Brow Beat

The Disappointing Return of Dazed and Confused’s Best-Loved Character

A still of Matthew McConaughey in the music video for “Synthesizers” by Butch Walker and the Black Widows.

A music video which stars Matthew McConaughey reprising his iconic turn as David Wooderson in Dazed and Confused and plays out as an extended, Linklater-approved homage to that movie’s very best scene? What could possibly go wrong?

Well, if that scene takes place entirely in some bland-looking dance club, and the song that Wooderson unconvincingly lip-syncs to sounds like something that would prompt the fictional character we know and love to switch the radio dial faster than you can say “Melba Toast,” and if at one point Wooderson picks up a trumpet and goes all Dizzy Gillespie for some reason—well, then a few things may possibly go wrong.


(And, if I may indulge my inner typeface-geek for a second: Mistral, used in the opening credits, is more reminiscent of the 1980s than the late ‘70s—that’s why it worked so well for Drive. If your music video stars David Wooderson, Harlow is the typeface you’re looking for.) 

As Kevin Jagernauth suggests at the Playlist, you may be better off just waiting for Linklater’s “spiritual sequel” to Dazed and Confused to get off the ground. Still, I feel a certain obligation to share all Wooderson-related news. So, if the description above doesn’t put you off completely, check out the video below.


Dazed and Confused and the Cinema of Aimlessness