Farscape and Stargate SG-1 alum Ben Browder recently starred as a frontier family man in Outlaws and Angels –available to watch now on YouTube, Google Play, Vudu, iTunes, and Amazon Video. Three bank robbers are on the run from the law, with a pair of bounty hunters (one being Luke Wilson) hot on their trail. The outlaws invade the home of an unsuspecting, seemingly innocent frontier family to hide out for the night. An unexpected game of cat and mouse ensues, leading to seduction, some role reversal, and ultimately, bloody revenge. It’s a Western flick that stomps around from one uncomfortable situation to another, reminiscent of Quentin Tarantino but without much of the iconic director’s signature dark humor.
While the movie gave viewers a hard time choosing whom to root for, as each character has the potential to be just as bad as the other, it’s not quite as difficult sitting down with Ben Browder himself to talk about a whole number of things within a short 10-minute time limit. Including the weather.
Ben Browder: Hi, Christina. How are you doing on this glorious day?
Legion of Leia: I’m good. It’s raining here, though. There’s a downpour.
BB: [laughing] But the rain’s good, though! It helps the plants grow.
LoL: Well, that’s true, but when you live in the South and it’s constantly humid, you kinda wish for it to let down a little.
BB: Yeah, I know. Where are you in the South?
LoL: Charleston, South Carolina.
BB: Charleston is…yeah. That’s hot and humid, and nothin’ but. [laughs] It’s a great place, it’s a great city, but woooow. That’s a muggy spot.
LoL: Yeeeesssssss [laughs]. So I watched Outlaws and Angels, and…I have to ask: is that mustache real or fake?
BB: [laughs] Is the…No, no, it’s not my mustache. I mean, technically, I guess it’s fake. I don’t know who they cut it off of to put on me. [laughs] My wife wouldn’t let me grow that one.
LoL: How did it feel on your face. Would you want to grow a beard like this? It looks itchy.
BB: Uh, well I’ve had a full beard in the past. I’ve grown my mustache from time to time, but I didn’t have time to grow it for this particular role. At least, not to [JT Mollner‘s] specifications. Yeah, it takes a little while to put one like that together.
LoL: Alright. So tell me a little about your character, George.
BB: Well, you’ve seen the movie…George is, uh, a “loving father.” So awful. Awful!
LoL: [awkward laughter] Yeeeaaaaahhhh.
BB: George is a bit of a tortured soul. He loves his family in, uh, all the wrong ways. That’s the best way to describe him. I mean, anyone who is interested in going to see the movie can look online and find out everything about it, but I tend not to wanna give everything away when I talk about the movie. [Chuckles] A lot of the characters in this movie have…issues. [Laughs] They’re not necessarily clean in any sense of the word.
LoL: So during the course of the film, did you have a hard time playing George? Did any of what you were supposed to know about the character that didn’t show up in the film get to you in any way?
BB: …. Yes. [Laughs] It’s one of those parts the you look at on paper and go “Oh no. No no no no, don’t…who would want to do that?” That sort of becomes the reason for taking the role. It’s something of a challenge; it’s something that takes you out of your comfort zone. That’s the compelling thing about acting. Having said that, once you crawl inside his dusty clothes, you just…I think everyone is the hero of their own story, and George sees himself as a noble man who’s lost. [Laughs] That’s, at least, my take from an internal perspective about people like that. George, in his mind, is just a simple farmer/preacher trying to do right.
LoL: Yeah. Okay, so I noticed early in the film that the chickens have the run of the house at night. This does not compute to a city girl like me. Is there any reason why there are chickens everywhere? Why did you have to lie down with one? They were all so chill!
BB: [Laughs] Well, chickens would be inside the house to keep from predators at night.
BB: Yeah. If you don’t have a barn or a chicken coop, you just bring them inside the house. [George and his family] are poor farmers. I didn’t see any outdoor facilities for the chickens on the farm, so you bring them in to keep them safe.
LoL: Yeah, okay. That makes sense.
BB: Yeah, so if you leave your small animals outside in Southern California, they will get eaten. [Laughs] You kinda forget about that. If you live in Charleston, you might forget that, but there’s still predators roaming around Southern California.
LoL: Oh gosh, yeah, we don’t really have any of SoCal’s predators here in Charleston. Except for maybe palmetto bugs…
BB: Yeah, if you head west of the Appalachian Mountains, you will find animals like coyotes and even panthers if you’re lucky.
LoL: Yeesh. No thanks.
BB: Oooooh yes! My mom lives out in eastern Tennessee, and she had a couple of dogs taken by bears.
LoL: Oh nooooooo! Poor puppies!
BB: I know, right?
LoL: So basically what you’re telling me is to never ever let my pets out, ever, for fear of bears coming to eat them. Thank you. Thanks for that.
BB: Yeah, well, if you’re in Florida, you might need to be careful about the alligators. Charleston doesn’t really have any non-human predators left. I think. You don’t still have gators over there, do you?
LoL: Oh no, we do. They somehow always find ways of getting into man-made ponds no matter how far away you are from the marsh.
BB: Oh, well. There ya go. Just keep your dogs inside or else the gators are gonna get’em. But yeah, that’s what farmers did in the 1800s out West.
LoL: True that, true that. All good points. I’m going straight for the fan questions now. Would you go back to Farscape if they made more episodes or a movie?
BB: Absolutely! I’m still waiting for the word. [Laughs] Farscape is very near and dear to my heart, of course I’d come back.
LoL: Who’s been your favorite alien on the show?
BB: Ummmmmm, duh! Aeryn. [Laughs]
LoL: Oh duh! Claudia Black is an amazing woman. She’s my favorite too! [laughs]
BB: Yeah, see? There ya go! My other favorite is Pilot. Playing with Pilot was pretty amazing.
LoL: One more question! You’ve been in horror, science fiction, and now a western. Which genre has been the most fun to play in?
BB: I love science fiction. I grew up loving science fiction. I’ve read science fiction, a bit of fantasy and horror as well. But…well, y’know, I like working. [laughs] But if I had a preference for what I wanted to watch, if I could only have one genre in my DVR, it would probably be science fiction.
LoL: Yay! Sci-fi for the win!