HBO Documentary: "Small Town Ecstasy"

Did anyone else catch this last night (Sunday 4/28) on HBO? In a nutshell, the filmmakers (who were completing a project on ecstasy use in America) decided to follow the family drama of a divorced father named Scott whose ecstasy use/abuse is, not to sound like a daytime talk show, tearing the family apart. What affected me the most was the influence he kind of unknowingly had over his children, who seemed (with the exception of the eldest, who was in the Army at the time of filming) scarily enthusiastic and eager to experiment with ecstasy; with, for the most part, their father’s consent and blessing. I’m not quite sure what to make of how I felt after watching it; I just wanted to throw it out there and see what anyone else thought. I think the documentary was also the subject of Nightline, or 20/20, or one of those shows; if anyone saw that segment, I’d like to know what you thought.

Yup, I saw it. Past my bedtime on a Sunday but I couldn’t stop watching it - like a car wreck on the freeway.
I didn’t have any issues with the second eldest son playing around with drugs, but the father’s party at home where all of his children were on E was highly disturbing - for those that didn’t see the father gave his 13 year old son to let him “experience how wonderful it is”. Scary stuff.
He also looked pretty funny with his bleached hair and upside down visor on his head (the dad).

There was also that weird role reversal/friendship thing with the older son (Craig, not Army guy) and Scott, when Scott was denying giving the two other kids money to buy ecstasy; Craig accused him of leaving money out and available so they could buy some. The dad seemed like a teenager, making up fake-o lame excuses so he wouldn’t get in trouble with his 17-year-old-son.

The scene in the shabby little apartment with hardly any furniture was too depressing. I had to turn it off soon after.

The fact that the dad was a woodcutter was disturbing. There was something so… Brothers Grimm about it.

The dad looked like a jackass in the raver outfits.

It’s one thing to snap, have a mid-life crisis at the age of 40 and begin a second childhood. Happens all the time. Makes the subject look like a pathetic ass but, generally, it’s no big deal.

It’s quite another to allow and encourage your 13 & 15 year old children to take illegal, potentially harmful substances and circumvent your parenting responsibilities in order to socialize with them and gain their support as a peer.

That guy is a moron who should never have been allowed to procreate in the first place. His on-camera comments about suicide/homicide after his arrest were just fucking creepy. Here’s to a strategically placed wood-cutting accident soon.

I’m no prude - at one time or another I’ve used and enjoyed all the substances mentioned in the program. But, as a parent I will make damn sure that I do everything I can to monitor what my children ingest until they’re of legal age to make their own decisions.

It’s possible to be a friendly parent, but you have to be a parent (NOT a friend) to your kids.

As a complete side note: what was with the love of Nike-emblazoned clothing that family had? Creepy, verrrry creepy.

I found the whole thing sad and disturbing. The one queston I kept asking last night was, why on earth did Scott (the dad) allow a camera crew to tape him as he committed felonies?

And on a personal note, I felt really good about my appearance. I’m the same age as the dad, and he looked 15 years older thasn me: wrinkled, baggy-eyed, and perpetually worn out.

I also found the MRI of Craig’s brain, documenting the damage done by his X binges, to be absolutely horrifying.

I know; that “you have the brain of a 45 year old man” comment was horrendous. What happened to the Army son, Job? At the end, when they ran the concluding bits, the commentary said he was in jail or arrested for felony vandalism and something to do with a handgun (please correct me if I’m wrong). Although he wasn’t in the film much at all, he seemed to be framed as the most stable child in the family; a substitute father for the younger kids, a responsible role model. Maybe I was reading too much into it.
gobear, I had the feeling that Scott, on one hand, was adopting a cavalier, “teenage” approach to his felonious acts, as if it were cool to be caught on camera. He was so caught up in acting like a rebellious teenager (lying to his son, mocking his ex-wife’s letter, throwing around lingo that made me cringe) that I was contemplating how, as Captain Spaulding points out, he could ever effectively be a parent to his kids instead of a contemporary. The documentary, in essence, wasn’t so much about ecstasy use at all, but about parenting and fatherhood, which was sentimentally hammered home when Scott and Craig sat sorting socks while listening to “The Cat’s in the Cradle.”

Pretty creepy. I didn’t really know what the show was about until they started focusing in on the guy and I’m like “man, this guy’s kind of old to be at a rave”. I didn’t know he was a father there with his kids. Sheesh.

That show plus the lousy chinese take out I had served to keep me up most of the night.

He had the drug evangelist zeal of a teenager. I found it hard to believe a man his age could have so little perspective. I just couldn’t believe he would advocate stuff like that to his young children who miraculously looked up to him no matter what. I’m glad most of them got away from the drugs.

When I was in college I went to a party where a guy (I think he was over 20 at the time) and his father were sitting at the kitchen table smoking pot. I thought that was wierd. This guy was light years beyond that.

A few nights ago they had the guy that made the film on Loveline, and the stuff he said was pretty scary too. He was talking about how Scott didn’t even seem like an adult human being, because his decision-making processes were so screwy. Craig also called in, and he said that he was the one who had gotten his dad on drugs in the first place. What a messed up family.

I saw it, too. I couldn’t get over how pathetic that dad was. I cringed at the scenes of him at the raves, trying to be hip and everybody’s friend.

I agree that his homicide/suicide comments were creepy. So was his comment that maybe his wife would die and he could have the kids.

And going out the same night after getting arrested? That guy is a pathetic loser, and I’m glad his kids seem to be seeing him for what he is.

I wonder if they’ll do a follow-up after his criminal trial.


You know what, though? He seemed so insincere and selfish throughout the whole thing, that when he teared up both talking about the song and listening to it, I couldn’t help but think he was just full of shit. It just looked so faked.


Note to parents: My only parental figure (whaich may have had something to do with it) has told me stories about partying with the kennedy’s, big drug dealers in Aspen, and stuff about music clubs and back stages in NYC late 70’s. Tell your kids about what has happened in your life, and why it has made an impact on your life. In almost all instances, you can make the effect negative. It’s worked for me; I am at a very respectable school. with a 4.0 GPA, and have been clean for 2 years, after following my mother’s footsteps (which are ladden with job offers from all over the country). Without the wonderful parent I have, I wouldn’t be iin the same position that I’m in now, I love you mommy!!!

Ugh, Not much to say without repeating what everyone here has already said but that guy Scott just pissed me off. WHAT A FUCKING LOSER.

When he was wondering around on the street in the yellow vest and upsiode-down visor I kept thinking this whole thing was a joke and that it was actually the Andy Dick show or something. Unreal.

Three things that stuck with me is Scott referring to everyone as “dog,” this pharseology in conjunction with his bleached hair and that ridiculous visor that he wore just made him look like such a &%$*ing jackass.

Also, the scene in (IIRC) his father’s ministry and he says, (paraphrasing) “just like how my dad would help out people with God and their spirituality, I like to help people out at raves. Getting them drugs, or a drink of water or whatever - I definitely get that from my dad.”

Finally, though much of it was decidedly UNfunny, I did get a chuckle thinking of my dorky/fantastic/geeky/cool as a mofo dad telling me, covered in neon, “[krazy kat] I’m rolling my f**king tits off!!”

funy for all the wrong reasons