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Sergei Malatov
Сергій Малатов
The Wire Serge.jpg
First appearance '"Ebb Tide" (episode 2.01)
Last appearance "Unconfirmed Reports" (episode 5.02)
Cause/reason Incarcerated
Created by David Simon
Portrayed by Chris Ashworth
Episode count 11
Nickname(s) Serge, Boris
Gender Male
Age 20s-30s
Occupation Smuggler, enforcer in The Greeks' organization
Nationality Ukraine Ukrainian

Sergei "Serge" Malatov (Ukrainian: Сергій Малатов) is a fictional character on the HBO drama series The Wire, played by Chris Ashworth. He acts as a driver and muscle for The Greek. He is Ukrainian, although Americans often assume he is Russian. He hates this and their subsequent tendency to nickname him "Boris" (based on Boris Badenov). He is responsible for picking up containers of stolen goods from the port and taking them to The Greek's front warehouse to be fenced.



Malatov is a trusted lieutenant in The Greek's nefarious import business. When fresh supplies of Russian vodka, appliances, electronics — and even Eastern Bloc women to serve as sex workers — arrive to Baltimore, Sergei is there to ensure the cargo is delivered to their associates in the city. He mentions that he was imprisoned for four years in Ukraine, and that American prisons are no where near as harsh as the ones there.


Season Two

Sergei is supposed to collect a container carrying prostitutes, but when the Greek's crewman on board the ship that delivered the cargo fails to signal him, he abandons the container. The Greek later learns that the girls were killed, and Sergei is sent to the ships next destination to find the crewman. He infiltrates the Philadelphia port and captures the crewman. When The Greek and Spiros "Vondas" Vondopoulos arrive, the crewman tells them everything about how the girls were killed, and Spiros murders him. Sergei is charged with disposing of the body and The Greek instructs him to make sure there was no face or fingerprints. The body is later found and identified by a tattoo the crewman had.

Sergei is friendly with drug kingpin Proposition Joe, who is supplied by The Greek. He intervenes on behalf of Ziggy Sobotka when he gets into debt with Proposition Joe's people because of The Greek's ties to the Sobotka family.

He is ruthless and possibly a genuine sadist, torturing a man who gave no indication of knowing the information that Malatov was charged with gaining. In a phone call to a dealer asking whether a recently found body was his handiwork, he retorts "Did he have hands? Did he have face? Yes? Then it wasn't us. Idiot!" This implies that he routinely mutilates his victims. Whilst some have speculated this could be down to sadism, another possibility is that without dentures and fingerprints, a body whose DNA is not in the police system already (convicted felons etc) would be difficult or impossible to identify.

When security camera footage of him abducting the crewman is discovered by a police detail investigating the deaths of the girls and smuggling on the docks, Sergei is persuaded to become an informer and turn on The Greek and Spiros, but The Greek has already escaped.[1]

Season Five

Several years later, as rising kingpin Marlo Stanfield gets a line on Spiros "Vondas" Vondopoulos and the Greeks, he has Chris Partlow investigate the port investigation, as well as Sergei's criminal record at the courthouse. Upon learning that Sergei is locked up in Jessup, Marlo arranges a meeting with him. Initially, Marlo's access to Sergei is blocked by Avon Barksdale, who is effectively running the criminal activities within the prison, but after Marlo makes a payment to Avon's sister, Avon grants Marlo access to Sergei.

Sergei, despite receiving a great deal of money from Marlo, is disrespectful and states that he does not need Marlo's help or money. However, Marlo points out that Sergei can win back some favor with the Greeks if he gets a message to Vondas regarding Marlo's intentions to do business with them. Avon encourages Sergei to cooperate with Marlo, and Sergei, realizing that Marlo is right that he can claim some credit if the deal happens, agrees to get in touch with Vondas.



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