->''It's the road less traveled for a reason...''

Works where the horror lurks in the realm of rural areas where modern man doesn't belong. Expect inbreds, deranged killers, {{serial rapist}}s, and especially {{Cannibal Clan}}s.

DontGoInTheWoods is the most common flavor, but other locales such as [[SwampsAreEvil swamps]], [[ThirstyDesert deserts]], [[GhostTown abandoned towns]], [[DesertedIsland deserted islands]], [[FlyoverCountry endless stretches of highway]], [[AbsurdlySpaciousSewer beneath]] [[SinisterSubway the bustling city streets]], and even [[GrimUpNorth snowscapes]] have seen use.

For works set in North America, there are several regional recipes:
* '''{{Deep South}}ern Fried''': your choice of WildWest, SouthOfTheBorder, SouthernGothic, or [[TheSavageIndian original recipe]] sauces [[note]] Be warned, ordering the last one will [[DiscreditedTrope earn you dirty looks, these days]][[/note]]
* '''TheOtherRainforest style''', which tends to involve manifestos, cults, and granola.
* '''Classic LovecraftCountry style''', an old favorite best served in a [[TownWithADarkSecret quaint little northern fishing village]].

For works set in more exotic backwaters, there's also the cuisine of the {{Uberwald}}, the SavageSouth, DarkestAfrica, and the LandDownUnder.

It's worth noting that those who actually ''live'' in these areas are frequently [[GenreSavvy aware to varying extents]] of these depictions, and tend to take them with a mix of SelfDeprecatingHumor, CulturalCringe, and [[MexicansLoveSpeedyGonzales legitimate appreciation]] of their region's signature NightmareFuel. On the amusing side, it's not unheard of for a bored local to get a laugh out of playing the CreepyGasStationAttendant with lost tourists, and for anyone with the right accent, a creepy Halloween costume is as easy as getting pair of muddy overalls and exaggerating.

On the creepy side, this can be TruthInTelevision. Even in well-developed regions like the Eastern United States, one can still find the occasional [[HiddenElfVillage isolated small town]] on a postage stamp island, deep in the [[{{UsefulNotes/Appalachia}} Appalachian Mountains]], or [[DyingTown bypassed by the highway]] with only one or two last names among the population. While it's unlikely you'll find a clan of cannibals ignorant of the outside world, generations of isolation tend to lead to a xenophobic CloseKnitCommunity; even someone moving there from a nearby town might find themselves on the wrong side of a CultureClash. Also, many {{Misanthrope Supreme}}s and {{Crazy Survivalist}}s gravitate towards [[CaptainObvious less populated areas because there are fewer people to bother them]], and similarly some serial killers choose to make their homes in rural areas because there are fewer witnesses.

[[Wiki/{{Wikipedia}} The other wiki]] refers to this trope as "[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hixploitation Hixploitation]]".


* ''ComicBook/ThePunisherMAX'' story "Welcome to the Bayou".
* ''ComicBook/{{Preacher}}'': Jody and T.C. are a pair of murderous hicks who obey the commands of Jesse's mother. Herr Starr also loses a leg after being found by a trio of inbred cannibals.
* ''ComicBook/HackSlash'' featured a number of stories like this. Subverted in "Wallow In Death", in which it turns out that the undead hillbilly serial killer was driven to it by the cruelty of some arrogant student holiday makers, and that all his victims [[AssholeVictim deserved it]].

