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Why Oscar Finlay From Amazon's Reacher Looks So Familiar

Based on the Lee Child novels, Amazon Prime's "Reacher" has quickly become a huge hit for the streaming service thanks to heavy audience interest and strong reception, and the new show was quickly renewed for a second season (via Deadline). The show follows a drifter and former military cop, Jack Reacher (Alan Ritchson), as he is plunged into a criminal conspiracy within the small town of Margrave, Georgia.

Malcolm Goodwin plays the character Oscar Finlay, the Margrave police captain and a former detective from Boston. Finlay and Reacher butt heads at first, but they soon have to work together to solve the murder of Reacher's brother, as well as investigate the political corruption surrounding the town. Goodwin commented to Hollywood Life that Finlay naturally has a chip on his shoulder because he wants to be respected as a detective, "so it's imperative for him to solve this and do it his way. But of course, the prime suspect is another special investigative detective who wants to do it his way."

Goodwin's face may naturally seem familiar to "Reacher" viewers, which makes sense considering he was in a hit series on The CW for several seasons and has worked steadily in film and television since 2003. This is why the actor is so recognizable.

He was Frank's cousin, Jimmy Zee, in American Gangster

A classically trained actor, Malcolm Goodwin first found his calling in the theater (via True Calling Media), and he even credited his acting teachers with helping him work through his shyness and a speech impediment (via Paste Magazine). According to IMDb, his first official screen acting credit was in the 1997 TV movie "Color of Justice" as Shawn, but the young actor didn't work in TV again until six years later, when he filmed a "Law & Order" guest spot.

Goodwin soon began racking up credits thanks to his television appearances and small scenes in movies, including an uncredited role in "Get Rich or Die Tryin'." He also played the pivotal character of Jimmy Zee in "American Gangster," a hapless cousin of Frank (Denzel Washington) who turns informant on the dealer. Malcolm later credited the film with helping to kickstart his career: "From there, things just spiraled off and it's been non-stop since" (via Paste Magazine).

The actor picked up more small roles in movies like "Leatherheads" and "The Lazarus Project," but it was a music video that would be one of his most recognizable projects in the 2010s. 

Goodwin showed up in a super successful music video

In 2011, Malcolm Goodwin appeared in the music video for the LMFAO single "Party Rock Anthem." In the video, a parody of "28 Days Later" and other zombie media, Goodwin plays a survivor of the epidemic of "shufflers" that the group's new song has created, credited as Louis on IMDb. He warns Redfoo and Sky Blu about listening to the track. Soon, everyone ends up dancing to "Party Rock Anthem" anyway, unable to resist the song's rhythm. It may be a small role in the video, but Goodwin is still a perfect foil to the antics of LMFAO. 

One of the biggest hits of the 2010s (via Billboard), the music video has also been viewed more than two billion times, making it arguably Goodwin's most visible individual appearance anywhere. Enough people have noticed his appearance by now that he even mentions in his Instagram bio that "yes, I'm also the dude from Party Rock Anthem Music Video:)." 

He played a former crime lord in an A&E crime drama

The same year "Party Rock Anthem" gained millions of views on YouTube, Malcolm Goodwin also received his first regular television role in "Breakout Kings." The A&E crime drama follows a task force assembled by the U.S. Marshals Service largely comprised of prison inmates. In exchange for shorter sentences, the convicts help the Marshals track down escapees. However, if they try to escape themselves, it's back to prison and the sentence is now doubled. 

Goodwin plays Shea Daniels in the series, an imprisoned former gang leader who once oversaw a vast criminal enterprise. As one of the most experienced convicts on the team, Shea is able to think like the people they're tracking. Yet, the once powerful kingpin wants to follow the rules and go "straight" for his girlfriend Vanessa (Tattiawna Jones). 

In interviews, the actor seemed excited to be in "Breakout Kings," because "with TV you get to live the character's back-story. So you're in episode eight and nine, you know how that character is going to react or they talk about an experience, you've actually played it" (via Black Film). But the drama ultimately was canceled by the network in 2012 after two seasons (Deadline). 

He guest starred in several CBS dramas and in House of Cards

In between landing regular television roles, you've likely seen Malcolm Goodwin in a number of guest appearances in network and cable shows, including multiple 2010s CBS hits. The actor was often cast as a criminal or ex-con, such as local tough guy Aaron Voss in the "CSI" episode "Fallen Angels." Goodwin even played an unrepentant cop killer, Angelo Reid, in the fourth season premiere of "Blue Bloods" in 2013.

At least in his appearance in "Bones," his trainer character CC Creach is suspicious, but not the suspect the team is looking for. He then plays Darnell Hayes, Freddy Hayes' (Reg E. Cathey) son who is out on parole, in "Chapter 22" of "House of Cards" in 2014. Darnell tries to help Freddy with his restaurant but loses his temper with a reporter and threatens him, violating his agreement and inadvertently destroying Freddy's efforts to build a franchise.

Since 2019, Goodwin guest-starred in CBS' "Bull" as a character named Eddie Mitchell, someone accused of a crime, but he also branches out a bit by playing steadfast law enforcement official Agent Collins in the CBS drama "FBI" (via IMDb). It probably helped with casting that his most famous television character by then was as a good-natured cop in a genre series.

He's most recognizable as Clive in iZombie

Malcolm Goodwin officially joined the cast of The CW series "iZombie" in 2015. He plays Detective Clive Babineaux in the supernatural dramedy for five seasons, until the series ended in 2019. A Seattle police detective, Clive at first believes living zombie Liv (Rose McIver) when she tells him her "psychic" abilities help her solve crimes, and she helps consult on many of his cases. The pair slowly form a bond over the course of the series, even after he discovers the truth about her undead status. 

Like the show itself, Goodwin was critically acclaimed for his performance as the likable detective. Tell-Tale TV praised the actor for embodying a character who wanted to be cool but was gradually revealed to be "a big softy with a genuine love for D&D and his crazy little zombie partner." The performer told Paste that personally, he truly enjoyed playing the cop, and the "iZombie" set was "one of the best working environments that I've ever been a part of."

However, Goodwin is also the kind of person who enjoys his craft no matter what production he's working on. When asked if he loved what he did, the actor responded, "With all my heart. I still pinch myself to make sure this dream I'm living is still a reality" (True Calling Media).