Monday, March 10, 2008

The Wire's Women

I've kept up with the Freakonomics blog feature on what real thugs think of The Wire rather sporadically, but the last post, describing why the thugs gave up on the show two episodes from the end, gets at one thing that really did bug me about the best series on television:
“[The show should have focused on w]omen,” said Tony-T. “Where I come from, women run most of the things [that the show] talks about. It’s the women that have the power in the ghetto. This show totally got it wrong when they made it all about men. Women are the politicians; they can get you a gun, they got the cash, they can get you land to build something on.”
There were only three episodes of the entire series written by a woman, and all too often the female characters were peripheral, flat, or reactive. The show failed to explore the growing Hispanic population of Baltimore due to David Simon & Co.'s lack of expertise as well, but I cut people less slack for failing to portray half of the human species. Couldn't one of the students in Season 4 have been a girl? Did Alma the intrepid reporter have to be so one dimensional (granted, all the Baltimore Sun characters were somewhat thin)? Couldn't they have done more with Rhonda Pearlman than show her in relation to McNulty and Daniels?

A shot by shot analysis of the final montage is here.

Update: Sorry, skeptics: David Simon + actual thug > Amanda Marcotte.
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