Ask Joel Dahmen how much of the popular Netflix series “Full Swing” was staged and the self-effacing PGA Tour star answers exactly as you’d assume he would.
“It’s all completely scripted,” Dahmen told Golfweek through a laugh. “None of it’s true.”
He’s joking, of course. For those who have yet to gorge on the eight-part series, Dahmen was a breakout star as the fourth installment provided a detailed look at the death of his mother, his battle with testicular cancer and his lack of belief in his own ability. Producer Chad Mumm knew what he had with Dahmen, proclaiming that the native of Clarkston, Washington, would see an uptick in popularity after the series dropped.
Mumm was right. Dahmen’s traffic on PGA Tour digital channels saw a 2,000% bump soon after. His caddie and best bud Geno Bonnalie also became a social media darling, with 800% more mentions on Twitter the week after the launch, according to Sports Business Journal.
But while all the notoriety has made Dahmen more recognizable to golf fans, he doesn’t seem to be letting the spotlight swallow him up.
“I think overall it was really good. I think they did a good job of telling our story,” Dahmen said. “We have a unique friendship, brotherhood, whatever you want to call it.
“But we gave them a lot of content that could have been very funny and they could have went another way with it.”
What kind of content?
Dahmen won’t reveal.
“We’re hoping we’ll be in for another season,” he said with another wry smile.
While his popularity is at an all-time high, Dahmen is hoping his results on the golf course can soon follow suit. He’s failed to crack the top 40 in a half-dozen starts this calendar year, missing a pair for cuts along the way, and although he reached the weekend at the Valspar Championship he shot over-par rounds on both Saturday and Sunday, falling into a tie for 61st place.
But this week’s Corales Puntacana Championship could be exactly what Dahmen needs to get out of the funk. He won the opposite-field event in 2021, marking his only victory on the PGA Tour and while most of the world’s top players are in Austin for the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play finale, Dahmen is one of the favorites to win in the Dominican Republic.
Either way, he’s still certain to have a good laugh along the way with Geno, who now attracts nearly as much attention as the player he caddies for.
“The popularity of it, we didn’t really don’t know what we were getting into,” Dahmen said. “We didn’t know we were going to kind of have our own episode of it. They gave us microphones, which is always dangerous. And then they put a camera in us and just kind of let us roll that.
“Just in the last couple weeks, it’s been a great response. Luckily I think we’re on the good side of that, there are some other episodes that maybe weren’t on the good side. So I think overall it has been great.
“And Geno’s signing autographs. He’s shaking hands. He’s kissing babies. You can’t take his guy anywhere anymore.”