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|Season 12, Episode 11|
Buck Strickland standing in front of the Sugarfoot's Express
|Air date||February 10, 2008|
|Written by||Paul Corrigan & Brad Walsh|
|Directed by||Kyounghee Lim|
Untitled Blake McCormick Project
"Trans-Fascism" is the two hundred-twenty-fourth episode of King of the Hill. It was first aired on February 10, 2008. The episode was written by Paul Corrigan and Brad Walsh, and directed by Kyounghee Lim.
Kahn and Ted Wassanasong are trying to woo New York City investors at Sugarfoot's. When the yuppies noticed the high trans fat content, they refuse to consider Arlen. The Arlen City Council bans the sale of foods containing trans fats including rare burgers and raw oysters, and as a result Sugarfoot's Restaurant goes out of business. Hank, who feels the ban is an infringement on his freedom, encourages Buck Strickland to fix things. Strickland's solution to the problem is to sell his delicious foods on a lunch truck so he can evade the law and give freedom to the people of Arlen. Bribery and police corruption ensue, and Hank begins to have second thoughts about his activism to repeal the ban, particularly when Bobby gets ideas that he can pick and choose which rules he wants to follow. But before he can back out, a rival lunch truck, Rooster's Roost terrorizes the Sugarfoot's truck, and a turf war develops. The fierce competition convinces Hank to stay on board with Sugarfoot's until they can shut Rooster's down. With Nancy's help, Hank puts his best investigative skills to the test and becomes determined to unearth evidence to bring Rooster's down. When the Sugarfoot's Express started, Hank demanded all employees follow basic health guidelines, such as wearing hair nets, no smoking on duty and washing their hands before starting work. This would prove crucial, as it is later revealed that customers of Rooster's Roost are getting violently ill, which is not seen in customers of the Sugarfoot's Express. Through a Channel 84 expose, it is shown that Rooster's Roost runs a filthy operation. Hank finally seeks to lawfully repeal the ban pointing out three factors to the Arlen City Council. 1.) Prohibiting something by law does not mean every single person is going to stop using it, as evidenced by the now black market in trans fats. 2.) If a prior lawful trade is driven underground it will attract the likes of those who could care less about preparing the right way, as evidenced by Rooster's disgusting kitchen. 3.) It is the responsibility of the individual to regulate himself as to whether or not he ought to eat trans fats, not having government act like a nanny state. Realizing that sometimes Arlen just needs good tasting food, even if it is not ideal, and also that the trans fat ban was causing plenty of community problems, the Arlen City Council accepts Hank's proposal to overturn the ban, especially since members of the Council faced the prospect of being outed on the air for patronizing the food trucks, as documented by Nancy Gribble on videotape. In the end of the episode, Sugarfoot's Restaurant reopens, where the Hill's are shown eating dinner, and Hank telling Bobby that the hush puppies taste so good since there is trans-fat being used, and you're not breaking the rules to eat it. Peggy then tries to tell Hank to skip out on the check, then load up Splenda packets in her purse, which Hank refuses to do.
- Elvin and Little John make reappearances in this episode. Both characters were last seen in Season 4 episode "Hanky Panky" (Part 1).
- Rooster's Roost is owned by Rooster, a character last seen in a Season 5 episode "The Buck Stops Here". In that one, he lives in Hot Springs, Arkansas and owns an illegal dice game. Buck ended up owing Rooster money, which was unresolved and may explain the food truck rivalry. Buck mentions to Hank that he last saw Rooster in Arkansas and they parted on bad terms (ironically with Hank saving him and Bobby).
- The same plot would be repeated a year later on the TV show "American Dad" with the episode "Live and Let Fry." The stories were in response to New York City implementing a regulation against the use of trans fats in restaurants in 2007.