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Where's Wallace at? Where's the boy, String?
February 1, 2011 4:29 PM   Subscribe

The Wire: Where Are They Now?

Michael B. Jordan (Wallace): "Following an early departure from The Wire in 2002, Jordan has made a successful career in television, including stints on All My Children, The Assistants and Parenthood. He currently plays Vince Howard in the much-beloved Friday Night Lights, and he will appear alongside Wire castmate Tristan Wilds in the Red Tails project."
posted by vidur (80 comments total) 16 users marked this as a favorite

 
I thought of making this into an askme at one point. I watched Luther and found it amazing. I watch Thorne and found it above average, so thought about hunting more of the actors down. It's weird that the author is so enamored and dismissive of the small screen in the same article.

"Dominic West (Jimmy McNulty) has kept a rather low profile on British television, while Aidan Gillen (Tommy Carcetti) has similarly kept mostly to limited small screen roles."

Gillen play the coroner in the Thorne series.
posted by cjorgensen at 4:36 PM on February 1, 2011


Luther is fucking awesome.
posted by Fizz at 4:36 PM on February 1, 2011


Although not mentioned this article, when I realized Avon was one of the leads from Remember the Titans my mind was blown.
posted by yeahwhatever at 4:40 PM on February 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


What about Lester Freamon? And the Barksdales? And Brother? And Wee-bay? And...
posted by iamkimiam at 4:41 PM on February 1, 2011 [2 favorites]


I saw someone who was a spitting image of Diangelo Barksdale at a Java developers conference this fall and had to look up his IMDB to make sure he hadn't moved on to a career in software development.
posted by twjordan at 4:43 PM on February 1, 2011 [2 favorites]


So, basically, the ones who were already established or up-and-coming actors (e.g. Riddick, Elba, Whitlock, Hector) have continued on that path, a couple who largely got their big break in The Wire have become established actors, and most of the rest have either gone back to being jobbing actors or dropped out altogether.

Which would seem to tie in pretty well with the fates of actors in general.
posted by Pinback at 4:50 PM on February 1, 2011 [2 favorites]


I was so happy to see Wallace show up on Friday Night Lights. Kid has the ability to make me cry with one look.
posted by gaspode at 4:53 PM on February 1, 2011


Yeah, Jason Katims must love Wallace cause he's in Parenthood as well. Man, did that kid grow some jaw muscles!
posted by saul wright at 4:59 PM on February 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


No mention of Treme? Half the Wire cast are in that.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 5:01 PM on February 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


how often are casting agents looking for a lesbian drug-dealer type with a super-thick Baltimore accent?
The way they're writing scripts for Home and Away and Neighbours these days, Snoop might wind up in Australian teenage soap.

Make it happen, Fremantle Media. Toadfish needs putting in a vacant.
posted by Fiasco da Gama at 5:04 PM on February 1, 2011 [6 favorites]


Gillen play the coroner in the Thorne series.

Gillen is portraying Petyr Baelish (Littlefinger) in the Game of Thrones series on HBO, which is pretty high profile.

In other news: Game of Thrones on HBO coming in a few months. FANGIRL SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE
posted by Justinian at 5:05 PM on February 1, 2011 [8 favorites]


Yo String, where's Wallace? WHERE'S WALLACE!?!?
posted by spikeleemajortomdickandharryconnickjrmints at 5:10 PM on February 1, 2011 [8 favorites]


Carcetti plays Littlefinger? Not at all the casting in my head...
posted by Edgewise at 5:11 PM on February 1, 2011


The Avon Barksdale is in Remember the Titans?! thing got me this weekend. It was the only thing on, and then, bam, there he is. Totally bizarre.
posted by Ghidorah at 5:16 PM on February 1, 2011


I think Carcetti as Littlefinger will totally work. Littlefinger = not muscle-bound, dark-haired, devious, and exceedingly political.
posted by zoetrope at 5:18 PM on February 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


Ziggy Sobotka (the actor that plays him) had one of the main roles in the HBO adaptation of Generation Kill, which was pretty amazing in its own right.
posted by Ghidorah at 5:24 PM on February 1, 2011 [4 favorites]


Yeah, Jason Katims must love Wallace cause he's in Parenthood as well...

