Register a SA Forums Account here!
JOINING THE SA FORUMS WILL REMOVE THIS BIG AD, THE ANNOYING UNDERLINED ADS, AND STUPID INTERSTITIAL ADS!!!

You can: log in, read the tech support FAQ, or request your lost password. This dumb message (and those ads) will appear on every screen until you register! Get rid of this crap by registering your own SA Forums Account and joining roughly 150,000 Goons, for the one-time price of $9.95! We charge money because it costs us money per month for bills, and since we don't believe in showing ads to our users, we try to make the money back through forum registrations.
 
  • Post
  • Reply
freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


Sergeant_Crunch posted:

As good as season 4 was, I still think season 2 tops it.

I watched it for the first time last year and now I'm watching it again because my girlfriend's never seen it, and I'm interested to see if my line-up changes. As it stands I'd rank the seasons (from best to least) as 3 > 1 > 2 > 4 > 5. With a fairly solid line between 2 and 4; I never really warmed to the last two seasons. I mean, they were great, better than 99% of any other TV, but they didn't quite reach the platinum standard of the first three seasons.

Adbot
ADBOT LOVES YOU

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


Slo-mo walk is the best scene. Played completely straight, and it cracks me up every time.

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


I agree with that, but no way are the drug zones a B-story. I also think 3 is the best and it's mostly because it charts this fantastic, escalating story of a police captain actually trying something novel and new (probably the only time that happens anywhere in the show) to tackle the slow decay of Baltimore. Bunny Colvin is my favourite character in the series based on this one season.

Which is not to detract from the implosion of the Barksdale organisation, which pays off a lot of storylines that had been developing since season 3. As with any series - TV, movies, books, whatever - the later editions can have something of an advantage over the earlier ones, because you've spent so much time with and become so invested in these characters. I know when I first watched season 1 - and I think a lot of people think this - I thought Stringer was way more capable and commanding than Avon and I was baffled to why Avon was in charge, until you find out he inherited it. It's satisfying to see that finally come to a head in season 3, especially as you realise that Avon is smarter than he seems and Stringer isn't as smart as he seems.

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


bentacos posted:

Well, The Bunk is strictly a suit and tie motherfucker, so maybe everyone else is just trying to keep up.

IIRC Bunk starts wearing track pants and his old lacrosse team hoody the minute he gets briefly assigned to the detail in Season 2.

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


dreffen posted:

Here read stuff that David Simon wrote about the HD re-release

http://davidsimon.com/the-wire-in-hd/

quote:

More fundamentally, there were still, upon our review, a good hundred or so scenes in which the widening revealed sync problems with actors who would otherwise have remained offscreen, or even the presence of crew or film equipment. These scenes, still evident in the version that HBO originally intended to broadcast several months ago, required redress.

Hahah wow.

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


I always assumed the Pit had nothing behind it, which is why they did a really crummy looking CGI tower - why bother when there was an actual tower there? I mean yeah it's smaller but I can't imagine that detracts much from anything.

gently caress trophy 2k14 posted:

Oh wow who'd have thought Baltimore still looks poor.

Is Baltimore actually... like the Wire? Like, an actual third-world-country surrounded by first world white people? I always sort of assumed that it was based on Simon's experiences in the 80s/early 90s and that there was no way modern America could actually be that bad. Not even the poor black neighbourhoods. Like, "Omar wandering around with a shotgun in the middle of the day" level of lawlessness.

I'm Australian so I guess my comparison is an Aboriginal township in the Outback. Horrible, shameful poverty with an obvious racial cause which the rest of us guiltily avert our eyes from.

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


I'm doing a rewatch for the first time and finding that no wonder there were a lot of characters who seemed to come out of nowhere and suddenly become important. First episode of season 3 has Marlo coming out of his house, getting in his car and uttering a few words ("either do it or don't," with a crony pointing a gun at Johnny's head) and nothing else, no indication of why he's important. Also has Slim Charles speaking at a Barksdale meeting with no indication of where he's coming from or that he'll rival Stringer to be Avon's #2.

I'm not complaining, it's just really interesting to watch this a second time and see how gradually some characters were added into the mix. Bunny Colvin is my favourite character in the series by far, but until this rewatch I didn't realise he actually appears in an episode towards the end of season 2.

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


Wait when are there trains in the Wire? All I remember is Bunk and Jimmy pissing on the train tracks while they're drinking. And maybe a math question about a train in Prez's class?

