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Movies & TV

10th Jun 2024

How Prime Video’s epic sci-fi show is actually secretly a Western

Stephen Porzio

‘The Western elements of this story aren’t superfluous, they are organic,’ one of its stars told JOE.

FalloutPrime Video’s much-anticipated big-budget series adaptation of the popular video game franchise – finally lands this week on the streaming service and JOE had the opportunity to speak to some of its cast members.

For those not aware, the show is described as the “story of haves and have-nots” in a post-nuclear war world in which there is almost nothing left to have.

“200 years after the apocalypse, the gentle denizens of luxury fallout shelters are forced to return to the irradiated hellscape their ancestors left behind—and are shocked to discover an incredibly complex, gleefully weird, and highly violent universe waiting for them,” the plot synopsis reads.

Much of this violence is doled out by Cooper Howard aka The Ghoul (Walton Goggins), a former Western actor mutated by the radiation exposure, which has also given him an extended lifespan.

As such, he wanders the American nuclear wasteland as a gunslinging bounty hunter.

The role of The Ghoul is another addition to Walton Goggins’ Western bonafides, having already appeared in the Quentin Tarantino-directed oaters Django Unchained and The Hateful Eight, as well as the neo-Western series Justified.

And when we spoke to Goggins – as well as his co-star Kyle McLachlan – we asked him about playing a Western star in Fallout after already having cemented himself as one of the great modern Western actors.

In response he said: “I am very much attracted to the genre and have been a fan of the genre – I grew up watching Westerns like so many of us. I just keep coming back to them over and over again for what they say.

“I was so surprised [with Fallout] when I read it for the very first time wondering how [the writers were] going to weave this Western element into it – because it really is a science-fiction show.

“But the Western elements of this story aren’t superfluous, they are organic based on the life of Cooper Howard and who he was beforehand.”

Goggins then added: “I’ve always wanted to play a movie star, really and had never had the opportunity and when I read this on the page, I just kind of jumped at it.

“It was just a great opportunity to step into the shoes of some of the great Western stars that we all grew up with and are familiar with. I loved it.”

Fallout’s eight-episode first season will premiere on Prime Video in Ireland and the UK on 11 April.

You can check out its trailer below and also read about the show’s major connection to one of 2023’s biggest movies right here:

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