It’s the voyeuristic nature of reality television that makes it appealing to most viewers, but sometimes peering into the lives of others can veer into invasive, unsettling territory. The new series “Best Funeral Ever” seems to straddle the border between intriguing and disturbing. The reality show, which debuted on TLC last night has a morbid premise in which viewers follow CEO John Beckwith Jr.  and the staff at the Golden Gate Funeral Home in Dallas, Texas, as they plan funerals under the philosophy is “Whatever the family wants, we’ll do.”

Last night’s episode showed the funeral of Willie McCoy, who became famous for singing the iconic jingle for Chili’s baby back ribs. The service had a barbecue theme which included the pastor donning a Chef’s hat, praise dancers, live pigs and a barbecue sauce fountain in which loved ones dip ribs to pay their respects. Pallbearers sang the jingle McCoy was famous for while they carried his casket. Another service had a flamboyant Christmas-eve themed celebration replete with live animals and yet another embraced a State-Fair theme for a man whose disability prevented him from riding roller coasters

The theatrics of the ceremonies are only heightened by professional mourners, who are hired to cry, shout and scream to incite mourning at the event. The Golden Gate Funeral Home says the professional mourners enhance the aura of the service and are even referenced in the Bible.

The funeral home calls their over-the-top services “our version of the traditional African-American homegoing celebration.” As entertaining as they might be for some, others take issue with the show’s premise and feel it’s exploitation at its very worst.

Watch the sneak peek below:

What do you think of “Best Funeral Ever,” Clutchettes? Would you watch?

  • Pseudonym

    “…a barbecue sauce fountain in which loved ones dip ribs to pay their respects…”

    I can only laugh! hahaha

  • lovelyrose

    This show is very unsettling. I did not enjoy this. It seems that the networks are turning anything into “Reality” TV.

  • A.Memphis10

    I wish a mofo would bring one rib tip in my funeral services. I mean, I get it… he was famous for that moment in time, and the theme was a tribute to his life and livelihood… but shouting over some Sweet Baby Ray’s bbq sauce and pulled pork – was BEYOND! BEYOND!!

  • Leo the Yardie Chick

    I caught the tail end of the Santa Claus/Christmas funeral, with the professional mourner hard at work. I thought the woman was either faking the spirit or having an epileptic fit, until the ‘professional mourner’ arrow came up.

    Wow. To each his own.

  • kissofdanger

    Great! More coonery and buffoonery! Just what the networks ordered.

  • dee

    isn’t TLC supposed to be the learning channel?

  • miss B

    it the family loves it, well i like it. not my call.. they sign a release for the funeral to be broadcasted.


    Wow! Tomfoolery at funerals! Nothing surprises me anymore! Also @Dee, I thought TLC was The Learning Channel also, but this is the same network that brings us Honey BOO BOO!

  • Please Stop!

    No way! You have to be kiddin’ me. This is so sad. I am actually teary eyed.

  • Nadell

    Folks, just prepare yourselves for other ratchet shows. Honey Boo Boo was the 1st of many warnings. TLC, Oxygen, VH1, MTV, Bravo, E! ….. don’t be surprised at any other outlandish shows.
    TLC stands for THE LEARNING CHANNEL, correct? I remember tuning into this station for educational purposes – it was not that long ago. Now look at the direction they’ve turned!
    But I must say, Best Funeral has really taken the cake by far!!!!!!!

  • May

    They are teaching us alright, smh!!!

  • naysue

    And I thought having a funeral like the final scenes of Imitation of Life was enough. Obviously, somebody wasn’t thinking big enough!

  • Mrs. Thompson

    I take issue with the statement”…traditional African-American homegoing services” first of all. This definitely cast a bad light on African-Americans. It also plays down the fact of death. People are to mourn in their own way, and their service should be how they, or the family sees fit. But to display the messiness and pure “ratchedness” of these funerals is beyond immoral to me. There is nothing wrong with making a reality show about funerals, but don’t play on the hard times of others

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