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Jon Reep at the Craterian Theater

Known to television viewers for his line "That thing got a Hemi?" in Dodge Ram commercials, actor and comedian Jon Reep likes to poke fun at redneck stereotypes.

"We're not all uneducated white farm laborers from the South," Reep says during a telephone interview from the back of a cab taking him to Los Angeles International Airport. "Some of us are well-read rednecks."

Reep was born and raised in Hickory, N.C. He attended Fred T. Foard High School, played football, attended community college and then graduated in 1997 from North Carolina State University in Raleigh with a bachelor's in theater.

One year later, Reep hit the road as a full-time comic, and in 2000, he moved to Los Angeles to start at an acting career.

Now he has proclaimed himself "Metro Jethro."

"It's like taking the good parts of small town life and mixing them up with the good parts of big city living," Reep says. "I love to eat sushi now. We used to call it bait where I come from."

Reep has dubbed his new DVD/CD, released Oct. 20, "Jon Reep: Metro Jethro." Recorded live at the McGlohon Theatre in Charlotte, N.C., the video and audio combo holds a batch of sweet stories full of small town funny with a little bit of big city smarts, along with more heart-warming stories about his loveable father, David Reep.

"I'm stocked with stories about Dad," Reep says. "There's the one about the time he was mowing the lawn and tried to mow over a bee's nest. He thought the bees would be caught in the bag with the clippings. That one didn't work out.

"Another time, he decided to teach my mother a lesson after she had been attending some self-defense classes. He disguised himself in a trench coat with a pair of black panty hose over his head and walked up to her on the street. My mother froze at first, but when she realized who he was she kicked him right in the chin and left him half naked laying in the street."

"Jon Reep: Metro Jethro" also includes an interview with Jon's father about the time he nearly drowned trying to fix a hole in his family's pool while wearing a backpack of rocks.

"It's a true story," Reep says. "Draining the water from the pool would have been safe and efficient. But Dad bought some underwater kits to fix it himself, filled a backpack with rocks to hold himself down in the deep end and rigged a snorkel to a garden hose.

"My brother and I were 9 and 10, and it was our job to pull him out with the garden hose if anything went wrong. He signaled when the hose began to collapse under the weight of the water. My brother and I panicked and jerked the hose out of the pool. Dad made it to the shallow end. He was out of breath, yelling at us, calling us idiots."

Reep's father seems to be okay with his newfound celebrity as material for his son's comedy.

"He's a bailiff back home in North Carolina, and I know he catches hell about the stories while he's at work," Reep says. "I told Dad that I could never have become a comedian without him. Not because of his love and support, but because of all of the dumb stuff he used to do."

"Jon Reep: Metro Jethro" is available at Amazon.com, jonreep.com and iTunes.

Reep's "Metro Jethro" aired Oct. 17 on Comedy Central, and he appeared as a pot-smoking farmer named Raymus in the 2008 film "Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay," starring John Cho ("Star Trek," "Nick & Nora's Infinite Playlist" and "Harold & Kumar Go to Amsterdam"), Kal Penn and Rob Corddry ("The Daily Show with Jon Stewart").

In 2007, Reep won NBC's Comedy Central "Last Comic Standing."

"What put me on the map was the Dodge HEMI commercials," Reep says. "But winning 'Last Comic Standing' really put me on the national scene as a stand-up comedian."

Jon Reep's win on Comedy Central's “Last Comic Standing” in 2007 catapulted his career as a stand-up comic. - Photo courtesy of Bragman Nyman Cafarelli