Review of Hatfield & McCoy: Murderous feud turned comedic dinner show

The Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Show is located at 119 Music Rd in Pigeon Forge, TN (photo courtesy of Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Feud)
The Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Show is located at 119 Music Rd in Pigeon Forge, TN (photo courtesy of Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Feud)

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When Obi-Wan Kenobi, Jedi master, explained his lies to his disciple Luke, concerning the relationship of Luke’s father to Darth Vader, Old Ben said the lies had been true, from a certain point of view. 

For years, I thought Ben was just poppycocking his way around George Lucas’ plot holes. But as I’ve grown older, and, perhaps, wiser, I’ve come to realize there’s a lot more to the idea of perspective than I’d previously considered. 

Take for instance the concept of dinner show experiences like the Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Feud. On the surface, it might seem odd to take a murderous, mostly inexplicable Kentucky blood feud and turn it into a Hee-Haw-esque dinner show.

But looking from another point of view, the show is a triumph of imagination. Much like the geniuses who figured out you could make glass from sand, or glue from a horse, the person who decided to take dour, murderous, semi-incestuous Kentucky hill folk and turn them into comedy show featuring clogging has a creative mind unlike many who have strode the Earth. 

The Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Feud against all odds, offers an entertaining night out in Pigeon Forge.

The show is based off of the real-life Hatfield-McCoy feud which involved two rural American families of the West Virginia/Kentucky area. The majority of the feud surrounded a mystery around the murder of Asa McCoy, a Union soldier, for which the Hatfield family was blamed (photo courtesy of Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Show)
The show is based off of the real-life Hatfield-McCoy feud which involved two rural American families of the West Virginia/Kentucky area. The real-life feud involved a mystery surrounding the murder of Asa McCoy, a Union soldier, for which the Hatfield family was blamed (photo courtesy of Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Feud)

Not only do you get to enjoy a four-course feast, you get to briefly become part of one of the longest-running feuds in history. Following in the footsteps of legendary actors like Kevin Costner, Bill Paxton and Bugs Bunny, you can become a Hatfield family or a McCoy – I recommend Hatfield simply for the fact that the names are cooler. Had our third child been a boy, I planned to push hard for the name Devil Anse Gullion. We got Ainsley instead.  

The show is a two-hour journey that begins with the mean and features comedy (it’s billed as side-splitting comedy but let’s not get crazy) and musical acts with dancing and mountain clogging.

The show also promises “explosive” stunts that offer a true bang. Translation? This be a shootin’ feud.  

If I’m being honest there is a part of me inclined to turn my nose up at the idea of celebrating the antics of two families, the town sheriff and mayor in an adventure that includes competitions and stunts on the “mountainside” and in the 24-foot deep swimming hole. 

But then there is a part of me, the part that grew up watching “The Dukes of Hazzard.” That part says ‘Sheeew doggies’ and gets tickets for the front row. 

From the start, the feud is action packed with “battles” of musical talents, clogging and dancing, and dozens of imaginative diving stunts, which as you likely know, are a big part of West Virginia-Kentucky coal country culture. My grandmother used to wax poetic for hours about traveling down to Tug Fork and the Big Sandy River just to see them hillbillies perform their cliff-diving antics.

Writer’s Note: The Dukes of Hazzard part of me did not write that previous sentence.

An example of some of the more "explosive" comedy guests can enjoy during the show (photo courtesy of Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Show)
An example of some of the more “explosive” comedy guests can enjoy during the show (photo courtesy of Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Feud)

During the show, the audience becomes part of the feud by taking part in competitions set at the Sevier County Fair. All children in attendance get in on the act during a portion of the show, creating memories that will last long after the show is over. 

“The cast pours their heart into every performance,” said Jamie Parish, General Manager of Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Feud. “We invite audiences to become a part of our ‘feudin’ family’ and create memories that will have them laughing long after the show is over.”

The Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Feud is located at 119 Music Rd in Pigeon Forge, TN.

Reservations and showtimes are available by calling 865-908-7469 or at hatfieldmccoydinnerfeud.com. Guests should arrive 45 minutes prior to showtime for dinner. 

Disclaimer: While we do our best to bring you the most up-to-date information, attractions or prices mentioned in this article may vary by season and are subject to change. Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any mentioned business, and have not been reviewed or endorsed these entities. Contact us at [email protected] for questions or comments.

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