The Rundown: Everyone On ‘Only Murders In The Building’ Is Having Entirely Too Much Fun

The Rundown is a weekly column that highlights some of the biggest, weirdest, and most notable events of the week in entertainment. The number of items could vary, as could the subject matter. It will not always make a ton of sense. Some items might not even be about entertainment, to be honest, or from this week. The important thing is that it’s Friday, and we are here to have some fun.

ITEM NUMBER ONE – Honestly, good for them

I am really enjoying the third season of Only Murders in the Building so far, which is a little strange, I think, mostly because I’m still not sure if it’s as good as the first two seasons. There is so much going on. Everyone is splitting up and there are hallucinations and marriage proposals and dangerous stalkers and maybe ghosts and it’s all going very Scooby-Doo all of a sudden. But I do love it. And I think the reason why I love it is because it seems like everyone on the show is having an absolute blast.

It doesn’t hurt that the show just went ahead and added Paul Rudd and Freaking Meryl Streep this season. Or that it’s letting both of them chew up all the scenery they can cram into their mouths playing against type. I mean, we’ve got Paul Rudd as our murder victim playing a dipshit pretentious actor with a massive inferiority complex, kind of like if his character from Wet Hot American Summer was in a theater camp and wore a scarf instead of a leather jacket. And we’ve got Meryl Streep playing a struggling actress who sometimes bungles her way through an audition — yes, I consider Meryl Streep pretending to act poorly to be one of the best acting performances I’ve seen this year — and is also our most likely murder suspect so far. And Tina Fey showed up again this season but with blonde hair. It’s really just an embarrassment of riches for a show that already featured Steve Martin and Martin Short and Selena Gomez. It’s almost unfair, really.

And again, it seems like everyone is just having the best time of their lives, which counts for a lot in my book. Even in the small ways. Like, for example, in this shot where Selena Gomez is poking around Paul Rudd’s character’s apartment after the murder.


Do you see it?

Do you?



Paul Rudd’s character has a poster hanging in his own hallway for a fictional movie he starred in called Sex Panther, which is notable because, for those of you who never saw Anchorman or used the internet between about 2003 and 2011…

This is what I mean. They didn’t have to do that. Reasonable arguments can be made that they shouldn’t have done it. But they did it because… they wanted to. Because it made them laugh. And everyone involved has enough juice that no loser in a suit can tell them no. I kind of dig that.

Could all of this fall apart before the season ends, all the spinning plates crashing to the ground and everyone cutting their feet on the shards of glass strewn about the floor? (WHY ARE THEY SPINNING PLATES BAREFOOT?) I mean, sure. But it’s cool that they’re taking some big swings. And having fun. That really does need to count for something sometimes. Good for them.

ITEM NUMBER TWO – Hey, speaking of murder-related shows that are still unreasonably fun


The second season of The Afterparty shouldn’t have worked. The first season shouldn’t have worked either, probably, if only because the degree of difficulty on “a high-concept murder mystery where each episode is told from a different character’s POV using a different genre of storytelling in the silliest way you can imagine” is high enough that you could sprain your ankle leaping down from it. And yet, here we are. Sure, season two didn’t quite do it for me like season one, in part because this week’s finale — which I will not spoil here — somehow tied things up kind of messily and kind of too neatly, but still. I very much enjoyed the ride. And a big part of that was due to Paul Walter Hauser’s performance as Travis, a goofy Reddit bro in a fedora who was constantly doing stuff like, well, this.


Every moment he was on screen made me unreasonably happy. I fell down a Google trapdoor this week and discovered he actually has a history of appearing in shows I enjoy, like Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Superstore, Key & Peele, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Community, and Cobra Kai. I also learned he’s up for an Emmy this year for his performance in Black Bird. And I learned I’m not the first person to be blown away by one of his performances, based mostly on this 2018 Newsweek article titled “Paul Walter Hauser Steals Every Scene as Harding’s Bodyguard in I, Tonya.”

What makes the actor stand out, though, in a film stacked with bravura performances (including Margot Robbie and the Golden Globe-winning Allison Janney) is his ability to turn Eckardt into something more than a caricature. Director Craig Gillespie praised Hauser, his “secret weapon,” for delivering “an entertaining performance with such humanity.”

Some of the Eckhardt’s best moments, the ones that made his loony tunes character relatable, were Hauser ad libs. At one point, Eckhardt, who naturally lives in the basement of his parents’ house, yells up to his mother to make a call: “It’s local, Ma!,” he screams. Later, he orders her to bring shortbread for the FBI agents interrogating him, improvising the line, “I shouldn’t even be saying his name… Derek.” It’s uncomfortable watching Eckardt because we all know someone like him.

