Who is Senator Clay Davis based on?
November 12, 2008 8:57 PM   Subscribe

Who are the actual people Senator Clay Davis (a character in the HBO show The Wire) is based on?

Everywhere I search online, the articles say that the creator of The Wire based Davis on 3 Maryland State Senators and that Davis' penchant for saying "Partner" was from a particular person that all Baltimoreans would know without saying the name. I've only lived in Baltimore 4 years and don't know who this is or the other 2.
posted by 8699oriel to Media & Arts (4 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
The Wikipedia article on Clay Davis mentions a Thomas L. Bromwell.
posted by LionIndex at 9:28 PM on November 12, 2008

Isiah Whitlock Jr. (who plays Davis) was once asked if Davis is based on a real person. His response: "Not really. They told me that he’s not like a particular person. Now, that being said, if you want to take maybe four or five people that they based the character on, some not even politicians. But just that certain things would happen to certain people that you can put with Clay Davis to round out his character. And then you take all of the people that I’ve studied and I take a little bit here and a little bit there and then you end up with a character like that.

A Salon.com article says, "Davis seems pretty clearly based on former Maryland State Sen. Larry Young, who was expelled from the legislature in the late 1990's, but acquitted in his own trial. Now he's a radio host; in fact, he's the radio host seen interviewing Davis last week. (Also, if your obsession with Simon creations goes back as far as mine, Young was the prototype for the congressman on "Homicide" who files the false report about a kidnapping that leads to Pembleton's first resignation.)"
posted by JPowers at 10:09 PM on November 12, 2008 [3 favorites]

Response by poster: Thanks for the Larry Young name - I had no clue he was the radio host that interviews Clay Davis. Is this the guy who Simon says all Baltimoreans would know because he says "Partner" all the time?
posted by 8699oriel at 8:23 AM on November 13, 2008 [1 favorite]

A friend says she thinks Ulysses Currie is someone he's based on. He's under investigation. (Link to my employer.)
posted by Airhen at 5:38 PM on November 13, 2008

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