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Review Group Week 241 - NEMESIS #3

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Re: Review Group Week 241 - NEMESIS #3

Postby 3MJ » Wed Sep 29, 2010 5:35 am

Hmmm I love everyone involved, but I couldn't think of a premise I'd like to follow less...

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Re: Review Group Week 241 - NEMESIS #3

Postby Punchy » Wed Sep 29, 2010 5:36 am

Jubilee wrote:Hmmm I love everyone involved, but I couldn't think of a premise I'd like to follow less...


Not a fan of Jazz?

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Re: Review Group Week 241 - NEMESIS #3

Postby ****** » Wed Sep 29, 2010 8:05 am

Punchy wrote:
Creighton was a douche, don't be depressed for him!


I liked his character a lot. Everything with his wife in that last episode was heart wrenching.

I don't know why/how they're doing another season. Everything was wrapped up so perfectly.

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Re: Review Group Week 241 - NEMESIS #3

Postby ****** » Wed Sep 29, 2010 8:08 am

Punchy wrote:
Not a fan of Jazz?


I never go out of my way to listen to Jazz, but in the context of the show the music in Treme is great.

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Re: Review Group Week 241 - NEMESIS #3

Postby thefourthman » Thu Sep 30, 2010 9:24 pm

Nemesis #3

I have no aspirations that this is a great comic. It’s not.

It is entertaining as hell though. Even when it does something completely silly like have Blake pronounce that he knew who Nemesis was the whole time (and keep the reader in the dark till next issue – well played on the serialization Millar, well played).

There is a lot of talk about Millar writing story boards for movies and whatever. Hog wash. The man writes big popcorn action filled comics. Sometimes - they are keen satire (see Kick-Ass), sometimes - they are brilliant reflections on an icon (Red Son), sometimes – they are mindless fun. That’s what this one is. What if Batman weren’t just a dick? What if he were a bad guy? What if he could kill anyone given enough time?

Blake couldn’t have thought it would be that easy. (And as to aspirations that background checks on security guards would solve the problem presented here, did you miss the part where one of his crew is a master identity thief? They did do a background check and it cleared. DUM DUM DUM… see that is the genius of Millar, he knows your objection even before you do.) So now Nemesis is set free and he’s brought two thousand of his best inmate buddies to create further chaos for Blake. Awesome.

Of course, Nemesis is really after the kids. And in this comes the SHOCK factor. The difference between Millar in shock mode and Ennis, is that Millar knows how to straddle the line. The kids aren’t murdered, the kids don’t commit incest – but Millar uses all that taboo to create a false shock. Nothing is really as shocking as it appears, he has merely twisted standard soap opera mechanics a little. I love him for it.

As to character work - Blake is the only guy getting any in this series and it’s deft and subtle. Blake has been taken from super cop to prick with a family he can barely maintain – he’s a politician, imagine that. He has actually almost become the bad guy and you almost start to route for Nemesis in this issue – that’s a neat trick, if you ask me.

McNiven is not turning in the trademark clean work that he is known for. If you ask me, that is a good thing, this is a dirty book, clean lines would be out of place. Come on the cars racing from the prison, awesome! Splatter of blood everywhere, he’s having fun.

Millar is a master manipulator. It’s what he does best. He appears to have manipulated a bunch of people into a frothy mess of complaint. He’s written a comic book equivalent of The Expendables to me. It’s not high art. It’s not the acme of its genre. What it is is a big bold action romp befitting of Michael Bay and while the rest of you haters cry foul, I just like to see some blood splatter every once in a while.

Story 3
Art 4
Overall 7

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Re: Review Group Week 241 - NEMESIS #3

Postby thefourthman » Thu Sep 30, 2010 9:25 pm

What the fuck is Treme?

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Re: Review Group Week 241 - NEMESIS #3

Postby thefourthman » Thu Sep 30, 2010 9:25 pm

Hey, everybody, there is no way I am fucking navigating this thread for reviews, I will respond in kind after Amlah does his thing!

