Oh, Indeed

10 Reasons Omar From The Wire Was the Ultimate Badass


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Michael K. Williams’ path to playing jazz musician Rock Banyon in The Spoils Before Dying is pretty atypical – he worked at a pharmaceutical company and was homeless for a while before being discovered by Tupac Shakur. Everything changed for him in 2002 when he got the role of one of the most iconic badasses in TV history – Omar Little on The Wire.

To get you ready for the July 8th premiere of The Spoils Before Dying, let’s recap the reasons why Omar was so awesome. (Spoilers ahead!)

10. He Stood Up to the Gangs

The essential nature of Omar’s character was as a sort of hood Robin Hood, no pun intended. Omar made a living not by preying on the innocent (or as innocent as they get on The Wire) but on the predators. This naturally made him not very popular with the Barksdale crew and the other gangs that filled their shoes.

Omar the Wire All in the Game

9. He Took His Grandma To Church

It takes a lot of guts to be a family man on the mean streets of Baltimore, and every Sunday morning Omar showed respect by going to church with his dear grandmother (who thought he had a honest job at the airport). When two of Barksdale’s boys go after him there in the third season, it causes all Hell to break loose. But Omar is always a cool customer.



8. He Lives By A Code

In a world where morals are hard to find, Omar is a rare bird: he abides by a strict moral code. Best illustrated by him telling Bunk he “ain’t never put my gun on nobody who wasn’t in the game,” the code keeps Omar level when a tsunami of crap comes his way.

Omar The Wire Code

7. He Always Gets Revenge

Stringer Bell’s cunning plan to pit Omar against Nation of Islam hired gun Brother Mouzone ended badly for the copy shop gangster when the two adversaries figured out they’d been played. Their takedown of Stringer is one of the show’s most satisfying moments.



6. He Was Only Supposed To Last Seven Episodes

David Simon originally envisioned Omar as just another passing face in the Baltimore crowd, with a character arc lasting just seven episodes and culminating with him dying on his quest for revenge against the Barksdale gang. After watching Michael K. Williams completely inhabit the role, Simon knew that Omar was destined to be a bigger part of the story.

5. He Brings His Own Music

All the great badasses have theme songs, and Omar’s eerie whistling of “The Farmer In The Dell” created an atmosphere of menace that reverberated through the streets of Baltimore. You knew Omar was coming from a mile away, and all the knowledge in the world couldn’t save you.

4. He Could Laugh At Himself

After The Wire wrapped, the closely-knit crew went their separate ways. But in 2012 many of the original cast came together for the hilarious Funny or Die clip “The Wire: The Musical,” which showed Omar, Bubbles at the rest at their singing, dancing best.

3. He Loved With All His Heart

Omar’s homosexuality was an incredibly daring choice for the series. Making such a powerful and feared figure gay – and showing him being emotionally intimate with his boyfriends – reminded us that Omar was human, not just a force of nature, and his reaction to Brandon being killed in the first season set many wheels in motion.

2. His Fashion Was On Point

Omar’s trademark duster and doo-rag combo was all well and good, but you got a totally different view of the man when he showed up in court to testify against Bird. To jazz up his black and red tracksuit, Mr. Little ties on a white silk tie for the couture statement of the century.

Omar The Wire style

1. Obama Said So

You may not agree with the POTUS on everything, but you can’t deny that Barack Obama has pretty great taste in TV shows. So when he says that Omar was the best character of all time on The Wire, we’re going to agree. Now all he needs to do is sign an executive order to make that legally binding.

Omar The Wire Indeed

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Documentary Now! Robert Evans Mansion

The Reel Deal

Everything You Need To Know About “Mr. Runner Up” Inspiration Robert Evans

Watch the two-part finale of Documentary Now! this Wednesday at 10P on IFC.

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Photo Credit: Everett Collection

In its upcoming two-part finale, Documentary Now! spoofs the crown jewel of docs: The Kid Stays In The Picture. It’s the autobiographical documentary about Robert Evans, the unlikely Hollywood mogul whose mix of self-aggrandizing bravado, classic good looks and extremely circumstantial good luck took him from being a salesman to an actor to the head of Paramount Pictures.

If you’ve never seen the film, it’s totally worth it. Rotten Tomatoes agrees, with a staggeringly-high approval rating. Watch it before, or watch it after — doesn’t matter. You’ll appreciate it whenever.

In the meantime, here’s a bit of background that will come in handy…

Robert Loves Robert

Robert Evans desk

USA Films/Everett Collection

Robert Evans is the ultimate Robert Evans fan. The movie was narrated by Robert Evans and based on his memoir of the same name. It is totally unbiased.

