Treme (TV Review)

Drinking Game

Take a Drink: for every live music number.

Take a Drink: any time bureaucracy prevents something simple from getting done.

Take a Drink: for corruption

Pour One Out/Drink a Shot: for any death and/or dead body.

Drink a Shot: whenever DJ Davis gets fired/quits/re-hired

Drink a Shot: whenever Antoine Batiste (Wendell Pierce) has a one night stand

Drink a Shot: on the rare moment Police Lieutenant Terry Colson (David Morse) manages a smile

Community Review

[ratings]

TV Review

By: Oberst Von Berauscht (A Toast) –

Following the devastation in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, the city of New Orleans suffers massive storm and flood damage.  Three months later, residents of the Treme neighborhood begin returning home.  The lives of residents from all levels of income, background, and history intertwine as they pick up the pieces.

Among the characters on the series are Trombonist Antoine Batiste (Wendell Pierce), Chef Janette Desautel (Kim Dickens), Mardi Gras Indian Albert “Big Chief” Lambreaux (Clarke Peters), Investment Banker Nelson Hidalgo (Jon Seda), and Radio personality “DJ” Davis McAlary.  each of these characters work hard every day to restore normalcy to their lives. 

Bearing in mind what constitutes "normal" in NOLA
Bearing in mind what constitutes “normal” in NOLA

A Toast

Treme is a powerful drama following the lives defined by this cultural melting pot that is New Orleans. The spiritual successor to prior HBO series The Wire, Treme explores the life and culture of a city, warts and all.  New Orleans is a city where black, white, rich, and poor live in close proximity.  This blend of influences set the stage for the creation of Jazz, the Blues, Rock and Roll, and everything else that followed.

The series features a cast of strong character actors, many of whom are New Orleans natives, as well as numerous appearances by New Orleans artists and musicians.  These performers lend authenticity to the series, making viewers feel as if they’re a fly on the wall. Veteran actors such as Melissa Leo, Khandi Alexander, and John Goodman work alongside solid newcomers like Lucia Micarelli, Michiel Huisman, and India Ennenga, all pulling their fair share of dramatic weight.

The Music of Treme is a character of its own, sometimes in the background, sometimes the foreground, always alive.

Live performances are a valuable part of the series, and are wonderfully produced.  The music ranges everywhere from traditional New Orleans Jazz and Blues to hip hip, rock and roll, and folk music.  This pastiche of styles is often fused together and ultimately difficult to define, much like the city of New Orleans itself.

Alongside the stellar contributing writers, co-creators/writers David Simon and Eric Overmyer have crafted a series of stories which tie together fantastically.  Heavy attention to detail is put into every aspect of production.  Much like The Wire, each episode of the series builds on each other, with every story constructing part of a larger thematic narrative.  The Wire used the city of Baltimore as a microcosm for all that is broken within American society.  Treme expands on these themes by including the ongoing fight to preserve culture in the face of business interests, bureaucracy, and disaster.

Hidalgo
Money makes the world go-round, for those with money…

Verdict

Essential viewing for music fans, fans of The Wire, and generally anyone looking for a more intelligent alternative to standard serialized television

AToast-150x150

About Oberst von Berauscht

Oberst Von Berauscht once retained the services of a Gypsy to imbue in him the ability to accurately describe the artistic qualities of a film up to seven decimal points. To maintain this unique skill, he must feast on the blood of a virgin every Harvest Moon, or failing that (and he usually does), he can also make a dog do that thing they do where they twist their heads slightly (you know, when they're confused about something) at least a few times a week. I've gotten way off track here... The point is, Oberst is one of the website's founders, so... yeah

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