Say It With Thunder
Well, Shoals already laid out a mess of the reasons why I find my brain sluggish when I would have thought it feverish, and I don’t have all that much to add. When something is so well-wrought and so exceedingly well-ended, it ends up defying too much dissection. It’s akin, I think, to the moment you close the back cover of a just-finished novel, and if it’s a good one you’re filled with emotion, but there’s a distinct quietness. The curtain has come down. There is really little more to say.
Of course my impulse every time I do finish a really good novel is to get up and run to the shelf and dive into another one. There’s also the impulse to put that off, to just let the narrative sink in. But in this instance there’s no next novel at the ready. The Wire is over, and another season, another episode won’t be on the way. But that curtain is down, and rightly so, and any loose ends left were left for a reason.
I will say that in terms of endings, Simon has managed to be quite wry, from Cheese’s headshot at the hands of Slim to McNulty and Freamon metaphorically dead, to Marlo’s fate worse than death (no one knows his name). These American lives, those that are moving on at all, are opening their second acts, and while the cyclicality of Michael and Sydnor and Dukie is expectedly bleak, there’s a small space for hope (admittedly well-earned) in Namond, Prez, and of course Bubbles. I think that what I will remember most from this season is Andre Royo’s inspired performances, his final fleshing out of the human being who lived inside Bubbles all those years, finally clear-eyed and awake, finally starting to push on through real life.
If I have any more closing thoughts I will be sure to bring them here, but if not, I think I’ve said plenty these past two seasons, and I stand by my words. Thanks for listening.