Friday, September 01, 2006

TV time...

I can bite my tongue no longer:

The Wire is the best show I have ever seen. By far.

I know that statement may seem a touch hyperbolic, but you must trust me, it is not. On the surface, it’s just a show about police and drugs in Baltimore. Underneath that, it’s a show about everything.

Actually, calling it a show is probably not appropriate. Though I’m not sure what the best term would be – I’ve heard stuff like “visual novel,” which doesn’t quite cut it -- The Wire is certainly beyond normal television.

The City Paper has a long story (that you should read) about the show and its writers, David Simon and Ed Burns, a former reporter and cop, respectively, who also wrote one of my favorite books, The Corner: A Year in the Life of an Inner-City Neighborhood (Simon was also the writer and creator of Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets and the accompanying television show).

Since I've always lived in HBO-free houses, I never had a chance to see the show. But after reading The Corner last year and a lot of buzz about The Wire this summer (the fourth season starts next week), Abbzug and I decided to rent a few DVDs from season one.

That was a little more than three weeks ago. We finished season three on Tuesday. Thirty-nine episodes in 20-some days. It got to the point where Netflix couldn't keep up and we had to make special trips to Blockbuster and Hollywood Video, the latter being the only of the two stocking seasons two and three (and it might have been cheaper just to buy all three seasons). Many late nights we would finish an episode or two transfixed, precious minutes of sleep passing by, and without hesitation watch another.

Our complete devotion to the show, however, is not unique, either. Spend some time reading about The Wire on the internet and you’ll find countless others like us. For instance, here, here, here and here.

Like all addictions, The Wire takes its toll. But unlike most, it’s completely worth it.

2 comments:

Mary Catherine said...

I concur. It is - bar none-the best show on TV- and I'd have to say... not just the best show if the year- but the best show ever made for tv.

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