There are two takeaways from all of this:

  • Paul Walter Hauser should be in more things
  • I meant for this to be more about The Afterparty but I am easily distracted

Moving on.


One of the cool things about living in the future is that there is so much information accessible to you all the time in so many formats that sometimes it feels like you have seen everything there is to see, and yet, once in a while, you’ll stumble across something new that will genuinely flabbergast you. Something like, to choose an example not so much at random, this excerpt from a new interview at Rolling Stone where noted horror novel icon Stephen King professes his undying love for the 1999 smash hit “Mambo No. 5” by Lou Bega.

Oh, yeah. Big time. My wife threatened to divorce me. I played that a lot. I had the dance mix. I loved those extended play things, and I played both sides of it. And one of them was just total instrumental. And I played that thing until my wife just said, “One more time, and I’m going to fucking leave you.”

I am honestly thrilled to have this information in my head now, and I suspect it will stay there forever, but I am a tiny bit disappointed that Stephen King hasn’t already used it as the inspiration for a book where a frazzled wife gets fed up and murders her husband for playing a song over and over and over and then is haunted by it for the rest of her life when she hears it in the supermarket or in a movie trailer or blasting out of a car that’s driving past her house, unsure each time if she’s really hearing it or if it’s all in her head.

I mean, come on, Stephen King. This is a layup. Pound it out in a month, call it “Murder No. 5” and let’s all move on. Here to help.

ITEM NUMBER FOUR – Keanu is so cool


A good thing to remember is that all news is local news somewhere. For example, for most of us, the big takeaway from the band Dogstar going on tour again this year is “holy crap, the band that Keanu Reeves plays bass in is going on the road.” But for the journalists at the New Haven Register in Connecticut, the story here is “local drummer continues to know Keanu Reeves.” Here, look:

One day in 1991, Robert Mailhouse, a drummer and New Haven native, decided to wear a Detroit Red Wings jersey to the store. What happened next can be summed up in one word — “whoa.”

Fresh off a string of hit movies like “Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure,” “Parenthood,” and “Point Break,” actor, musician and ice hockey fan Keanu Reeves noticed Mailhouse’s jersey.

Three notes here:

  • I love that Keanu has starred in multiple billion-dollar movie franchises since the Bill & Ted movies but “whoa” will follow him around until he dies
  • It’s kind of funny that the band where one of the biggest movie stars in the world plays bass has the most boring origin story ever
  • This guy’s last name, Mailhouse, sounds kind of like what your brain would spit out some morning when you’re too hungover to remember that it’s called a post office

It gets better.

“It was mostly women, believe it or not,” Brian Phelps, owner of Toad’s Place, said of the crowd. “Basically, (Keanu) was playing bass guitar and anytime he looked up from the floor and onto the people, the women would start screaming and they would keep screaming until he would put his head back down.”

The thing I like most about Keanu is that, despite being a box office mega-draw for over 30 years now, and turning weird little action movies — “computers secretly control people,” “hitman’s dog gets murdered” — into worldwide franchise phenomena, he seems like he’s just… like, a dude. Like he’d be just as happy if he worked in a garage and tinkered with motorcycles all day. Like he doesn’t need all this in the way some actors very clearly crave it. The man plays bass in a rock band. Not lead guitar. Not lead vocals. Not even drums.


He fascinates me deeply.

ITEM NUMBER FIVE – I need to talk to Michael Imperioli and Paul McCartney at once

Getty Image

Two things are true here:

  • If I had a magic lamp with a genie inside it and I had three wishes to burn, I suspect I would use one on like “the ability to wrangle any person on Earth for a conversation where they have to patiently answer all the questions I have for them, no matter how stupid”
  • I bet I am the first person to ever type the words “I need to talk to Michael Imperioli and Paul McCartney at once” in that exact order

But, come on. Look at Michael Imperioli just casually talking about enlisting the services of a witch to get a movie made.

“I had just begun writing ‘Summer of Sam’ with Victor Colicchio — we wrote that script together,” Imperioli says in an exclusive clip from “Ghosts of the Chelsea Hotel.” “I really wanted to get it made. So I met somebody who was living here who was a witch, who said she could help me get it made, but it wasn’t going to happen the way I thought it would. I was very ambitious at the time and wanted to get that made, so [I] resorted to tapping into otherworldly means to get it through the studio system.”