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Re: Review Group Week 241 - NEMESIS #3

Postby Eli Katz » Thu Sep 30, 2010 10:01 pm

thefourthman wrote:What the fuck is Treme?

David Simon's new series.

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Re: Review Group Week 241 - NEMESIS #3

Postby thefourthman » Thu Sep 30, 2010 10:05 pm

Eli Katz wrote:David Simon's new series.

That told me nothing, know I feel extra dumb. :-(

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Re: Review Group Week 241 - NEMESIS #3

Postby Eli Katz » Thu Sep 30, 2010 10:13 pm

thefourthman wrote:That told me nothing, know I feel extra dumb. :-(

The creator of The Wire, the best TV show ever made, is David Simon. His new show is called Treme.

If you have not seen The Wire, prepare to have your mind fucking blown.

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Re: Review Group Week 241 - NEMESIS #3

Postby thefourthman » Thu Sep 30, 2010 10:21 pm

I have seen neither. What the hell channel does this Treme come on?

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Re: Review Group Week 241 - NEMESIS #3

Postby Eli Katz » Thu Sep 30, 2010 10:23 pm

thefourthman wrote:I have seen neither. What the hell channel does this Treme come on?

HBO

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Re: Review Group Week 241 - NEMESIS #3

Postby Eli Katz » Thu Sep 30, 2010 10:24 pm

In the Life of ‘The Wire’

October 14, 2010
by Lorrie Moore
The New York Review of Books

The Wire
a television series created by David Simon
HBO, 23 DVDs, $249.99

The Wire: Urban Decay and American Television
edited by Tiffany Potter and C.W. Marshall
Continuum, 254 pp., $75.00; $24.95 (paper)

The Wire: Truth Be Told
by Rafael Alvarez, with an introduction by David Simon
Grove, 581 pp., $19.95 (paper)

Set in post–September 11 Baltimore, the HBO series The Wire—whose
sixty episodes were originally broadcast between June 2002 and March
2008 and are now available on DVD—has many things on its rich and
roaming mind, but one of those things is Baltimore itself, home of
Edgar Allan Poe, H.L. Mencken, Babe Ruth, and Billie Holiday.
Baltimore is not just a stand-in for Western civilization or
globalized urban rot or the American inner city now given the cold
federal shoulder in the folly-filled war on terror, though it is
certainly all these things. Baltimore is also just plain itself, with
a very specific cast of characters, dead and alive. Eminences are
pointedly referenced in the course of the series: the camera passes
over a sign to Babe Ruth’s birthplace, tightens on a Mencken quote
sculpted into the office wall of The Baltimore Sun; “Poe” is not just
street pronunciation for “poor” (to the delight of one of The Wire‘s
screenwriters) but implicitly printed onto one horror-story element of
the script; a phrase of Lady Day wafts in as ambient recorded music in
a narrative that is scoreless except when the credits are rolling or
in the occasional end-of-season montage.

But there are less famous Baltimoreans throughout (local filmmaker
John Waters is given an ambiguous shout-out in the final season, and
he shouts ambiguously back in the DVD’s bonus features) and all are
part of the texture and mythology that The Wire‘s producers are
putting on display both with anger and with love. The dartboard in a
union boss’s office in the series’s second season features a photo of
the former owner of the Baltimore Colts, who moved the team to
Indianapolis in 1984; scenes shot in Baltimore churches use the actual
congregations; real-life hot dog joints (Pollock Johnny’s!) now reside
in The Wire‘s televised amber; actual purple-walled soup kitchens and
cemeteries and neighborhood corners have acquired mythic status.


More than one former reporter from The Baltimore Sun has written for
the show. Baltimore heroin kingpins have cameo appearances, and one,
Melvin Williams, who was arrested by producer Ed Burns when Burns was
“a po-lice” (as it’s said in Baltimore), is given the role of the
Deacon, which he performs arrestingly with lines such as “A good
churchman is always up in everybody’s shit. That’s how we do.” The
list goes on. Baltimoreans name their pets after the show’s
characters. Some former members of the cast still roam the streets,
now as celebrities. Young people use characters’ pictures from the
show for their own profile photos on Facebook. British tourists come
to Baltimore for Wire bus tours. This array of consuming
response—domesticating ownership, emotional identification, and
devoted pilgrimage—is only part of the very many personal reactions to
the show.