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


Doesn't Bug get given to a foster mother out in a relatively decent suburb?

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


I remember saying nobody in the Wire apart from rear end in a top hat characters like Rawl and Valczek get happy endings, but that's definitely not true. Off the top of my head Bubbles, Carver and Daniels are all in an indisputably better place by the end of the series than they were at the start.

edit - I remember somebody saying that, not me.

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


Well one of the other things I'd take from the Wire is that when it comes to crime, sooner or later, everybody comes undone. No matter how careful you are, sooner or later you get caught or get killed.

It's telling that only two cops get shot in the series and both of them survive. Meanwhile virtually every major criminal character either dies or goes to prison.

edit - I forgot about the cop Prez shoots dead, but that sort of adds to my point: an accidental shooting by a fellow cop.

freebooter fucked around with this message at 23:03 on Jan 12, 2015

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


I'm in the middle of a rewatch and came across this scene, which I distinctly remembered for its unusual camera angles. I've dug it up from way back in the thread rather than screencap it myself.

Jerusalem posted:

Less happy are the Detail detectives, as Colvin shows them Hamsterdam, explaining that there are three locations where drugs are, if not legal, at least overlooked. Horrified, Sydnor and Kima refuse to sugarcoat any of this and lay it out in the open for Colvin - he's legalized drugs. Not at all he insists, begging them to look at the improvements made to what were previously his worst corners, explaining that crime is down 5% in his district now. Realizing that this isn't endearing him to them, he tries the other old standby, claiming that his plan is to let everybody settle in here and then make a big showy arrest. McNulty raises his eyebrows at that, not believing it for a second, and Colvin again asks them not to let the Bosses know, he needs time before he can explain this to them. He apologizes to Sydnor for making them let Bodie's crew go and giving them back the G-Pack, but McNulty speaks up to say it's not a problem, they got what they needed from the stop. Kima and Sydnor still aren't happy, and McNulty takes Colvin aside to bring up a troubling fact - once they make their big showy arrest then the dealers will just return to their old corners. Plus he knows that Colvin has never cared about showy arrests... is he really planning on taking this mess to the Bosses? "gently caress the Bosses" Colvin says at last, about the best thing he could have said to McNulty, saying that nothing else is working and he's only a few months away from retiring with his pension anyway. McNulty shrugs, this isn't his problem, he's got what he needed, let Colvin run with his crazy idea. One wonders if maybe this didn't create the germ of McNulty's own insane scheme in season 5.



What's the deal with McNulty's head being backlit by the sun here? It's clearly intentional but I'm not quite sure what it's meant to symbolise, if anything.

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


Aha, of course. I was associating it with those old pictures of saints or angels with the halo behind their heads, which made no sense because it's quite the opposite of how McNulty's portrayed.

A little touch from that episode I missed the first time around: at the press conference where they announce they recovered Dozerman's gun, Dozerman himself is looking shaky and sweaty, and Burrell says that he will soon be returning to duty - not that he already has, or is. You get the impression they've pretty much hauled him out of a hospital bed and stuffed him in full dress uniform for the cameras.

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


kaworu posted:

OK - setting that aside, just to take an example from something I just say in the last episode (409 I think) Prop Joe and Marlo are hookin' up and Prop Joe is givin' Marlo the word on what he learned with his funny accents about Herc, and as he hands the card to Marlo he says "Might could be a problem." This is transcribed by lazy subtitlers as "Mike could be a problem." This is exactly the sort of mistake they make over and over - the quirky grammar that black people use is often misheard and transcribed into some absurd way that's "correct" but meaningless in context like that.

I'm really surprised by that. I work as a live subtitler, and the non-live subtitlers (at least at my company) are absolutely detail-oriented and pedantic about getting everything 100% right, down to the tiniest, most irrelevant bullshit in throwaway game show episodes. Is this on the official DVDs?

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


Stuff I've noticed rewatching season three:

I distinctly remember McNulty saying to D'Angelo's mother, "I kinda liked your son - all things considered, he wasn't a bad guy." It stuck with me because that pretty much sums up how the viewer probably feels about him too. This time around, I noticed he says - almost verbatim - the same line to both D'Angelo's girlfriend and, four episodes later, his mother. It's a self-scripted line as part of his "reasonable homicide detective" front.

