Adam Guenzel

Adam Guenzel is a fictional character, played by Mike Doyle, on the HBO drama Oz.[1]

Character overview[]

In the fifth season, Guenzel is introduced as an upper middle class white man who is sent prison for rape. His friend Franklin Winthrop assisted him in the crime, and they have both been sentenced to 28 years in the titular prison. Inside, he is targeted for rape by the Aryan Brotherhood, but he receives protection from Tobias Beecher. He foolishly turns on his protector, however, who abandons him to the Aryans' clutches. He is subsequently gang-raped by the Aryans and made into one of their regular sex slaves; he later dies in an ill-advised escape attempt.

Season 5[]

Guenzel and Winthrop arrive in Oz for raping a woman while intoxicated. He is sent to Em City, as Unit Manager Tim McManus feels that Beecher, a friend of the young man's family, can keep him on the right track.

Guenzel is scared of prison; he comes from a wealthy white neighborhood where he has been spoiled to the point of never making his own bed, and he fears he will not survive. Beecher, who remembers how frightened he had been in the early days of his sentence, takes Guenzel under his wing.

In the cafeteria, Aryan member James Robson parades Winthrop around as the gang's slave and he assures Beecher that Guenzel is next on their list. Desperate to protect Guenzel, Beecher asks Kareem Said, the leader of Oz's Muslims, to do so. Said refuses because the Muslims and Aryans have been warned to stay away from each other and Said despises Guenzel for abusing women. Guenzel then goes to protective custody temporarily as Beecher recruits the Italian gang to protect him. Chucky Pancamo, the Italian gang's leader, hates the Aryans, and so gladly protects Guenzel from them. In the gym, Robson leads the Aryans in a rape attempt on Guenzel, who is playing basketball with Beecher. Frank Urbano and the Italians step in and join the fight in defense of Guenzel. The guards break it up and the prison is put into lockdown.

Vernon Schillinger, head of the Aryans, is angered and has Winthrop tell Guenzel about Beecher's homosexual relationship with Chris Keller. Guenzel, who is extremely homophobic, turns against Beecher and begins taunting him. Earlier, Schillinger had made an offer to Beecher that involved him giving Guenzel over to the Aryans unprotected in exchange for an opportunity to regularly visit Keller. Beecher initially refuses the offer, but after Guenzel turns against him, he accepts.

Beecher convinces McManus that Guenzel is unsalvagable and McManus then transfers him to Unit B. In Unit B, he is approached by Schillinger, who slaps him across the face and tells him to "shut up" and "speak when spoken to." He is then taken by other Aryan inmates into the janitorial closet, where Schillinger rapes him. Afterward, the Aryans throw him in the gym bloodied and naked, where Beecher then finds him. Beecher feels remorse for abandoning Guenzel; he says that no one, regardless of their crime, deserves that kind of treatment.

Guenzel, now the Aryans' sex slave, is paraded around the prison dressed as a little girl. Beecher then has prison psychiatrist Sister Peter Marie "Sister Pete" Reimondo try to talk to him. Worried about being charged for rape, Schillinger has Guenzel go see her, and tells him that if he talks, he will die. Guenzel says nothing, but Sister Pete realizes that he has been sexually abused by someone in Oz. Fearing discovery, Schillinger indirectly kills Guenzel during an escape attempt by neglecting to tell him of an electric fence surrounding the prison.


Merri Lisa Johnson writes that the character is presented as "obnoxius and offensive in so many ways that I can't help but suspect that we're being set up to root for his rape."[2]


  1. "Ator norte-americano encara a arte de morrer em cena," The New York Times (03/06/2009).
  2. Merri Lisa Johnson, Third wave feminism and television: Jane puts it in a box (2007), 184.

External links[]


pt:Adam Guenzel