The use of Baltimore as a millennial tapestry, in fact, might be seen
as a quiet rebuke to its own great living novelists, Anne Tyler and
John Barth, both of whose exquisitely styled prose could be accused of
having turned its back on the deep inner workings of the city that
executive producer David Simon, a former Baltimore reporter, and
producer Ed Burns, a former Baltimore schoolteacher and cop, have
excavated with such daring and success. (“Where in
Leave-It-to-Beaver-Land are you taking me?” asks The Wire‘s homeless
police informant Bubbles, when driven out to a leafy, upscale
neighborhood; the words are novelist and screenwriter Richard Price’s
and never mind that this aging cultural reference is unlikely to have
actually spilled forth from this character; the remark does nicely).

So confident are Simon and Burns in their enterprise that they have
with much justification called the program “not television” but a
“novel.” Certainly the series’s creators know what novelists know:
that it takes time to transform a social type into a human being,
demography into dramaturgy, whether time comes in the form of pages or
hours. With time as a medium rather than a constraint one can show a
profound and unexpected aspect of a character, and discover what that
character might decide to do because of it. With time one can show the
surprising interconnections within a chaotic, patchworked metropolis.

It is sometimes difficult to sing the praises of this premier example
of a new art form, not just because enthusiastic viewers and cultural
studies graduate students have gotten there first—”Heroism,
Institutions, and the Police Procedural” or “Stringer Bell’s Lament:
Violence and Legitimacy in Contemporary Capitalism” (chapters in The
Wire: Urban Decay and American Television)—but also because David
Simon himself, not trusting an audience, and not waiting for
posterity, in his own often stirring remarks about the show in print
interviews, in public appearances, and in audio commentary on the DVD
version, has not just explicated the text to near muteness but jacked
the critical rhetoric up very high. He is the show’s most garrulous
promoter. In comment after comment, even the word “novel” is not
always enough and Simon and his colleagues have compared his
five-season series to a Greek tragedy (Aeschylus, Sophocles, Euripedes
are all named), Homer’s Iliad, a Shakespearean drama, a serialized
narrative by Dickens, an historical document that will be read in
fifty years, a book by Tolstoy, and Melville’s Moby-Dick. This leaves
only journalist Joe Klein to raise the ante further: “The Wire never
won an Emmy?” Klein is shown exclaiming in the DVD features on the
final episode. “The Wire should win the Nobel Prize for literature!”

“It could have—if we’d done everything wrong—been a cop show,” Simon
has said. And in its admirable and unblinking look at a cursed
people—America’s largely black and brown urban underclass—it is
arguably biblical, Dantesque, and (Masterpiece Theatre be damned) more
downstairs than upstairs. Despite Simon’s assertions, however, the
series has some origins in legal and police shows such as L.A. Law and
Hill Street Blues—not to mention Burns and Simon’s own Emmy-winning
The Corner (2000), a rather shapeless precursor (a faux documentary
about poverty and drugs in the mostly black neighborhood of West
Baltimore, filmed with a handheld camera and a blues soundtrack), as
well as Homicide, based on Simon’s own book about the Baltimore Police
Department, which ran from 1993 to 1999. The Wire is the polished
mature version of efforts begun before; it is not entirely sui generis
but it is beautifully evolved. Nor is the force of the conventional
medium entirely absent. Although there are no breaks for commercials,
one feels the pressure and shape of an hour imposing itself on each
episode, even if the plot of each remains unresolved and the pacing
broodingly languorous despite sharp-edged cutting.

