Isaiah Washington, now a member of Bionic Woman's big happy family, is never too busy to shatter the deafening, one-day silence that followed his ouster from Grey's Anatomy at the hands of a shadowy cabal of moustache-twirling gay foes. Speaking to Extra, the actor delivered a curiously roundabout answer to a question about whether or not potential Bionic viewers might be turned off by his year of very bad press:
Extra: Did you ever worry about any negative feeling that might affect the ratings of this show? [...]
Washington: I was just recently at the Congressional Black Caucus, this past weekend. And there was a gentleman there who was a member of those 43 members by the name of Sen. Barack Obama. And there was also two young women there—or, women there—one named Nancy Pelosi, and another named Hillary Rodham Clinton.
And when the lights dimmed, I had a line [outstretches his arms] from left to right of people coming to congratulate me for being on Bionic Woman, and supporting me, and wanting, like, to have an autograph signed for almost the entire—I could not eat my dinner. So if that is any indication—sitting in a room with those three political elites, and people are trying to get to my table more than they are trying to get to their table, then that says a lot about two things: one, where our political system is today, and the confidence people have in our political system, and two, the power of television, and what people feel is genuine and what people feel is right and what people feel about a particular individual. So no, to answer your question, I couldn't have any time of day to worry about what people are thinking, because I'm too busy trying to learn this dialogue on this show.
Washington's riveting anecdote about the night his own popularity eclipsed not one, but two presidential frontrunners and the first female Speaker of the House is indeed a powerful statement about Americans' confidence in government, and their inspiring ability to look past a few misplaced slurs to see the faggot-tolerating man within. Whoever winds up the next Democratic nominee would do well to take a page from Washington's unceasingly modest and politically astute playbook.
- Isaiah Washington: 'I Thought My Career Was Over' [extratv.warnerbros.com]