The Wire: Season 3 (TV Review)

Drinking Game

Take a Drink: for top down politics

Take a Drink: for scatalogical and/or sex jokes

Take a Drink: for corner smash-ups

Take a Drink: every time Omar whistles or you hear “Omar comin’!”

Take a Drink: whenever a police officer of any rank gets their ass chewed out

Do a Shot: for parliamentary procedure

Do a Shot: for conflict between brothers

Pour One Out: for Hamsterdam

Community Review


TV Review

By: Henry J. Fromage (A Toast) –

Season 3 of The Wire is all about Politics.  Street Politics, Police Politics, Sex Politics, Criminal Politics, and the dirtiest of all, Politics Politics.


Kudos if you can combine more than one.

This season, the Special Investigations Unit is back together, and hot on the trail of Stringer Bell.  New forces are rising on the street, however, led by the deadly calm Marlo Stanfield, and the Barskdale empire also has to deal with the return of Avon, and his potential undoing of everything Bell has built in his absence.  On the police front, pressure is intense from City Hall to bring down the crime rate “by any means necessary”.  One soon-to-be retired major decides to try something different…

A Toast

One of the things that is so great about The Wire is how each season it layers on more perspectives on and entanglements with Baltimore’s drug (and everything else) problem.  Season 3 takes us into the backrooms of city government and the upper offices of the police department, where policy is made and shoved downwards until it becomes the headaches of and impediments to everyday police officers.

The Barksdale drug operation has begun to resemble that top-down approach in many ways by this point in the series, a parallel accentuated when Stringer tries to put some money to work in more legitimate arenas and falls prey to the real barracudas- state politicians.


Sheeit!  I’m a shark, motherfucker!

It’s Major Colvin’s (Robert Wisdom) Hamsterdam, though, that has provoked the most reaction from this season.  The embattled policeman decides that since he’s retiring anyway, he’s going to finally clear some of his worst corners by brown-bagging drugs.  He creates a “free zone” where police will ignore the drug trade as long as there’s no violence… so he effectively legalizes drugs.  This grand social experiment produces results good, bad, and ugly (never more so than when we get to see how indistinguishable from Hell Junkie Valhalla would really be).  While its real-world efficacy is a definite matter of debate, that debate is a fascinating- and currently resonant- one.

Once more, however, the ultimate triumph of The Wire rests on character, character, and more character.  We see some arcs end (several in the climax of the season, which is positively Shakespearean) while others begin- the chilling Marlo (Jamie Hector), Chad Coleman’s ex-con banger Cutty Wise, who is trying to make a life for himself on the outside,  Bubble’s new shadow, whatever freak force of nature that Snoop (Felicia Pearson) is, and many more.  Oh, and Aidan Gillen is a face HBO viewers will be familiar with, portraying a city councilman playing that political Game, in the hunt for that mayoral throne…


Petyr Baelishes never die…


Here I go again, forgetting some of the most memorable events of the season.  For example, this happened:


Words cannot express the awesome…

For every provocative social parable, perfectly constructed quote, or deeply affecting character moment The Wire delivers, it also gives us a nugget of sheer badassery.  And that is why it is still unmatched in the annals of Television History.


About Henry J. Fromage

Movieboozer is a humor website and drinking games are intended for entertainment purposes only, please drink responsibly.

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