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Useful Notes / Barack Obama

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While he's certainly not David Palmer, he'll do just fine.

"Yes We Can."

Barack Hussein Obama II (born August 4, 1961) served as the 44th President of the United States of America from 2009 to 2017, succeeding George W. Bush and preceding Donald Trump. Born in Honolulu to a white American mother and a Kenyan father, he spent his childhood in Indonesia and Hawaii before attending Harvard Law School and eventually settling in Chicago, where he worked as a community organizer and a college professor before being elected to the state Senate in 1996, and from there to the U.S. Senate in 2004.

He's relatively young (47 on taking office), being the only President born after 1946 to date, and is in a visibly loving relationship with his wife Michelle, and is often seen publicly with his daughters Malia and Sasha in non-political contexts. He is also the first American president to be of mixed-race ancestry (the son of a White mother and a Black father), an achievement that has been cited by some as proof that the Civil Rights Movement has paid off. At the same time, however, his mixed-race status led to a conspiracy theory that Obama was not actually an American citizen, and while Obama did release his birth certificate, the conspiracy still lingered with allegations that it was forged.note  In hindsight, the conspiracy theory was a sign of a greater "whitelash" against Obama's electoral win (the very idea of a Black POTUS having long been thrown around as grist for fear-mongering by white supremacists), and some analysts argued that the underestimation of this whitelash lead to the emergence of the alt-right during Obama's presidency and Trump's 2016 victory. At the same time, frustrations with persistent racial inequalities and violence towards minorities during Obama's presidency resulted in the Black Lives Matter Movement. Thus, the idea that America entered a "post-racial" age with Obama's presidency is generally considered a hollow sentiment at best, and most agree that the Civil Rights Movement still has many battles left to fight before it can truly be declared 100% successful.

Comedians, satirists and impressionists often struggled to find a consistent angle in portraying Obama, as his carefully guarded, straight-laced-and-straight-faced communication style pigeonholed any of the usual gaffes that could define a president in the popular mind (Obama certainly had a few such errors, but they were complicated, and didn't make for easy comedic fodder). The Onion largely focused on Obama's controversial drone warfare attacks and the disconnect between them and his more idealistic rhetoric. Key & Peele arguably struck the most resonant chord with their portrayal of Obama and his "anger translator" Luther, whose job it was to take the President's carefully worded language and express it in the angry terms Obama couldn't (which proved a brilliant opportunity in a White House Correspondent's Dinner when Obama himself took part, steadily getting angrier and angrier - and, one suspects, revealing some of his real feelings and frustrations beneath the calm outside). This was related to a broader sense (and criticism) of Obama as The Spock: profoundly rational and logical in thought processing, but unable or unwilling to channel the country's rage over, say, the economic devastation of the Great Recession, with most agreeing that a desire to avoid the "Angry Black Man" Stereotype was the driving impetus behind it (the fact that Obama was actually a big fan of Spock made this unflattering comparison really easy for columnists). Obama contrasted his Spock-like rigidity though by simultaneously cultivating an image as something of a father figure for the United States, combining an air for rigid professionalism with a visible fondness for the United States and hope for it to continue improving, encouraging American youth in particular with spurring on change.

However, in terms of portrayals of Obama and his public image, the biggest outlet for both has inarguably been the internet. With his two terms encompassing the Internet's evolution from a worthwhile utility to a mainstream commodity, Obama's legacy is, by and large, an online one. His presidency is largely remembered through its constant status as a source for Memetic Mutation, aided by his inherently amusing-sounding name, his Black and Nerdy hobbies and interests (which became known around the time when geek culture went mainstream), his online-friendliness, and his skilled invocations of The Comically Serious. Memes about Obama (most of them generally benign) still pop up here and there to this day, and he's regarded as the most meme-friendly president in US history.

In terms of his actual presidency, public opinion on Obama today is generally mixed, but mostly skews positive with little outright hatred outside of the far right and far left. Criticism of Obama generally focuses on his inaction on immigration reformnote , his management of the financial recovery and his handling of the War on Terror, in which he failed to truly resolve it and took actions that arguably exacerbated it (namely the aforementioned drone strikes). Critics of a more progressive bent have expressed disappointment with Obama for not capitalizing on his initial goodwill and sizable congressional majorities to fully deliver on his promised systemic reforms (e.g. not pushing for a public option in his healthcare act, not spending more on the economic recovery and not prosecuting Wall Street figures who triggered the recession), as well as his continued support for foreign entanglements and wars abroad. Some progressives have even accused Obama of abandoning or undermining rising progressive populists like Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren. Additionally, retrospective analysts note that while Obama's economic recovery program benefited urban, non-redlined Americans to a strong enough degree to restore their confidence, rural residents and even some middle-class suburban families didn't see the same benefits, and in some cases the the recession belatedly hit them during the urban recovery.

