Lestor Freamon: ‘You follow drugs, you get drug addicts and drug dealers. But you start to follow the money, and you don’t know where the fuck it’s gonna take you.’
The Wire is an American television series that deals with a lot of issues that you wouldn’t usually see in a police series, or maybe you’d see them, but not like the way the creator David Simon shows them and puts them in a different display. The Wire is set in the projects of Baltimore where most people are either dealers or junkies. Together with his team, the homicide detective Jimmy Mcnulty tries to catch the biggest drug dealer and maybe you could even say ‘owner’ of the projects of Baltimore, Avon Barksdale.
The Wire is one of a kind, it’s versatile and it shows life in the lowrises from the views of many different people. The police aren’t being displayed as the good guys who catch the bad guys. The series shows how every person has it’s own weaknesses and strengths, you don’t get to see Jimmy McNulty as just a police officer, you get to see him as a terrible father, a wife-cheater and a man who likes to drink, maybe even a little bit too much. But still you get to like him, you want him to succeed, you want him not to mess up, but when he does, you still have sympathy for him. And even the biggest drug dealers and murderers of who knows how many people gain your sympathy. Take Omar, when this tough gangster comes walking up everybody runs away as fast as they can, he easily kills a man or two and after having done that he kisses his boyfriend(yes, boyfriend) and shows his love for a man with no shame whatsoever. The female narcotics detective Kima Greggs is also a good example to show that in the Wire there are no stereotypes being used. Kima is a tough detective who likes to catch corner boys and other scum the hard way, but yet, she is an attractive woman and has a lesbian, affectionate relationship. Not you’re usual female detective right?
The way McNulty, Kima, Bunk and the others do their job is again, not likely. By using a wiretap they too, get to know their suspects better. It’s great to see that in the Wire nothing has been left out, nothing has been revealed or has been shown more beautiful than it truly is, the creator wanted to be sure that the viewers knew everything, from the drug addicted prostitutes who are selling themselves to anyone who is willing to pay with babies on their arms to the police officers that beat up their suspects. The fact that David Simon himself has been a police reporter at the Baltimore sun for several years and that Ed Burns, who has been a police detective, helped to create the series is probably one of the reasons why the series is so realistic.
David Simon made a conscious choice when he portrayed the city of Baltimore in a negative way, and that’s what makes the series so good. The mayer of Baltimore city, Sheila Dixon has said that the Wire does’nt give a realistic view of the city and portrays Baltimore in a way that’s too negative and over exaggerated, while right now, she stands trial for theft and misdemeanour. It’s a fact that in America the stupidest moron can occupy an important position or have a well paid job just because he ‘knows people’ and this ‘knowing people’ can go pretty far. Most police series don’t show any bit of bureaucracy and make it seem like police officers receive the best technical equipment and as much money as they want if that helps to solve a crime. And that’s why it’s great that there’s finally been a man who made a series based on reality that wasn’t afraid to show the whole truth and nothing but the truth.