The Wire 201

29 June 2017

If you haven’t watched the wire, skip this post.

Obviously, I like the wire a whole lot. I love the wire a whole lot. If you don’t, you probably won’t get a lot out of this post. Best to leave. Everyone who loves (or even watches?) the Wire cannot shut up about it, and neither can I. Hence, one big post to get it out of my system once and for all.

I don’t particularly care for Stringer Bell. He doesn’t change during the entire saga. He’s smart, he’s an asshole, and he only seems to cares for Avon. He has his place, but I imagine he could have been written a lot better. The actor, Idris Elba, definitely has the range to pull off a much more sophisticated character. The educated gangster from the project is also a very lazy stereotype to use. Even his betrayal of Avon feels lazy.

Avon doesn’t seem to evolve either, but somehow his character works. And I think it’s because you gradually get to know his character. He starts out as a typical drug kingpin, in it for the money. But, after a while, he turns into a very sensual character. He doesn’t care about the money at all. He cares about the “game”: winning in a competition, defending his reputation. Adhering to a very strict code of conduct. Tis gradual reveal that keeps his character interesting. There is some danger that was actually a too simple, dangerous stereotype, but it has some real hart in it. Perhaps could use some more Marc Anthonyesque

Omar is a very specific case. My take on it is that he shouldn’t have been in it, even though he might be the most popular in it. He doesn’t evolve at all, even though he might doubt himself. If you try to imagine him in a revenge flick, it would be a bad one. Unlike all the other characters, he’s not part of an institution, and that sort of lobotomizes him. He’s 100% in control of his own actions. He’s affable, he’s fun, but ultimately uninteresting.

Brother Mozone is the logical extreme of this. He’s unbelievable, one-dimensional, and a very bad blow against the suspension of belief. Even in a Marvel superhero Netflick, he would be a terrible villain. I really would like to know the motivation for including him (just as Omar). Audience testing?

Bubbles is obviously the main character of the show, no debate. He goes through multiple arcs. I cried through most of them. Others, laughed. He is profoundly tragic, as even as tragedy happens to him, his reaction to it only deepens the hole. Apparently, he was so good at his role, that during a break in shooting a junky gave him some free heroin because he was looking so bad.

I think Bodie is a slightly different take on Bubbles. He’s empathic, he cares. He’s smart, protective. He didn’t even set the first step on the path of his life, but he follows his destiny with a fatalistic determination. This is very evident from his final scene, where he fully comes to terms with the destiny life has forced upon him. Without even a single complaint.

Season 2? We don’t talk about season 2.

So that’s about 10% of what I wanted to say about the wire. I guess more posts could be incoming…