‘1883’: Why Sam Elliott Doesn’t Feel Like He’s ‘Carrying the Show’

by Shelby Scott
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Sam Elliott is likely one of the most humble guys within the acting industry. Despite the prominent role he plays in “1883,” the beloved actor believes his character, Shea Brennan, isn’t “carrying the show.”

Outsiders might beg to differ. From the get-go, viewers could tell that, at least in an emotional capacity, Shea carries a lot of baggage. Not only does he feel responsible for the deaths of hundreds upon hundreds of Union soldiers, but he is also forced to cope with the deaths of his daughter and wife after they contracted and succumbed to smallpox.

From there, Shea, quite literally, carries the immigrant caravan. The first episodes see him teaching them, the best he knows, how to survive the perils of the American West. Frequently, he adopts an off-skew fatherly role as he protects, feeds, and shelters the convoy with his good friend Thomas.

Sam Elliott and Shea Brennan Reflect Similar Values

Nevertheless, during his appearance on “The Official Yellowstone Podcast,” Elliott shared with “Yellowstone” actor Jefferson White, “I don’t feel like I’m carrying the show on my own shoulders.” He added, “We all have a hand in it.”

However, he did state, “I have a job to do,” his tone reflecting the personality apparent in Shea Brennan. “And the better I can do my job, the job I was hired to do, the better I feel the final product is gonna be.”

Taking the words straight from my mouth, or rather, my fingertips, he continued, “I think it’s probably the same with Shea. The better he is at protecting those souls that are in his charge, the better he’s gonna feel about himself.”

Therefore, while the actor doesn’t feel as though his role carries the narrative of “1883” alone, he definitely sees a similarity between his responsibility and Shea’s. That realization unites him more closely with the character.

A Lesson On Bad Words, Courtesy of ‘1883’

Shea does possess certain fatherly attributes in “1883.” However, the number of times the character, as well as his companions, have cursed to make their point is innumerable. That said, the last new episode of “1883” saw the immigrants, and young John Dutton, learn about the word, “f**k.”

In essence, it led to a rather humorous scene, a popular tactic within the Taylor Sheridan-produced series. With all the suspense present throughout the episode, it was a breather from the heaviness of the West’s realities.

That said, little John Dutton asked his mama what the foul word meant and, in a quick-witted, laughable response, she replies, “It means a spanking, and a good one,” if he ever repeats it.

However, off-screen, John’s actor, Audie Rick, at only five years old, had a talk with his own mama about the meaning of the F-word. And her narrative of the event is hysterical.

In short, the little actor perfectly utilized the word after uttering the wrong curse word, “sh*t,” during a take. To read about the full incident, click here. It’s worth it.

Outsider.com