Oh my God -- that's who that is. I couldn't figure out why that guy who the daughter on this show I barely watch was making me want to cry whenever he came on screen, and now that I realize I was remembering him as Wallace but not fully, it makes so much more sense.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 5:26 PM on February 1, 2011 [2 favorites]


I'm with iamkimiam. I want to know where everyone is now, regardless of skin color. Also, I would like many equally high quality sequels. The Wire is one show that actually did not have to end where it ended.

I.e. I continue to suffer withdrawal pains. Need more!
posted by bearwife at 5:26 PM on February 1, 2011


Clay Davis (that will always be his name) has a featured role in some dopey comedy about to be releases. The trailer shows him doing an Omar impersonation.
posted by Burhanistan at 5:27 PM on February 1, 2011


Several of the cast have also had cameos in comedy shows, including Andre Royo on the "Joel Munt's Big Deal Party" episode of Party Down and Chad Coleman on the "Charlie Kelly: King of the Rats" and "Dee Gives Birth" episodes of It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia
posted by cobra_high_tigers at 5:27 PM on February 1, 2011


Why does it not surprise me that the actor who played Jimmy McNulty disappeared, apparently relegated to some boat acting job somewhere?
posted by dflemingecon at 5:32 PM on February 1, 2011 [6 favorites]


The girl and I are just coming into the home stretch in watching the complete run of Oz, and are pleasantly surprised to see how many Wire actors also turn up there, a few years before The Wire (usually on the other side of the law). Odd to see Avon Barksdale as a prison guard, or Daniels and Carver as prisoners getting involved in a lethal fight with each other.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 5:36 PM on February 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


Aren't they all on The Office now?
posted by jpdoane at 5:36 PM on February 1, 2011


Johnny Fifty owns a sideshow museum.
posted by box at 5:41 PM on February 1, 2011


Besides being on Treme, Anwan 'Slim Charles' Glover has a radio show and sings in a go-go band.
posted by box at 5:45 PM on February 1, 2011


Avon Barksdale was also in the crazy Richard Kelly movie Southland Tales.

And Omar Little was in Trapped in the Closet.
posted by Saxon Kane at 5:45 PM on February 1, 2011


I've been planning on doing a AskMeFi on which TV Show/Movie has the most "The Wire" Alumni. I'm going with "Brooklyn's Finest". It has Clay Davis, Omar, and Wee Bay in it.
posted by sideshow at 5:49 PM on February 1, 2011


Clarke Peters did guest spots on In Plain Sight, Covert Affairs, and Damages last year, and Robert Wisdom and Michael B. Jordan both showed up (separately) on Burn Notice.

I was seeing those guys so often, it was like The Wire was still on. Almost. OK, not really.
posted by FelliniBlank at 5:52 PM on February 1, 2011


I've been planning on doing a AskMeFi on which TV Show/Movie has the most "The Wire" Alumni.

If you allow Treme, it beats Brooklyn's Finest: Bunk, Lester Freamon, Slim Charles and Walon.
posted by box at 5:54 PM on February 1, 2011



Gillen is portraying Petyr Baelish (Littlefinger) in the Game of Thrones series on HBO, which is pretty high profile.

In other news: Game of Thrones on HBO coming in a few months. FANGIRL SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE


This show is going to be the best show. I'm really losing my head with blind adoration.
posted by furiousxgeorge at 6:01 PM on February 1, 2011


Presbaluski, Chris Partlow and Carcetti's chief of staff were in Fringe along with Lt Daniels and Bubbs. I'm sure there have been others. You can watch Fringe just to spot Wire cameos if you want.
posted by The Hamms Bear at 6:09 PM on February 1, 2011


Frank Sobotka too!
posted by The Hamms Bear at 6:12 PM on February 1, 2011


Ziggy Sobotka (the actor that plays him) had one of the main roles in the HBO adaptation of Generation Kill, which was pretty amazing in its own right.