* ''Film/AndSoonTheDarkness''
* ''Film/AmericanGothic''
* ''Film/AxEm''
* ''Film/CabinFever''
* ''Film/TheCabinInTheWoods'' (part of it, anyway; it gets complicated after that)
* ''Film/{{Carver}}''
* ''Franchise/ChildrenOfTheCorn''
* ''Film/ChernobylDiaries''
* ''Film/ColdPrey''
* ''Film/{{Deliverance}}''
* ''Film/TheDevilsRejects''
* ''Film/DontGoInTheWoods''
* ''Film/{{Duel}}''
* ''Film/EatenAlive''
* ''Film/EdenLake'' (for OopNorth)
* ''Film/TheEvilDead1981''
* ''Film/TheFactsInTheCaseOfMisterHollow'' involves the investigation of a MysteryCult in the woods of northern Ontario, and a [[DontGoInTheWoods camping trip]] that may have gone very, very wrong.
* ''Film/FasterPussycatKillKill''
* ''Film/TheFinalTerror''
* ''Film/FridayThe13th1980''
** ''Film/FridayThe13thPart2''
** ''Film/FridayThe13thPartIII''
** ''Film/FridayThe13th2009'' (2009)
* ''Film/{{Frontiers}}''
* ''Film/{{Hatchet}}''
* ''Film/TheHillsRunRed''
* ''Film/HouseOf1000Corpses''
* ''Film/HouseOfWax2005''
* ''Film/TheHillsHaveEyes''
* ''Film/IDrinkYourBlood''
* ''Film/ISpitOnYourGrave''
* ''Film/JeepersCreepers''
* ''Film/JoyRide''
* ''Film/JustBeforeDawn''
* ''Film/{{Madman}}''
* ''Film/ManThing''
* ''Film/MidnightMovie''
* ''Film/{{Misery}}''
* ''Film/MonsterMan''
* ''Film/MotelHell''
* ''Film/MothersDay''
* ''Film/MotorHomeMassacre''
* ''Film/TheNailGunMassacre''
* ''Film/{{Pumpkinhead}}''
* ''Film/{{Severance}}''
* ''Film/SharkNight'' (the sharks are the "pets" of some redneck SnuffFilm makers)
* ''Film/SickGirl''
* ''Film/SpiderBaby''
* ''Film/StrawDogs'' (moreso TheRemake)
* ''Franchise/TheTexasChainsawMassacre''
** ''Film/TheTexasChainSawMassacre1974''
** ''Film/TheTexasChainsawMassacre2''
** ''Film/LeatherfaceTheTexasChainsawMassacreIII''
** ''Film/TexasChainsawMassacreTheNextGeneration''
** ''Film/TheTexasChainsawMassacre2003''
** ''Film/TheTexasChainsawMassacreTheBeginning''
** ''Film/TexasChainsaw3D''
* ''Film/TuckerAndDaleVsEvil'' (a DeconstructiveParody of the genre)
* ''Film/TwoThousandManiacs''
* ''Film/ViolentShit'' (just the first two)
* ''Film/{{Venom}}''
* ''Film/TheWickerMan''
* ''Film/WithoutAPaddle''
* ''Film/WolfCreek''
* ''Film/TheWoman''
* The ''Film/WrongTurn'' series

* ''Literature/{{Apeshit}}''
* Close to every novel and short story Edward Lee has ever written, which he calls "redneck horror." ''The Dunwich Romance'' in particular was based on the Lovecraft story discussed below and pretty much takes this trope to its most grotesque limit.
* Creator/HPLovecraft was probably the TropeCodifier. (See also: LovecraftCountry)
** In "The Lurking Fear" it turns out the "monsters" are [[spoiler: the cannibalistic descendants of a single family so heavily inbred they have all but turned into goblins]].
** ''Literature/TheShadowOverInnsmouth'' is about an isolated fishing village whose inhabitants - characterized as "white trash" by a local from a nearby town - are slowly mutating into degenerate, AlwaysChaoticEvil FishPeople,
** "The Picture in the House" is set in "the ancient, lonely farmhouses of backwoods New England; for there the dark elements of strength, solitude, grotesqueness, and ignorance combine to form the perfection of the hideous."
** "TheDunwichHorror" is a pretty classic example of this trope. Dunwich is a decayed hamlet in the backwoods of Massachusetts. Its denizens are described as follows:
-->They have come to form a race by themselves, with the well-defined mental and physical stigmata of degeneracy and inbreeding. The average of their intelligence is woefully low, whilst their annals reek of overt viciousness and of half-hidden murders, incests, and deeds of almost unnameable violence and perversity.
* Most Jack Ketchum stories, the most well known of them probably being ''Off Season''.
* Inverted in ''Literature/TheTroop''. The horror happens ''to'' them, rather than being perpetrated ''by'' them. And since it's East Coast Canada, they're Newfies.

