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TV Characters at the Poker Table

By on March 26, 2014
Lamorne Morris as Winston. Co. Cr: Ray Mickshaw/FOX

Lamorne Morris as Winston. Co. Cr: Ray Mickshaw/FOX

Having just watched the movie Goodfellas for the thousandth time, I noticed how the movie’s infamous poker scene, where Tommy DeVito (Joe Pesci) shoots Spider (Michael Imperioli) in the foot, makes me crack up despite its tragic nature. The scene takes place at a poker table inside of a dark, smokey room. It’s one of the greatest scenes that involve poker playing even though Spider being shot in the foot has more to do with DeVito being an ill-tempered, impatient gangster than a sore master poker player who demands respect. In fact, he doesn’t give off the vibe that he’s a great poker player at all. But, there are movie and television characters from the who do seem like they could hold their own at the poker table. For now, lets just focus on television characters.

Would you play against these folks?

Winston Bishop (Lamorne Morris) — Poor Winston. New Girl’s tragic case just can’t seem to get his life together and find his post basketball career passion. To top it off, Coach (Damon Wayans Jr.) has returned to the show and bogarted Winston’s position in the loft. But Winston has adjusted well, which is why if he ever picked up poker while he’s soul searching he’d probably be the ultimate “shark.” You can never really read a shark. Like, who would have known that Winston used to play semi-professional basketball? Sharks are known to have the gift of adapting to the table’s other players and eating away at the younger fish with no mercy. Watch out, Coach!

Marty Kaan (Don Cheadle)House of Lies’ Marty Kaan is definitely what the poker world might call a “Coffeehouser.” Apart from being the kind of player known for misleading opponents about what he’s holding, Examiner describes a Coffeehouser as an “excessive chatter at the table,” and we all know how much Marty loves to talk trash to both his Kaan & Associates podmates and his clients.

Cordelia Fox (Sarah Paulson) — As headmistress of the witch coven at Miss Robichaux’s Academy in New Orleans on the last season of American Horror Story: Coven, Cordelia showed us how resilient she could be in the face of a wicked mother and a bunch of spoiled witch-brats all vying for the “Supreme” title. She was last season’s rock, and she’d be a rock at the poker table, never taking risks and keeping her integrity in tact with only making the important decision and big plays.

Frank Underwood (Kevin Spacey) — The show is called House of Cards for a reason. As PartyPoker reminds us, “Poker is a game that was created by liars, played by liars and all the money is owned by liars.” Sounds like politics, right? Frank (or, President Underwood) is the biggest liar out of anyone on the show. Throughout the whole show, the only people that were able to get a read on his motives either ended up dead or defeated in some way. This is what a “LAG” does in poker. He either outplays you with his best hand or makes you fold because you think that he’s bluffing.

Tyrion Lannister (Peter Dinklage) — Tyrion has come a long way throughout Game of Thrones, from a drunken underachiever to a character that everyone is cheering for. He still has wild tendencies, which is why he’d probably be the “maniac” poker player. Those kinds of player usually go all in because they’re either intoxicated or just plain ol’ thrill seekers. Peter Dinklage is just as wild even when he’s out of character. Don’t believe us? Just read this Esquire review.

One Comment

  1. Lisa

    March 29, 2014 at 4:57 pm

    I just found this and love it! I’m a sucker for the great poker scene in TV and the movies. No way I’m facing any of these guys. Also, who can forget Walt going all in on Hank in Breaking Bad, bluffing his way to forcing his brother-in-law to fold. What a tease on how Mr. White was breaking bad, really, really bad.