"There is an end in sight here," Judge told the Post Wednesday. "I think 10 [seasons] is a good, round number."
FOX officially says that "No decisions have been made regarding the future of 'King of the Hill.' " But whatever the show's future, its fans are, no doubt, anticipating the upcoming Sept. 18 season premiere.
"The only storyline we have right now is Luanne starts going out with this guy, Lucky. Tom Petty (search) does the voice," Judge said. "He's a character we had season-before-last, and we just loved the character and the way Petty did his voice. It felt like it really fit."
That's an apt metaphor for "King of the Hill," which carved out a comfortable prime-time niche over the years mixing character-driven, low-key comedy and (occasional) pathos into the lives of patriotic Texas propane salesman Hank Hill, wife Peggy, son Bobby and pals Boomhauer, Bill and Dale.
The show has often focused on the relationship between Hank and Bobby — whose decidedly un-Texas-like behavior has often perplexed his dad.
"I think there was a while there when some of the writers were pushing Bobby as being, whatever the polite term is, a sissy, and that went a little too far," Judge said. "I like it better when Bobby's a weird kid who worries Hank, but [Hank] still loves him a lot."
So what, Judge was asked, does he think the show's legacy will be?
"That at a time when TV was constantly trying to shock everybody all the time, we had a show that was kind of a quiet hit and was portraying normal, unhip middle-Americans with dignity — instead of just making fun of them in a crass way."