Top 25 Fictional DC Resident: #7 Nick Naylor

Name: Nick Naylor
A.K.A: “Mass murderer, blood sucker, pimp, profiteer, and yuppie Mephistopheles.”
Residence: Dupont Circle
Occupation: Vice President of and the chief spokesman for the Academy of Tobacco Studies
Memorable Quote: “That’s the beauty of argument, if you argue correctly, you’re never wrong.”

The Academy of Tobacco Studies is funded by cigarette companies to research the impact of smoking cigarettes on human health. As their chief spokesperson, Nick Naylor spends his time informing the public about the results of these research efforts – which amazingly have not demonstrated any conclusive links. Nick is the defender of smokers’ rights, appearing in public forums and various television programs.

Living in DC, you either know someone like Nick – or are in fact desperately trying to be like him. Self-described as a man with “a bachelor’s degree in kicking ass and taking names” and dressed to impress the K Street crowd, he is everything about lobbyists that you think you hate. His closest friends are Polly Bailey and Bobby Jay Bliss, the lobbyists for the alcohol and gun lobbies. Together the form the “M.O.D. Squad,” e.g. “Merchants Of Death.”

He was featured most recently in the cinema adaptation of John Buckley’s “Thank You for Smoking.” In an effort to overcome the negative attention placed on smoking by Senator Ortolan K. Finistirre (D-VT), he embarks on a journey to Hollywood to “put the sex back in cigarettes” with actors smoking in films like the black and white classics he recalls from his youth.

Nick takes his son, Joey, on the trip with him as a way to rebuild a bond weakening under the strain of divorce and a lack of paternal custody. Not to mention the new man in his ex-wife’s life. “Don’t forget,” Nick says to his replacement, “I’m his father, you’re just the guy who fucks his mom.” During the trip, Father and Son bond as Nick imparts upon Joey the art of spin as a means for “defending the defenseless.”

Though anti-smoking guerrillas kidnap and attempt to kill Nick by covering his body in nicotine patches, Nick survives thanks to a tolerance developed over a lifetime of smoking. Despite losing his job after an expose is published about him by his girlfriend, he turns the tables on her by exposing their affair and ruining her career. He even faces off with Senator Finistirre in a Senate Hearing, arguing “the number 1 killer in America is cholesterol, and here comes Senator Finisterre who’s clogging the nation’s arteries with Vermont cheddar cheese.” The Senator is forced to declare “the great state of Vermont will not apologize for its cheese.” He ultimately opens his own public relations firm, where his work is again featured in Buckley’s “No Way to Treat a First Lady.”

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