Best Deleted Scene from The Wire Fifth Season

19 Sep
September 19, 2007

Reprinting with permission, The CityPaper, Baltimore, Sept 19, 2007

We received the below in an e-mail from The Wire co-creator/executive producer/writer David Simon on Labor Day, the Monday after shooting for the show’s fifth and final season concluded the previous Friday. It’s a four-page insert scene the writing staff intimated was coming on the penultimate day of shooting, adding more work to an already packed final production day. According to Simon, rumors of the additional pages started seeping from the production office to the set, instigating some minor grumbling about cramming yet more scenes into a final episode that Simon suggests is already about 50 percent longer than ordinary. But everybody reacted professionally to the schedule changes–assistant directors inquired about what the actors needed, production managers ordered additional film, cast members were told where they needed to be to work on dialogue. And then the pages arrived and as cast and crew read through the scene it slowly became apparent, amid growing laughter, what the pages actually were–a sly thank you from the writing staff to the entire cast and crew responsible for five seasons of one of the finest dramas the small screen has ever seen.

Insert scene: A60-

FOR PRODUCTION, TO FILM 8/31.

 

INT. INTERROGATION ROOM #1/HOMICIDE UNIT – NIGHT

BUNK, MCNULTY sit, worried. A long beat of frustrated silence before MCNULTY leans back in his chair, speaks.

MCNULTY

If they were going to do me, I’d be done already.

BUNK

Now, later. They’re gonna do you.

MCNULTY

I’m not so sure.

BUNK

You really think we need to discuss this some more? Whatever’s gonna happen is gonna happen.

MCNULTY

What are you saying?

BUNK

I’m not sure this conversation is going anywhere, Jimmy.

MCNULTY thinks on this, nods.

BUNK

I’m sayin’ this like that song by whatshersame, you know? Whatever the fuck is gonna be is gonna be.

MCNULTY

Doris Day.

BUNK

Say what?

MCNULTY

Doris Day. Que-sera-sera?

BUNK

The fuck are you going on about, motherfucker?

MCNULTY

That’s the song. Que Sera Sera, by Doris Day. Whatever will be will be.

BUNK

The shit that’s clogged up in your fuckin’ head. Amazing.

MCNULTY

You brought up the song, bitch. I’m here trying to figure out whether or not I’m gonna get done and you’re talking in gay-ass clichés.

BUNK

You ain’t goin’ to get done.

MCNULTY

How do you know?

BUNK

How do I know?

MCNULTY

Yeah. Which god came down to Baltimore and gave you the power to see the motherfuckin’ future. This is my life on the line here.

BUNK

Calm the fuck down.

MCNULTY

How can I?

BUNK

Look, you know the rest of the story.

MCNULTY

I do?

BUNK

Motherfucker, they done moved the whole script. And you read to the end of this shit, right?

MCNULTY

I know what it says so far, but all these fucking revisions. They’re up to cherry-colored pages . . .

BUNK

Buff.

MCNULTY

What?

BUNK

Buff pages. Last revision was buff.

MCNULTY

Fuck buff. These pages right here are second white.

BUNK

That’s what I’m sayin’, Jimmy, we’re far along in the process here.

MCNULTY

But they could still revise it more. Like this scene here . . .

BUNK

They ain’t gonna shoot this bitch.

MCNULTY

You sure?

BUNK

Motherfucker, they lookin’ at a seven-and-a-half page day tomorrow already. Simon tries to add this shit to that sked and the crew will bank his white ass.

MCNULTY

I dunno. I think that cocksucker has been asking for impossible shit so long, he just figures . . .

BUNK

He is a motherfucker, but Jimmy, this one would go too far.

MCNULTY

So we’re done?

BUNK

Done. These pages ain’t gonna actually get shot, Jimmy.

MCNULTY

So we’re just talking here.

BUNK

Talkin’ shit about ourselves for ourselves. We a drunkass pair of meta motherfuckers right now.

MCNULTY

I love the way you say shit like that.

BUNK

Well, it’s the script.

MCNULTY

But you make the shit sound good.

BUNK

I do.

MCNULTY

Profane, but poetic.

BUNK

Yeah, fuck.

MCNULTY

Motherfuck.

BUNK

Fuck me.

MCNULTY

Fuck fuck fuckity fuck fuck.

BUNK

Aw fuck.

MCNULTY

Yeah. Fuck, yeah.

On MCNULTY and BUNK, nodding in fucking affirmation of just how fucking good The Wire crew is, just how fucking grateful the writers are, how there is not–we repeat, not–another scene remaining that we could ask you to shoot,

FADE TO:

THE END

9 replies
  1. G. K. says:

    Hi,

    I wonder what do you think about “The Wire’s gender problem”: http://feministing.com/2009/11/06/the-wires-gender-problem/

    Reply
    • David Simon says:

      Why oh why can’t a story be about everything, and include every agenda? That would make storytelling so much more fair.

      Reply
  2. G.K. says:

    Hi,

    I’ve just tweeted it to HBO, but I wanted you to know too. (https://twitter.com/thevesaire/status/402861037801590784)

    In Turkey a tv channel (e2 – http://www.e2.tv.tr/ ) has started The Wire recently, but because of the censor, the Turkish subtitles are terrible! Also the channel broadcast it with wrong ratio (16:9). So, I’m not sure if it’s a good thing or not to have The Wire in Turkish tvs. I didn’t even mention the expurgated scenes. Because there are a lot of scenes which are cut by the channel.

    I don’t know if you can do something about the cencorship because it is a government policy, but at least maybe someone “in charge” can warn them about the ratio.

    Reply
  3. marc says:

    Brilliant. Can someone reconvene Wendell Pierce and Dominic West for an audio version at least?

    Reply
  4. John Harris says:

    I miss all that. I miss the interplay between Bunk and McNulty. I re-watch “The Wire” over and over as comfort food. Currently I’m on my sixth pass through the entire series. Another “Wire” marathon at my house. Don’t stop by if you plan on talking about anything else.

    This no lie — I cancelled my subscription to DirecTV after watching “The Wire”. “The Wire” has ruined all other television for me, even many of the shows I used to love. I just cannot be bothered to endure commercial television anymore. I’ll spare all of you the gory details of my rationale for that decision.

    Despite all the reasons to love each and every season of the show, I find season five’s depiction of the ritual dismemberment of the ethics of the newspaper business to be the most compelling part of the series. If I ever meet Tom McCarthy I’ll have a hard time choosing whether to shake his hand for “The Visitor” and “Win Win” or smack him upside the head for “being” Scott Templeton.

    I envy my friends who are just now getting to see “The Wire” for the first time, thanks to DVDs. I wish I could go back and watch it again for the first time. Repeat viewings are great, but the first time was so special.

    Reply
  5. drama dupree says:

    I miss this show so much. I pray at least once a week for a new season.

    Reply
  6. Jeff says:

    Haha I love it. Actually took it seriously until midway through.

    Reply
  7. Kristopher Kelly says:

    Show was flawless until I found out it was missing such a gem of a scene! “The shit that’s clogged up in your fuckin’ head.” … Man, that should definitely have taken the place of the Mencken quote at the start of the ep!

    Reply

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