Thursday, February 07, 2008

Why subscribe to HBO?

The Wire has received a lot of praise from critics, but most people still haven't seen it. My advice to you: watch the 1st season. After a season of the West Baltimore drug trade, the show widens its lens. The characters and stories include corrupt longshoreman, human trafficking, hardball politics, legalized drugs, inner-city schools, and the modern American newspaper.

If you are a fan of the show, check out Freakonomics' weekly feature: "What Do Real Thugs Think of the Wire?". Ethnographer/sociologist Sudhir Venkatesh watches The Wire with New York City gang leaders and reports on the experience each week. The reactions and insights of the "real" gang leaders shed light on forces and rules that are assumed but unspoken in the show.

Season 5 adds the final building block in The Wire's microcosm of an American city: the role of the media. Writer/producer David Simon spent years as a reporter for the The Baltimore Sun before creating The Wire. His basic messages about the media are pretty clear, and he elaborates in his recent opinion piece in the Washington Post, "Does the News Matter To Anyone Anymore?".

1 comment:

vw said...

i just started watching the 1st season and so far i'm impressed. thank you for the further reading and its good to see that derka is up and run *ahem* nucking again. face.