Trainspotting - I've heard way more background train noises in this season, notably right after Stringer tells Avon his killed D'Angelo and they fight, when Mouzone approaches Omar in the alley, and the wires of a train are visible passing by the window after Stringer is shot. (Which makes you wonder why the hell he thought anyone would buy a condo when the living room faces out onto a train track.)

Stringer calls the Western District and shortly afterwards Colvin gives McNulty a slip of paper with the address of Avon's safehouse, refusing to name the source. Later in the episode Stringer meets Colvin in the graveyard and again gives him a slip of paper, the dialogue indicating that it's just the same information. Why do this twice?

Prez's fortune cookie right before he shoots another cop: "A new friend will make himself known to you." :smith:

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


kaworu posted:

I think you might just have your chronology mixed up here, because there is only *one* slip of yellow paper with Avon's safehouse in it. McNulty figures it out when he sees the Western District number pop up *twice* on the wire - the first time when Bell contacts Bunny to give him information so Colvin knows he's a confirmed C.I. and not somebody loving with him, and the second time to set up the meet at the graveyard where Bell gives Colvin the safehouse info. It's only after that when Colvin and McNulty meet up at the Western District (the place with the beer cans alllll over the roof) and Colvin hands off the slip of paper - "the last bit of real police work in a long career" - which as I recall actually ends the episode in question, since it's when we finally get that great shot of the roof of the Western Districts with its thousands of beer cans.

One episode really bleeds into the next when you're doing a rewatch like this, though.

Maybe I'll have to check again, but I'm 95% sure it's all in order - Stringer calls Western, then Colvin gives McNulty the address, then Stringer gives Colvin the address again at the graveyard.

On a completely different note, I never noticed before that Bunk says he was only a few years above Omar at high school. Omar says he's 28 in season two. There is no loving way that Bunk is in his early 30s. Although, interestingly, the actor who plays Omar really is only a few years younger than the actor who plays Bunk - he was born in 1966 or something. He looks good. I don't know why they didn't just make Omar a 38-year-old.

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


freebooter posted:

Maybe I'll have to check again, but I'm 95% sure it's all in order - Stringer calls Western, then Colvin gives McNulty the address, then Stringer gives Colvin the address again at the graveyard.

OK, my mistake, I hadn't rewatched the very final episode yet. There are two slips of paper but they have two different Avon addresses:

1. Stringer calls the Western and informs them of something we don't see onscreen, but we can guess from later in the episode when Colvin gives McNulty a slip of paper at his desk in the Western. It's a Barksdale address which is registered in his name - probably the penthouse.

2. Later in that episode, Stringer meets Colvin at the graveyard and gives him the address of Avon's weapon-filled safehouse. In the final episode, Colvin passes this to McNulty. This meeting occurs in a park.

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


Jerusalem posted:

McNulty guessed that Stringer was the CI, but he had zero proof (at least that he could use) and identified ANOTHER OFFICER'S confidential informant just to get what he wanted. It basically goes against everything the CI system is meant to do, as well as intruding into a fellow officer's case/work (and a superior officer at that), and it's all because McNulty didn't want to jump through the hoops of regulations (and, you know, the actual LAW) and wanted to just shortcut his way to the result he wanted using "common sense" (which is an incredibly dangerous and potentially hazardous/corrupt way to think).

Don't they have Bell's wiretap showing that he called the Western? I recall this being of of McNulty's lesser transgressions, mostly because the rest of the unit (including Daniels) agrees to it without much fuss.

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


Who was Stringer actually arranging to have hit?

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


To me the docks seem like a more realistic, well-painted world than the crumbling school system. It also showed me things I hadn't already realised, namely that a) white dudes are just as hemmed in by the system and victims of capitalism as anybody else, and b) it's not as simple as looking at a dying industry and saying "they can just go get other jobs," because it invalidates their heritage, their culture, and everything their parents and grandparents have built up as a community in this one small trade; it underestimates how important the work aspect is for the working class, how closely their identity and their community is tied to their jobs.

Also as much as I love Prez his arc in s4 kinda sucks - I'm actually two episodes into my first rewatch of it now, but IIRC he literally goes from one episode where he's hopeless and has no control over the class, to being the cool, inspiring teacher in the next, with no transformative catalyst in between. And the Inspiration Teacher cliche is a bit odious when it's mixed with the White Saviour, and really only redeemed in the Wire by the fact that Prez actually fails to have any ultimate long-term impact on the fates of any of his students.

edit - I should mention that I liked season 2 just fine the first time around, and my favourite season is 3.

