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Monday, January 14, 2008

Obama on The Wire

posted by on January 14 at 10:15 AM

J. Patrick Coolican, formerly of The Seattle Times, now of The Las Vegas Sun, scores an interview with Barack Obama in which he briefly talks with the presidential candidate about two of Slog’s biggest loves: The Wire and The Gays.

Even more Sloggerific: Despite the tolerance he showed toward an anti-gay preacher back in October, Obama reveals his favorite character on The Wire to be… Omar.


That’s right, Omar (above center), the gay gangsta who robs drug dealers for a living, cries over the brutal death of his gun-toting boyfriend (above left), and turns out to make a killer government witness. (And, you know, full disclosure: Omar’s also my favorite Wire character.)

You can listen to audio of the interview here, but it’s short and, in the world of the Slog, probably comes close to breaking news, so I’ll also transcribe it for you:

Obama: I gotta say Omar’s a great character. That’s not an endorsement.

Coolican: (Laughing.) Uh oh, you’re making national news here.

Obama: Exactly. That is not an endorsement. He is not my favorite person. But he’s a fascinating character.

Coolican: And there’s a real life story behind it, too.

Obama: He’s this gay gangster who only robs drug dealers, and then gives back. You know, he’s sort of a Robin Hood. And he’s the toughest, baddest guy on this show, but he’s gay, you know. And it’s really interesting. It’s a fascinating character.

RSS icon Comments


AAAAAHHHHH! Close your b tag.

Posted by Mike of Renton | January 14, 2008 10:26 AM

Fox News ALERT!!!!

Obama endorses vigilantee Robin Hood activities in the 'hood!!!

Posted by Just Me | January 14, 2008 10:27 AM

Omar is the biggest bad ass in the history of television. He has to be everyones favorite character.

Posted by Gabe Global | January 14, 2008 10:31 AM

Omar is the truth, but he is no Robin Hood. He keeps his money, doesnt give to the poor, and is fair with his henchmen.

My prediction. Omar takes out Snoop and Chris takes down Omar.

Favorite Omar line:

Youre Lying to live.

Posted by SeMe | January 14, 2008 10:37 AM

The Wire soundtrack has Paul Weller doing I Walk on Gilded Splinters (confident. to any Jam fan) and SIXTEEN TONS done by someone who is not Tenessee Ernie Ford. i thought of Anthony when I saw it at Easy Street over the weekend. I was buying the December issue of Seattle Sound mag - there's a distant mention in it of my efforts toward a "trainwreck"

vegas is a la la town. yuck, perhaps seattle in the future if certain pollsters have their way. Sue! Sue! Sue! Bad Builder! Naughty bOy/girl! I'm an idiot because i didn't inspect the building. ask questions! Sue Sue Sue Tears in my beer! Whine in my Stein!

Posted by gr miLusk | January 14, 2008 10:37 AM

Omar don't scare.

Posted by flamingbanjo | January 14, 2008 10:53 AM

In-deed. Now Obama has me. Suspicions that he's a camouflaged corporate suckup are out the window. If he's into the Wire, and is as enamored of Omar as I, he's planning many moves ahead of everybody.

He takes office and sets to kicking ass. Working for him, voting for him, seeing what he does once in office = reasons to live.

Posted by tomasyalba | January 14, 2008 10:57 AM

Omar is everyone's favorite character. no points for Obama here.

Posted by shams | January 14, 2008 10:58 AM

If he'd said Snoop, I'd change my vote.

Posted by Hooty Sapperticker | January 14, 2008 11:38 AM

Obama says: "Hes the toughest, baddest guy on this show, but hes gay."


Is that like being African American but "articulate and clean?" Obama supporters freaked out when Sen. Joe Biden said he was the first African American candidate who was "articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy ... "

It's not unusual for gay people to be bad-ass and tough - look at Alexander the Great and the Sacred Band of Thebes.

Posted by bober | January 14, 2008 12:34 PM

If you have to reach back 2400 years for an example, that's pretty unusual. You must be able to think of somebody more recent?

Obama's probably attracted to the fact that this is a character that could have been yet another stereotyped gay or stereotyped black, and instead the character goes against type. He doesn't conform to the mold, and he's popular. Sort of like Obama.

Posted by elenchos | January 14, 2008 12:48 PM

Good catch.

Posted by thehim | January 14, 2008 12:50 PM

I agree with elenchos @11.

Posted by Will in Seattle | January 14, 2008 1:26 PM

@12 and 10: If he had said, "He's gay, but he's the toughest baddest guy on this show," you might have had a case. But he's clearly saying that the character breaks the stereotype of a tough bad guy. True, and good for the show, and good for Obama.

There were no gay men in ancient Greece as we understand the term now. There was absolutely homosexual activity, but I really doubt Obama was referring to that.

Posted by annie | January 14, 2008 1:29 PM

I love me some Omar. Oooooooooweeee, do I love me some Omar. At least Obama has good taste. Did he smoke Newports before he quit?

Posted by Noel Black | January 14, 2008 1:31 PM

He probably smoked menthol Kools, like most brothers.

Y'all is crazy.

Posted by Shaniqua | January 14, 2008 2:47 PM

Seriously, B.O. just got my vote. Omar is the shit.

Posted by Marko Constans | January 14, 2008 5:47 PM

I think the "hes the toughest, baddest guy on this show, but hes gay" quote just acknowledges that by making him both gay AND the most tough, the show is going against stereotypes. It defies the homophobic but unfortunately popular notion that gay men are somehow weaker than straight men.

Anyway, Obama has great taste! The Wire is the greatest show ever.

Posted by Kathy | January 15, 2008 12:47 PM

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