In hindsight, the tepid financial recovery, racial backlash and general disillusionment with establishment Democrats like nominee Hillary Rodham Clinton resulted in Democrats losing most of their government seats and Donald Trump becoming elected in 2016. Subsequently, the Democratic Party began shifting leftwards with progressive populists like Bernie Sanders capturing the liberal zeitgeist and moderate Democrats adopting more liberal policies. Most notably, Obama's Vice President, Joe Biden, won the 2020 election by campaigning on a platform significantly to the left of Obama's.

That said, most agree that he came at a time when an upbeat president like himself was most needed, with his optimistic campaign messages and fatherly demeanor helped American morale in the face of the Great Recession. His push for domestic social and economic reform also garnered favor among the American left (even if his Affordable Care Act was mostly just repurposing a failed bill by Richard Nixon), and his combination of an articulately dignified demeanor and lighthearted sense of dry humor led many to regard him as an excellent public relations figure as well. Furthermore, despite the mixed response to his handling of the conflict in the Middle East, the killing of Al-Qaeda founder Osama bin Laden in 2011 under his command was generally regarded as a great moment of catharsis for America, nearly ten years after the September 11 attacks that had so thoroughly shaken the world at the start of Bush's term. On the international front, his pivot to Asia and perceived reluctance to be more forceful was divisive in Europe. However, he remains fairly popular with young Europeans, and is more fondly remembered now, if only because he is the polar opposite to both George W. Bush and Donald Trump and — in retrospect — is wistfully remembered as a statesmanlike and rational figure. Contrast the reactions to their visits in Britain: Obama was welcomed like a rockstar. Bush was booed and heckled as a war criminal. Trump was greeted by a colossal 'Trump Baby' balloon flying over London.

Long after the conclusion of his presidency, Obama still remains a vocal figure in US politics through social media, acting as an impromptu pundit on the state of the country and the greater world and continuing the idealistic, paternal brand of political rhetoric that had so thoroughly defined his time as president.

Along with Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Donald Trump, Obama is one of the only five still-living former US presidents. Obama was also the first president to receive a 3D-rendered portrait of himself, created by the Smithsonian Institution in 2014.

Tropes associated with Barack Obama in media and portrayals in fiction:

