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The Wire season 5?
i recently bought seasons 1-4 of the wire and damn its a good series. However, the last season hasnt even been released here yet, despite being available in the u.s. for over half a year.
Anyone know when we'll get a local release? or am i gonna have to get a new dvd player and buy the wire online?
I'm in the same boat ... you could wait for ch9 to air S5 here, but I'm thinking that $50Au for a multi-region player and $90Au for the disc-set might be the better option. While some US sites offer better upfront prices for DVDs, the exchange rate and shipping might make an Aussie site better value.
"Look at that bow-legged mothaf**ker. I made him that way."
Season 5(based on the Baltimore Sun newspaper) available in Australia in August. Looking forward to then, but going through serious Wire-withdrawal in the meantime.'Looks like they broke him' Daniels
I couldn't wait 'till August ... I lashed out on a $50 multi-region player and ordered s5 from the States ... the $120 price-tag was a bit steep, but well ... I'm addicted.
I think it's one of them contrapment things.
"he was my dawg, man"
Might have to do the same. Ive watched bits and pieces on youtube, but you really need to sit down and watch it in sequence to absorb everything. REgular tv just seems so mediocre now. The only other shows that came close for mine were Oz; the originator, The Sopranos and Carnivale. 'Shorty was Righhhht' D'Angelo
Too right; it highlights how truly shitful most of tv is. Watching scraps of s5 on youtube is probably what pushed me to order it from the US - I did it through a dvd store - probably $30 more expensive than ordering online, and i've still gotta wait another week, but ... I'm not takin no chances with this baby.
"... so I'm gonna sign my clowny-ass name on this check for you."
Where did D'Angelo say that? I'm watching season 1 again at the moment. Hes one of my favourite characters. Hes the only guy from the projects(apart from poor old Wallace) who shows a bit of integrity. "Yo String, Where Wallace At?" Does anyone know what hbo and/or David Simon are working on next?. I heard about one show called Generation Kill, about marines in Iraq. Not really my thing, I don't think, but anything else in the pipeline?
S1; early in ep 2; where Wallace and Poot are discussing chicken nuggets and D'Angelo gives them the home truths about how business really works ... I've started watching S1 again too after checking on that quote. Still got it wrong tho - he actually calls it a 'big-ass check' !
Yeah, what happened to Wallace in particular was tragic - especially considering he was the carer for all his brothers and sisters ... echoed later by the stories of Dukie, Michael and Randy in S4. Interesting how long the arcs of some of the characters are - I reckon the young addict mother that Omar holes up with in S1 looks like Michael and Bug's mother in S4, and the woman that Bunk picks up & later calls McNulty to drag home, is 'Miss Anna' - Randy's foster mother.
I read that Simon decried how much cult following 'the Wire' has now - considering he is reportedly 2 projects past it. He also says on a couple of the audio commentaries that he doesn't mind if people download it illegally, or shoplift the dvd's as he didn't get 'any points on the package'.
A few of the leading cast members were talking about a 'Wire Movie', but I doubt if that's gonna really happen.
For me, I've downloaded mp3s off limewire, but I don't trust bit-torrents. Nothing beats a hard copy.
I like that; 'Points on the Package' . I notice the dvds of 'The Wire' have gone up from $16 to $60 in the last two weeks. You would think that is where the most points lie, (ie DVD sales)I wonder why Simon doesnt receive royalties on the DVD, he probably signed them away to get more creative control. I don't know if a movie version would work. The slow burn is what makes it so good, you follow all the different characters through the minutiae of their daily lives.
I liked the scene where Lester is unravelling the bodies in the vacants and Bunk is too busy bemoaning the lack of pussy in the bar they are in to listen to him. Speaking of said bodies, i was reading an article about 'Snoop', that bad-ass bitch from Marlos crew, the nailgun specialist(i actually thought she was a male at first), they were asking her if she felt she would be type-cast. She was adamant she could play other roles. I must admit I can't picture her as a housewife or something!?
... god it makes me cringe to see those 'yo-s' on youtube etc that see Snoop as some sort of role model ! (almost as sickening as those that see Stringer as a heroic sex symbol)
Apparently Felicia was 'off the street' and had been in juvie; & credits the show with giving her a chance at a new life. As far as future work, most of the actors in the show seem destined to be typecast - not that there's anything new about that. The boys from S4 in their audio commentary said that Law & Order (or Laura as I prefer to call the franchise) is the sort of work that they've got since - apart from Tristan Wilds, I guess.
