24 Hour Propane People is the one hundred-ninety-eighth episode of King of the Hill. It was first aired on April 23, 2006. The episode was written by Aron Abrams and Gregory Thompson, and directed by Robin Brigstocke.
When Buck gets banned from his favorite strip club Jugstore Cowboys for his rude behavior, he refocuses on making Strickland Propane a "fun" place to work, inspired by a gimmicky ice cream parlor, Frozen Cow Creamery. Buck makes his employees dress in costumes, have sleepovers in the office and use hip catchphrases. Customers are not sure how to react to this gaudiness, and Donna, Enrique and Joe Jack are being pushed to the limit by having to dress in goofy costumes and all of Buck's "fun teamwork activities" are crowding out the essential parts of the business such as inventory, and even the employees' family lives. It's up to Hank to get everyone focused on selling propane again.
In a subplot, Peggy lets her job at the Arlen Bystander go to her head, and uses her employee ID card to gain freebies at places like the movies and restauarants under the pretense of reviewing them.
Hank tries to reassure the others that the customers will indirectly make Buck come to his senses. Since there has not been a marked increase in business, Buck will be forced to face facts that this giddiness is a liabiity. Buck then comes back with the weekly business report, saying that profits have increased $300 since Strickland adopted the "fun" model, perplexing Hank. Hank tries to get to the bottom of how come more profits were made, and considers it strange when comparing the weekly reports of the usual business model (or as Buck calls it "the old, fuddy Strickland") increased every day in round numbers. Donna said Buck would be pilfering the strongbox, helping himself to $20 bills. Hank then deduces the better business: The gimmickry did not attract more customers; instead the reason for the increased bottom line was that Buck was not stuffing the profits down strippers' G-strings since he got blackballed from the strip club. Hank arranges a reconciliation between Buck Strickland and the proprietor of the strip club, causing Buck to be welcomed back to Jugstore Cowboys. As he leaves, Buck asks Hank to watch the shop, to which Hank gladly agrees. Donna, Joe Jack and Enrique put all their "fun stuff" into a dumpster which Hank burns, then comments running a proper business can be fun.
"He wants you to bring him some pants." - Joe Jack
- The name of this episode is most likely inspired by that of the 2002 movie 24 Hour Party People
- The name of Buck's favorite strip-club, Jugstore Cowboys, is most likely a pun on the title of the movie Drugstore Cowboy.
- The "horrible new ice cream place", as Hank describes it, and Dale reveals is called Frozen Cow Creamery, is most likely based on the ice cream chain Marble Slab Creamery which began in Houston, Texas.
- In this episode, Joe Jack alludes to having done time in prison and/or jail. He states: "I've been locked up before honey!" Also, later when it's revealed the only reason Strickland Propane is ahead in the books for the month is because Buck isn't raiding the safe, Joe Jack says "When he (Buck) comes back, I say we throw a blanket over his head and do what feels right."
- Hank Hill
- Peggy Hill
- Bobby Hill
- Dale Gribble
- Jeff Boomhauer
- Bill Dauterive
- Buck Strickland
- Cotton Hill
- Joe Jack
- Donna (debut)
- Bob Jenkins (cameo)
- Troy (first and final appearance)