The Sopranos helped prepare the way for this format as well, though
the nature and mood of The Sopranos is essentially comedic, a family
drama laced with amusing and operatic artifice, as is the current AMC
series Mad Men. Recognizable authenticity, new and trenchant social
commentary, and tragic class warfare have not really been high on the
agenda of any other cable series, and it is a source of some
bitterness for The Wire‘s creators that it never had the wide audience
that these other series have had.

Simon uses an analogy of white flight to explain it: white people will
tolerate up to 8 percent of the neighborhood being black before they
begin to leave, turning the neighborhood into a black one. The Wire‘s
cast is over 60 percent black and the white viewer flight was almost
immediate. A teenaged actor who plays one of the middle-schoolers of
the show’s fourth season and who was not privy at the time to Simon’s
analysis remarks of the show’s lost viewers, “The messed-up thing is
they can’t handle the truth.”

The Wire, of course, is a deliberately far cry from Adam-12 and
Dragnet, the cop shows of Simon’s childhood. Its newness as a
narrative art form is underscored most convincingly by its power on
DVD, where it can be watched all at once, over sixty hours: this
particular manner of viewing makes the literary accolades and the
comparisons to a novel more justified and true. On the other hand, so
engrossing, heart-tugging, and uncertain are the various story arcs
that watching in this manner one becomes filled with a kind of
mesmerized dread. In this new motion picture format the standard,
consoling boundaries and storytelling rhythms are dispensed
with—mostly. One is allowed a wider, deeper portrait, a panorama, of
entrepreneurial crime, government corruption, a harassed underclass,
and faulty institutions of every sort—sprawling portraiture that aims
at inclusivity.

Even though its city hall has been mum, Baltimore’s Police Department
has given The Wire its endorsement, as have the kids of East and West
Baltimore. Moreover, the show’s themes can seem reiterated everywhere
in the world, from out-of-work shrimpers and autoworkers, to the meth
cookers of the Ozarks, to the poppy growers of war-torn Afghanistan
(oddly, Hamid Karzai has two brothers who live in the Baltimore area).
It is sometimes hard to think about the world’s troubles without
thinking: “This is just like The Wire.”

In exposing the nerves, fallout, and sealed fates caused by a
remorseless breed of capitalism and its writing-off of whole swathes
of the populace, and by insisting on its universality as a subject,
The Wire has much in common with great political drama everywhere; the
plays of George Bernard Shaw (in which rich and poor are both given
language) come to mind. The newly elected mayor of Reykjavik will not
allow anyone in his political party unless they have watched all five
seasons. The mayor of Newark is also a fan. So is Barack Obama, whose
favorite character is the gay, drug dealer–robbing gunslinger Omar
Little—a new hero in queer studies, one of the few characters in the
show who honors “a code,” and the only one whose ongoing motivation is
love for another person.

In the intricate network of The Wire the story lines derive from the
worlds of street-corner drug dealers and big-time traffickers, the
police of homicide and drug enforcement and “special crimes,” the
in-office brass, the dockworkers who knowingly and unknowingly unload
the drug shipments, the union leaders, the foreign suppliers, the
public schools, the newspaper, the mayor’s office, the city council,
the lawyers and judges of the criminal justice system, the prisons,
the soup kitchens, the rehab facilities, and the group homes with
their revolving doors. This is the metaphorical “wire” that connects
all the various institutions and habitats of the city. It also refers
to the high-wire act of brave policing and honest work—difficult and
rare.

More literally, the title signifies the wiretap that narcotics
detectives are constantly trying to get judicial consent for and then
set up before the dealers—drug lords, “hoppers” (the lowest-level drug
dealers), lieutenants, and other “soldiers”—get wind of it and switch
to a different system. At one point, with their cell phone codes
cracked, and with the detectives successfully up on the wire, the
players in “the game,” as the drug business is called, are either not
using phones at all or else tossing them away after every use. The
wire not only demonstrates the ingenuity of dealers and detectives as
they elude each other, but surveillance itself becomes the show’s
metaphor for what drama does in listening in on the world. It also
embraces the Wildean sense of art’s cleverness as well as its
uselessness. Utility versus futility is everywhere at the center of
David Simon’s own view of the show. The great waste of human spirit
and endeavor is dramatized, ironically, with great human spirit and
endeavor.