  • AcCENT Upon the Wrong SylLABle: Jon Stewart on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart will occasionally pronounce the President's name flatly as "BA-ruck OH-buh-muh" instead of "bə-ROCK oh-BAH-muh". British media favours either "BA-ruck" (phonetically similar to 'barrack') or "buh-RACK uh-BAH-muh".
    • According to himself, people used to pronounce it as O'Bama, as if he was Irish.
  • Analogy Backfire: Comparisons to Abraham Lincoln and John F. Kennedy, who were both assassinated. Lampshaded in a "Between the Lines" segment of Mock the Week:
    Greg (Obama): Ladies and gentlemen, I'm going to attempt to emulate my political heroes: Lincoln, Kennedy, Martin Luther King.
    Hugh (Inner Obama): I'm going to be assassinated.
  • Awesome Mc Cool Name: Chris Rock commented in one stand-up about how awesome Obama's name is:
    Chris Rock: Barack Obama. That sounds like a guy waving a spear! You expect to see the bass player of The Commodores with a name like that!
  • Blessed with Suck: The Onion ran an article after he was elected with the headline "Black Man Given Nation's Worst Job."
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff:
    • In general, Obama was always more popular in Canada, Australia and Europe than in America. To this day, many non-American westerners hold Obama in high regard for his charisma and diplomatic overtures that made him the perfect antithesis to both his predecessor and successor. That said, Obama's American popularity recovered considerably once he left office.
    • In the UK, the British people absolutely love Obama. Even more than 5 years after departing the Presidency and in the midst of the Ukraine crisis that catapulted Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to international recognition and adulation, Obama still remains the most popular foreign politician there, with an approval rating of 68% according to YouGov. Granted, some of this might be rose-tinted memories based on several years of dealing with Donald Trump (who has a UK disapproval rating of 70%) and the shenanigans of Prime Minister Boris Johnson (who is sometimes compared to Trump, even by Trump himself). Yet nonetheless, Obama's dry wit, charisma, dignity, and skilled oratory went over very well in a country that (usually) values all those traits in its politicians. Also, unlike every British politician for a very long time, he's seen as being downright cool.
  • Narrator: Of the Netflix Nature Documentary series "Our Great National Parks".
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed:
    • Rewatch the final presidential election on The West Wing and note how eerie the similarities are to the 2008 election. Pure coincidence, you say? The writers based the character of Matt Santos on then state-senator Barack Hussein Obama. Also, Josh Lyman became Santos' chief of staff in this story, and Lyman is known to be heavily based on Rahm Emanuel, a Clinton-era staffer... who went on to become Barack Obama's first chief of staff.
    • Blair Underwood's character of President Elias Martinez on The Event bears a lot of similarity, down to the idealism (and criticism for it), and older, more 'traditional' VP. In fact, Underwood personally got to met Obama when the latter was at Harvard Law School and Underwood went there to research his role for L.A. Law.
    • The Superman of Earth 23, Calvin Ellis. He's a black Superman who is President of the United States of America, and debuted in January, 2009. Creator Grant Morrison has made the connection explicitly clear as well. This Superman usually appears whenever the multiverse is tackled.
  • Unfortunate Names:
    • Michael McIntyre did a bit about how Obama's name is unfortunate for a president:
      Michael McIntyre: Barack Hussein Obama is a terrible name to run for American president. "Barack" sounds like "Iraq", "Hussein" reminds one of Saddam Hussein and "Obama" sounds like "Osama". But still he did. He became president. And I imagine many young black kids here in Britain see this and think "I could get elected Prime Minister! If I work hard and devote myself, I can make it" — "No, I don't think so, Adolf Mugabe Fritzl."
    • Patton Oswalt did a similar thing in a bit about time-traveling to his 1998 self:
      Patton Oswalt: His real name is Barack Hussein Obama. So, we basically elect a Jamba Juice supplement with a dictator's middle name...(later on) Yeah, I'm gonna vote for Ginseng Hitler Bee-pollen.