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


Watching early s4 again, and Norris picks up a homicide which was a witness murder. He's delighted about the overtime but Landsman tells him to "bury the witness angle" because there's an election on and they don't want to stir poo poo up. As soon as Norris shuts the door Landsman rings a Major, which turns out to be Valczek, who then triumphantly reports it to Carcetti. I get why Valczek is trying to butter up his chosen candidate, but what's Landsman's motivation? Is he just trying to get in the good books of a potential police chief?

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


I can't be bothered screencapping it, but I'm watching the whole show again and I just noticed for the first time that Cutty actually did exactly what Avon didn't want, and put a poster of him up on the gym wall.

Except I only noticed it because there's a scene where Namond (I think) is talking, and they're just laughing and messing around like street kids (or maybe they're talking about what theyw ant to do when they're older? I forget) and the poster is sort of looming up behind his shoulder. Like the shadow of the ghetto is always coming after them. Unless I'm overthinking it.

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


Jerusalem posted:

Rawls: You're not actually killing them yourself, are you Jimmy? Tell me that much at least.

"You're not killing them yourself, McNulty. At least assure me of that." I only remember it verbatim because it's my favourite Rawls quote ever.

And I love the hint of a smirk in McNulty's mouth as he shakes his head. Like, as much as he knows he's in deep poo poo, he's sort of appreciating the final whirl of his crazy mutually antagonistic relationship with his old boss.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XB3fxE1V66s

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


Not Al-Qaeda posted:

It was also kinda creepy of lester to hit on someone he has "power" over

And is about 30 years older than

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


ChairMaster posted:

The opinion of every stupid rear end in a top hat who's never had to face actual oppression in any real way, good for you.

Yeah, this reminded me of a line from Ta-Nehisi Coates' great piece:

quote:

I grew up across the street from Mondawmin Mall, where today's riots began. My mother was raised in the same housing project, Gilmor Homes, where Freddie Gray was killed. Everyone I knew who lived in that world regarded the police not with admiration and respect but with fear and caution. People write these feelings off as wholly irrational at their own peril, or their own leisure.

Or, to put it another way: violence is already happening. It did not begin with the riots. Well worth reading the entire thing, and indeed everything Coates writes.

http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2015/04/nonviolence-as-compliance/391640/

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


I just finished season 4 for the second time, and realised that it's not in fact Chris who kills Bodie, but some guy called O-Dog. Did anyone else think it was Chris?

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


forever whatever posted:

Isn't it Micheal? I think you see his face.

Whoops - I always confuse Chris and Michael by name. I meant Mike.

But, yeah, it's O-Dog. You specifically barely see his face, it's night-time and he's wearing a hoody. Chris previously advises Marlo not to send Mike, because he knows him, but Marlo doesn't flat out agree, so maybe that's why me and others assumed it was Mike.

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


So thinking back to my not-so-recent anymore rewatch of season 4, it's interesting how the final episode has multiple examples of strong, stable characters being given the opportunity to dedicate themselves to helping the less fortunate who are at bad places in their lives. There's three:

Colvin > Namond
Carver > Randy
Kima > Bubbles (I think this is the last time she ever sees him?)

There was a discussion a while back about how it's maybe kind of hollow, that scene with Carver going apeshit on his steering wheel in the car - when if he was really committed to helping Randy he could register to be a foster parent and get him out of the group home in a few months. Someone else suggested that maybe that's the point, that it's the gap between what he would like to imagine himself doing, and what he's really going to do, because deep down he doesn't really want the lifechanging hassle of raising a kid he barely knows. Same thing happens with Kima and Bubbles - at the end of the day she's not willing to carry that weight. Colvin is the only one who does it.