Imperioli did not elaborate on exactly what types of spells or rituals he may have cast upon the film, but “Summer of Sam” went on to be directed and co-written by Spike Lee and released by Buena Vista Pictures. Imperioli and Lee also played small roles in the movie.

This is what I’m talking about. I would pepper this poor man with 8000 questions about the logistics of a witch getting a movie made. It would span multiple days. I’d wake up with more questions and go back for follow-ups. Neither of us would ever get any work done ever again.

I’d have to leave him alone eventually, though, because I would need to talk to Paul McCartney about, well, this answer from a little Q&A he did with his own website about what he does to pass the time on the road. Do you plan the movies you’re going to watch?

Paul: No, I just go to ‘New Releases’ and unfortunately they’re not new – I’ve seen most of them! They don’t update them quick enough for me. I scan through and think ‘ah, I’ve been meaning to see that’.

On car journeys, I watch stuff on my iPad which can be films or series. I’m currently on Better Call Saul and it’s a good one.

I need to talk to Paul McCartney about Lalo Salamanca. This is serious. I am not joking. If you know or can put me in touch with him for like a 10-minute interview, I promise I will only ask him Lalo questions. It will be such a tremendous waste of a career-making interview opportunity and it would make me so happy I would float off into space.


If you have questions about television, movies, food, local news, weather, or whatever you want, shoot them to me on Twitter or at (put “RUNDOWN” in the subject line). I am the first writer to ever answer reader mail in a column. Do not look up this last part.

From Matt:

Please describe the exact set of circumstances it would require for you to willingly sit through a 4.5 hour historical drama.

Okay, first of all, I assume Matt is talking about this, which I joked about on Twitter last week.

Ridley Scott’s historical epic “Napoleon” clocks in at a whopping 158 minutes, but even at over two-and-a-half hours a lot of material was left on the cutting room floor. In the September 2023 issue of Empire Magazine, Scott reveals that he has a “fantastic” cut of the movie that runs nearly four-and-a-half hours.

So, there are a few things at play here. One, as I’m sure all of you can tell from reading any paragraph I’ve ever written, is that I was a massive ADHD kid — scribbling on my desk, whipping pencils into the ceiling above my seat, all of it — and remain so in many ways as an adult. But I’m also the kind of sicko who can sit around and watch an entire extra-inning baseball game with no issue. And if anyone can make a 270-minute historical drama tolerable, it’s the dude who made Gladiator

With that said, the circumstances for me, personally, are as follows:

  • At home, not in the theater, because I will need to pause at least twice for kitchen runs
  • A snowy Saturday or Sunday afternoon in like mid-February when there is no sports to watch and it is too cold/slushy to go anywhere
  • A low-grade fever that saps my energy to the degree that finding anything else to do feels like an insurmountable task

That said, under those circumstances, I could see myself enjoying an afternoon-long cut of a Napoleon movie.


To Spain!

A group of thieves stole $500,000 worth of extra virgin olive oil from a Spanish oil mill, El Mundo reported, as the liquid soars in price.


The olive oil was stored in a warehouse waiting to be bottled when it was stolen, according to local newspaper Diario Córdoba.

Martin Parra, the manager of the company victim to the theft, told the outlet he believed the thieves must have used two large tankers to transport it, which take up to an hour to fill.

I would, no joke, watch a movie about an Ocean’s Eleven-style group of highly organized thieves acquiring two large tanker trucks and stealing half a million dollars worth of olive oil. Someone, please get Steven Soderbergh on the phone.

The price increase is largely due to droughts sparked by heatwaves across Spain, impeding the country’s agriculture industry.

Dammit, do not ruin my fun by bringing global warming into this.


Just let me have this one.


According to trade publication Olive Oil Times, estimates for production have been continually revised. Last August, agricultural associations predicted Spain would produce 1 million tons of olive oil in the 2022/23 crop year — a 27% fall from the previous year. But by the end of the harvest, there was around 680,000 tons; a 50% decrease, per Olive Oil Times.

Is it weird that, immediately after reading this paragraph, the most interesting thing about this story for me swapped from “a group of highly organized thieves acquired two large tanker trucks and stole half a million dollars worth of olive oil” to “there is a trade publication about the olive oil industry called The Olive Oil Times”?

Make that movie instead. The one about two investigative reporters at the Olive Oil Times tracking down leads in this case. Woodward and Bernstein but with olive oil.

Think about it.

Thank you.