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October 10, 2015


Mad Men: Out of Town (season premiere)

by Allison Waldman, posted Aug 17th 2009 12:35AM
The more things change, the more they stay the same. Don has returned to Betty, the baby's on the way, but all's not right in Don's world. There's turmoil in the office and a current of unrest thanks to the British takeover of Sterling Cooper.

But if you hoped, or believed, that Don's sojourn to Los Angeles and his contemplation of another life was a wake-up call, think again. Don Draper remains Dick Whitman. A leopard doesn't change his spots.

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The Wire: -30- (series finale)

by Jonathan Toomey, posted Mar 10th 2008 8:21AM

The Wire: -30- (series finale)
(S05E10) "...the life of kings." - H.L. Mencken

History repeats itself. Just like Daniels said, what's the point if one generation is too busy training the next how not to do the job? More than anything, that was the biggest message that came across in the series finale of The Wire. But there was one more too. You always hear the saying "if it ain't broke don't fix it," but over the course of five seasons and sixty episodes of The Wire, David Simon systematically explained why things that are broken don't seem to get fixed either. And now it's over.

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The Wire: Late Editions

by Jonathan Toomey, posted Mar 2nd 2008 10:02PM

Gbenga Akinnagbe as Chris Partlow on 'The Wire.'
(S05E09) "Deserve got nuthin' to do with it." - Snoop

One down and one to go. The penultimate episode. Talk about depressing. After next Sunday, there won't be any more new episodes of The Wire. I don't think I've been this bummed out about a show ending since Six Feet Under went off the air and let's be honest -- The Wire is way better than Six Feet Under, or anything else... ever. With the finale so close, this episode set a lot of stuff up as you'd expect. Everything that's been percolating all season started to boil over and now all that's left to find out is who gets burned and who doesn't. Quoting Stringer Bell's last words, "get on with it motherf*ckers!"

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The Wire: Clarifications

by Jonathan Toomey, posted Feb 24th 2008 10:03PM

Michael K. Williams as Omar Little on 'The Wire.'
(S05E08) "A lie ain't a side of a story. It's just a lie." - Terry Hanning

Rest in peace Omar Little. Wow. Honestly, that's all I really want to talk about. So let's get everything else out of the way first. I'll come back to Omar. Where to start then? How about my weekly rant on Scott Templeton? When I first saw that quote at the head of the episode, I was wondering who the hell Terry Hanning was. I figured he must hold some weight if his quote was the one selected to grace the episode though. Then we saw him. The military vet that Scott "interviewed" under the bridge the day he went slumming with the homeless. I've been waiting all season for a moment like this.

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The Wire: Took

by Jonathan Toomey, posted Feb 17th 2008 10:01PM

William F. Zorzi and Tom McCarthy
(S05E07) "They don't teach it in law school." - Pearlman

McNulty finally got his wish. After weeks of lies, Carcetti caved to the potential implications of a serial killer running amuck. For a man with aspirations to run for governor of Maryland, that can't happen. So Jimmy's case finally became a true red ball and the floodgates opened. Not even McNulty could have expected the insanity that came along with the department's complete cooperation. As it stands right now, McNulty can have anything or anyone he wants. While he and Lester had been feverishly awaiting this moment, it quickly turned into exactly what they didn't need.

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The Wire: The Dickensian Aspect

by Jonathan Toomey, posted Feb 10th 2008 10:02PM

Clarke Peters as Det. Lester Freamon in The Wire.
(S05E06) "If you have a problem with this, I understand completely." - Freamon

I thought the theme of this season was supposed to be newspapers and the media? Maybe it's just me, but more than any other season of The Wire, this one seems to be focusing the least on its stated theme. Other than the steady story of Scott "worst journalist ever" Templeton, we really don't see The Sun as much as I'd like. I love Gus Haynes. He's a great character and I hope that the final four episodes take a little more time to dig deeper into his role.

That being said, I realize this is the final season and I'm hugely appreciative that any and all plots (new and old) are being addressed. Most shows don't take the time to wrap everything up properly. Remember the final season of Alias? What a mess. I just think things could be a bit more evenly balanced.


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The Wire: React Quotes

by Jonathan Toomey, posted Feb 3rd 2008 10:01PM

Tom McCarthy as Scott Templeton on 'The Wire.'
(S05E05) "Just 'cause they're in the street doesn't mean that they lack opinions." - Haynes

I hate Scott Templeton. Or should I say M. Scott Templeton? Did you see that on the newspaper article he co-wrote with Alma? He added a pointless first initial to his name! Nowhere in his bio on The Wire website does it say anything about a first name that starts with M. This very well could be a pointless detail, but on this show those types of things rarely occur. It's just another reason that Templeton is a giant ass. He's really no better a man than McNulty when you consider what he's doing. The difference is that Scott has this air of arrogance about him, as if he feels as though he's meant for great things. Yeah right. He's lazy and has no work ethic whatsoever. And he wonders why Gus continually passes him over and gives him tons of grunt work. Imagine how Gus will look at him when the truth does come out. That being said, I loved how this episode played out. One bullshitter versus another. That always leads to a good story.


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The Wire: Transitions

by Jonathan Toomey, posted Jan 27th 2008 10:30PM

Clarke Peters and Dominic West
(S05E04) "Buyer's market out there." - Templeton

Doing more with less. How many times have we heard that so far this season? You know what would be more accurate? Making something out of nothing. Just look at Colicchio in that opening scene. He saw Kenard with that brown bag and could have ignored it. For all he knew, it could have been a trout sandwich from one of those filthy carry-outs that everyone frequents. But Kenard was screwing around with Colicchio by filling that bag with leaves (and not some yellow-top vials) and Colicchio still hasn't figured out the simple fact that Michael and his hoppers are going to be back out there slinging again the next day. So why bother? Making something out of nothing is all that seems to be getting those Western officers through the day. Something tells me that a cop who's content with his job isn't going to be getting into any fist-fights with civilians.