IIRC this is repeated again at the end of season 5, when Prez knows full well what Dukie is getting up to, but doesn't choose to extend his help any further than a few hundred bucks and a pep talk. Dukie was his first student, somebody he knows is a good kid deep down, and he and his wife have a comfortable lifestyle and no kids. He could go the Colvin route... but he doesn't.

edit - I'm sounding judgmental on some of the characters but I don't mean to be. It's an interesting scenario, because it raises the uncomfortable question of how much you'd be willing to compromise your own comfort to help out somebody on the periphery of your life.

freebooter fucked around with this message at 21:22 on May 29, 2015

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


Aces High posted:

I thought that was part of the "maturation" of Prez's character though? Like he is told time and again during season 4 to not get too attached to the kids because he will only know them for a year, maybe some of them he will know for more but hardly any. When Dukie approaches him Prez asks questions about what he wants the money for, he asks him if he needs a ride downtown so he can register, all the stuff that he should do, he even tells him that if he is using the money for drugs then he can't help him anymore, and when he sees confirmation of the path Dukie is going down he keeps his promise.

I always felt the reason Prez did that wasn't because he didn't want to compromise his own lifestyle it was because he was finally in a place where he was happy and everyone who worked around him told him to not get too close with any of his students because it would wear him out and within a few years he'd be just as hosed up as the kids he's supposed to teach. This show has always been about showing you that the institutions destroy well-intentioned people and Prez is no different, but then that is probably because he is still IN the system. Bunny could adopt Naymond because he was out of the system, he'd already had his pension ruined when he retired and most of his jobs in retirement he kept leaving because he wouldn't compromise his character and he had the freedom to exercise that. Kima, Carver, Prez, they are all still young (relatively speaking) and can't take unnecessary risks with their lifestyles otherwise they will end up just as bad as the people they are trying to help.

Out of the three I would say that it is Carver that does the least in his situation and that is a big reason why it is such a powerful scene when Randy chastises him asking "what are you going to do for me, Sgt. Carver?". Kima goes and sees Bubbles at the facility, she brings Walon and then leaves because she isn't really qualified to help Bubbles anymore because she admits that she doesn't know what to do anymore. Prez makes the case that Dukie should not go on to high school as he isn't emotionally ready for it and the administrator shuts him down saying that he can't help the kids, and if he does he will burn out and be useless within a few years.

Good points about Colvin being out of the system. I did think of how Prez was warned not to get too attached to the kids, but felt that that was more of an overarching warning about all the kids in general - whereas the first one you really get attached to, just one, you could take on just one. Is Dukie even on drugs at that point? I haven't got to the end of my season 5 rewatch but IIRC he's just getting the money for them so that the other druggie homeless guys will let him live with them. Which he wouldn't have to do if Prez let him sleep on his couch.

Also that scene with Randy, "what are you going to do for me," comes after his foster mother gets burned. Then in the next episode Carver is genuinely trying to do as much as he possibly can for him. I actually kinda think the whole thing about "it takes months to get registered as a foster parent" was handwaving on the part of the writers - they wanted to show a crushing situation in which a kid gets taken into the system and has no hope, but had also written Carver to be a nice enough guy that he's genuinely take Randy in, if he could. So they had to come up with a reason why he couldn't.

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


It's fascinating how rewatches focus your attention. I'm approaching the end of my first re-watch, in which I kept a close eye out for the first appearances of Slim Charles and Cheese - characters introduced early who later turn out to be very important. And now I know that on my third rewatch I'm going to be keeping an eye out for Fat Face Rick. ("You kill Joe?... Didn't think so.")

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


Watching s5 again and was looking forward to McNulty's FBI profile (which is probably one of the funniest moments of the series) but I'd totally forgotten the hilarious scene before that where the FBI serial killer hunter is trying to impress them, and one of the other agents namedrops that he was on the Unabomber case. And Kima says "didn't that case run like, 18 years?" And McNulty adds "yeah, and then his brother turned him in or something?" It's not even that funny when you write it down, but the actors' facial expressions are perfect.

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


OK, just finished season 5 again, and there's a massive thing which I hadn't noticed the first time around. Pearlman tells Levy that if they find Marlo on the street again, they will push the case through, even if it means exposing all the illegality and sending a couple of detectives to jail. Marlo then goes and starts that corner fight, and the implication is that he won't be able to give up the game.

Simultaneously, Sydnor goes to Phelan and complains about how the legal side of things is loving poo poo up. Watching that the first time, you just sort of smile at the reflection there, at how Sydnor has now become McNulty, etc. Watching it the second time, I actually paid attention to what he was saying: he's basically urging Phelan to look closely, because they have enough evidence to put Marlo away, and it's a political stitch-up.

Those two things together make me think that maybe it's not actually happy ever after for McNulty and Freamon. (Although I'm confused why Sydnor would be pushing it, since he's just as implicated in an illegal wiretap as they are.)

