'Honey Boo Boo': The Ballad of Mama June and Sugar Bear

Pork Chop. Boxcar. Catfish. Fat Betty. Corn (and Nibblet). These are the names of just a few of the guests who will be invited to the upcoming, obviously season finale wedding of Mama June Thompson and Sugar Bear on Here Comes Honey Boo Boo. Factor in the venue (the Thompsons' home), the flower girl (Honey Boo Boo), and the caterer (roadkill), and you've got a party of epic proportions in the making. And the farting, good lord -- this family farts twelve times a minute already. Fat Betty's only going to raise the smell profile even higher. I'm genuinely disappointed to not be able to attend.

But how did Mama and Shugie get to marriage? is the question on everyone's lips (who watches this show but for whatever reason didn't see this episode). We all know these two backwoods lovebirds have been together for going on a decade now, and even without a ring have built a home of love and lard-based nutritional values. What we didn't know, until tonight, was how they got together in the first place.

FLASHBACK to the early aughts, maybe 2003, when a younger June Shannon and Mike Thompson were just trolling the Internet for some McIntyre, GA-based strange. Thompson was "smexy" in those days, a real player. Two failed relationships had led him to look for love online. Shannon was 70 pounds lighter, maybe, and had not yet delivered to the world its greatest redneck poet, Honey Boo Boo. They met in a singles chat room, neither looking for anything serious. "You were supposed to be a piece of ass, just a hook and book situation," recalled Mama. But like a fairytale, that hook and book situation evolved into something deeper. Mama was the one who got hooked. Nine years later their good thing is still going strong.

Love comes in many forms, which I don't mean as a weight crack but you're free to assume with an episode called "Chubby Chaser." As we saw last week -- there's something special in this weird, subtitled family unit Mama and Shugie have created for themselves. Yes, they spend an inordinate amount of time farting and playing games to heighten the farting experience, but in the service of love and family? These people might as well be the Cleavers. Really, compare the way HBB's parents offer affection to one another with the unbridled hatred Modern Family's Claire Dunphy feels for her husband. And Phil and Shugie are of comparable intelligence!

What I'm saying, basically, is HBB is the new American family and we'd all be wise to start taking notes.

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