There’s no doubt what Ep 54 will be remembered for, and it is hard to get past what Marlo did to Prop Joe, but we need to look at all the other switches that flipped as well.
It’s at these moments I hate On Demand, or at least not having On Demand, but I’ll stick my speculative neck out anyway, knowing that half of you already know whether it’s valid speculation or just mistaken crap.
So, let’s chew on some of the bigger chunks:
“I’ve been meaning to speak to you about your profanity.”
The scene between Klebanow and Hayes is getting a little buzz in the j-world.
Salon’s Slate’s TV Club said it “defied belief;” Romenesko puts out the call for personal anecdotes and gets a few, while others chatter away on their own blogs. (And may I please ask: When did David Simon piss in Bill Wyman’s cornflakes, anyway?)
I think the case has been made pretty well that this scene was not beyond belief, but once again I’m amazed at how many people are missing the point: This exchange wasn’t about Klebanow being a tightass or Haynes an abusive pottymouth. It’s about how the suits — any suits — exert control in a million subtle ways to bring a staff to heel. Start with cutbacks, so that everyone fears for their job. Make sure the atmosphere, once open and raucous and encouraging of dissent, becomes just a little bit chillier, day by day. Reprimand the troublesome ones with bullshit. Before long, you can announce the next round of layoffs without hearing a peep from anyone.
And if any of these flatdicks can’t see that, well, I can’t save their sorry asses.
OK, I know that nobody will believe it, but as a young consultant, I used to subscribe to GQ. I wore double breasted Hugo Boss suits with Hermes ties and Bally shoes. Now, my wardrobe consists mainly of hockey jerseys, hoodies, and Hawai’ian shirts with high tops. I love tenure.
Anyway, I was reminiscing a bit when I saw this month’s Men’s Vogue. Sho nuff, an article about The Wire. Don’t read the article because a) it doesn’t have that much news but b) it does have spoilers.
However, there is a nice pictorial, with Mr. McNulty, Bubbles, and Omar. Something about seeing Bubbles in a $1200 coat over a $3800 suit that is a bit unsettling. Not as unsettling as seeing how damn good Omar looks. He makes that purple scarf work, baby.
Here’s what I’ll miss most about Proposition Joe: His glasses. “The Wire” runs on a shoestring budget — compared to “Deadwood,” anyway — but you have to take off your hat to a propmaster who pays attention to how a fat man wears his reading glasses, how he bends them at such a sharp angle to the temples, so that he can look down at his tinkering without having to stress his chins too much.
That said, I’m starting to wonder about Marlo. We’ve all known he was bloodthirsty in a particularly cold way, but he looked almost …tumescent at Joe’s last moments. Even his advice was sexual: “Breathe easy. Close your eyes.” But he doesn’t close his. This man likes killing way too much, even for a killer. Continue reading
…I kinda figured that anyway.
And for those of us playing the train game, yes, that was The Clash in McNulty’s bar playing Train in Vain.
Finally, I thought Marlo was smarter than that. RIP, Prop Joe.
In the first episode of the season, we got the beginnings of a plot development with Herc and Levy, and (speaking as a social Sunday-night watcher, not some On Demand dope fiend) thus far we haven’t seen anything further on it. VirgoTex and I chatted about it in email a little a few weeks back, then events got in the way and I never blogged about it, but let me think out loud about it and see what you think.
It’s become clear to me so far this season that the Barksdale crime family is alive and well. Even with most of their soldiers dead or in jail, the family is still in The Game. Avon (and presumably Wee-Bey and others) are tight with the Russians in prison. On the outside, they’ve got Slim Charles temporarily affiliated with Prop Joe. And most importantly, they have Levy.