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


Yep, silly me, I just went back and looked at the old recaps in this thread and realised he's talking about a different case. I guess I missed the first sentence or two; the way the rest of the conversation plays out it sounds like he's talking about Marlo.

Still, Marlo going back to the street doesn't bode well. I always saw that scene originally as what it said about Marlo, and who he truly was, rather than thinking about the flow-on effects to other characters,

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


Something that has occurred to me - why do they make such a big deal of how impossible it is for Rawls to be commissioner because he's white, when the commissioner in the first season is white? Chalk it up to poetic license?

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


I think it's truer to life in that it accurately represents, for example, state corruption and black ghettoes. And minor stuff like people actually using a computer with a mouse.

The dialogue is not at all realistic because no dialogue is ever realistic in any fiction, because people in real life talk messily. Listen to a conversation between two people and attempt to transcribe it, and you'll notice that they talk over each other, trail off, change their train of thought halfway through, say things like "but, I mean" because their mind is catching up with their words, etc. Nobody reading a book or watching TV wants to watch that. It's not how fiction works. It's poetic license, it's fine.

More notably, though, I'd say the dialogue is unrealistic because it occasionally verges on Sorkinesque. No cop like McNulty is ever going to go on some of the long-winded rants he goes on. And I haven't spent a lot of time in the black ghettoes of America, but I doubt they speak in such grandiose terms as they so often do in The Wire. I have a theory that the street argot in The Wire, for white viewers, is sort of like the Old English used in Shakespeare: it gives a layer of exoticism to the text, and even if you don't quite understand what it means all the time, you can gather it from context and it gives it a sense of verisimilitude. Some of the quotes from characters like Avon or D'Angelo or Slim Charles sound, to a white ear, more profound for being delivered in a dialect language. Or possibly, the fact that it's delivered in a dialect language marks the fact that it sounds like dialogue, like a scripted profundity.

And again, none of that is a bad thing.

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


bucketybuck posted:

I always hold this scene up as the ultimate example of Stringer being nowhere near as smart as he thought he was.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tkLuncXw-P4

Basically he's smugly selling his mobile phone stocks right before the massive mobile phone boom of the 2000's, patting himself on the back and acting clever in front of the lackeys all the while making a horrible business decision!

I can't stand this scene. It's one of the rare moments (like the chess scene) where they really overreach and it becomes ham fisted. They're trying to point out how he's using his street smarts and observation to adjust his stock portfolio, which is a thing his lackeys would never even think to possess.

It's not a dumb business decision because it came before a boom (the writers could hardly have known that), it's a bad decision (and bad writing) because no competent businessman would ever buy or sell stocks based on the lone observation of what a single ghetto kid was doing with his phones. And no, I didn't get the impression that we were supposed to think he was making a bad decision.

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


Minor season 5 question: why does Gus appear to have both his own office but also a desk out in the bullpen?

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


exmachina posted:

Bubbles had a happy ending, he was allowed into his sisters house at the end.

Yeah, I've heard heaps of people say the Wire is depressing and every character ends up in a worse place than they started, which is straight up wrong. Bubbles, Daniels, Prez, Pearlman, Carver, Namond and Cutty are indisputably better off at the end of their arcs than when they started. McNulty, Freamon, Colvin, Carcetti and Poot are arguably better off. Kima, Bunk, Herc, Landsman and Slim Charles are more or less in the same place.

Adbot
ADBOT LOVES YOU

freebooter
Jul 7, 2009

AUSTRALIA
NEEDS
TURNBULL


Watched the episode where Kima gets shot again, and it's interesting to note McNulty's reaction. The rewatch in this thread was the first time I ever noticed how much he completely goes to pieces in the following episode with his insubordination and open drinking etc; I didn't really pay attention to it when I first watched it because there's too much other interesting stuff going on in that episode to pay attention to McNulty's drama (the excellent hospital scene aside - which is really more about Rawls). But it's worth noting that in the heat of the moment McNulty doesn't miss a beat: relays instructions to dispatch perfectly, immediately performs CPR on Kima. It's only later that he comes down with his PTSD, filtered through his own solipsist lens.

I dunno. Am I alone in finding him a sympathetic character all the way to the end of the series? Like, never 100% on board with him (especially in season 5) but I still think he's on okay person who means well.

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • Post
  • Reply