HBO’s The Wire is a critical and unflinching look at the social problems within the streets of Baltimore. The Wire has an enormous cast: corner boys, teachers, police, journalists, city staff and many others populate its violent and shocking scenes. We witness corruption and back-room deals, the abject failure of the public education system, the dissolution of traditional forms of print media, and a vicious drug trade that leaves hundreds of dead in its wake.
So, why would you want to watch something so ostensibly disheartening? Because this is a series that has been critically acclaimed and touted as nothing short of “literature”. If it is literature, it’s Dickensian, to be sure. Narratives are played out in long arcs, and the pay off for viewers typically comes at the end of a 13 hour season. The Wire’s writers are not afraid to eliminate major characters, either. In fact, several of my favourite characters eventually “get got” and wind up being shot by enemies or close associates.
Once you’re beyond the initial shock of the violence and foul language, you’re immersed in a world that’s totally unlike the one you likely inhabit now. The acting is superior and the stories are gripping.
Check out The Wire today! Use your library card to place a hold, and we’ll deliver the DVDs to a branch of your choice.