The other member of the duo Gbenga Akinabe (?) is an interesting character. Like 'the mother of the year' who plays Namond's mother, and Jamie Hector (Marlo) he's apparently a very nice person in real life !
I find one of the most interesting real-life characters is 'Little' Melvin Williams, who plays 'the preacher'. He was a drug lord for 20 years in Baltimore, before being busted by a squad Ed Burns worked 'the wire' in. I read a warts-and-all article by the Baltimore Sun (online) that mentioned him listing Ed Burns as a director of one of his companies since his release. Ed Burns laughed it off.
As for a Wire movie, I think Simon felt the same, and it was just wishful thinking on the part of a few actors. I think the whole thing is Homeric in its breadth and detail, and it should stand alone. Lance Reddick (a Baltimore native) thought the same.
I don't credit HBO as much good at marketing - season 1-5 box-sets are all $60 US and they only ship to US & Canada ... as for us - well, we're still a colony, aren't we; just with different masters.
'I'm not much of a one for sentiment' - Marlo
oh, I forgot about that scene with Lester and Bunk while McNutty's on the wagon (I like Bubbles pronunciation best). Lester can be a boring fart (and his intellectual vanity in S5 is apparently his undoing), but he doesn't seem to have any trouble charming the ladies when he wants to. I've just re-watched S1, and there's two scenes where I laughed out loud at 'Cool Lester Smooth' (Kima's nickname for him) as he seduced Shardene ... first, when he answers Daniels with : "...to protect and serve, Lieutenant", and then when he stops Sydnor from getting her coffee with
"I'll get it. A little cream, right?"
Having been on the wagon myself for years, I find Bunk and McNulty's bingeing pretty sad and boring, but they did have some good exchanges. "It's pussii .... Jimmy ... Jimm-aayyy"
I like their plastered scene in S1 when Jimmy thanks Bunk for taking his virginity gently. Bunk answers : "had to ... that shit's special"
You definitely know your stuff. I know what you mean about glorifying Snoop, Stringer etc. Stringer is a smooth operator and brilliantly portrayed by the pommy guy, I forget his name, but definitely pure evil, he ordered the killing of our friend Wallace and was banging D'Angelos missus while he was in jail. Hes also a crack and heroin dealer, I don't see how any rational person could see him as anything but a piece of shit, then again he is just a product of/trying to escape from his environment. I was looking at some posts on the wire website, they were saying things like 'Wallace deserved it for being a snitch' 'Marlo is my hero I want to consumate my love for him' etc etc. A bit sad really. Probably all white boys who still live at home with mum pretending to be gangsters. I never saw Lester as a boring fart, just fiercely committed to the job,and the only one with the balls to go after politicians(and definitely a smooth mover with the ladies), although I haven't seen season 5 yet. What a rich array of characters, all brilliantly portrayed by the various actors, I just hope more shows like the wire get made, that it wasn't just an abberation, and that all the actors continue to get work.'****ing Chain Of Command' McNulty
I agree that probably many of those idiots that plug into that bs are white suburbanites; though it's also true how all criminal conspiracies, and most beaurocracies (police, military, political and religious) share a code of silence, and a lot of average joes and yos buy into that crap as a badge of honour.
Shows also how good the actors are; that Jamie Hector for example, creates one of the most 'evil' (or amoral) characters in tv history - a creature so cold-blooded, he's reptilian - yet, the man in real life mentors teenagers, and is a thoroughly decent human being. On that subject, the English actor who plays Stringer is called Idris Elba, and his natural accent is quite posh (more so even than Dominic West).
Simon has talked about the irony of the show only being made because it is out of the 'LA-New York axis' - and that also meant it got almost zero industry recognition (no Emmys, blah blah blah...) -plus it also confronts uncomfortable home truths about US society; particularly 'the war on drugs'. As one of my favourite street characters in 'the Wire'; Slim Charles put it - "... if it's a lie, then we fight on that lie". So I think shows like it will remain a rarity. Mind you, Australia's maybe even more backward in some ways - as illustrated by the cinema chains' response to 'the Combination' recently.
I watched 'Crash' the other night on tv, which shared some similar themes to 'the Wire'. It was good, though not great. I thought one of the best performances was by 'Ludacris', who played a crook who carjacked rich white folks (& ironically for a rapper)lectured his partner in crime for playing hip-hop; as reinforcing the stereotypes that white society held of black men.
