VOTD: The Visual Style of ‘The Wire’

Fans of The Wire jump at the chance to wax poetic about what some consider television’s all-time best show and this post is no different. A video has come online detailing the visual style of David Simon‘s landmark HBO drama which, if you’re familiar with the show, is kind of surprising. Ask anyone what they love about The Wire and “visual style” probably won’t make the top ten. The style, if it can even be called that at times, is largely clinical and straightforward, a crutch for the pitch perfect dialogue, characters and story. Or so we’re lead to believe.

In this 30 minute video essay, Erlend Lavik hypothesizes the visual style of The Wire is much more significant and impressive than generally considered. Check it out below. Read More »

For my money, The Wire is the best show to ever grace a television screen. I’ve watched I Love Lucy, The Honeymooners, Seinfeld, M*A*S*H, The Sopranos, and I still think the The Wire towers above them all. For five amazing seasons, series creator David Simon created an intense, detailed and eye-opening cross-section of Baltimore’s beating heart by focusing on law enforcement, the drug trade, politics, education, shipping and the press. Praise for the show is almost universal, save for the Emmy voters who never gave The Wire a single award. And though it ended in 2008, fans still dream about the unlikely possibility of the show returning.

Among those fans is Attorney General Eric Holder who, last week, demanded that Simon and co-creator Ed Burns make another season. Or at least a movie. Friday, Simon responded to Holder with a simple request. He’ll do it, but first the Department of Justice must “reconsider and address its continuing prosecution of our misguided, destructive and dehumanising drug prohibition.” Point, Simon. Read the full quotes after the break. Read More »

If you’ve been paying attention to /Film, you’re probably already aware that we heart artist Tim Doyle — we’re huge fans of his distinctive style, as well as his obvious love of cinema. Most recently, we showcased a series of Quentin Tarantino-inspired pieces that were displayed earlier this month at the Bold Hype Gallery in New York City. Now, Doyle’s taking on Stanley Kubrick and HBO’s The Wire in some new posters — check them out after the jump.

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The key to great analysis is often imagination. That’s what sets apart “When It’s Not Your Turn”: The Quintessentially Victorian Vision of Ogden’s “The Wire,” an article which purports to be an examination of the great literary text The Wire, if it had been published as a serialized Victorian novel. The article acts as if The Wire was written by Horatio Bucklesby Ogden, a contemporary of Charles Dickens, and goes on to examine the content in an appropriate manner. There are even reproduced pages of text and era-appropriate illustrations by Joy Delyria.

This isn’t a parody of the show, but a way of looking at it that requires a small leap of imagination. It’s pretty great stuff, and we’ve got a bit more info after the break. Read More »


A simple — yet very effective — teaser for David Simon’s (The Wire, Generation Kill) new HBO series Treme has just popped online. Even at a mere fourty-seven seconds, it’s already giving me goosebumps. Hunter has covered some statements from Simon about the series last month. Here’s a primer: Treme is about a group of musicians and other folks living in the Treme neighborhood of post-Katrina New Orleans. The Wire’s Wendell Pierce, a New Orleans native, will play an accomplished jazz trombonist, and Clark Peters will portray the leader of a Mardi Gras Indian tribe. The rest of the cast includes Steve Zahn, John Goodman, and Melissa Leo.

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There is little doubt in the minds of many critics and cultured viewers that any single season of The Wire would be perched near or atop the best films of the decade if it qualified. In a new eight-page interview with Vice, the writer and creator behind all five seasons of the HBO series, David Simon, offers characteristically solid, amusing no-bullshit insight into how The Wire was created.

Even post-finale, any casual conversation about The Wire is akin to slitting open the belly of a five-headed Jaws, and Simon dives in afresh. The series’ overarching theme, he says, is that, “Human beings—in [America] in particular—are worth less and less.” He also extends on why Charles Dickens “punked out” and why seasons weren’t set aside to tackle immigration and health care. What’s the main thematic difference between The Wire and his new, New Orleans set HBO series, Treme? Simon’s impassioned explanation, after the jump…

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The Wire

If you’ve listened to the /Filmcast, then you’ve probably heard Adam, Devindra or David rave on and on about the television series The Wire. Last month we posted a video containing “the 100 greatest quotes from The Wire.” But it turns out the series has so many great quotes that a sequel was created — hh2edits has put together another compilation montage containing “the other 100 greatest quotes” from all five seasons of the series. I must warn you, this obviously contains spoilers… so if you haven’t completed the series, you might not want to watch the video embedded after the jump.

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VOTD: 100 Greatest Quotes From The Wire

The Wire

If you’ve listened to the /Filmcast, then you’ve probably heard Adam, Devindra or David rave on and on about the television series The Wire. hh1edits has put together a compilation montage of the 100 greatest quotes from all five seasons of the series. I must warn you, this obviously contains spoilers… so if you haven’t completed the series, you might not want to watch the video embedded after the jump.

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Casual readers of /Film will know that we’re all big fans of David Simon’s HBO series The Wire. In fact, Slashfilm editor-in-chief Peter Sciretta recently admitted that after months of disgracefully leaving The Wire on his DVD shelf, he finally gave season 1 a spin (his reaction? “Why did I not watch this sooner?“).

Livejournal user Patty Boh recently discovered that the soundstages for The Wire were still intact, so he somehow got access to them and photographically documented the results. The resulting photoset is both haunting and nostalgic, a sad, hollowed-out remembrance of one of the greatest television shows of our generation.

According to Patty, the building that houses the sets is scheduled for demolition and will soon become a supermarket. Somewhere in that fate is a plot for another compelling Wire season.

Make sure you head on over to Patty’s photoset at Livejournal (WARNING: SPOILERS FOR THE WIRE LIE WITHIN) for the entire series of high-res images and check out his Livejournal page for more great photos. You can hear our 3.5-hour Wire retrospective by clicking here. Thanks to /Film reader John H. for the tip!

Cool Posts From Around the Web:

I was going through my normal Sunday early-morning ritual of cruising through deal sites, when I happened upon this slice of deal goodness (via Slickdeals) and my head almost exploded: The Wire: The Complete Series DVD set is now on sale for $90 at Amazon! This is a ridiculously cheap price (the seasons used to individually cost upwards of $60 each) for the greatest television series of all time. If you have never watched the show before, you owe it to yourself to pick this one up. And if you have watched it, you know how awesome it is, so the onus is now on you to buy this set and give it to a friend. You can listen to our 3.5-hour long review of the entire series of The Wire by clicking here.

Buy it from Amazon by clicking here (note that the shipping is free, but that the ship time is 1 to 3 weeks). And if they’re sold out of it, Best Buy has the exact same deal too.

Additionally, Amazon’s MP3 store also has “The Swell Season” for sale for $3 as its deal of the day. “The Swell Season” is the 2006 album by Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova, the duo behind the film Once. While the album is obviously different than the Once soundtrack, it shares four tracks with it (“Falling Slowly,” “When Your Mind’s Made Up,” “Lies,” and “Leave,” although I believe they are different versions) and is probably worth a purchase if you were a fan of that film, especially for $3.

Trivia: The appearance of “Falling Slowly” on “The Swell Season” and another album (“The Cost”) contributed to the the AMPAS’ decision to examine the song’s eligilibity for an Academy Award nomination. “Falling Slowly” ended up winning the award for Best Original Song, beating out three songs from “Enchanted.”

Older (still valid) Deals After the jump.

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