"Nobody fucks with me now." - Marlo Stanfield
It's been 8 years since the greatest television show ever ended. I've watched it from season 1 to season 5 more than once so that should indicate how great The Wire truly was. Never re-watched another show in my life.
Everyone had their favorite characters. I'd say Omar had to be the most popular from what I've seen. Nobody I knew fucked with the cop characters. There was a lot of love for Bodie. I personally liked the killers Wee-Bey and Chris but my all time favorite on the show was Marlo Stanfield.
The most interesting character in the history of television. People didn't understand him so he was the most hated. They viewed him just on the surface level. A sociopathic killer. He is that no doubt but there is a method to his madness. There is layers to Marlo's character that you could use in your daily life.
Here's what you can learn from Marlo Stanfield
NEVER WASTE YOUR WORDS OR YOUR TIME
The first thing you ever hear from Marlo on the show is "Do it or don't. I have some place to be." He's a man who's time is precious and he says VERY little. Every time he speaks it's for a purpose. He doesn't fill empty space with words. He doesn't small talk. Say what you have to say and keep it moving.
You see on the show that all the people who try to small talk with him he just stares at them and it makes them uncomfortable. Don't ever talk to talk. Never kill time. They're so powerful.
TAKE INFO NEVER GIVE INFO
One thing people sleep on about Marlo is that when someone is talking to him he is analyzing them. He's studying them. Feeling them out. Either in the moment or after the moment he has his mind made up about them. They did all the talking so it's easy for him to come to a conclusion on their character and intentions.
Marlo doesn't say much so he doesn't give them any info to go off on but his reputation in the streets. The more they talk to him the more info they give him. He returns ZERO to them. Just the same stare and maybe 2-3 words. It's how he stayed ahead of everyone.
REPUTATION > MONEY
In the series money had no value to Marlo. You saw he liked to gamble with the scenes of him playing poker and mentioning a trip to Atlantic City to Chris Partlow but even with gambling it wasn't about money he loves power. He loves to win. Money is just a tool to Marlo.
When Omar took his money it wasn't the money he was mad about. Marlo's reputation had a blemish on it. Rich or poor as long as his reputation was intact he didn't give a fuck about shit else. It's like the 48 Laws Of Power states "Guard your reputation with your life." Omar retired and Marlo brought him out of retirement to correct his reputation that Omar fucked with.
In the infamous jail cell scene with Chris, Monk, and Cheese, Marlo goes the fuck off and it's the first time you hear him raise his voice and speak more than a paragraph. All because of his reputation was taking a hit. Omar called Marlo out and everyone in the streets heard and saw it. Omar calling Marlo a bitch and he still walking around living makes Marlo look weak. Every second that passes that Omar is walking around breathing Marlo is losing respect.
Marlo understood that and that's why he was so pissed. He didn't even care about the drug charges anymore. Once he heard Omar called him out and Chris kept that information from him he lost his mind. It's implied Marlo grew up with nothing and his name and reputation is all he had.
You get an idea of how dangerous Marlo past had to be because Chris was notably afraid of Marlo in the jail cell scene. If a cold hearted killer like Chris Partlow is afraid of you then you had to be lucifer himself.
The scene with The Greeks where Marlo brings a suitcase of money fresh off the street shows you how much money didn't mean shit to him. He didn't know how to clean money at all. Marlo eventually attained Stringer Bell's dream of becoming a legitimate businessman and he didn't give a fuck about it. He was out the game and got to keep 10 million dollars. He escaped prison and death and that's rare in drug dealing but Marlo didn't care.
The new legitimate Marlo in a suit goes back to the streets and fights off 2 guys on a corner. If you notice before Marlo approaches them they're talking about Omar and not Marlo. Omar's reputation and legacy is solidified. Marlo is a after thought. He asks the dudes "You know who I am?" The dudes have no clue. No one knows Marlo anymore. Marlo's Reputation is officially irrelevant. To him that's worse than jail or death.
Everyone who watched the series wanted Marlo to die but what they don't realize is that with his reputation and the streets being snatched from him was the worse punishment he could receive. He's alive physically and his name is dead and that's his worse nightmare. It's his hell on earth. Everything is mental with Marlo. He's not afraid of death or prison. He cares what everyone thinks about him.