He’s Kind Of A Big Deal

Robert Evans, Chinatown
Paramount Pictures

Evans produced some of Hollywood’s true classics: Chinatown, Rosemary’s Baby, The Godfather, Love Story…the list goes on. Totally legit and amazing movies.

He’s Also Kind Of A Joke

Wag The Dog
New Line Cinema

Evans has been parodied in TV shows and movies like Entourage and Wag The Dog. He is the quintessential “producer” you already have in your head.

So Wrong He’s Right

Robert Evans Slap
20th Century Film Corp

Robert Evans is a notorious narcissist whose love of self is so blind and sincere that it’s actually adorable.

There’s Something Missing

via Giphy

Entire sections of Robert Evans’ life are left out of the documentary. Maybe it’s because of timing. Maybe it’s because real life isn’t a tidy narrative. Who knows.

He Blew It

Spider coke

Evans had a pretty spectacular fall from grace. He was convicted of cocaine trafficking in the early 80’s, and was connected to a contract killing during the production of The Cotton Club. Oops.

Losing Is For Losers

Everett Collection
Everett Collection

In the Robert Evans mythology, all tragedies are just triumphs in disguise, and every story has a happy ending…for Robert Evans.

Bill Hader Jerry Wallach

With these simple facts in hand you are now prepared to thoroughly enjoy the two-part finale of Documentary Now! starting this Wednesday at 10/9c on IFC.

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Weird Roles

Anthony Michael Hall’s Most Rotten Movies

Catch Anthony Michael Hall in Weird Science on Friday at 8P on IFC.

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Photo Credit: Universal/Everett Collection

Anthony Michael Hall was the quintessential ’80s nerd. We love him in classics like The Breakfast Club and National Lampoon’s Vacation. But even the brainiest among us has his weak spots. In honor of Weird Science airing this Rotten Friday, we analyze Hall’s worst movies.

Weird Science (1985) 56%

A low point for John Hughes, Weird Science is way too wacky for its own good. Anthony Michael Hall’s Gary and his pal Wyatt (Ilan Mitchell-Smith) create the “perfect woman.” Supernatural chaos ensues. The film costars a young Bill Paxton, floppy disks, and a general disconnect from all reality.

The Caveman’s Valentine (2001) 46%

This ambitious drama starring Samuel L. Jackson couldn’t live up to its rich premise. Jackson plays Romulus, a Juilliard-educated, paranoid schizophrenic who lives in a cave. Hall co-stars as Bob, a rich man, who wants to see Romulus play the piano. The plot centers around Romulus investigating a murder, but with so much going on, the movie never quite finds its rhythm.

All About the Benjamins (2002) 30%

Ice Cube plays a bounty hunter who teams up with Mike Epps’ con man to catch diamond thieves. Hall plays Lil J, a small-time drug dealer. It’s definitely a role we’ve never seen Hall in, but overall the movie isn’t funny or original enough to justify its violence.

Freddy Got Fingered (2001) 11%

This showcase for Tom Green’s goofy gross-out comedy is often hailed as one of the worst films of all time. Green plays Gord, a 20-something slacker, who dreams of having his own animated series. Hall is Dave Davidson, a CEO of an animation studio who eventually helps Gord find success. Too bad Tom Green wasn’t so lucky.

Johnny Be Good (1988) 0%

Hall plays against type as Johnny Walker, a star quarterback. Robert Downey Jr. is his best friend and Uma Thurman plays his devoted girlfriend. Despite the support of a future A-list cast, the movie lacks central conflict and charm. Or, as TV Guide put it, “Johnny be worthless.” Ouch.

Catch the “Too Rotten to Miss” Weird Science this Friday at 8P on IFC.

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Season 6: Episode 1: Pickathon

Binge Fest

Portlandia Season 6 Now Available On DVD

The perfect addition to your locally-sourced, artisanal DVD collection.

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End of summer got you feeling like:

Portlandia Toni Screaming GIF

Ease into fall with Portlandia‘s sixth season. Relive the latest exploits of Fred Armisen and Carrie Brownstein’s cast of characters, including Doug and Claire’s poignant breakup, Lance’s foray into intellectual society, and the terrifying rampage of a tsukemen Noodle Monster! Plus, guest stars The Flaming Lips, Glenn Danzig, Louis C.K., Kevin Corrigan, Zoë Kravitz, and more stop by to experience what Portlandia is all about.

Pick up a copy of the DVD today, or watch full episodes and series extras now on IFC.com and the IFC app.

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