The Washington Post

‘Buckwild’ critic Sen. Joe Manchin expresses condolences after star’s death

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), who in December spoke out against the West Virginia-based MTV reality show "Buckwild," mourned the death of one of its stars Tuesday.

In a statement, Manchin expressed sympathy for the family of 21-year-old Shain Gandee, who was found dead with his uncle and another man after telling people they were going four-wheeling in the early morning hours Sunday.

“Gayle, my family and I join all West Virginians in praying for the Gandee family as they go through this inexplicably difficult time,” Manchin said.

Production of the show is now on hold, according to The Post's Lisa De Moraes.

Manchin wrote to MTV in December, saying the show — which has been called the "Jersey Shore of Appalachia" — presented an unflattering and untrue picture of his home state and urging MTV President Stephen Friedman to “put a stop to the travesty called ‘Buckwild.’ ”

"Instead of showcasing the beauty of our people and our state, you preyed on young people, coaxed them into displaying shameful behavior — and now you are profiting from it," Manchin wrote. "That is just wrong.”

Aaron Blake covers national politics and writes regularly for The Fix.



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