Season One introduces us to the Barksdale drug operation headed up by
Avon Barksdale, his sister Brianna, and his right-hand man, the
wannabe businessman Stringer Bell. The syndicate is operated out of a
nightclub and then a funeral parlor, and when Avon is incarcerated,
Bell attempts to hold meetings using Robert’s Rules of Order. (The
result is a kind of skit.) The business has as its primary territory
housing project towers that are subsequently exploded in Season Two,
an image deliberately designed to recall September 11. (Baltimore
early on got rid of its old housing projects; other American cities
followed.) This detonation is mostly viewed through the eyes of kids
who are watching everything they’ve known reduced to rubble—and not
unceremoniously.

Stringer Bell, played by the African-British actor Idris Elba, is the
enigmatic Gatsby figure, yearning for legitimacy, sporting wire-rimmed
glasses, and attending economics classes at the local community
college. He aims to become a legitimate businessman, a fate that is
finally handed over to Marlo Stanfield at series end, though Marlo
(played with eerie but prideful injuriousness by Jamie Hector) doesn’t
want it. Brianna Barksdale is one of several mother characters who
give the lie to lip service paid to family values in a drug war–torn
family by forcing their reluctant kids onto the streets to sell dope.
In a white male–written show with few women, and, yes, a stripper or
two with the requisite heart of gold, these “Dragon Ladies,” as one of
the kids calls them, are part of a Wire subset of women marred if not
mutilated by ambition.

Still, these portrayals seem complex: emotionally ugly and specific
enough to be convincing. They are eyepopping to watch, especially
Michael Hyatt as Brianna, who demands of her son that he do hard
prison time for the organization, and Sandi McCree as De’Londa, who
exclaims loudly that her son should be put in “baby booking” where he
might learn to be a man. These women, not drug-addled themselves, eat
up the screen, even when they are quiet and must merely flash a look.
Women who pimp their children are breathtaking in their
monstrousness—absent from The Wire are any wise, reassuring
matriarchs—and these bleak characters succeed in taking the viewer’s
breath away. Simon is not interested in viewer comfort; the
conventions of prescriptive political fiction do not capture his
imagination very deeply; he is far more interested in the unholy
bargains everyone makes in the maelstrom of societal injustices. For a
feminist heroine the show has only the quite imperfect Detective Kima
Greggs, and only because in her strength, humor, passion for work, and
apparently secure hold on her biracial identity and lesbianism, she is
slightly better than almost anyone else.

Each season explores an institution that has gone hollow with
gamesmanship. Most of Season Two focuses on Baltimore’s dockworkers,
particularly Frank Sobotka (played with a smolder and a fat suit by
baby-faced Chris Bauer), a union head who stares out at Baltimore’s
abandoned mills and grain piers and notes that they are now condos.
His torment and lament—that this country once made things—is the
nation’s own. His particular fate is a tragic one, Shakespearean in
its emotional mix of small onstage relatives and large offstage
forces, and his relationship with his nephew is one of several
uncle–nephew relationships in The Wire (Avon and D’Angelo; Proposition
Joe and Cheese) that wordlessly announce the gaping holes left in
families hit by law enforcement and hard economic times. Season Three
introduces the politicians and Season Four the school system and the
children it fails. Season Five concentrates on the diminished and
compromised role of journalists.

