• I liked watching The Wire: The Musical Parody. It made me laugh and the funny part about it was having some of the actors who were in the show take part in the joke. Looking at it, this has potential to be a REAL musical. I’m not into musicals but I would see this one if it was playing at a theater near me! They needed a Clay Davis number!

  • I’ve conferred with some “Wire” fans around Chicago and we agreed that for part 2 they’re going to need to bring in John Doman (Bill Rawls) and Dominic West (McNulty) for a stirring duet of “You Are a Gaping Asshole”.

    Rawls: Listen to me you fuuuuuccckkkkkk! This is not on you! You are a gaping asshoooolllleee! But this is not on youuuu!
    McNulty: Yes it is!
    Rawls: No it’s not! (jazz hands)
    McNulty: Yes it is!
    Rawls: No it’s not! (jazz hands)
    McNulty: (collapses his head into his hands)
    Rawls: Everyone in CID knows that you are a gaping asshole, but this is NOT. ON. YOU!

    Something like that.

  • Ms. Pearson looks great. I didn’t know what her legal situation was after reading about her ridiculous drug charges. Glad she’s out and seemingly doing well. I don’t know the details but it pains me to see victims of their environment being arrested and jailed while Wall Street gets off Scott Free for the mess they’ve caused. I know it’s not as simple or as black and white, cut and dry but the “war on drugs” should be “war on wall street”. Imagine if all the resources spent locking people like Ms Pearson away were spent on white collar crime? She makes a mistake and gets jailed. They make mistakes and get a multi billion dollar bailout.

  • You know, it could work! Mr Simon why not get some of your Treme buddies to write some more lyrics.

  • Please bring this to the Edinburgh Fringe in August.. Alternatively bring it to Scotland. I’ll be your man on the ground here. Omar Coming – To Scotland.. PLEASE!

  • How frickin’ awesome was that?

    Watching any well-acted show, particularly one featuring actors you’ve never seen before, and it isn’t always front-of-the-mind that the actors are real people off-screen. Even later, they can carry the first character they play with them to other roles, at least in my mind as i”m watching them. Lance Reddick is still Daniels even when he’s Broyles. Chris Bauer as wossface in True Blood is constantly a source of perplexity to me – how could Frank Sobotka be this stupid cop, there has to be another layer of *something* beneath it… but there isn’t… it’s puzzling.

    So to see something like this is just *so* jarring that it’s bizarre and wonderful. *Wire* is no Doctor Horrible, but the lament of the poor discarded burner cracked me up, as did the catchy tune with all the simple lyrics near the end. I love that they got enough people together to pull this off. If you come across this note, Wire cast, thanks for the laughs here and for the amazing work on the show itself!

    • I actually watched that 30 Rock before seeing season 5 of “The Wire” (we had just finished seasons 1-4). Was absolutely terrified that Dookie was actually going to get popped down by the vacants – not that what actually occurred was a whole lot happier. (Damn you, Simon…)

    • Ah, right. I imagine there’s all sorts of online wonder that I would find this to be marvelous parody, while expressing disappointment in a bunch of bracketfests analyzing the various merits and demerits of Wire characters, Wire scenes, Wire seasons, et al. It will only be a moment or two more, I’m sure, before some pundit files a three-part essay with footnotes on the seeming hypocrisy.

      I will try to slow it down and keep it simple:

      1) Pop-culture theorists writing out prolonged March Madness contests that reduce the show to bite-sized morsels of useless verbiage, and doing so for day after day until they declare a winner — devoting such energy to that while having never come close addressing the themes and arguments of the entire work anywhere else in their publication? That, to me, is some long-winded, pompous, sad-ass appropriation.

      2) The Wire actors themselves cutting up on the show themselves, mocking all of our pretense? For one thing, it’s theirs to parody, right? I mean, those guys did the work for sixty episodes, and you do realize that as a matter of routine, we put together gag reels every year, right? Laughing at ourselves is never a problem. And for another, more fundamental thing, that shit was, at points, really funny. And funny is funny.

