If a male American actor has plenty of gravitas, odds are he’ll end up playing the President someday, or if not the President, someone like him—your Mayors, your Captains, your Senators, your Supreme Court Justices. These people don’t always have gravitas in life. Some of them really don’t. But the fictional versions nearly always do, and Edward James Olmos has what you might politely call a shit ton of gravitas.
Olmos hasn’t played the President—yet—but he has played his fair share of compelling, sometimes enigmatic authority figures. The best known of these is, of course, Admiral William Adama on the Ronald D. Moore remake of science fiction series Battlestar Galactica. For four terrific seasons (and one divisive finale), Olmos gave one of the best and most compelling performances on television, but it was far from his first gravitas-dripping role and it won’t be his last.
His latest, AMC’s Sons Of Anarchy spinoff Mayans M.C., is merely the latest in a career filled with performances that benefit from his particular presence. His rich, gruff voice carries weight. He demands attention. He commands respect. And all that gravitas is right at home in the world of Mayans M.C., even if Felipe Reyes, the father of protagonist EZ Reyes, has relinquished some of the power he once held.
What we’re saying is, when Edward James Olmos lets his opinion rumble forth, it makes you want to stand up and say, “So say we all.” We asked him if a hot dog is a sandwich.
The Takeout: Is a hot dog a sandwich?
Edward James Olmos: No.
TO: Okay, why not?
EJO: Because it’s a piece of meat that is placed into a bun. And it’s a hot dog, not a sand-wich.
TO: So it’s not a sandwich because it’s a hot dog?
EJO: A hot dog. And hot dogs are not sandwiches. It’s funny, because you’re asking a vegan.
TO: Okay, so is a vegan dog a sandwich?
EJO: Hoo, yeah.