The most intriguing phrase Simon has used regarding The Wire is to say
that it is about “the death of work.” By this he means not just the
loss of jobs, though there certainly is that, but the loss of
integrity within our systems of work, the “juking of stats,” the
speaking of truth to power having been replaced with speaking what is
most self-serving and pleasing to the higher-ups. In a poker game with
the mayor, one folds on a flush to allow the mayor to win. (As opposed
to the freelance stickup man Omar, who, beholden to no one, shows up
at at a kingpin’s poker night with two pistols and the Dennis Lehane
line “I believe these four 5s beat your full house.”) Police
departments manipulate their stats for the politicians; schools do the
same; newspapers fake stories with their eye on prizes and
stockholders. Moreover, in the world of The Wire almost everyone who
tries to buck the system and do right is punished, often severely and
grotesquely and heartbreakingly. Accommodation is survival at the most
basic level, although it is also lethal to the soul.

Ideas are no good without stories. Stories are no good without
characters. In drama, characters are no good without actors. If the
integrity of The Wire derives from the integrity of its creators, its
power lies, in an old-fashioned way, in the brilliant acting of a
varied and charismatic cast. Not to diminish the quality of the
writing or the careful cinematography, but little of Simon’s agenda
would convince without the series’s acting: this is how the humanity
of various people is given its indelible life. The Wire‘s producers
claim it contains the most diverse cast ever on television, and it is
hard to doubt it.

What depth of acting talent we have in our contemporary world, even if
so much of it is not in Hollywood. Some of The Wire‘s standout
performances are from British or Irish actors who mimic American
accents so impressively that their real voices in the commentaries are
startling. Of course the Baltimore gloss is less convincing and
sometimes even absent, but the rest of America is fooled: Dominic
West, as the “true police” Jimmy McNulty, is from Britain; Idris Elba
as Stringer Bell, also British, is of Ghanaian and Sierra Leonean
parentage; Aiden Gillen, who plays Tommy Carcetti, the calculating
politician who on occasion gets passionately if momentarily swept up
in his own rhetoric, is from Ireland.

Some of the actors in The Wire are amateurs and some are pros educated
at Juilliard and Yale. Gbenga Akinnagbe and Felicia Pearson, who play
Chris and Snoop of the Marlo Stanfield gang, are a prime example.
Akinnagbe is a professional actor and Bucknell graduate, and Pearson
is a Baltimore rapper and quite literally an ex-con, having done time
at the Maryland Women’s Correctional facility for a homicide committed
when she was fourteen. She had never acted on screen before but was
brought to the set by Michael Williams (Omar), himself a former
dancer, then placed prominently and without a name change in Seasons
Four and Five: her real-life nickname is Snoop.

Together Snoop and Chris form a duo that according to Stephen King are
two of the scariest assassins ever put on the screen. Snoop bears a
pretty mime’s pale impassivity; Chris’s starburst hair gives him a
clown’s silhouette though his face remains stonily dour. Together,
dour clown and mime, they are assassins in an escapee circus act,
caught in a zombie script that would terrify not just Baltimore’s
finest but Baltimore’s finest horror writer. They open Season Four
using a nail gun—a nod, perhaps, to Cormac McCarthy’s cattle bolt—to
kill young black men (number one males, in police terminology) who
have in some way disrespected their boss, Marlo. Snoop and Chris fill
up abandoned row houses with bodies, creating a charnel house straight
out of Poe.

No one is really looking for these victims—oh, for a missing blond
cheerleader, think the cops, whose budgets have been slashed (reduced
wages, no witness protection funds, flat tires on their cars, DNA
samples going bad in broken refrigerators)—and by the time the bodies
are found there are well over a dozen. “My number in the office pool
is twenty-three,” says Detective Bunk, cigar in mouth, so convincingly
played by Wendell Pierce.

In the Barksdale gang, the hopper, the lieutenant, and the deputy
kingpin who are killed for going their own way (Wallace, D’Angelo,
Stringer Bell) are portrayed by actors possessed of especially
beautiful and sensitive faces. Their deaths play viscerally and haunt
the show; Seasons One and Three are largely built around them. (Almost
everyone a viewer might quixotically root for is eventually killed;
even if the killing is not lingered over, the show pulls no punches.)
Avon Barksdale initially seems green and weak next to the handsome and
charismatic Stringer, but the several layers of Avon’s manipulations
are put forth with fluid skill by Wood Harris, and when we see him
again in Season Five his performance has solidified into a nuanced
affability made sinister by power. One of the series’s most telling
scenes is in Season Three, when Harris and Elba stand on a terrace
overlooking the city, anxiously disguising their characters’ mutual
betrayals with sentimental memories of a shared boyhood. Here Avon’s
extra layer of artifice, his hardened street-soldier smarts, triumph
over the man who would like drugs to be a business rather than a war.