In an alternate storyline in my head, Ziggy Sobotka gets a work release from prison to join the army and becomes "Josh Person" to protect his identity. James Ransome just owns that character type, and it fits him like a gimp suit in those two shows. And while I'm on the subject I'm gonna link my all time favorite quote about Ziggy: The moment you see Ziggy’s character for the first time, you know this guy is gonna end up dead–even if he was guesting on fucking According to Jim, soon enough he’d have pushed Belushi just a little too far, and the show would’ve had to have taken a turn for the dramatic.
posted by 1f2frfbf at 6:12 PM on February 1, 2011 [6 favorites]


And Amy Ryan, aside from her Office role, was amazing on In Treatment as the shrink's shrink.
posted by Jode at 6:18 PM on February 1, 2011


Wow, I'm a huge FNL fan and didn't even recognize Wallace. Kid grew. I actually think Friday Night Lights is a better show than the Wire.
posted by dobbs at 6:20 PM on February 1, 2011


It's certainly up there, dobbs.
posted by gaspode at 6:23 PM on February 1, 2011


I hope Carcetti as Littlefinger is as genius a casting move on the screen as it is in my head. (really genius)
posted by BillBishop at 6:32 PM on February 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


Omar Little is now Chalky White on Boardwalk Empire. He's been what I'd consider a little underused, but it's a big cast. And, he did get one fantastic speech in the first half of the season.

I watch Parenthood and just marvel at how Wallace has grown too!
posted by gladly at 6:36 PM on February 1, 2011


I do a pretty convincing Omar from the HBO series The Wire
posted by P.o.B. at 6:47 PM on February 1, 2011 [6 favorites]


Seth Gilliam was in Commonwealth Shakespeare Company's production of Othello this summer. As (wait for it) Othello. I saw it twice during the run, and on the second go-round kept waiting for him to exclaim "sheeeeeit!" at the end of one of the soliloquies.
posted by pxe2000 at 6:50 PM on February 1, 2011


Wallace had a sad story line, but what about Dukie? Damn near broke my heart when he lied to Prez and became the Bubbs replacement. When Bubbs got to go up those stairs though...

Pat Moran has to be one of the greatest casting directors in the history of television.
posted by Chichibio at 6:54 PM on February 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


No joke from anyone that this Wire post followed a Wired post.
posted by CNNInternational at 7:02 PM on February 1, 2011


The wife and I cruised through the Law & Order: CI episodes on Netflix Instant, and it's uncanny how many actors from The Wire would show up in any given episode. My wife quickly grew sick of my "Wire guy" remarks.
posted by Brocktoon at 7:05 PM on February 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


I actually had a soft spot for Ziggy and hoped he would get his shit together by the end of the season. But that's a fantastic quote, 1f2frfbf.
posted by yaymukund at 7:06 PM on February 1, 2011


Dominic West needs to publicly apologize for Punisher: War Zone, including his acting. I know a guy has to pay the bills, but sweet Jesus that was sad.
posted by Iosephus at 7:20 PM on February 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


Deirdre Lovejoy, who played Rhonda Pearlman on The Wire, had a recurring role as a serial killer on Bones.

Amy Ryan was also in The Green Zone.
posted by kirkaracha at 7:28 PM on February 1, 2011


SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE

In this context I believe it's actually "SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEit."
posted by kirkaracha at 7:30 PM on February 1, 2011 [10 favorites]


I've been seeing Dominic West in a few things on TV recently, both pre- and post Wire. Agree with Isoephus on Punisher: War Zone - that had to be purely to pay the bills as it was awful. He was in Mona Lisa smile on tv last night and we saw him last week in Centurion where he was pretty good.
I miss The Wire, has it been 3 years already?
posted by arcticseal at 7:50 PM on February 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


Chinese New Year here, may have to have a marathon and revisit some old friends.
posted by arcticseal at 7:51 PM on February 1, 2011


Hang on: 'Andre "Bubbles" Royo will be starring in the post-apocalyptic piece Remnants'? I really hope this is related to the awesome pilot John August made during the writer's strike a couple of years ago.
posted by hot soup girl at 8:35 PM on February 1, 2011


I think my most jarring "Hey that's the guy/girl from The Wire" moment has to be watching Mona Lisa and seeing a young Lester Freamon play a vicious pimp.
posted by Rangeboy at 8:39 PM on February 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


No joke from anyone that this Wire post followed a Wired post.

I was just gonna copy my joke from the earlier thread and say "well, nobody's gonna pay attention to the Sopranos thread anymore".
posted by inigo2 at 8:50 PM on February 1, 2011


What about Lester Freamon?

Cropped up as a professor with a secret in this dodgy drama. Yer man was phoning it in, but that was plenty good enough for the show.
posted by Abiezer at 9:09 PM on February 1, 2011


Wow, I'm a huge FNL fan and didn't even recognize Wallace. Kid grew. I actually think Friday Night Lights is a better show than the Wire.

