Scott Eastwood’s gross world
Scott Eastwood is featured in Australia GQ’s September issue—in a somewhat telling play, he’s on the alternate subscriber cover while Jake Gyllenhaal covers the newsstand copy. So Scott Eastwood gets covers, but he still has to take a backseat to an actual movie star. Which is how the interview goes, really, as Scott’s dad—a real Movie Star—inevitably comes up. This profile is packed with stuff, including writer Adam Baidawi dubbing Scott a “Cali-bro”, which is just about the perfect description for him, but the biggest headline is about Eastwood discussing the death of a former girlfriend.
In weirdly graphic terms, Eastwood reveals that an ex-girlfriend—identified as Jewel Brangman—died in a car accident due to a faulty airbag. Of her death, Eastwood says, “She was a wonderful person and it’s sad that she’s gone from the world, and a terrible tragedy for her family. Such a horrible accident really makes you think about the fleeting nature of life, and how grateful we should be for each day. I know I’m grateful that I got to know her, she was really special.”
Hahaha, just kidding. He didn’t talk about her! He just talked about himself! What he really said was, “I had never lost someone I had been really intimate with, you know, like in that way, in a relationship. I think that really affected me in a way that... I don’t know. Maybe it’s made it harder for me to date.” Translation: I banged a chick and she died and I feel weird about that.
I don’t want to assume Eastwood didn’t have real feelings of grief when he learned about the accident. But let’s be clear on a couple things. 1) At the time of her death, Eastwood and Brangman had broken up and he was dating someone else (Brittany Brousseau), so he didn’t lose a partner. And 2) HER DEATH ISN’T ABOUT YOU. What is the problem with men lately where terrible things happening to women is all about them? Is it really so hard to empathize with a woman that you can’t process a woman’s pain except to consider how it impacts YOU? Eastwood says he still hasn’t spoken to Brangman’s father because he hasn’t “found the right words”. Yeah, no doubt. Because your words are all about YOU, and this has nothing to do with YOU.
(And lest I sound too judgmental, a guy I once dated died in a freak accident several years ago. It’s not that I didn’t feel sad, I did, but his death had nothing to do with me—for me it was just a terrible quirk of fate. For his family, however, and the friends that were still in his life, it’s a loss with no boundaries. There’s no comparison.)
But wait, there’s more. Another anecdote relayed by Eastwood is about that time when he was sixteen and his dad punched him in the face. Eastwood says, “I had taken my younger sister, who was, like, 14, to this party. […] And I left her and I didn’t think about it at the time. Later, Dad found out that I’d left her there.” Baidawi goes on to set the scene: “Clint Eastwood, all six-foot-one of him, slammed his teenage son against a wall. He wrapped his sinewy hands around Scott’s throat. And then he punched him, square in the face.” Scott Eastwood calls this moment “very old-school.” Sure, that’s one word for it.
It’s not like I had ideas about Clint Eastwood being a beacon of progression. He was born in 1930, and one reason things weren’t “called racist” when he was younger is because it was legal to discriminate against people based on skin color until he was well into his thirties—it wasn’t called racism because it was called “the law”. But somehow, even with that, and empty chairs, Scott Eastwood keeps finding ways to make his dad sound even worse. Including the tidbit one his birth certificate that reads “Father Declined” is bad enough—and says a lot about Clint’s idea of fatherhood—but the face-punching? The only people who will find that charming are the people who agreed that we should stop calling things racist.
And GQ, I guess, because the whole profile is about how “normal” and cool Eastwood is, and how fun it is to go to clubs with him where his last name opens every door and reveals a secret club world of bored but hot Eastern European chicks ready to entertain you. It’s a really gross profile. Not because of bad writing, but because Scott Eastwood is gross, his world is gross, and idealizing him is gross.