According to Adult Swim's press release, The Heart, She Holler is a "new live-action soap opera about folk who ain't never used soap or seen an opera. It's a satire on the emotional Hee-Hawification of America, set in a town so inbred, the folks have become almost supernaturally wrong. The series is produced by PFFR, and premieres this fall on Adult Swim." What could be a better intro to such a show than a punky kid with a swimsuit and a perm prancing around an above-ground swimming pool in Adam Ant-style face paint? We can't think of a thing.
This all may sound a little random, but these videos are amazing. It was only a matter of time before they infiltrated living rooms (or dorm rooms, more likely) throughout America, and it totally makes sense that Adult Swim, with its absurdist humor and psychedelic non sequiturs, was first in line. Joseph describes the videos as examples of what kids in nowhere towns did for fun before Ritalin and the Internet. Amanda is as punk-rock as any 10-year-old ever was, and the lo-fi editing and complete lack of self-consciousness make the videos more art than home movies. The audio tapes of Amanda already have steady, cult-like recognition on WFMU (New York and New Jersey's 91.1, sniff sniff) on DJ Irwin Chusid's show. Chusid explains the appeal of Whitt's Amanda tapes in a recent WFMU blog post, including a connection between the Whitt siblings (who, incidentally, hail from the famous barbecue family) and fellow lo-fi aficionado R. Stevie Moore — who is playing at Exit/In on Tuesday, July 5 — and a ton of audio clips.
But the videos are our favorite. Joseph did, after all, grow up to be a brilliant visual arts curator who was responsible for some of the most relevant art showing in Nashville during his time at Vanderbilt, including an exhibition by Jules De Balincourt, Harmony Korine's Pigxote series, and a mashup of Warhol Polaroids and work by artists David Horvitz and Grant Worth. The Amanda tapes are just as weird and fun to watch as anything by Korine or Ryan Trecartin, but without any of the dark undercurrents.
We've included some of our favorite Amanda videos after the jump, including a tribute by musician Hawnay Troof.