Archive for the ‘Whites of West Virginia’ Category

Okay…so yesterday evening ol’ Chop watched THE WILD AND WONDERFUL WHITES OF WEST VIRGINIA.  This is a documentary produced by Johnny Knoxville (y’know JACKASS) that chronicles a year in the life of the infamous White family of Boone County, West Virginia, who were first made (in)famous by the PBS doc THE DANCING OUTLAW.

For those not in the loop: OUTLAW was focused mostly on Jesco White, the “last of the mountain dancers”, and came into the Choppah’s hands in probably the same way it came into many others: a grainy, 20th or 30th generation videotape that was watched over and over in a frenzy of disbelief that yep….people REALLY live that way.

WILD AND WONDERFUL isn’t the same beast. It pretty much confirms that folks living hard and fast with little to no education, no respect for ANY outside authority, and a knowledge of how to work the welfare system for their own benefit are not usually gonna end well.  Or end up very pretty, to be honest. Where DANCING OUTLAW was entertaining in a very real “HOLY SHIT, did he/she just say/do THAT?” kind of way, WILD & WONDERFUL was actually….a bit sad. It sort of made ol’ Chop feel bad for finding OUTLAW funny at ALL.  It doesn’t flinch from showing you the normal fruits of a life of booze, pills, larceny, and flat-out hell-raising as a family tradition.

However, on its own, it really is a good doc…a sort of cautionary tale. And a peek inside a family that pretty much lives by their own rules, for good or bad…lotsa bad. Worth a look for those both familiar with the Whites already, or those who have never been exposed their brand of bat-shit.  And yep…there’s a bit of ol’ Jesco in there.  But honestly, I don’t think his subsequent ‘fame’ has done him a DAMN bit of good in the long run.