Yahoo! TV Q&A: 'Justified' star Raymond J. Barry talks about the Arlo shocker
SPOILER ALERT: This interview contains major storyline and character spoilers for last night's "Outlaw" episode of "Justified."
It's true … Arlo Givens, one of Harlan County's most notorious rascals, yet also one of its most oddly endearing residents, is dead. After taking a pair of scissors to the chest in a fight at the prison -- which is tied to this season's ongoing "Who is Drew Thompson?" storyline -- Arlo lived long enough to leave son Raylan with another unforgettable father-son moment: His last words to his son were, "Kiss my ass."
And with that, Arlo was out of the picture, with Raylan getting a phone call at work that his dad had died, and boss Art having to force Raylan to take a couple of days off to deal with his daddy issue.
Watch a promo clip from the "Outlaw" episode:
The presence of Arlo, and certainly the actor who played him, Raymond J. Barry, will be missed on "Justified." Yahoo! TV talked to the 73-year-old actor (and playwright, painter, sculptor, and father of four, including a 4-year-old) about Arlo's departure from Harlan, about how he has yet to see an episode of FX's fine drama, and about the many, many things he has planned for the future.
Arlo's death was so brutal. What was it like filming that?
The scene itself is action packed and brutal and very dramatic. It's certainly a well done closure, let's put it that way. It's a long fight scene during which time you're not sure who's going to win. I'm thinking now of "Shane," the movie from the '50s with Alan Ladd. They had this long barroom fight in the middle of this small Western town, and I'll never forget the battle of it and the choreography of it. It's just one of those paradigm fight scenes that left an indelible impression upon my mind. Hopefully, this one will be the same.
There's no closure for Arlo and Raylan, really, except maybe that Arlo on his deathbed treated Raylan the exact same way he'd treated him his whole life. Were you hoping for anything different, some other type of closure?
I was hoping for that. I thought, wouldn't it be unusual and unexpected if, one day, Arlo would say to his son, "I love you?" It's so different from the way he speaks. You would never expect him to go into that terrain with his boy. Yet, it's something that may happen between the father and son regardless of their lack of education, their background, and the conditioning they've experienced in their environment. I thought that would be a wonderful stroke. Nonetheless, having said that, it wasn't in the offing. (Laughs)
We think the fans are going to be heartbroken. Arlo has certainly had his bad boy moments, but he's always so fun to watch.
Sometimes I've been on location … one time I was up in the state of Washington shooting a movie, and a woman came over to me and said to me, "Are you my favorite father?" (Laughs) Referring to Arlo. I said, "Yes, I'm your favorite father." She couldn't believe I was sitting in a restaurant there in the state of Washington. Arlo is a cantankerous guy. He's a causal character. He makes things happen, in spite of the guy's age. You would consider him an older man, but he certainly has impact upon everyone who has contact with him. He's not passive, let's put it that way.