The Zeljko Ivanek Hall of Fame: Domenick Lombardozzi

5 Oct

(The Zeljko Ivanek Hall of Fame is where we turn the spotlight on a television actor or actress, and it is named after their patron saint, Zeljko Ivanek)

Domenick Lombardozzi has made a career out of playing a very different Italian stereotype role than last week’s honoree Lenny Venito.  Like countless actors in this Hall of Fame, Lombardozzi got his start on a Law & Order episode in 1999.  He next appeared in one episode of one season show The Beat in 2000, and in a minorly memorable role in 2 episodes of Oz in 2000, as Ralph Galino, an Italian American contractor who ended up in Emerald City after a building he contracted killed two people.  Galino, a generally law-abiding citizen, didn’t fit in prison, brought a cell phone into the prison, and was killed by The Bikers relatively soon after.  He played Yankee Moose Skowron in the HBO movie 61* in 2001 and appeared in episodes of Third Watch and NYPD Blue the same year.

In 2002, he began his most memorable role as Thomas “Hurc” Hauk in The Wire.  Hurc appeared in every episode of the show, often alongside his buddy Ellis Carver, who both start as competent but disgruntled narcotics officers, and provide comic relief.  Hurc is herded into the Barksdale detail, but gets into trouble when he and Carver make a late-night raid into the housing projects and get bottles thrown at them.  Herc and Carver steal some money later on a drug bust and return to the detail in the second season.  In the third, he works in the Western District and is responsible for leaking the Hamsterdam project to the media.  In the fourth season, Herc sees the mayor receiving oral sex and uses that information to leverage his way to sergeant, but later gets fired after arrested an African-American minister on bad information.  In the fifth season, he works as an investigator for the lawyer Levy but helps out Carver by providing him with Marlo Stanfield’s phone number.

In Entourage, he played incredibly irritating character Dom, an old high school buddy of the gang who came back from prison to try to integrate into their lives, but just didn’t fit anymore.  After disappearing, he got a chance to redeem himself in a later episode where he had mostly turned his life around.  In 2009, he appeared in a Law & Order: Criminal Intent.  In 2010, he appeared in the third hour of the last season of 24, as a New York City police officer who finds a colleague dead and upon seeing Jack Bauer, thinks he is responsible.  Lombardozzi beats up Jack as his partner, who disagrees with this violence, watches, but eventually Jack escapes.  He appeared in a second season episode of Bored to Death and is one of a pair who kidnap Jonathan and demand ransom.

Currently, Lombardozzi stars as Ray Zancanelli on Breakout Kings, an A&E original program, in which, in Mod Squad fashion, a group of criminals are commissioned to help find other criminals in exchange for a reduced sentence.  Zancanelli is a former US Marshal who was fired after he was discovered to have stolen money from a crime season.  He is currently on parole, and unlike the other convicts, is allowed to carry a weapon.

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