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Saturday, October 18, 2014

The Cast of The Wire at the Paley Center

Here is a video of a panel that took place the other day at the Paley Center for Media in New York City.  The panel featured prominent cast members from The Wire.  At a little over an hour, this is the best panel I've ever seen - in this case, online - but also in person.

Watching this also cemented my view that The Wire is the single best show ever to have been on television.   I don't say that lightly - in their own ways, The Sopranos, 24, Breaking Bad, other shows including and even Lost in its good moments were superb.   But none quite compare to The Wire, for reasons that become clear, I think, in this panel discussion.  The only proviso is that the panel is replete with spoilers.  So, if you haven't seen The Wire - all five seasons - don't look at this panel video until after you do.

Part of the pleasure of watching this panel is thinking about how all of these stars first became known to me on The Wire, and have gone on to the other memorable roles.  But every time I see one of them, I say to my wife, hey, that guy was on The Wire ... Wendell Pierce in Treme and Ray Donovan, Michael Kenneth Williams in Boardwalk Empire, Lance Reddick (who wasn't on the panel, alas) on Fringe, Dominic West (also not on the panel) in The Affair, Chad Coleman (also not on the panel) in The Walking Dead, and Idris Elba in Luther and great movies such as Long Walk to Freedom, for which he deserved an Oscar but wasn't even nominated.   The list goes on and on - making The Wire a veritable directory of great actors in dozens of shows since then.  The Wire has seeded television with superb acting for almost a decade now.

My reviews of last season of The Wire, usually written shortly after the episodes were aired for the first time, follow ...

The Wire's Back! Review of Season 5 Episode 1 and Episode 2: The Great, Dangling Conversation ... 3. McNulty and Marlo ... 4. One Down ...5. Media Chasing Their Own Tales and Tails ... 6. Superman Omar and Tall Stories ... 7. King of Diamonds ... 8. Two Down ... 9. Cold, Killer Sweetheart ... The Wire Bows Out Gracefully: Kudos to the Cast and David Simon, the Charles Dickens of Television

See also this earlier Looking Back at the Wire

Two podcast episodes about The Wire -

    The Wire without Stringer        |   The Wire Season 4
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