I just has the same reaction after reading the article. I can't believe I didn't make the connection.

FNL:Season 2::Wire:Season 5
posted by Falconetti at 9:49 PM on February 1, 2011


Along with Oz, you can catch a sizable part of the cast in the preceding HBO miniseries The Corner, also based on Ed Burns and David Simon's book on Baltimore. The roles are switched around in sometimes interesting ways, and the production as whole functions as a sort of prequel to the Wire, focusing heavily on the lives of addicts rather than dealers and cops. It's bleaker in tone and has lower production values but is worst a look for Wire junkies.

Also, not to pee in anyone's cheerios, but am I just not getting something about Luther that makes it good? I'm a big fan of Idris Elba and he's good in it, but everything else about that show seems like an endless cliche parade (albeit with a BBC varnish). I could barely make it through the second episode and then gave up. Does it get a lot better after that or something?
posted by whir at 11:32 PM on February 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


I spotted Wee-Bey in the trailer for some utter piece of gansta' ghetto garbage staring 50 Cent a while back. Something inside died a little.

Clarke Peters played Nelson Mandela in Endgame a UK tv drama about the end of apartheid in South Africa which I thought was pretty good. Apparently he was also in Holby City a medical soap which is... not so good. And of course he was brilliant in Treme

And also taking on a real life character Dominic West played Cromwell in The Devil's Whore a mini-series set in the English Civil War which I also enjoyued.

My best 'Hey! It's him from The Wire' was re-watching Hackers recently and realising the befuddled S.S. agent that Zero Cool and Acid Burn have a competition over who can fuck up his life the most was played by Bunk...
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 1:54 AM on February 2, 2011


Michael K. Williams (Omar Little) appeared in "The Road" (2009), as a nervy, psychologically traumatized apocalypse surviver. His shell-shocked character makes for a dramatic departure from the coolly confident Omar, IMO.

Though not specifically related to acting, Gbenga Akinnagbe (Chris Partlow) published an interesting account of a trek in the Himalayas. It's standard, par-for-the-course New York Times travel writing, but it's a must for readers interested in this part of the world.
posted by Gordion Knott at 2:52 AM on February 2, 2011


They all gots to get got.
posted by slimepuppy at 3:28 AM on February 2, 2011


this reminds me, I've got to wash my sheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeets
posted by victors at 4:45 AM on February 2, 2011


His shell-shocked character makes for a dramatic departure from the coolly confident Omar, IMO.

Does he still have that nasty limp?
posted by goethean at 5:51 AM on February 2, 2011


I'm still getting a kick out of the fact that I'm not the only one who has "hey that's..." moments.
posted by nevercalm at 5:53 AM on February 2, 2011


Frank Sobotka is in True Blood.
posted by afx237vi at 6:05 AM on February 2, 2011


At its core, The Wire is about Baltimore. It is still here.
posted by Shike at 6:24 AM on February 2, 2011


Dominic West needs to publicly apologize for Punisher: War Zone, including his acting. I know a guy has to pay the bills, but sweet Jesus that was sad.

This may be an unpopular opinion, but I believe that one of the amazing things about The Wire that isn't on the very long list of "amazing things about The Wire" is that it made Dominic West's acting talent seem more than just barely passable. Nothing else I've ever seen him in has made me think otherwise.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 6:28 AM on February 2, 2011 [1 favorite]


I saw Herc on Bored to Death, as Herc.
posted by Beardman at 6:30 AM on February 2, 2011


This may be an unpopular opinion, but I believe that one of the amazing things about The Wire that isn't on the very long list of "amazing things about The Wire" is that it made Dominic West's acting talent seem more than just barely passable. Nothing else I've ever seen him in has made me think otherwise.

