How The Wire Derived Inspiration from Actual Corrupt Baltimore Politicians

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The Wire has been off the air for seven years now, but judging from the number of thinkpieces, nostalgiapieces, and regular old pieces devoted to it, devoted viewers still miss it acutely.But even those suffering from a touch of Wire-fatigue will likely enjoy this interview with Isiah Whitlock Jr., who played corrupt politician Clay Davis (he of the iconic “sheeeeeeee-it”) on the show. In it, Whitlock reveals a few fascinating details:

  • He actually used Davis’s famous catchphrase in a previous role in a Spike Lee film
  • The Davis character was loosely based on disgraced former Maryland politician¬†Larry Young, who was expelled from the senate on ethics charges
  • Young clearly had no hard feelings–he actually played a bit part on the show himself

sheeeeeit

There are some other fun tidbits; check out the whole interview here.



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