Rattlesnakes. Fatal river-crossings. Bandits. And now tornadoes for good measure. Mother Nature dealt a backhand to our brave, if not woefully-unprepared pioneers in the latest episode of 1883 on Paramount+ -- the hit prequel to Yellowstone.
By now, we’re used to seeing the group in constant peril, all under the watchful eyes of Tim McGraw’s James Dutton, Sam Elliott’s Shea Brennan and LaMonica Garrett’s Thomas: A former Buffalo Soldier-turned-Pinkerton Agent.
“He’s a Black cowboy with a badge and a gun,” Garrett tells ABC Audio. “Sign me up to see what that’s about in that time period regardless of what else is going on!”
“We were one-in-four cowboys back in the day and that wasn’t shown in television, film and Hollywood," Garrett adds. "There’s so many stories, there’s so many legends in the Black cowboy culture that have never seen the light of day."
Garrett, who’s had starring roles in shows like Sons of Anarchy, Designated Survivor and The Flash, was raised on a steady diet of old-school western shoot-em-ups.
“And you don’t realize, growing up that you didn’t really see people that looked like you on these shows," he says. "So doing the research and you realize the representation that wasn’t there all throughout these years in a genre that I love…It’s huge. Like you see this gaping hole that we weren’t a part of.”
Garrett says his 1883 role is one that honors the past, while moving ahead with a newfound sense of representation. “To bring Thomas to life, this strong character with dignity, and pride, and strength…and he has his own code that he lives by and if you cross it, he takes care of it.” (AUDIO IS ABC 1-ON-1)
New episodes of 1883 are available Sundays on Paramount+.
An old adversary is slithering his way back to the All-Valley Karate Championship in season 4 of Netflix’s Cobra Kai, the wildly popular continuation of the Karate Kid films.
Terry Silver, played by Thomas Ian Griffith, has returned to the franchise after he was last seen tormenting Ralph Macchio’s Daniel LaRusso in 1989’s The Karate Kid Part III. Griffith tells ABC Audio it was the story that convinced him to come back.
“You know I had been working as a writer and I wasn’t sure about going back into the whole acting thing to begin with,” Griffith says. “And then once I heard this incredible path they had mapped out from the backstory in Vietnam through what he’s been up to for the last 30 years and how that manifests itself in the show today I’m going ‘oh man, this is like gold!’
This season, Daniel and longtime frenemy Johnny Lawrence, played by William Zabka, forge an uneasy alliance between their dojos. Macchio says it required some changes on Daniel’s part.
“He lets go of some of his grip on the you know, Miyagi teachings,” Macchio says. “The more he sees Johnny and his daughter Samantha and how they’re interacting/reacting to this is where he loosens that grip and says maybe it’s time to find your own way.”
Cobra Kai has already been greenlit for a season five. So does the cast ever think about the endgame?
“The endgame is, it just keeps getting bigger,” Zabka says. “As far as characters go, hopefully there’s some resolve. I’d like Johnny to find some peace in his life and some love. You know, he was a good kid, he just had a bad teacher!"