    • The man himself has shown a good sense of humor about it, once joking in a speech at a charity dinner:
      “Many of you know that I got my name, Barack, from my father. What you may not know is that Barack is actually Swahili for ‘That One.’ And I got my middle name from somebody who obviously didn’t think I’d ever run for president.”

Barack Obama in fiction:

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  • Numerous advertisements use lookalikes, sound-alikes, silhouettes, and other No Celebrities Were Harmed versions of Obama. Some, usually pushing some sort of financial service, often featured clips of Obama shortly after the election discussing the economic crisis. Others just begin the ad with a gratuitous name drop ("Barack Obama is repairing the economy..."). Interestingly, other countries are even more likely to include fake Obamas in their ads than the US. One famous campaign in Spain is for a free weekends cellphone plan called "Yes Weekend." It features an Obama lookalike chanting "YES, WE KEND! YES, WE KEND!"
  • The man himself does appear in a commercial encouraging and supporting public service.

    Anime & Manga 
  • A blatant Captain Ersatz of Obama ("John Omaha") has appeared in the Air Gear manga.
  • A Certain Magical Index: The "Angel Fall" spell causes everyone's appearance to change without them noticing, except for a few who managed to escape the effects. The lead turns on the news, only to discover that President Obama has been swapped with a certain lesbian schoolgirl, who uses Obama's "Yes we can!" Catchphrase.
  • In the Tournament Arc of Gamble Fish, Obama gets a cameo in the form of King Omaha, introduced as the hero who will turn the tide of depression in the US. Complete with the "Yes we can" catchphrase. He also nets a few moments of Heroic Resolve.
  • In Gintama 165 episode, which is in bigger part a hallucination caused by fever, Katsura due to virus became a cross between Will Smith and Barack Obama, and a catchphrase "Yes, we can!" used.
  • Mobile Suit Gundam 00:
    • The leader of the United Nations bears a remarkable resemblance to Obama, earning him the nickname '00bama''. His replacement at the end of the series is a woman. Think about that for a moment.
    • Gundam 00 also has a minor (but sympathetic) squad leader in the A-Laws who looks possibly biracial and is named Barack.
  • In the 20th chapter of Heaven's Lost Property, Obama cameos during the global emergency of... a zoo animal breakout.
  • Hetalia: Axis Powers:
    • The personification of America excitedly shouts "Yeah Obama we can change!" after helping Estonia catch a cracker (...cracker?) who was putting Russian propaganda in Estonia's computer. The strip is based on an event that took place only a few months after then-Senator Obama announced his presidential run, so apparently he was a supporter since the beginning.
    • The author also drew a sketch of America holding Bo, the new little puppy of the Obamas.
  • Obama Mifuyu of Kurogane Pukapuka Tai is unrelated... probably.
  • There is an Obama H-Doujinshi (My Neighbour Taro-kun) out there. It's even weirder than you're probably thinking. Starring Obama and other political leaders, the "story" involves (most prominently) Obama having sex with his neighbor's kinky maid — and then an orgy with Hillary Clinton present.
  • The very first promo for Minami-ke Okaeri had Kana also using the "Yes we can!" catchphrase in the exact Obama intonation.
  • In Osomatsu-san, the episode "It's a Birthday Party, Dajo" features Hatabo getting a video call from Obama, who's depicted with longer hair and a mustache. Obama asks Habato for economic advice, and Habato responds by simply suggesting "American hot dogs," an idea that Obama immediately gets on-board with.
  • In Tiger & Bunny, the mayor of Sternbild and his wife bear more than passing physical resemblances to Barack and Michelle Obama, although said mayor has a baby son who figures into one of the episodes, instead of two daughters.
  • Obama has made several Lawyer Friendly Cameos in the 2008 Yatterman anime. One of the more memorable ones featured a preadolescent Obama romancing a preadolescent Hillary Clinton, that episode being broadcast while the two of them were still competing fiercely IRL for the democratic presidential candidacy.

