Frotcast 303: ‘Suicide Squad,’ And Development Hell, With Justin Halpern

Senior Editor
08.11.16 7 Comments

Warner Bros/Vince Mancini

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We all saw David Ayer’s Suicide Squad this week, which wasn’t great, but is strangely fun to dissect. We discuss the strange development of Suicide Squad, then Justin Halpern comes on to tell us his own strange development stories, from Sh-t My Dad Says to present, along with a great story about John Slattery from Mad Men. We finish things off with Crystal Corner, and “Fill My Hole,” in which we name things to watch, read, and listen to, to fill the emptiness inside. Enjoy!


6:15 – My defense of my mild positive Suicide Squad review
15:00 – How Suicide Squad is bad, and yet the typical nerd criticisms of it are all wrong.
19:35 – Talking Jared Leto’s performance, the explanation of the Joker’s dumb grill, and how happy Jared Leto makes us.
22:40 – Movies that are Suicide Squad but better
25:00 – The list of Jared Leto’s favorite books
34:00 – Justin Halpern comes on, interrupting our musical segment
43:00 – Arguing over who has the weirder mouth, Michael Phelps or Andrew Luck
46:30 – The idea of having to sell a creative project after you’ve stopped believing in it.
48:00 – Justin’s wonderful John Slattery story.
52:15 – The insane development story behind Nine Lives
1:18:00 – Crystal Corner

Here’s Justin Halpern’s John Slattery story, which I thought was pretty good:

We actually spent a few days with him in New York, because he lives in New York, and we had to go through the script [of the pilot they were making] with him. It was funny, because we walked into this one restaurant in New York, and I go up to the counter, and it’s really busy, and before I could even say anything, the hostess was like, “We’re really busy.” And I was like, well okay, I just want to put our name in. And she’s like, “It’s gonna be a long time.”

And so I went back, and I told John, and I was like “Hey, they said it’s gonna be a real long time.” And he’s like, “Hmm, well, I don’t know if it’ll be a really long time… if you’re in Mad Men!”

And he walks up to the host and he goes, “Hey, I was just looking for the host?” –Doesn’t even say he wants a table or anything. And then he just comes back and he goes “they’re gonna take us to our table now.”

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