"B.N.B.G - Big Negro, Big Gun" Det. Holley to Krajcek after Stringer had his liver ventilated.
Absolutely, you don't have to be like the character you are playing to play them, therein lies the skill of the actor, although Snoop might be the exception, I think she is basically playing herself. Apparently in Season 3 she was working on The Wire, then going back to selling drugs once she had done her lines, I think In Season 4, as a result of her having a more major role, she claims to have stopped doing this, and also cleaned up found Jesus etc, whether this is the case and she has left the mean streets of Bmore behind remains to be seen. I don't want to sound cynical, but people are very much the product of their environment. 'If he wants back on the money, he back on the money, but my man might be going back to Edmondson(high school) like we talked about, right?' D'Angelo. Wallace:[Puzzled Look]. That Gbengi Akinabe you metioned earlier is an interesting character. I believe he led a really tough life growing up, but managed to pull himself up by the bootstraps, and is now a likable, well educated guy, but when he morphs into Chris, its like he is channeling pure evil. Jamie Hector is an alumni of the ice cold, monosyllabic drug lord school. He disposes of people with the disdain of someone swatting a bothersome fly. The code of silence definitely extends beyond the streets, as far even as the police, where it is just as prevalent. The police are similar to a gang in many ways, the 'looking after your own' mentality prevails. Whistleblowers in any environment are reviled, even though they are often the only ones to have the courage to speak the truth, e.g. d'Angelo on the streets, McNulty/Freamon in the police department. Maybe we should be thankful for all the idiots who watched the wire without really understanding it, at least they were able to finish five seasons without getting cancelled, partly because of said idiots subscriptions to hbo.
Amazing how these Yanks find god as quickly as they seem to lose him. Even Susan Atkins and 'Tex' Watson from Manson's 'Family' converted in jail (Watson's even an 'ordained preacher'!).
I didn't know that Pearson was still 'in the street' during S3 - I guess it just adds to the revulsion I feel for her character. While Simon has said no-one in the series is entirely bad or good, she's one of the few characters that to me have no redeeming qualities whatsoever. While Chris is certainly a sociopath; and so emotionally detached that he assures his victims "I got you covered"; "don't worry, I'll make it quick" - he beats Bug's father to a pulp when he sees he and Michael share a history of child abuse. Even Wee Bey redeems himself somewhat through his son - which echoes what you said about the environment people live in - Namond only escapes by leaving the streets and his family.
Eldridge Cleaver wrote about the slave and segregationist origins of American black mens' preoccupation with 'cool' - he was a convicted pimp and dealer and later 'black liberationist'.
Snoop would probably say 'go back to New York, you weak-ass Yankee bitch'.
I like how Carver's character so succinctly summed up how white kids have co-opted the lingo of that plastic gangster bullshit; " the thieving bastards steal everything, don't they ?"
The ultimate irony for the American Empire is that it's downfall looks likely to come from within. With Mexico seemingly hijacked by drug cartels swollen by the profits of Yanqui drug-use, they'll soon face a border too big to police, and a lie to big to hide. As Daniels said to Burrell - "You'd rather live in shit than let the world see you work a shovel."
As uncool as it sounds, I think the 'shit' in modern society is individual angst and alienation.
One of the characters I loathe most in the show is the school administrator with the specs in S4 who says to Colvin "did they embarrass us ?". The epitome of shit-shifting and fiddling while Rome burns.
"I need to go somewhere I can breathe, like normal folks." D'Angelo
Americans have strange views on religion and guns, among other things. I find it amazing how much fundamentalist Islam is reviled in the heartland of America, when their version of Christianity is just as fundamentalist and extreme, including the version George W. Bush subscribes to. He prays to God before making any major decisions, i.e. invading Iraq, and killing thousands of innocent people. 'Oh, God told me to do it.' After the last massacre at that college in America, a pro-gun group turned up on campus advocating allowing more people to carry concealed weapons, so that one of these people could 'take out' the lone gunman. Their solution to a massacre involving the use of guns is to issue more guns. The scary part was they were actually allowed to go there and taken seriously.
I'm bemused by the use of the word pimp in everyday language. I've heard a five year old use it, encouraged by his parents. As if prostituting women for money is a commendable profession. I guess for a black man in (particularly 1960's) America just escaping from poverty was an achievement.