I tend to agree -- I have never yet seen him deliver a performance a tenth as good as he does with McNulty, and I cannot imagine anyone else in the role. Maybe he lucked into a role he waws temperamentally perfectly suited to. It is like Kevin Costner, who is often accused of being wooden... people overlook that the performance that elevated him to stardom was as Eliot Ness, which is exactly where you want someone inflexible and nigh-emotionless. He also did fine work as a corpse in The Big Chill.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 7:51 AM on February 2, 2011


For me the most recent 'Hey, it's that guy from the The Wire!' moment was watching Goodfellas for the millionth time and noticing that the doctor who checks Ray Liotta out in the helicopters sequence is none other than a young Clay Davis.
posted by Mocata at 7:57 AM on February 2, 2011


Dominic West played a funny hair-metal rocker in the mostly lame Rockstar. Drove me crazy. I didn't recognize who he was until the end of that movie.
posted by JBennett at 8:30 AM on February 2, 2011


I find that nothing underlines how much impact a show has on me than how I take notice of the cast in later roles. It's impossible for me to see Andre Royo in anything without thinking (sometimes out loud) "BUBBLES!".

Nothing tops The Wire for this phenomenon, but I also do it heavily for the cast of Freaks & Geeks and Firefly (I just wish Castle didn't suck so hard). I expect I will do it in the future for Friday Night Lights.
posted by mcstayinskool at 8:37 AM on February 2, 2011


Darn, I was really hoping this would be about where the characters from The Wire are three years later, and not the actors. Still nice to know, though.
posted by The Lurkers Support Me in Email at 10:50 AM on February 2, 2011 [1 favorite]


Dominic West reads Pride and Prejudice in the Carte Noir Readers. Or so somebody told me.
posted by iamkimiam at 11:21 AM on February 2, 2011


I know the original post was about the African-American actors from The Wire, but I'll mention in passing that I saw Deirdre Lovejoy reprise her spooky serial killer role on Bones a week or two ago.
posted by aught at 12:05 PM on February 2, 2011


Thanks for posting this. Goddamn that show is so good it makes me ache. Any other cop is just embarrassing. CSI, Law & Order, NCIS, etc. are phony, hyperbolic trash that make me prickle with discomfort at the utter lack of creativity and deadening predictability of their storytelling. They're the television equivalent of books you can buy in the grocery checkout line.

When The Wire ended I felt like there should be a moratorium on cop shows for the next 50 years, maybe even a century. If I had enough money I'd buy The Wire: The Complete Series set and give it to everyone I know and mail a copy to each and every member of Congress.

If you want to know how America works, if you're one of those people who watches the news and thinks, "Gee, why don't people just do better?", if you want to truly understand why our entire American system is terminally flawed, YOU NEED TO WATCH THE WIRE.

The show doesn't offer all the solutions (although Hamsterdam wasn't such a bad idea), but it does nicely summarize all the problems in a way that no other single piece of media ever has, in my opinion.
posted by Surinam Toad at 12:26 PM on February 2, 2011


You mean Dominic West is capable of performing even more poorly than he did in The Wire? His mediocre acting, particularly in the first season, almost put me off watching the series.
posted by exogenous at 1:21 PM on February 2, 2011


Sonja Sohn campaigned for Obama in 2008 with some of the other actors from The Wire, and she now has an organization called ReWired for Change in Baltimore. She spoke at a conference I attended last year, and I can report that she is smart and funny and political and still smoking hot in person.

She spoke at length about her experiences working to get out the vote in housing projects in North Carolina and Virginia, and why she was motivated to create her organization in Baltimore.
posted by gingerbeer at 1:37 PM on February 2, 2011


Any other cop [show] is just embarrassing.

True. Wire have forever ruined other cop shows for me, and I am thankful for that.
posted by vidur at 2:32 PM on February 2, 2011


If anyone's jonesing for a good cop show, check out Southland. It's not The Wire but it's much better than csi/svu formula dreck. Reminds me of Hill Street Blues, kinda.
posted by aerotive at 3:36 AM on February 3, 2011


Just remember another one: the actor who played Lester Freamon was in Notting Hill, potraying one of the actors in the press junket for Julia Roberts' space opera movie, getting interviewed for Horse and Hound.
posted by Ghidorah at 6:54 AM on February 3, 2011 [1 favorite]


My "Holy shit Wire guy" sighting came during a rewatch of Outland when it was on a local movie channel recently.

A very young Clarke Peters, aka Lester Freamon is in that movie. Only recognized him by the voice.
posted by never used baby shoes at 12:20 PM on February 3, 2011


We're watching the Hudsucker Proxy this afternoon (one of my favorites), and realized that Buzz, the elevator guy is Prez!
posted by jpdoane at 10:08 AM on February 20, 2011 [1 favorite]


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