So This Is How It Ends
Well, there it was. I’m kind of drawing a blank at the moment. . . we learned that Michael was the next Omar, Dukie the next Bubbles. Almost all the loose ends got tied up, with some wonted cynicism and a few happy endings. And like at Jimmy’s wake, we all realized that, uneven as this season has been, this show rules and there’s a lot we’ll miss about it.
If that sounds empty, it’s because it is. Finales are hard to discuss like that; on an emotional level, all your cumulative for the show and its characters comes rushing back. And it’s hard to be technical or critic-minded about an undertaking that, ultimately, belongs to the creators. They ended it how they wanted, and we have to deal with that. There’s no uncertainty as to what they’re thinking, second-guessing their instincts, wondering where the show is headed, or squinting at how everything will fit together.
What did and didn’t make it into that last episode is, in a lot of ways, Simon and co.’s definitive statement on what this program stood for. Or, more modestly, why this season had to be the way it was. The finale is a tautology that consumes everything that came before and will come after it.
I might say more later, and someone else will probably pipe up. But for now, consider this an open thread.
Actually, one thing: My two favorite scenes had to be Cheese’s murder and Marlo’s trip out into the night. I don’t know if Cheese’s speech about the game was one of the more definitive the show’s ever put forth, or the ultimate in dime store Wire-isms. I also don’t know which way it was supposed to be perceived by the characters. But that it was immediately followed by a murder that contradicted everything it contained—one that went against a lot of what’s been both depressing and demoralizing about the show—was kind of awesome. It’s cool that Bubbles got to eat upstairs, but Slim’s “that was for Joe” found hope in the most unlikely place. And not just hope for honor returning to crime, but that, in the larger context of the American city, there could be decency and standards for large-scale enterprises.
Yes, I recognize the irony of Slim Charles leaving that mark on the plot, and not Daniels, who wanted so badly to do so on the right side of the law. WHAT THE FUCK IS IN THAT FILE?!?!!? Exactly, I mean.
And then Marlo. I know that people have had some issues with his character’s one-dimensional nature, and how blank he can seem at times. But Jamie Hector might be the best actor on that show, since the few times Marlo does show any kind of anything do so much to shape our perception of him. I will probably watch the finale again just to see that expression on his face when he bleeds through his suit. At first glance, it seemed equal parts nostalgia, disdain, indifference, fear, resolve, and realization. And that’s with a bunch of shadows on him and no chance for me to press rewind.
Anyway, have at it. More later.
. . . it’s now half an hour later, and I just finished reading THE BEST DAVID SIMON INTERVIEW EVER.