A tale of media sensationalism, corruption, and love, The West That Always Never Was is based on actual events that follows three intertwined tales set in 1909 Southern California. Willie Boy, a Chemehuevi, kills a man, kidnaps the man's daughter, Carlotta, and then flees the posse sent to bring him to justice. Rico, a Yacqui tracker hired to help the posse track Willie Boy, becomes a part of a system that he detests. Madison, a meek reporter from Los Angeles sent out to write a story detailing the posse's chase of the fugitive finds that not all is as it seems. Set after the close of the American "Old West," it questions the common tropes of violence and justice tied to the West and draws parallels to modern ideas of racism and the media's ability to influence popular thought.