The classic plastic gangsta in the wire was Frog, I think the same one you were talking about, a lily-white homie, seemingly oblivious to the fact, spouting 'yos' checkits' and 'my nigga's like there's no tomorrow
America's war on drugs has been an abject failure since before prohibition, a bit like the war on terror has been since its inception. Yet the administration blindly perseveres with it because any hint of compromise or acknowledging reality is too politically unsavoury. The bigots would jump up and down and say 'youre encouraging our children to take drugs!' if any form of legalisation or harm minimisation is trialed. Former Baltimore Mayor Kirk Schmoke, who appears briefly in season 3 advising Mayor Royce on the health benefits of Hamsterdam found this out to his political peril. He called for debate on alternatives to the war on drugs in 1988, including legalisation. He was a real pioneer in this regard, I doubt many American politicians would attempt such a manoeuvre, they would be too worried about the fallout.
By the way, I found out what David Simon's next project is(after Generation Kill), its a series about musicians in a district of New Orleans post Katrina, called Treme. But you probably knew that already.'Adjourn your asses' Stringer
Last edited by trudat; 14-04-2009 at 01:46 AM.
you said it ... though Obama easily won the last election, he seemed to get in the most trouble for criticizing Middle America's love affair with guns, and for his association with Reverend Wright; who, while pretty strident, was still basically talking about reality. There is so much in 'the Wire' about the disconnection between the real world and how the powers that be spin and 'juke the stats' to sell their ****ed-up version of 'The American Dream'.
I like how the show often 'flips' real-life characters such as Kurt Schmoke who you mentioned; and that he got to return the nom de guerre that the press gave him when he told Mayor Royce that people will call him "The Most Dangerous Man in America" for contemplating Colvin's tactics.
I didn't know about Simon's latest project - sorry if I appear like a know-all. It sounds interesting.
I liked how you used that quote from Stringer's 'business meetings'. Interesting how he only followed etiquette when it suited him; such as later after a co-op meeting when he strikes the legal pad out of Shamrock's hand with "niggah, are you takin' mutha****in notes on a criminal conspiracy?"
Although English is a ever-evolving organism, I do agree with you about words like 'pimp' and 'punk' that even kids use unblinkingly (though Eldridge Cleaver was literally a pimp, by his own admission!)
I did like how Greggs called McNulty her bitch with all his 'guilty-ass cryin' an' shit'. She's a great character. You may well know (I only got it off wikipedia) that Sonja Sohn is married to an Australian didgeridoo player of aboriginal descent, and that they set up home in Baltimore. Probably a lot cheaper than New York where they met.
"Not much you can say, not to real police, is there Bunny?" Rawls
I'm a big fan of Greggs/Sonja Sohn too. I didn't know she was married to an Aussie didgeridoo player! Cool. I wonder what their kids would look like. A Korean/African/Aboriginal combination. She is a very striking looking woman, beautiful, in a unique way. Another interetisng fact about another unique wire character, Bubbles. I was reading in a New Yorker article that during filming a man walked up to Andre Royo(who was in character as Bubbles),and pressed a packet of heroin into his hand, saying "You need a fix more I do" Royo refers to the moment as his 'Street Oscar'.
I've always found Stringer eminently watchable, despite his skewed moral code. He definitely pick and chooses when he wants to be a 'respectable'business man and when he wants to play it street, depending on what best suits his purposes. Hes a bit like Marlo in that regard, charismatic, and the sort of person you would listen to their every word, yet "The boys the spawn of the devil, Kima" Vernon Holley(one of your colleagues in Homicide)
Just got the message from Ezdvd - my 're-up' is ready; so as off tomorrow I'll be off the air for awhile.
As for the lovely Sonja Sohn; I was surprised to learn that she is in her late 40's and has a teenage daughter with the surname of Wang; who may be adopted, or just from her previous marriage; as she don't 'take after her momma' (as Kima described Bunk's kids in S1). I have a Chinese friend in her late 50's that looks ten years younger too.
Talking about striking individuals; I've often thought that Lance Reddick bears a familial resemblance to Woody Strode; but he doesn't mention it on his website, nor is it suggested anywhere else; so it's probably just coincidence.
"he's off the hook" Various
Enjoy the 're-up'. Maybe you better put some extra muscle on the stash houses. Let me know what you think(of S 5). I'm going to try and get hold of it soon also. I would be interested to hear your thoughts. Its certainly got a hell of a legacy to live up to. I think I will be watching it quite slowly, knowing that there is no possibility of further re-up. 'Those arent touts you're hearing brother, those are birds chirping' Colvin