CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- For good or ill, the "Buckwild" reality train has left the station as the MTV series screens its fourth week of shows Thursday. (There are two more to go.) But one of its original passengers has been booted off the program, which The Hollywood Reporter dubs the "Jersey Shore-esque, redneck reality show" set in West Virginia.
That would be "Jesse B," a 23-year-old Sissonville native whose real name is Jesse Boardman and who works in Charleston as a server at Recovery Sports Grill. He showed up Jan. 17 at a "Buckwild" viewing party that occurs weekly on the heels of the Third Eye Cabaret I host at The Cellar, 8 Capitol St.
We invited him onto the stage for a brief interview before the show aired on the Cellar's TV screens at 10 p.m. The night's episode happened to showcase a fight between a seriously drunk Boardman and another character, Tyler, after Boardman hit on cast member Salwa.
It was an off-camera fight that got Boardman booted, though. There are apparently good and bad fisticuffs in reality TV land.
In this transcript, this is what "Jesse B" had to say about his "Buckwild" experience.
Q: How did they find and cast you for the show?
A:"They found me at a party in Sissonville as they were coming to meet people to try to get a show together. It was through Zoo Productions. Then, MTV picked it up two years later. I've been filming for about three years. I've been filmed in Sissonville, in Charleston. I've been filmed in Huntington. I've been filmed in Morgantown."
Q: How did they pitch the show to you?
A:"They were coming to us, looking for people for a TV show. I was just sitting on my John Deere tractor, havin' a beer. They were, like, 'We like this guy!'
"I guess there was a show they were trying to do called 'We Know How to Party Down South,' and they did a casting call at the Civic Center, which obviously if you go to the Civic Center you're not going to see people in the real way they act. Then another company picked it up, the idea of it. Then, MTV picked that up."
Q: How did you get kicked off the show? You were at the Kanawha County courthouse for a custody case for your son, you said.
A:"I was real upset afterward. I didn't get any custody. I come outside, and there's all these people standing around with cameras. And they're like, 'We're going to do an interview right here.'
"Well, I was tore up, I didn't want to do it right then, so I went to walk away. And the producer grabbed me and was like, 'No, you're going to do it right there.' And I swung and hit him.
(Addressing audience)"Let me just tell you, when I get hit tonight, everybody? I was really, really, really intoxicated. I don't even remember being there. It's kinda like a first viewing for me, too."
Q: So, the episode's fight was at a party?
A:"Yeah, it was at the girls' house. The girls have a cabin in Sissonville. The caption on the show tonight says 'Tyler Fights an Unwanted Guest.' Well, I was brought to the show by the MTV crew, drunk. And then I got into a fight. So I don't know how they're going to play it out..."
Q: Did they get you drunk?
A:"No, no, no. I was drunk before I got there. They called me, lookin' for me. I was passed out at a bar, and waitin' for a ride home. They come and picked me up instead and took me to this party."
Q: They knew you were drunk, though?
A:"Yeah. Really drunk."
Q:What do you think of the reaction to the show? What do you think of the show?
A:"I think it's exactly how I thought it would be, where they take Sissonville and make it PG-13, instead of rated R. Everybody was worried about 'The Wild and Wonderful Whites of West Virginia' and wondering how they were going to do it.
"This is also a reality show on television, not a documentary that you have to go buy. It's on TV for everybody. So I knew they were going to keep it PG-13, which is awesome.
"There's some stuff I wish they'd do a little bit different. They did a lot of editing around things that make things look like they aren't. But I guarantee you, I tell everybody now: the show is not scripted.
"There was times when they'd be like, 'OK, guys, let's all go muddin' and have a campfire today.' And then we'd do it, and they'd just film it and see what kind of reactions they would get out of it."
Q: Wait a minute now. What about the putting of a swimming pool in the back of a coal truck [as seen in one of the first episodes]?!
A:"That was an idea by Shane, the main guy on the show, but was just enforced with money by MTV -- something we would do if we had the money to do and we already had the idea for. But MTV was like, 'Well, hell, we can get that together.'"
Q: So, they rented the truck and..
A:"No, no, no, the dump truck came from a friend of Shane's, and then they just made sure that everything made it to work to where, you know..."
Q (from audience): Who was driving the dump truck? He spun around that corner.