"My name is my name." That quote sums up Marlo Stanfield. Without his reputation he doesn't attain what he attains. Your reputation is everything.
STUDY EVERYTHING IN YOUR FIELD
Being in the game Marlo stayed ahead about studying everybody and everything. Chris would display the same tendencies. Marlo is a student of history. He studied the mistakes of past kingpins. Studied their weaknesses and removed the possibilities of those weaknesses being in his organization.
No phones. Face to face meetings only. No buildings. All meetings are outside. Lookouts on every corner. He stayed ahead of the law. When you''re pursuing something you won't just hop in it. You'll study and learn everything about it. Marlo did this with the drug game.
Always study the game/profession you're in. It's critical.
This can go hand and hand with studying everything. Marlo had a rule and that rule was in order to be in his gang you couldn't smoke or drink. This was the smartest shit Marlo did. This is what separated his organization from The Barksdale Organization.
Avon's people were always high, drinking, and they'd get sloppy. Marlo knew this so what does he do? Move sober. Smart.
Fuck drinking. Dank Dank cool though.
If Marlo sees a way to get to the source he will do so by any means necessary. He removed the middleman and became the top kingpin of Baltimore. The Co-Op that Stringer Bell and Prop Joe created Marlo dismantled that shit.
Middlemen are a waste of time. Deal with them until you can find a way around them .
FIND YOUR LANE AND STAY IN IT
When Marlo made it out the game with millions and his health. The lawyer he had brought him to a fancy party in downtown Baltimore full of rich and powerful businessmen. Marlo lasted all of ten minutes and he left the function.
Unfamiliarity is something Marlo fears. He knows nothing or nobody at this party and he can't control anything at this party. Marlo craves power and control. He goes back to corner and starts that confrontation I mentioned earlier. He gets his fix of control and power.
Marlo knows his lane and it's not as a legitimate businessman. He's a gangsta and he knows it. He wants to stick with what he excels at. You should too. Find your lane and do the dash.
WEAKNESS AND DOUBTS AREN'T OPTIONS
Any moment Marlo feels weakness or thinks the people of the streets sense weakness in him he reacts immediately. Weakness is not a option because the moment people sense weakness people will try you. Marlo knows that.
If Marlo has doubts about anyone he removes them. It's part of the reason why he's not a fan favorite. Marlo has no gray area. He has no moral compass or soul like Avon did. If there's a 1% chance he thinks you're talking to the police he'll kill you. No matter if you family or not he doesn't want to risk it. If he thinks you spoke badly on his name he'll kill you. It goes hand and hand with his reputation and he can't have that.
Don't kill people but always remove weakness and doubts from your plan.
ALWAYS LOOK PEOPLE IN THEIR EYES
Marlo always looked people in their eyes no matter if he was cool or angry. He read Michael like this. He saw a little bit of himself in Michael when he met him and he respected Michael for standing tall and looking him in his eyes like a man. Like Tony Montana told us "The eyes chico. They never lie."
No one could figure Marlo out because he was mysterious. He had more money than everybody but he wasn't out there. He handled his business and kept it pushing. Gambling was the only thing that seemed like a hobby to him.
He wasn't riding in the fanciest cars or wore jewelry. You didn't know his net worth. He was very low key. The police couldn't figure him out either. He was accessible but not accessible if that makes sense. He showed his face in the streets but that's all you saw. You just knew not to fuck with him.
Don't tell everyone what you're on. Don't keep telling your business. Keep to yourself and keep working. Keep everyone outside your circle guessing. Remain a mystery.
Marlo only genuinely trusted 2 people. Chris and Snoop. The meets he had were with those 2 only. He told them what he was truly thinking and no one else. He lived by the Paulie Cicero code. He didn't want anyone hearing what he said or hearing what he was told.
Can't trust everybody. Think about this. how many people would pick up the phone for you at 4am? I bet you can't count past both your hands. Exactly. Trust only a few.
See! Marlo not so bad after all. Gotta find the jewels in all the bad shit.
Love, Benny available now.