      On the other hand, if Michael K. ever interviews Obama in public and doesn’t bust balls about the drug war, I’ll call him out so hard.

      I kid. I kid.

      • I see no reason for confusion here, and it’s sad that Mr. Simon would even need to explain his logic. One is something that took effort and thought, while the other is something that simply uses someone else’s effort and thought in order to generate web clicks and ad sales.

        It’s something creative vs. something reductive. It’s something made to entertain your mind vs. something that was merely reproduced in order detain your web browser.

        There is no comparison between a delightful musical parody that is the result of someone’s own hard work vs. the same old Grantland bullshit, which would be the pimping out of the hard work of someone else for their own self aggrandizement.

        If anyone deserves a little self aggrandizement from The Wire, it would be the people who made it and the fans who are inspired to make something because of it, rather than a bunch of tired old sports hacks who make their livings as pilot fish who sometimes write.

        • Grantland’s not all bad. I believe Klosterman is capable of a thoughtful piece on “The Wire” – in fact he touched on it tangentially in a piece on “Breaking Bad,” though he declared BB the superior series of the two (I refuse to get involved, as I love both – but it’s clearly “The Wire,” right? Maybe we can revisit it later, pending the fate of Walter White).

          But yeah, there’s a clear distinction here. This musical parody, in four minutes, manages to touch on several of the show’s major themes, and it also takes funny pokes at both “The Wire” and musicals. It’s a legit work of parody, and fairly smart. The bracket stuff is just a work of pop culture parasitism. I don’t find it offensive, but it’s certainly as far from possible as a meaningful engagement with the show – the online equivalent of hanging up a Scarface or Taxi Driver poster to show how badass you are.

          • I don’t think ill of Grantland as an enterprise at all.

            Yeah, I thought the bracketfest was dumb, off-point and a waste of actual time, space and effort.

            But I like reading Bill Simmons. He’s good.

      • …Not to mention that this work of parody could also be seen as making comment on the commercial tendency to turn successful stories into brand$ that can be adapted to places where they blatantly don’t fit. This is done at the expense of the story. And vaguely, perhaps, there is a comment about RENT in there somewhere, much like the comment ‘South Park’ has made. This is simply far more substantive than the lowbrow “content” you’ve criticized in the past.

        Dumbed-down, cheap, parasitic tabloid content is like porn or plagiarism: you know it when you see it! Well, I hope most people do, anyway.

        • I agree there is a difference between the bracket and this musical. All I’m saying is there is no reason both aren’t fair game. At the end of the day, both sources are just trying to get added entertainment value from a really good television show. You say that Grantland just did the bracket for clicks. That’s as true as Funny or Die doing the musical for clicks. That doesn’t mean that one form of derivative entertainment from the Wire is acceptable, but some other form is unacceptable.

        • My downstairs neighbor is a very fine professional musician who gets a lot of “bread and butter” paid work playing for Broadway orchestras. Recently she apologized for making me listen to her practicing for the upcoming Broadway production of Ghost: The Musical (from the Demi Moore/Patrick Swayze movie). She wasn’t apologizing for the quality of her own playing, but for the craptastic idiocy of the music she is forced to perform for it (it really is unusually bad). Not to compare Ghost to The Wire, but your post made me think of it with its reference to all of these brand$ being adapted for stage and other venues.

          It pays her bills, though, so I guess it’s not all bad…is it?

  • What an awesomely bizarre juxtaposition… I see such a disproportionately small amount of The Wire parodies/ tributes/ etc. considering the internet is the internet. Although I suppose because the philosophical argument of The Wire overshadows the story and characters (Aside from Omar or Mouzone), it is not as easy (Or worthwhile) to make parodies of it.

    Not sure if you saw, but there was a reference The Wire on iCarly, a Nickelodeon show: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bUYV-75GSEA

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