The Wire was heralded as the greatest TV show of all time after its run of five seasons. A sprawling epic, charting the struggles of drug gangs, the police, the press and the school system of Baltimore, it was completely unprecedented as a painfully accurate social commentary using the vehicle of TV drama.
If you haven’t watched The Wire, you probably shouldn’t be open your mouth during debates on the war on drugs, the disenfranchised and underprivileged of Western societies, or just about anything to do with Western society in fact: that’s how important it is. On the other hand, if you’ve watched The Wire loads of times, you’re probably wondering what happened to its cast…
Omar Little – Michael Kenneth Williams
A homosexual apex predator of the drug scene who preys on other drug dealers, eschewing getting innocents involved, what’s not to like? Omar was clearly the show favourite for its entire audience. As such, Michael Kenneth Williams continues to enjoy success in the film and TV world.
He’s found renewed TV glory for his portrayal of Chalky White in HBO’s Boardwalk Empire and appears in the critically acclaimed 12 Years a Slave, alongside Michael Fassbender. He’s also going to appear in Paul Thomas Anderson’s upcoming film, Inherent Vice.
Felicia ‘Snoop’ Pearson – Herself
Played by a non-actor with the same name, Snoop was one of The Wire’s most feared characters, prompting Stephen King to crown her as “the most terrifying female villain to ever appear in a television series.”
Since appearing in The Wire, Felicia has gone on to appear in a host of music videos, by artists such as ASAP Ferg and ASAP Rocky, as well as Rick Ross. She has also founded a youth drama organisation, named Moving Mountains, aimed at stopping youth violence through performing arts education.
Det. Lester Freamon – Clarke Peters
Lester Freamon was everyone’s favourite cop on the show, the eccentric detective who restored antique doll houses in his free time. Oddly enough, he resurfaced in Holby City, perhaps unsurprising for those who already knew that he’d been living in the UK since the 70s.
Since The Wire, he’s also played Albert Lambreaux, a Mardis Gras Indian chief, in David Simon’s Treme, reuniting him with the Wire crew.
Councilman Tommy Carcetti – Aidan Gillen
Introduced in season three of The Wire, Carcetti doesn’t have our trust at first but then gains our respect as we watch his hard journey from being city councilman to becoming the Mayor of Baltimore. Since The Wire, he’s found new fame as Petyr ‘Littlefinger’ Baelish in HBO’s Game of Thrones, which should keep him busy for a while.
The Wire has a sprawling cast and it’s quite hard to keep tabs on them all. Interestingly, starring in the show has caused several of them to put their film and TV careers on the back burner in favour of helping America’s working classes through outreach programmes.
This is just a testament to how important the show really is. There are two kinds of people in the world: those who have seen The Wire and those who haven’t. Make sure you don’t belong to the latter.
Images via HBO.com