There is not a feeble performance in the entire show. While David
Simon is achieving remarkable verisimilitude, supplying the scripts
with a glossary, and making sure the writing is both on message and
real (“bitch” is used mostly to describe men; only black actors use
the N-word and often affectionately), the actors sometimes improvise
imaginatively (often with the prop and costume people), reaching for
the curious displacements of art. Lance Reddick plays Lieutenant
Daniels as a princely African-American Spock aboard the starship
Baltimore. Robert Chew plays the drug lord Proposition Joe, whose
wistfulness for the old days is expressed in his tender repairing of
broken clocks. One defiant and suspended policeman, Herc—played by
Domenick Lombardozzi, whose Bronx accent is already a conspicuous and
pleasingly unexplained dislocation (try not to think of Tony Curtis in
Spartacus)—defiantly opens his front door wearing a Wisconsin T-shirt
with the logo “Smell the Dairy Air.” Omar sports a long, waxed duster
to accompany his shotgun and bulletproof vest, making him seem very
much an urban Jesse James, and the lighting, editing, and quite
self-conscious cinematography in various showdowns assist in this
motif. (In the one episode where Omar is on a Caribbean isle, he seems
so out of place the story line quickly summons him back to cowboy
land.)

J.D. Williams as terminal corner boy Bodie emerges as a tremendous
actor with or without his white do-rag, filched from a production of
The Crucible. And the middle school quartet in Season Four—Michael,
Namond, Randy, and Dukie—are a gut-wrenching ensemble, but Julito
McCullum’s performance as Namond, replete with ponytail and earrings,
seems singular in its range. His character is given more to do, but as
an actor he is there for every moment of it. His tears before his
mother, his fury at the universe, his jokes with his pals—”Yo, you
must be one of those at-risk kids!” he says self-satirically to Dukie
when his friend orders the turkey grease at a Chinese restaurant—all
this makes Namond’s successful if narrow escape from the neighborhood
one of the few bear- able outcomes in The Wire’s many stories. (And
one of the only times when reaching out to a cop doesn’t result in
catastrophe.)

It is a small statistic, as with the ex-con Cutty’s successful boxing
club, but one of human escape amid hopelessness. As the ill-fated
Dukie says, “How do you get from here to the rest of the world?”
Tolstoy was wrong about happy families—it is more likely hell, or
hellishness, that is of a predictable sameness. Heaven will take one
by surprise, as surprise is perhaps essential to it. “Sometimes life
just gives you a moment,” says Lester Freamon, played by the
deep-voiced, bowlegged Clarke Peters, the gifted actor who has
accompanied David Simon on his journey through The Corner, The Wire,
and Treme. But with this much already under Simon’s (and Peters’s)
belt, beyond, as they might say shruggingly in Baltimore, ain’t no
thing. The series’s final words are “Let’s go home,” not unlike the
last words spoken by the last man on the moon.

Copyright © 1963-2010 NYREV, Inc. All rights reserved.

http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archive ... life-wire/

thefourthman
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Re: Review Group Week 241 - NEMESIS #3

Postby thefourthman » Thu Sep 30, 2010 10:25 pm

That's a whole lot of words about a television show. :?
My top three shows all time are:
1. Lost (haven't finished season six yet, stupid life)
2. MASH
3. Rockford Files

thefourthman
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Posts: 26836
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Re: Review Group Week 241 - NEMESIS #3

Postby thefourthman » Thu Sep 30, 2010 10:26 pm

I don't get the HBO. I will buy it when it is cheap on DVD or bluray or whatever.

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