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The Wire: Not For Attribution

by Jonathan Toomey, posted Jan 21st 2008 10:44AM

Method Man (Cheese) and Robert F. Chew (Prop Joe)
(S05E03) "They're dead where it doesn't count." - Fletcher

Poor Bunk. Nothing can ever go his way. He sees Jimmy digging a hole that he isn't ever going to be able to get himself out of and he does what anyone with half a brain does. He appeals to someone with logic. Someone with brains, wit, and experience. He calls on Freamon to knock some sense into McNulty, so he stops with this fake serial killer business. Then, the two of them started talking. Poor Bunk.


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The Wire: Unconfirmed Reports

by Jonathan Toomey, posted Jan 13th 2008 10:01PM

Jimmy McNulty (Dominic West) and Officer Bobby Brown (Bobby Brown) examine a dead woman on The Wire.
(S05E02) "This ain't Aruba, bitch." - Bunk

No... it's not. Of course, Bunk was referring to the Natalee Holloway case from a few years back. The case (which added considerable fuel to the frenzy that surrounds "missing white woman syndrome" in the news outlets) was addressed because of what it implies. The question? What's it take to get noticed? What's it take to get proper news coverage and police investigation? As we've learned, 22 dead black males just don't make the cut. As Bunk and Lester reasoned, you need breasts, white skin, and a cheerleader's outfit for good measure. That or be a tourist.

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HBO running new promos for The Wire - VIDEO

by Jonathan Toomey, posted Nov 14th 2007 12:21PM

The Wire
All in the game. HBO has been running these new promos for the fifth and final season of The Wire for about a month or two now. I think I first saw them at the beginning of October. Anyway, they play pretty infrequently and I'm not sure if everyone has seen them. The first is a short promo with no scenes. Just someone typing on a monitor, making general statements about the new season. As you can see from the screenshot above, the more things change, the more they stay the same because it sounds like McNulty is hitting the Jameson again. The second video is a short behind-the-scenes featurette with interviews from David Simon and some cast members. The Wire returns with its final ten episodes on January 6, 2008. Both videos are after the jump.

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Tim Gunn dishes at the Baltimore Book Festival

by Annie Wu, posted Oct 1st 2007 3:05PM
Tim GunnTim Gunn of Project Runway fame attended the Baltimore Book Festival on Sunday to promote his new book and Bravo show, Tim Gunn's Guide to Style. I was lucky enough to get pretty good seat before the rest of the crazed crowd consumed the tiny tent. Again, this was a book festival, but it would have been silly to think that the discussion wouldn't stray into television territory. Gunn briefly spoke about his new show and the history of its creation (Bravo wanted to do a show with him but had no ideas, Gunn came out with the book, Bravo found out and turned the book into a show about bettering women, not "make-overs"). Then, naturally, the topic of Project Runway came up and took over the rest of the Q&A. Gunn shared some sweet information on past seasons and the upcoming fourth cycle, premiering November 14th.

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The Daily Show: March 13, 2007

by Annie Wu, posted Mar 14th 2007 2:43PM
Jon Stewart"Cheney's Clout", "'08 Simple Rules: For Dating Our Withdrawal": Jon talked about the clout-loosening stylings of our very own Vice President. I don't think I've ever heard the word "clout" used so many times in my entire life. "This man is very, very un-good". The Democrats aren't doing so hot either. Their presentation for their plan for troop withdrawal was less than clear. I haven't heard someone accidentally say "19--" in a long, long time.

Maybe I blacked out for a few minutes, but I didn't see any correspondents in this episode. Not even a field report! Hmm. I don't think that's happened in a while. I suspect YouTube/Google is holding all of the correspondents hostage until Viacom pulls the lawsuit. It is the only logical explanation.

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The Wire: Know Your Place

by Michael Canfield, posted Nov 12th 2006 10:58PM
Michael and Dukie
(S04E09) "Might as well dump 'em, get another." -- Proposition Joe

Herc's never been much of a detective, but here his incompetence, which is sometimes played for laughs, turns tragic. He's become so myopic trying to find a way out of his camera dilemma, that he smashes and bungles his way through a murder investigation. If he'd have talked to Carver, a cop who took the time to get to know the players, he would have picked up Little Kevin no problem. His word is no good. I don't think he was even conscious of what he was doing when he promised Bubbles protection. He was merely saying whatever he needed to say, fully intending to honor it, but then unwilling to do so when it became inexpedient later. Worse than that, now Randy is back on his radar. Without management or talent, what is left of the Major Crimes Unit is doing more damage than good.

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Fans of The Wire "Jiggle It"

by Julia Ward, posted Nov 7th 2006 2:07PM
Young LeekDid you see The Wire on Sunday night? If not, you can start catching up by reading Michael Canfield's reviews. Then, and only then, can you "jiggle it."

Having just relocated to LA from DC, neighbor to Baltimore, I was psyched to hear a Charm City club shout-out to Young Leek on The Wire. Two killers for hire smoked out a New York City dealer who had invaded their turf by asking everyone they met if they'd heard the Young Leek club hit Jiggle It. "They don't listen to that shit up in New York." The first dude who doesn't know Jiggle It gets popped.

We don't want that to happen to you so here's a link to Leek's MySpace site where you can hear Baltimore fav Jiggle It - one of the most ridiculously infectious club tracks to come out in a long time. Right when I was feeling homesick for DC, The Wire drops a Young Leek track. I love those writers. Now, if I ever hear go-go music on DC-based show, I'll be in heaven.

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