    Comic Books 
  • He made a cameo appearance at the conclusion of a story arc in Luann that featured Luann, Bernice, and Delta (who had wanted to see him) visiting Washington DC. (His face was not actually shown.)
  • He is also at the center of the next Army of Darkness comic arc, entitled "Ash Saves Obama".
  • And in another independent series, Barack The Barbarian (written by Larry Hama), he's the lead of a barbarian fantasy parody title which casts all the major players of the '08 election in a Conan-type universe.
  • And of course, on an alternate DCU Earth, he's actually Superman. He wasn't kidding.
  • Obama appears in the IDW series Godzilla: Kingdom of Monsters, lamenting that if dealing with a bad economy, a war, and a giant oil spill weren't bad enough, now he has a giant radioactive monster destroying Japan. As of the second issue he became "President Ogden."
  • He is accepted by the fanbase to be the natural choice of sector 2814's blue ring bearer. For those who don't read Green Lantern, Blue Lanterns symbolize hope. This all assumes the DC verse actually has an Obama, instead of the latest in its long line of various generic "president" characters however.
  • In the Marvel Universe, President Obama won the electoral vote, but in a three-way race, a plurality in the popular vote went to Stephen Colbert.
  • Antarctic Press is publishing a mini-series entitled President Evil which features President "Ba-rot" Obama fighting zombies. Covers so far parody Army of Darkness, 28 Days Later and The Evil Dead, and the last fourth issue will apparently be subtitled "Yes, We Cannibal!" Bonus points to Arctic Press, as the cover is the "Hope" poster featuring zombie Obama.
  • Though his face was not seen, it was implied that he was the one who elected Norman Osborn as King of Everything at the end of Secret Invasion via the shade of the President's hand that presented Osborn. It was later retconned that Obama's predecessor was the one who held the Idiot Ball during that particular decision. Later, Obama pardoned Captain America for his crimes during Civil War and authorized Osborn's takedown.
  • President Obama's comic book ubiquity continues to rise as there is at least one entire comic book series about himself but there's even one specifically about his wife. Seeing those comics on the shelves at the local comic shop is rather surreal. There's even a comic book about his dog.
  • Appears as a cyborg within the Steampunk Palin comic book.
  • The Barbarian Hero of the 2009 series Barack the Barbarian may look familiar. The idea spawned from the fact the real Obama collects Conan the Barbarian comics.
  • Appears as himself in Amazing Spider-Man #583, which is an Ascended Fanboy moment for him — a self-avowed fan of the character.

    Fan Works 
  • In the Daria Expanded Universe, the "Daylight" fanfic ''The Hope Mission'' has a relief effort begun on a decimated Earth by the citizens of another Earth where Obama is President. Among the items sent is a laptop computer and a DVD with a message of support to the survivors. The speech he gives sounds just like a real President Obama speech.
  • In Fuck The Jesus Beam, Obama appears as a villain. His in-story character is named, prepare yourself, BaROCK Dominatus Caesar Inferno Vespucci Giovanni Goku Super Sexy Awesome Absolute GOD O.B.A.M.A. He is apparently a KenyaN terrorist. And yes, those capitalizations are actually in the story, but no, the story is not filled with errors. It's intentional.
  • In Obama Sweeps: The Barrier, a parody of The Conversion Bureau, Obama manages to destroy the the Barrier with the help of a Smeargle and a Magikarp named "James Tiberious Karp."
  • Sonic the Hedgehog fanfic Immortality Protocol Cy-Fox opens with a United Nations meeting where many world leaders, including Obama, are present. Everything seems to be going along like a realistic political conversation... that is, until Obama utters the memetic line "You mean the Chaos Emeralds?".

