The Rundown: ‘Succession’ And ‘Ted Lasso’ Had A Wild Little Maternal Connection In Their Finales

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 – Harriet Walter had a pretty great week

Succession and Ted Lasso both ended this week. You can be forgiven if you thought that’s the only thing the two shows had in common. They were different in so many other ways. One was a mean little hour-long drama — with touches of comedy — about actual family members trying to destroy each other. The other was a sweet little half-hour comedy — with touches of drama — about a found family trying to build each other up. It turns out they did have one other pretty important thing in common, though: Harriet Walter.

Harriet Walter is a kind of iconic British actress. She has been in everything, especially if it needs a matriarch who scowls a little. Pick a British show then go look at her IMDb page and I bet you’ll find it. She was in Killing Eve, too, which isn’t really the point but still fun to make note of. And an episode of Documentary Now, which is also not the point but I do really like that show and will take any opportunity to bring it up. She is also in both Succession and Ted Lasso. And she appeared in both finales. Harriet Walter is having a pretty great week.

The wild thing here is that I watch both shows — and recap them — and I somehow just put this together this week. This might say something about my professionalism and attention to detail (or, uh, lack thereof), but it also might say something about Harriet Walter’s range. Let’s go with that second thing.

The best part is that she got off some of the best lines in both of the episodes, big-deal productions that wrap up a bunch of stories that had been bubbling throughout the respective shows. Here she is on Succession as Lady Caroline, the absentee mother of the Roy children, elaborating on her utter disgust with human eyes.


“Face eggs” will stick with me for a while.

Here she is in Ted Lasso as Rebecca’s flighty and fortune-teller-obsessed mother, who was out for lunch and drinks with her daughter and said… well, this.


This is cool. It’s cool to me. It might even be cooler than the thing where Stephen Root popped up in an episode of Succession and then appeared in an episode of Barry on the same night, like he was the damn king of HBO Sunday nights. It’s probably not as cool as the thing where I Think You Should Leave exists in the universe of Ted Lasso and that opened up a Sam Richardson-sized wormhole, but, to be fair, very little is cooler than that to me.

My point here is a simple one: Congratulations to Harriet Walter, man. The lady popped up in two of our buzziest shows in the final episodes in the span of about three days and got off killer lines and different looks and really just stole every moment she was on screen. That rules. It does make me a little self-conscious about what I was up to this week, though. I mean, I wasn’t even in one buzzy finale of a beloved television show. I really need to do better. I will work on this.

It would have been funny if Harriet Walter also appeared in the finale of Barry this week. Maybe as another character’s mom. Maybe as NoHo Hank’s mom. I would have liked that. And speaking of Barry and NoHo Hank and really great transitions…

ITEM NUMBER TWO – God, this is adorable

Check this out. It’s Anthony Carrigan, who played the previously mentioned Chechen mobster NoHo Hank on Barry, standing with his wife while she talks into a microphone. And she sounds a lot like he did when he played NoHo Hank! Almost like, as this tweet suggests, he took inspiration from his own wife for the character. Here, look at this.

This is another one of those Two Things Can Be True situations. The first thing, as I said in the heading of this column, is that, if that is in fact what is happening, it is adorable. I love it. I think I might just refuse to look into this anymore to be sure I don’t learn anything that refutes it and ruins it for me. Let’s all agree to let me have this one.

The other true thing here is that it’s really funny to picture Anthony Carrigan telling his wife that he used her for inspiration on-set as a new character and he wanted to surprise her with it and then they watched the first episode together and she turned to him and said “… that’s how you think I sound?”

ITEM NUMBER THREE – I like Ryan Gosling a lot after reading this


Okay, to be clear, I have always liked Ryan Gosling. Maybe not “always” like “as long as I’ve been alive,” if only because I was not aware of Ryan Gosling when I was, like, a baby, but definitely always as in “as long as I have been aware that he is a charming and goofy man.” Definitely since I saw him in The Nice Guys, which remains a good and fun movie that you should maybe consider watching again this weekend, maybe with me, maybe with some pizza that you brought over. Sausage and green peppers on it. Maybe some root beer. I can be flexible.

