The fifth season of the critically acclaimed TrueSouth Presented by Yellawood debuts on Sunday, Sept. 11, kicking off in Kentucky and shining a light on the town of Tompkinsville. The series, now in its fifth season on SEC Network, revolves around two food stories told from one place, which TrueSouth sets in conversation to make larger points about Southern beliefs and identities. Returning in season five is a special bonus episode with behind-the-scenes content and storytelling.
TrueSouth drives the rolling back roads of southern Kentucky, to gnaw pork shoulder steaks cooked over hickory fires and eat burgers fried in shallow oil. In Episode 18, we introduce viewers to a cultural microclimate that straddles the Kentucky-Tennessee line, where old traditions thrive and grown men gather in the Monroe County Marble Club Super Dome to play serious games of great skill that are compelling to watch and complex to score.
Two restaurants anchor the episode:
- At R&S BBQ, Anita Hamilton Bartlett leads a family crew. Brother-in-law Tommy Moody lights the fire. Son Radford Graves stokes the pit. Daughter Samantha Smith works the front. A fierce love binds this family. And a peculiar sauce, stirred with a base of lard, bastes the pork that pilgrims to R&S crave.
- Just down the street at Dovie’s, a 1930s era burger joint, Renee Short and an all-woman crew work the griddles. In honor of founder Dovie Moore, they wear skirts on the floor and broadcast kind regard for their community. The women of Dovie’s tease. They sass. They outwork the men in this onetime sawmill town.
Local music is forever important to our shows. For this episode of TrueSouth, we sampled bands across Kentucky, including Swift Silver, the duo of Anna Kline and John Looney, and S.G. Goodman, a farmer’s daughter who makes music in the town of Murray.
Season five of TrueSouth begins in Tompkinsville, Ky. Four more episodes follow. In October, we travel to Madisonville, Tenn. Come November, we’re in Jackson, Miss. This December, we land in Brunswick and St Simons Island, Ga. Join us in January for our second annual behind-the-scenes road trip across the belly of the SEC.
Advance press screeners of TrueSouth: Tompkinsville, Ky. are available upon request: [email protected]
TrueSouth is a James Beard Award-nominated limited series on Southern food and culture, airing monthly on SEC Network. Four-time James Beard Award winner John T. Edge writes and hosts the show, which is executive produced by two-time New York Times best-selling author, ESPN senior writer Wright Thompson, and produced by Bluefoot Entertainment.
The series, now in its fifth season, revolves around two food stories told from one place, which TrueSouth sets in conversation to make larger points about Southern beliefs and identities. This season’s featured places are Tompkinsville, Ky., Madisonville & Camp Benton, Tenn., Jackson, Miss., Brunswick, Ga., and a special behind-the-scenes finale to finish out season five. Seasons 1-4 of TrueSouth are available in their entirety on ESPN+.
Music plays an integral role in TrueSouth’s storytelling via on-screen performances and on-screen credits. TrueSouth playlist on Spotify shares the full soundtrack and score of every season of TrueSouth.
About SEC Network
The Southeastern Conference and ESPN launched SEC Network on August 14, 2014. The network televises hundreds of games across the SEC’s 21 sports annually. Programming includes in-depth analysis and storytelling in studio shows such as SEC Nation, Thinking Out Loud, Out Of Pocket and Rally Cap, daily news and information with The Paul Finebaum Show and SEC Now, original content such as TrueSouth, SEC Storied and SEC Inside, and more. Hundreds of additional live events are available for streaming exclusively on SEC Network’s digital companion, SEC Network+, via the ESPN App and SECNetwork.com. The network is also available in more than 135 countries throughout Europe, Middle East, Africa and Asia via ESPN Player, ESPN’s sports streaming service in the region.