    Films — Live-Action 
  • He's featured (played by an actor) in My Name is Khan.
  • A young Obama is portrayed in Southside with You, an film described as a Before Sunrise-style romance depicting Barack and Michelle Obama's first date.
  • The film Barry depicts his time as a student at Columbia University, trying to discover his own identity and come to terms with issues of race, class and life goals during a transitional period in his life.
  • Mentioned very briefly as being escorted to an undisclosed location in the Mojave Desert in Transformers: Revenge of The Fallen . Word of God was that this was Michael Bay's tribute to Obama. Overall, however, the film puts Obama in a bad light. Director Galloway, an Obstructive Bureaucrat who works against the heroes, repeatedly states that he gets his authority from President Obama as his National Security Advisor.
  • In the Marvel Cinematic Universe he only served one term before being succeeded by the fictional Matthew Ellis, and has been referenced a few times.
  • Kingsman: The Secret Service has an unusually negative portrayal, as he's among the world leaders the villain convinces to sign on to his plan to save the environment through mass slaughter of innocent people, portrayed with a Wham Shot of his distinctive silhouette after it was unclear who Valentine was talking to.
  • In The Way I See It, the Obama Administration is examined through the lens of Pete Souza, the Chief Official White House Photographer.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Key & Peele loved to spoof him and his seeming unflappability, with Jordan Peele's Obama being accompanied by Keegan Michael Key's Luther, Obama's "Anger Translator". President Obama has said that this is his favorite impression and even went as far as to include Luther during his 2015 White House Correspondents' Dinner performance.
  • He's mentioned a number of times on 30 Rock. In the first two seasons, Obama is Liz's preferred candidate for president in 2008. This is first mentioned in an episode from early 2007 where Liz tries to get Jenna to publicly endorse Obama, but Jenna, due to her stupidity, ends up accidentally endorsing Osama bin Laden instead. Also, the final season had a two-part episode about the 2012 election with Liz supporting Obama and Jack supporting Romney.
  • Special Guest Appearance: on the first episode for Operation Iraqi Stephen, the real President Obama shows up to "order" the chief of operations to give Stephen Colbert an army buzz cut to fully show his support for the troops. He even makes a joke about his own ears.
  • Similarly, an optimistic black community leader is the Victim of the Week in Cold Case while a (white) aspiring politician from a rough background (so rough that his sister is effectively his first lady, if you know what I mean) is featured in another episode.
  • Appears in the first part of the Doctor Who story "The End of Time", with a lot of blocking shots and hands covering his face. As per Russell T. Davies' tendency to mock the US in his scripts, the Master transforms him (and all of humanity) into Master clones.
  • A villain in Engine Sentai Go-onger became Prime Minister of Japan and promised change... by destroying a ton of buildings. And, he said "Yes we can!" in all of its engrishy glory.
  • Obama is the president in both of the Fringe universes. The way they introduced the alternate universe was to show a newspaper with the headline that's he taken office and then reveal that Olivia was actually standing inside one of the World Trade Centre towers. Apparently the Obama in our universe dislikes Broyles. Because Broyles beat him at golf.
  • In the final episode of Gilmore Girls, Rory leaves Stars Hollow for a job as a campaign reporter following the Obama primary campaign.
  • In House, one of the patients of the week was a young, eloquent black Senator, former community organizer and Presidential candidate. What makes that episode particularly freaky was that it first aired in April 2005, almost two years before Obama officially announced his run for the presidency, back when he was only a lowly Senator known almost solely for his speech at the 2004 Democratic Convention.
  • Sketch-comedy show Little Britain USA was filmed prior to the November 2008 elections, but twice featured a serious and competent black president playing straight man to the flamboyant and bumbling Prime Minister of England.
  • Obama has made an cameo appearance on MythBusters in December 2010.
  • The 22nd running of the Ninja Warrior obstacle course had a Barack Obama impersonator, complete with the entire crowd waving handheld US flags and chanting, "Yes we can!" "Obama" falls at the Jumping Spider obstacle. The announcer cries out, "No, you can't!" when he loses.
  • The two younger kids in the Britcom Outnumbered have mentioned him a few times; Ben believes that in his spare time, Obama drives a London bus ("he's the leader of the free world, he can do anything he likes"), while 7-year-old Karen is upset that he hasn't answered any of her letters and likes to add him into her drawings, usually doing something suitably awesome like riding a dragon.
  • The "birther" conspiracy theory is spoofed in the Parks and Recreation episode "Born & Raised". While Leslie is running for city council as part of a larger story arc, it's charged that she was not born in Pawnee, but in the hated rival town of Eagleton. Unlike with the real conspiracy theory, this turns out to be true, but Leslie manages to convince her opponents that she is as Pawneean as anyone actually born there.
  • Royal Canadian Air Farce has Alan Park playing Obama. Unlike Armisen, he has absolutely nothing in common with Obama (this is common with both him and Roger Abbott's George W Bush). They don't even try to get the voices down.
  • Obama is played by Fred Armisen (who, like Obama, is of mixed origin, only Armisen is Venezuelan on his mom's side and German and Japanese on his father's side) on Saturday Night Live, who, despite being white enough to regularly play Steve Jobs (or Prince [who, like Obama, is also half-black, half-white]), does the part with just a wig and some tape to make his ears stick out. These sketches seem a lot less afraid of Unfortunate Implications than most parodies, though SNL has made similar casting decisions in the past, most famously the even-whiter-than-Armisen Darrell Hammond as Jesse Jackson (with Hammond in tan make-up). Dwayne Johnson (who is Black-Canadian on his dad's side and Samoan on his mom's side) also played Barack Obama — or to be more precise, his Incredible Hulk-esque alter ego called "The Rock" Obama, who throws anyone who angers or disagrees with him out the window of the Oval Office (while still speaking in measured tones). From season 38 onward, Obama is played by Jay Pharoah.
  • In season 5 of True Blood, there is a gang of murderous racists who disguise themselves with Barack Obama masks. A frustrated Sheriff Andy tells some idiotic reporters that President Obama is not associated with nor is he supporting the gang.
  • In an interesting twist of reality-imitating-fiction, the last season of The West Wing had Hispanic candidate Matt Santos winning the Presidency. Matt Santos was based on a then barely-known senator named Barack Obama. Not only that, his opponent was a much older Republican centrist. AND both Santos and Obama appointed a major rival Presidential candidate as his Secretary of State. We're through the looking glass, people.
  • All five seasons of Warehouse 13 were filmed during Obama's presidency, so his portrait tends to decorate more or less every government office the protagonists visit over the course of the series. Arty's office in the Warehouse proper is a notable exception, probably because the Warehouse doesn't care about politics and is residing in the USA only because it always sets up shop in the world's most powerful nation at the moment. The Distant Finale of the series finale suggests that his basketball will become an artifact at some point in the future.
  • In Legends of Tomorrow, Grodd is sent to kill him while he's still in college, noting that "It will almost be an honor." After the Legends foil the plot, he's able to give Sara the perfect advice for the emotional issues she's having despite having no frame of reference for her time travelling. She also advises him to hold onto his birth certificate.
  • Kingsley Ben-Adir plays Obama in the miniseries The Comey Rule, where he is seen hiring James Comey for the job of FBI Director.
  • O-T Fagbenle plays him in The First Lady.