But I’m off-topic already. Let’s focus. There is a big profile of Ryan Gosling over at GQ this week, one tied to his role as Ken in the upcoming Barbie movie, which looks like a wild ride. It’s a good profile. And fun to read. I recommend carving out some time this weekend to read it all. But for now, let’s focus on these two paragraphs…

From Cornwall, Ontario, where Gosling grew up, to Toronto, where he began attending auditions as a child actor, was “like, a five-hour train ride,” Gosling says. He shares this, in part, because the two of us are on a train right now. The Pacific Surfliner, winding out of Los Angeles and along the coast. Just something he had never done and wanted to do. We’d walked through Union Station to the platform together and I’d watched a bunch of afternoon commuters, families surrounded by luggage, people with nowhere else to go just killing time, and kids in jaunty outfits like La La Land extras doing cartoon double takes, despite the white hat Gosling wore pulled down low.

Actually: “Let me make sure it’s five hours from Cornwall,” Gosling says, putting down the Starbucks cup that says “Freddie” on it and pulling out his phone. “Don’t wanna start self-mythologizing. It was a hundred hours on a train.” He puts the phone away: “Four hours and 15 minutes.” Margot Robbie, who produced and stars in Barbie opposite Gosling, calls him “an overthinker.” Gosling, she says, will say something, “and then 40 minutes later, he’ll come up to me and be like, ‘You know when I said that? I’m just clarifying that what I meant was, blah blah.’ And I’m like, ‘Why are you still thinking about that?’ ”

Three things here, all of them important:

  • I relate so much to a lot of this, which you may have noticed from the first, like, three sentences I typed in this section
  • Something about Ryan Gosling ordering coffee from Starbucks and having them write “Freddie” on the cup is both hilarious and charming to me
  • I am thinking about The Nice Guys again

Let’s watch a clip from The Nice Guys.

This was a great chat.


Welllllllll here’s the full-length trailer for the upcoming FX series Justified: City Primeval. Yes, I know, we did just talk about this show a few weeks ago when they released a little hat-based teaser, but we are gonna talk about it again for two important reasons: One, I want to, and; two, this is my column so shut up.

It looks so good. I think. I am still trying to decide if I like it because it’s actually a promising program or if I just missed seeing Timothy Olyphant wear a hat and tangle with some bad guys. It’s probably a little of both. I hope Jere Burns shows up as Wynn Duffy, in Detroit for some unspecified reason, double-parked in the Wynnebago right downtown. I really miss Justified.

Anyway, here’s the official summary of the show again…

Having left the hollers of Kentucky 15 years ago, Raylan Givens now lives in Miami, a walking anachronism balancing his life as a U.S. Marshal and part-time father of a 15-year-old girl. He crosses paths with Clement Mansell, a violent, sociopathic desperado who has already slipped through the fingers of Detroit’s finest once before. Mansell’s attorney has every intention of representing her client, finding herself caught in between cop and criminal, with her own game afoot as well.

… and here’s the exact moment of this new trailer where I rocketed off the floor and attached myself to the ceiling like a demon.


It’s weird. Raylan’s entire thing — shoot-first lawman who plays by his own rules and is rarely concerned with trivial things like “the Fourth Amendment” — would be horrifying to me in real life. I could read an article about some actual cop or law enforcement figure doing exactly the things Raylan does that make me cheer/whoop a little in the show and I would come away horrified. I don’t know. It’s a little troubling to think about, really.


Let’s not!

Moving on!


Vin Diesel Dwayne Johnson Fast Furious

Here’s what’s happened, short version:

  • The Rock entered the Fast & Furious franchise in Fast Five — the best Fast & Furious movie — as Luke Hobbs, a law enforcement official who was hunting Dominic Toretto
  • He and Vin Diesel then had a big feud and it was kind of funny and The Rock kind of left the franchise
  • I say “kind of” here because he then returned for a spinoff with Jason Statham and then SURPRISE he showed up in a post-credits scene in the recently released Fast X

Which brings us to the news from this week: The Rock will star in an as-yet-untitled standalone spinoff as Luke Hobbs. At some point. The details are all still fuzzy. But it’s happening. Here, look.

Universal Pictures announced the project on Thursday. Longtime “Fast and Furious” collaborator Chris Morgan wrote the untitled film’s script. Plot details were not available, though individuals familiar with the deal said the new movie will bridge between the events of the just-released “Fast X” and the upcoming “Fast X: Part II,” which is expected in 2025. Johnson just appeared as Hobbs, a diplomatic security service agent, in a credits scene for “Fast X.”

