Newest Review: ... and I are big fans of American boxsets and after thoroughly enjoying The Shield and The Sopranos, The Wire seemed like the next series to... more
Member Name: Olly0390
The Wire : Complete HBO Season 1 (DVD)
Advantages: Realism, characters
I watch quite alot of TV and when I first started to hear the buzz about this new HBO series called The Wire I couldn't wait to find out what the fuss was about. As the first season was just starting on FX at the time I set the Sky+ up and was ready to go. The show blew me away with its realism and gritty storytelling.
This first season introduces you to the cast that will be seen throughout the 5 seasons. The basic premise is of cops and crooks but thst tells little of what this show is really about. You see the story from both the side of the law, using wiretaps to try and catch their targets, and the drug dealing crews of Baltimore doing their best to change their tactics and continue to thwart the polices effort.
We see stellar performances from near every member of the cast from the cocky cop McNulty to the sleek, stylish ringleader Stringer Bell. The characters' progression through the story will have you feeling as much for both sides of the equation. The shotgun toting Omar is also added to the mix as he raids the drug rings for his own gain. The city of Baltimore is itself a character too in the series lending itslef perfectly with a great variety of built up areas and over populated 'slum like' areas. The interactions between characters feel as if they were real with both tense action sequences and emotional moments being handled equally well.
The language and violence of the show may be offputtting for some but this is what the creators were aiming for in creating a true represntation of whta life is like on the 'corner' for many in cities such as Baltimores poorer areas. It may be worth watching with subtitles if you feel you are unable to decipher the Baltimore slang used by the characters.
The show is often compared somewhat to a book in that each episode is like a chapter in the story and an episode should never be skipped, I would have to agree with this analysis of what has been one of the most engrossing series I've ever watched on par only with another HBO gem The Sopranos. I have really enjoyed my time with this series and I urge you to at least give The Wire a chance. I guarantee once you have watched the first few episodes you will be itching to put the next one on. The DVD has some commentary tracks as extras but with a show this good you may aswell just watch it all over again.
Summary: Fantastic TV, doesn't get any better than this
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