Wed, 24 Jul 2019

KYIV -- Fact has followed fiction.

Volodymyr Zelenskiy, a comic actor who plays a common man accidentally catapulted into an exasperated Ukraine's presidency on TV, has won big in the country's real presidential election.

Almost as remarkably, he appears to be doing it in runaway fashion in a process that both he and defeated incumbent Petro Poroshenko cited after the vote as a model for all post-Soviet states.

SEE ALSO: Comedian Zelenskiy Appears To Get Last Laugh With Landslide Victory In Ukraine's Presidential Poll

Here are six enduring moments from a historic, if surreal, day in Ukrainian politics.

Pumped Up With Eminem

After he had cast his ballot -- and having acknowledged that he got 'little' sleep -- Zelenskiy hinted that he had awakened on election day with some nerves. His wife, Yelena, had tried to calm and energize him with some music, he said.

Her choice of artists? Eminem.

We don't know if Zelenskiy 'lost himself' or 'sang for the moment,' as he couldn't recall the American rapper's exact song. Could have been Lucky You.

But he demonstrated just how he bobbed his head to it.

Busted By The Cops

With scores of cameras rolling inside a packed polling station at Kyiv's Maritime Academy, Zelenskiy had cast a vote for himself. Then he flashed it to reporters before dropping it into the ballot box.

While the cameras loved it, the police did not. It apparently broke Ukrainian legislation aimed at preventing campaigning by candidates on election day.

Shortly thereafter, officers arrived at Zelenskiy's office to fine him less than $30 for the display.

Copyright (c) 2018. RFE/RL, Inc. Republished with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036

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