Yes, sure, fine. The Rock also announced it himself in a very long tweet with a four-minute video attached. Or at least I assume he announced it himself. I have very few hard and fast rules in my life but one is that — barring crazy circumstances — I will not watch a four-minute video on Twitter.

Good for him, though.

My assumption here is that this standalone movie was part of the negotiation in him coming back for that post-credit scene in Fast X. Which is fine. I guess. I don’t know. I suppose it says a lot about me that I — a person who has loved these stupid movies so much for over 20 years now — would much rather watch the actual sit-down between The Rock and Vin Diesel where they hashed out their differences than this standalone movie starring The Rock.

I like to picture the two of them meeting on the top of a mountain. I like to picture The Rock getting up there by scaling the mountain with his bare hands and I like to picture Vin Diesel getting there by driving a muscle car up the face of a different mountain and using it as a huge ramp to launch himself to the peak where The Rock just climbed to. I like to picture Ludacris as the arbitrator who hears both sides. I like to picture all of it, really.

You see what I mean about this being more interesting than the actual movie, right? It’s fun. We have fun.


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 Paul:

I decided to do a rewatch of I Think You Should Leave with the new season being released this week. This time around I noticed that in the baby of the year sketch, the babies’ pediatrician is named “Dr. Skull.” In the last episode of the first season, in the Fenton horse ranch sketch, the ranch owners are Ted and Emily Skull. Not even mentioning how wonderful of a fake name “Dr. Skull” is (what do you think his first name could possibly be?), he has to be related to Ted and Emily right? Maybe Dr. Skull and Ted are brothers? The bottom line here is that Tim Robinson’s demented brain is the gift that keeps on giving.

I don’t have a lot to add here. I just really liked this email. I’ve watched the first two seasons of ITYSL straight through a few times and I somehow never picked up on the repeated use of Skull as a last name. I’m thinking about it a lot now, though. It really is a fun little piece of business. I feel like a good first name for Dr. Skull would be Jerry. Or maybe Ichabod. Dr. Ichabod Skull. That would be fun. Not a lot of Ichabods out there these days.

I suspect I will have more thoughts about the third season of ITYSL next week. I might get excited and rank all the sketches again. You can never tell with me. I’m a wild card.


To Vancouver!

Mounties in North Vancouver thwarted a toothpaste theft last Friday, seizing two duffle bags and one wagon’s worth of product.

One sentence into this story and we already have:

  • Mounties
  • A thwarted toothpaste heist
  • The phrase “a wagon’s worth of toothpaste”

You should see the smile on my face.

In a social media post, the detachment says officers were responding to an unrelated matter near a Superstore when they noticed ” a man running out of the emergency exit followed by staff.”

The suspect was arrested and the toothpaste – estimated to be worth $2,100 –was returned.

God, this is just tough luck for the toothpaste thief. He probably thought he was in the clear. But then cops showed up to check out something else and caught him. With $2100 worth of toothpaste. Which is, like, so much toothpaste. Two duffel bags and a wagon’s worth, to be specific.


Hold on.

Was he running out of the store dragging the wagon behind him?

Is that what’s happening here?

He was dragging a wagon filled with toothpaste as he ran out of a store with employees chasing him as Mounties who were there investigating another crime looked on and decided to intervene?

Please take a few minutes this weekend and think about how you would react if you were in the parking lot of your local grocery store and saw this chaotic scene play out in front of you. I would tell everyone I know. I would never shut up about it. It would be, maybe, the greatest day of my life.

North Vancouver RCMP spokesperson Const. Mansoor Sahak describes the theft as “unusual” and says the tubes – which were all the same and a particularly expensive brand – are thought to have been stolen in order to be resold on the street.

“They’re not using it for cleaning their teeth,” he said. “I don’t think anybody needs that much toothpaste.”

Okay. One of two things is happening here:

  • This police spokesperson means the thief is not using $2100 worth of toothpaste to clean his own teeth, and is selling it on the street
  • This police spokesperson is implying there is a second and possibly illicit use of high-end toothpaste and that is the reason for the theft

I really hope it’s the second one. I hope it was just the first step of a multi-part scheme, like an Ocean’s Eleven operation where they need a wagon’s worth of toothpaste for another step in a many-step plan that ends with the theft of many millions of dollars in cash and/or jewels.

You’re just going to have to let me have this one, too. I am already in too deep on it. You can’t take it away from me now.