrester. “They are in hot negotiations to bring back King of the Hill. The Trump administration made it suddenly very relevant again. The characters have all aged 15 years.”

“The project is sooooo good. OK, I’ve said too much,” he added with a smiley face.

2022: What now?

With the project as close to being official as it can get, all that’s left to do is speculate what’s happened to Arlen, Texas, over the past 15 years. We can probably all surmise that Dale Gribble (Johnny Hardwick) is almost certainly entrenched in Qanon by now, and Boomhauer (voiced by Judge) may very well have been one of the insurrectionists who stormed the U.S. Capitol. Or not! Either way, we’ll just have to wait and see, but whatever the creative team has in store sounds promising, to say the least.

Unfortunately, two characters we can probably rule out are Luanne Platter and her eventual husband Elroy “Lucky” Kleinschmidt, since they were voiced by Brittany Murphy and Tom Petty — who passed away in 2009 and 2017, respectively.

However, Luanne and Lucky did eventually welcome a daughter, Gracie Margaret Kleinschmidt, in the season 13 episode “Lucky See, Monkey Do,” so hopefully, the creators will find a suitable way to honor their memory.