  • He isn't directly namedropped, but in Stephen King's Under the Dome the local selectman receives a letter from the President and notes that "he'd signed all three of his names, including the terrorist one in the middle." And a bumper sticker with the slogan "Yes We Can, Again" implies not only a timeframe for the novel, but that Obama was elected to a second term in King's universe.
  • The Obama Biden Mysteries novels published by Penguin Random House portray Former President Barack Obama and Former VP Joe Biden as solving crimes like a modern day Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson after they leave the White House (with some satirical political commentary on the side).
    • Fun Fact: This is the same company that has published President Obama's memoir A Promised Land and Former First Lady Michelle Obama's memoir Becoming

    Puppet Shows 

    Pro Wrestling 
  • During the drawn-out primary, WWE once had Obama and Hilary impersonators who wrestled each other. This was after videotaped appearances from both Democratic hopefuls, as well as John McCain.
  • WWE has taken to using footage of Obama's press conferences, to create mock conferences of their own, to promote their "Capitol Punishment" Pay-Per-View event. It's exactly as silly as it sounds.


    Video Games 
  • In the Xbox Live game, Angry Barry, a Hulked-out Obama beats old ladies to death with busses to collect votes.
  • Advertisements for his campaign were implemented by Electronic Arts for updating billboards in Burnout Paradise if the player was connected online with his/her console.
  • In Madden NFL 11 and 12 and NBA 2K11, the players can go meet Barack Obama post-game for a congratulatory meeting. In the case of Madden, there was a distinct lack of Developer's Foresight, as Obama would always congratulate the player for a Super Bowl victory, no matter how many seasons the player completed. So, in the Madden world, Obama might still be President in 2037.
  • During the campaign, Mercenaries 2 released DLC that made Obama a playable character, along with Sarah Palin.
  • Japanese game company AlCot has released a eroge called My Girlfriend Is the President, in which due to a freak accident involving aliens and brainwashing, Japan adopts a presidential system similar to that of the US, with Yukino Ohama (the titular girlfriend) as the President of Japan. There's even a long speech ending with Obama's trademark Catchphrase.
    Yukino Ohama: Yes we cum!
  • Main character in Obama Alien Defense; see here.
  • In Perfect Dark, the president of the United States is a black man that bears a remarkable resemblance to Barack Obama, despite the fact that it was made several years before Obama's presidency.
  • A popular nickname for the Pokémon Abomasnow is Obamasnow.
  • Obama also appears in an advertisement for Rabbids Go Home, where he is about to deliver a speech when the Rabbids come in and steal his clothes.
  • One of the promotional videos for Scribblenauts had the playtesters try to summon Barack Obama. It didn't work. In the first game, the President is a white man in a blue suit, in the sequel, they changed the president's model, it now looks like Obama in the game's lighthearted style. He's also one of the playable avatars.
  • Captain America's ending in Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds has him being awarded a medal by Obama for stopping Galactus. In Ultimate, Obama was replaced with Nick Fury.

    Web Animation 
  • When discussing a plot point in the video game H.A.W.X., Zero Punctuation uses him as the President, when Yahtzee is dissecting the idea of schemers plotting to kill The President. Weird how disconcerting it is to see a general smiling-Obama face with Xs over the eyes, even when the point of the talk is how stupid that kind of plot would be to any self-respecting greedy evil corporation. He also uses him as a stand-in for Louis in his Left 4 Dead review.

    Web Comics 

    Web Original 
  • What do you get when you cross the 2008 presidential campaign, Steampunk, and pulp fantasy? Barack Obama Vs The Pirates Of Wichita and its various sequels, where politicians are Physical Gods whose wars for the Oval Throne shake the heavens. Obama himself is described with the qualities of a Memetic Badass.
    Also, according to rumor, a single tear from Obama's cheek can slay demons and cure vilitigo and impetigo. His stride is as of a titan's, seven leagues at a time, and while he holds a microphone in his hand he canst take no mortal wound nor shed a single drop of his own blood. He speaks the native tongue of birds, and converses happily with all beasts of hoof and paw, even to the lowliest vole and marmot. Gracious as the kings of old, Obama carries no money nor answers unkind word with like. Peonies spring up where his feet trod, and were he to lay his weary head upon the ground a mighty cedar, like unto the old father trees of Bsharri and Barouk, would spring forth to shade his noble brow. In the elven tongue he is Lothlornienel, with means "Laughter in the High Places", and the dwarves call him earthfriend, as well as "Khazad ak Manu", which means "He who does not wear patriotic lapel pins." His is the drill that shall pierce the heavens: believe in him believing in you! The Neocons speak of him in hushed tones in their shadowed, dusty halls, and refer to the ancient scrolls of the fallen empire of Mnem, which foretells of the coming of the Dusky Childe, who shall scourge their number from the halls and rotundas and tear down the altars in the high places and bring the three terrible plagues of Health Care and White Guilt and Political Transparency. They say that he will travel to Shibboleth – where the heart of Karl Rove is kept, inanimate, inside a Canopic jar – and break the seals and feast upon the contents therein: and with the power thus consumed he will erect a throne of jade and jasper and lapus lazuli, and rule upon it, and the thunderous gnashing of teeth from the Red States will play Hail to the Chief as he ascends the dais.
  • In the Jib Jab '08 election animated short, Obama is shown as something akin to a Disney Princess, frolicking with cuddly forest animals. A later video portrays him as a superhero.
  • In Fear, Loathing and Gumbo on the Campaign Trail '72 (an Alternate History scenario about a different 1972 presidential election), Obama has not appeared in person but apparently authored some of the books that the timeline takes extracts from: he seems to have become a professor in political history.
  • Given The Salvation War is an Alternate History which branches off from the real world in early 2008, it's not the least bit surprising to see Barack Obama as the US President in the second book, Pantheocide.
  • In the New Deal Coalition Retained alternate history timeline, a young Barack is sent to live with his father (who has become President of Kenya) after his mother dies in a car crash. At one point, he serves as an aide to his father's political ally Idi Amin, before eventually being elected to succeed his father as President.

