Betty Pearson, played by Leslie Uggams, in 'Fallout'.

Leslie Uggams Proves Once Again Why She’s the GOAT in ‘Fallout’

Amazon’s highly anticipated adaptation of Bethesda Game Studios’ Fallout series has finally arrived! All eight episodes of the first season are available to stream, and if you’re a pop culture vulture like myself, you probably binged them all in one weekend.

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The first season is filled with some complicated lore, as well as narrative twists and turns that even fans of the games didn’t see coming. On its surface, the series follows three protagonists: Chipper vault-dweller Lucy (Ella Purnell), Brotherhood of Steel soldier Maximus (Aaron Moten), and The Ghoul a.k.a. former Western star Cooper Howard (Walton Goggins).

As the series follows the three principals through the Wasteland, it also uncovers the allegiances of its supporting players. One such character is Betty Pearson (played by the iconic Leslie Uggams), Vault 33’s motherly council member.

***SPOILER ALERT: This post spoils the ending of season one of Fallout.***

When we first meet Betty, she is a warm and welcoming presence on the council alongside Reg (Rodrigo Luzzi) and Woody (Zach Cherry). When Hank MacLean (Kyle MacLachlan) is kidnapped by Lee Moldaver (Sarita Choudhury), an election is held for Vault 33’s new overseer. Betty, a previous overseer, wins with 98% of the vote and takes control.

But Lucy’s brother Norm (Moisés Arias) becomes suspicious of Betty when he and Chet (Dave Register) sneak into the abandoned Vault 32 and find the desiccated corpses of the Vaulties. Some were murdered, some died by suicide, and some were eaten by their fellow Vaulties. Many corpses were found attempting to break into Vault 31.

So how does Betty figure into all this? In Howard’s flashbacks, we discover that Betty was a Vault-Tec junior executive alongside Hank before the Great War. Hank and Betty were cryogenically frozen by Bud Askins and kept in Vault 31, alongside Bud (who is now a brain on a Roomba). Bud unfroze Hank and Betty to run Vault 33 as part of his Bud’s Buds program, i.e. to breed a generation of “super-managers” to run Vaults 323 and 33, and later, the world.

(featured image: Prime Video)


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Author
Chelsea Steiner
Chelsea was born and raised in New Orleans, which explains her affinity for cheesy grits and Britney Spears. An pop culture journalist since 2012, her work has appeared on Autostraddle, AfterEllen, and more. Her beats include queer popular culture, film, television, republican clownery, and the unwavering belief that 'The Long Kiss Goodnight' is the greatest movie ever made. She currently resides in sunny Los Angeles, with her husband, 2 sons, and one poorly behaved rescue dog. She is a former roller derby girl and a black belt in Judo, so she is not to be trifled with. She loves the word “Jewess” and wishes more people used it to describe her.