* Numerous ''Series/CriminalMinds'' episodes, the most obvious being "Blood Relations", featuring the deformed Mountain Man/Killer Woodsman.
* The ''Series/FridayThe13thTheSeries'' episode "The Long Road Home".
* Parodied on a ''Series/SaturdayNightLive'' sketch from Season 26, Episode 14. A man is in a car accident, and when he wakes up, asks where he is. He's told, "You're tied to a bed in a shack. We're weird hillbilly cannibals and we're gonna stick things in your butt." After he freaks out, he's told he's actually in a hospital; the hillbilly cannibal thing is "an old hospital joke".
* The ''Series/{{Supernatural}}'' episode "The Benders".
* The ''Series/{{Torchwood}}'' episode "Countrycide".
* ''Series/TheXFiles'' episode "Home".
* ''Series/TheLastRealityShow'' features a gang of hillbilly-marauders.
* Even though it takes place in a town in rural England, ''Series/TheLeagueOfGentlemen'' is mostly this, especially the Local Shop Couple.

* TableTopGame/{{Pathfinder}} features the ogres, which can really only be described as demented hillbilly rapists, at best. Comes complete with ParentalIncest, BrotherSisterIncest, [[BodyHorror inbreeding-fuelled deformities]], HotSkittyOnWailordAction, a taste for [[ImAHumanitarian human flesh]], murderous sadism, a liking for making stuff out of bones & bodyparts, and a racial fondness for ''hooks'' as a preferred melee weapon. [[BrainBleach You'll need a long shower even if you ''win'' against ogres.]] And if you lose, well...
** Marsh Giants mix this with Lovecraftian cultish themes. They're rampant cannibals, prefer to eat their own young because they believe that children parasitically weaken their parents, and even their children who aren't eaten are left dead or brain-damaged by the mothers' habits of rampantly drugging themselves on toxic fungi for euphoric highs, which poisons their milk.
* ''TableTopGame/VampireTheRequiem'' offers two [[PrestigeClass bloodlines]] who are twists on this, both of which (unsurprisingly enough) are [[WildMan Gangrel]]: the Oberlochs, an inbred family descended from cruel mine owners who cling to the backwoods and readily recruit; and the Mabrys, who bring the prey to them by running backroad watering holes and road houses.

* The ''Point Lookout'' DLC for ''VideoGame/{{Fallout3}}'' has the player fighting mutated hillbillies who have formed a cult around a MadScientist BrainInAJar.
* VideoGame/KillingFloor had an event like this, with a nearly identical name: "Hillbilly Horror". Every enemy in the game was reskinned into a named member of the "Wade Family", and a new map dedicated to said family was added.
* The island of Baldurans shipwreck in ''VideoGame/BaldursGate'' evokes this trope to some extend with the strange descendants of the surviving crew. To fans, it's commonly known as [[spoiler:Werewolf]] Island.
* The moment you first set foot into Haven in ''VideoGame/DragonAgeOrigins'', you know you've come to one of these places.
* Though ''VideoGame/ResidentEvil4'' is set in rural Europe instead of the rural U.S., it definitely gives off this vibe to an extent, especially in the early parts of the game.

* You wouldn't know it by the high-tech gadgets they tend to use, but Will Legal's poacher gang in the roleplays of ''Webcomic/WhiteDarkLife'' are hillbillies and rednecks.

* ''WesternAnimation/TheClevelandShow'' episode "[=BFFs=]".
--> '''Cleveland:''' Thanks, Peter! How did you know we were here?
--> '''Peter:''' Well, I felt bad after you left Quahog, so I called your house. Your wife said you were doing a friendship thing in the woods, and I immediately thought; "Well, this is going to end in hillbilly rape". So I tracked you down, and here I am.
* ''WesternAnimation/TheAmazingWorldOfGumball'' subverts this in the episode "The Vacation", where the Watterson family breaks down in the middle of nowhere and are picked up by a toothless (his one tooth fell out) old hillbilly who lives in an abandoned gas station with his mother. They're friendly, outgoing folks, but the Wattersons believe this trope enough they end up running through the desert hurting themselves trying to escape. They realize the truth after falling into the 'graves' he dug for them (actually toilets, one for each of them for privacy), and apologize for their reactions. He waves it off until they mention his mother, [[MamasBoy which is the only thing they do that upsets him]].