    Web Videos 
  • Game Grumps did impressions of Obama a few times.
    • They had a lengthy joke where Obama was a disgruntled fan who secretly trolls their videos with the same complaints as other Grump fans.
      Danny: (imitating Obama) Just because it makes them laugh it should make me laugh? Fuck 'em.
    • While playing Kirby's Dream Course, the Grumps pretend that Obama is a huge fan of theirs. They even act out Obama catching up on episodes of Game Grumps with all of his free time after he leaves office.
  • The Penguins of Madagascar: Operation N-W.O.R.D. has Barack Obama's wife Michelle die from Donald Trump saying the N-word, then him seemingly saying the N-word to attack the Penguins who are stopping racism, only for it to turn out to be Trump in Obama's body, and finally awarding the Penguins with an N-word pass for stopping racism.
  • In the Spoony One's review of Make My Video (from the '90s), there's a wheelchair-bound Corrupt Corporate Executive with an Evil Laugh whom Spoony notes bears a remarkable resemblance to then-Senator Obama, whom he dubs "Evil Barack Obama". He ends the video by popping up again to declare "I'm Evil Barack Obama, and I approve this message. Mwahahaha!"
  • Barack Obama is a Recurring Character in a few of RTGame's playthroughs of games that involve Miis. He is affectionately referred to as 'Gaybama' in the Miitopia streams thanks to playing as a Pop Idol and he is best friends with Mr Bean.
  • Obama is one of the four main characters in Biden and the Gang, along with Biden, Trump, and Bush. He's usually portrayed as the Only Sane Man.

    Western Animation 
  • He appears in the American Dad! episode "Incident at Owl Creek", where, after accidentally defecating into his neighbor's pool, Stan is humiliated by everyone. He devises a plan to make President Obama make the same faux-pas, negating his shame. It was All Just a Dream but Stan still shits himself.
  • In Batman: The Brave and the Bold, he suddenly appears at the end of "Cry Freedom Fighters!" to thank Plastic Man and the Freedom Fighters. Plas doesn't recognize him. Of course, Plas' knowledge of U.S. history is...a bit off in general.
  • The Boondocks has a decidedly negative depiction of the president. Since the season 3 premiere, he has been depicted as an Obstructive Bureaucrat whose long and inspiring speeches do nothing in the face of uncertain times.
  • Appeared as a villain in the Brickleberry episode "Obamascare", where he was portrayed as a creepy sexual predator, who was stalking Connie and trying to rape her, having a bizzare lesbian fetish.
    Connie: We can't be a couple, Barry. I'm a lesbian.
    Obama: So is Michelle. I love a little challenge.
    Connie: No, we can't Barry.
    Obama: Yes, we can, Connie. Yes we can.
  • Barack Obama also appears in The Cleveland Show, challenging Cleveland to a game of basketball. And winning handily.
    Obama: I better call my Secretary of Education because... you just got schooled. I can also call my Secretary of Treasury... because that jump was money. I'd also like to—
    Secret Service Man: Sir, we really have to go.
    Obama: Uh, one moment. I can also call my Secretary of Defense... because I am the bomb. Wheels up!
  • In the Family Guy episode "New Kidney in Town", Obama visits Quahog, and Chris' entire English class is assigned to write an essay about hope. Chris uses things he heard from Meg to write his essay, and he's selected to read it to introduce Obama. Chris and Meg eventually read the speech together. After that, Obama appears dressed like Conrad Birdie and performs the song "Honestly Sincere".
  • In Metalocalypse Episode "Dethhealth", Murderface has a series of hallucinations, one of which is a very brief, few-seconds long shot of President Obama standing outside the White House.
  • Has a Lawyer-Friendly Cameo in the Phineas and Ferb episode "Phineas And Ferb Save Summer" as the head of the World Leaders agreeing to L.O.V.E.M.U.F.F.I.N's demands for world domination
  • In South Park, Obama is the main character in the episode "About Last Night". The episode deals with the results of the presidential election — and the fact the episode came out the day after it was declared Obama won the election. It is awesome enough, but just read the description. It is about how the entire presidential election was a ruse by Obama, McCain, Michelle Obama, and the surprisingly intellectual Sarah Palin to steal the Hope Diamond from the Smithsonian Museum, Ocean's Eleven style. The episode ends with Obama deciding to stay President.


Video Example(s):


Obama Out

Obama ends his final White House Correspondents' Dinner with a mic drop.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (13 votes)

Example of:

Main / MicDrop

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