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3 years ago, Joshua Clark swallowed the human toe in Dawson City’s famous Sourtoe Cocktail. On purpose. He was run out of town. Now he’s back, looking to right his wrong. 

RUNTIME: 17:41

Toe Captain Terry is a grizzled old Yukoner who proudly administers the Sourtoe Cocktail to thousands of thrill-seeking tourists every year. It’s a ghastly Yukon tradition that involves a shot of Yukon Jack and a mummified human toe.

Three years ago, that tradition was thrown into jeopardy when Joshua Clark, a writer from New Orleans, swallowed the toe. On purpose.

In 2013, Joshua was passing through Dawson City when he heard about “the most disgusting cocktail in the world.” As a man of many adventures, he wasn’t content just to drink the drink — he decided to take it one step further. He slurped down the toe, then proudly paid the $500 fine for swallowing the amputated appendage and slipped into the night. 

A ragtag group of Soutoe alumni, angry bartenders and (according to some) a few Hells Angels went searching for Joshua, but he skipped town the next morning. In his absence, he was declared banned from the Downtown Hotel (home of the Sourtoe Cocktail).

Terry was—and still is—furious: Joshua left him with just one toe, and that toe is suffering from continuous use. Terry needs new toes so the Sourtoe Cocktail tradition can continue. He’s searching everywhere for fresh big ones. 

What Terry doesn’t know is that his nemesis is back in town. Joshua has returned to right his wrongs.

Reflecting upon his actions—and all the people he has hurt—Joshua decides to will his big right toe to the Sourtoe Cocktail Club. But will that be enough to reverse his ban from the Downtown Hotel? And will Terry ever forgive him?

Credits (Click to expand)

A film by            
Daniel Roher

Featuring           
Toe Master Terry Lee 
Joshua Clark 
Mr. Silly 

With           
Patrick Pikálek
Grant Rambo 
Kevin Barns 
Susan Taylor 
Paul Pobitaille 
Geri Polbourne 
Jon Wilkie 
Billy Kendrick 

Executive in Charge of Programming for CBC Docs
Lesley Birchard 

Edited by          
Edmund Stenson and Daniel Roher

Assistant Edited by
Garett Henry and Daniel Fishbayne 

Editorial Consultant
Lucious Dechausay 
James Varley 

Archival Research Coordinator
Felicity Justrabo 

Original Music by
Ben Fox

Sound Designer and Mixer              
Reza Dahya 

‘The Entertainer’
Written by Scott Joplin
Preformed by Ben Fox

‘Home on the Range: American Western Rodeo Lullaby’
Written by Dr. Brewster M. Higley

‘Tobia’
Written and Preformed by Billy Torello

‘Not Drunk’
Written and Preformed by The Joy Drops

Production Assistant
Issac Roberts 
Victoria Anderson Gardner 
     
Animations by
Drew Shannon and Yannie Lo 

Crew Outfitted by
Higher Ground Toronto 

Special Thanks           
The Downtown Hotel 
Julia, Bobby and Maddy Milnes 
Ben MacInnis and Sheila Curran 
Eric, Kevin, Joanne and Zachary Roher
Peter O’Brian and Carolyn Bennett 
Andrew Stobo Sniderman

Archives Provided by
Library and Archives of Canada 

Toe Swallowing
Video Si Wagen