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THE WIRE season 4 (see post #1 re: SPOILERS)


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#1 of 142 OFFLINE   Michael Reuben

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Posted August 25 2006 - 02:55 AM

The official premiere date is Sept. 10 on HBO broadcast, but anyone with HBO On Demand can see the first episode on Sept. 4. Throughout the initial run, HBO plans to make each episode available to On Demand customers on Mondays, six days before the broadcast premiere. They've described this as an experiment, presumably to see whether the early availability via On Demand increases the viewership of this critically acclaimed but criminally underwatched series.

Since not everyone has HBO On Demand, it is crucial that posts in this thread take care to avoid spoilers (or use spoiler protection). It used to be that we only had to worry about the 3-hour delay between east and west coasts. Now we have a delay of as much as 6 days between broadcast and On Demand. Fans and posters, please take note!

This will be the first time in years that HBO isn't running one of its original series in the 9pm Sunday slot. Apparently, The Wire did better at 10pm (its original time) than at 9pm (which HBO tried for season 3). As a lead-in, HBO is doing movie premieres from 8-10pm on Sundays.

Season 4 of The Wire has 13 episodes, and HBO is providing the entire series to reviewers, no doubt hoping to get reviews like the one by Adam Buckman that appeared in today's New York Post:

Quote:
The shows are so powerful - so well-written, acted, filmed and edited - that the experience of watching them has left me a complete wreck.

I am so blown away by this show that I will go out on a limb here to declare that these 13 episodes just might comprise the single finest piece of work ever produced for American TV.

****

This season, creator/executive producer David Simon and his writers have come up with something new. To their depiction of cops, criminals and the Baltimore city government, they have added a storyline about the public school system and the difficulties associated with teaching inner-city kids who often choose the corner drug trade over education.

To tell this story, the show's producers have cast a group of child actors whose performances are jaw-dropping - principally the actors who play four neighborhood friends who all attend the same middle school.

****

Where these four characters are concerned, a warning: If your heart breaks easily, then you might want to avoid watching "The Wire" altogether.

But if your heart can stand it, following the story of these four boys for 13 Sundays this fall will be one of the most rewarding experiences you've ever had watching TV.

http://www.nypost.co....am_buckman.htm

(NOTE: I've quoted somewhat more extensively than usual, because the Post's articles don't stay active for more than a few days.)

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#2 of 142 OFFLINE   Holadem

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Posted August 25 2006 - 06:41 AM

Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image

But...
Quote:
The shows are so powerful - so well-written, acted, filmed and edited - that the experience of watching them has left me a complete wreck.

I am so blown away by this show that I will go out on a limb here to declare that these 13 episodes just might comprise the single finest piece of work ever produced for American TV.
I am wary of this sort of hyperbole. Just sets up expectations nothing can match.

"Criminally underwatched" is right.

This is my second favorite HBO show (used to be 3rd), right below Six Feet Under. Can't wait to see some of my favorite characters return.

I wonder what McNulty is up to. He seemed to have reached an epiphany of sorts.

--
H

#3 of 142 OFFLINE   Michael Reuben

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Posted August 25 2006 - 07:21 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Holadem
Just sets up expectations nothing can match.
I know what you mean, but for me this just confirms that season 4 maintains the level of excellence that the show achieved throughout the previous 3 seasons.

I envy the reviewers who get to watch all the episodes at one shot. When I re-watched season 2 on DVD, it was a different and more satisfying experience than watching the episodes spread over three months.

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#4 of 142 OFFLINE   Jeremiah

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Posted August 25 2006 - 03:26 PM

I do think the first two Seasons are the greatest seasons of any show I have ever seen. Season 3 was great but the first 2 were pretty close to perfect. Glad the show is back for a fourth, didn't realize it was just around the corner.
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#5 of 142 OFFLINE   Jason Hughes

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Posted August 26 2006 - 09:22 AM

I can't wait. But I will wait for the actual broadcast as I want to watch it in HD.
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#6 of 142 OFFLINE   Chad Erickson

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Posted August 28 2006 - 05:57 AM

I can't wait for next Monday night when i can sit down and finally start watching season 4. Count me in as a person that will be watching it OnDemand and again during it's Sunday night broadcast.

I agree with everyone above regarding Season 1 and 2. It is some of the best TV storytelling i have ever seen.

#7 of 142 OFFLINE   Holadem

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Posted August 28 2006 - 07:57 AM

While S2 may improve (very relative of course) on rewatch, S1 & S3 were my perfect seasons. S2 was structurally more complex for sure, but the main difference is that the emotional investment (I feel dirty saying that) I had in the barksdale crew just couldn't be matched by the Sabotkas. The extremely irritating Ziggy didn't help.

I expect to see Marlo Stanfield in the background this season, as the focus shifts away from criminal matters.

--
H

#8 of 142 OFFLINE   Michael Reuben

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Posted September 04 2006 - 02:56 PM

So was anyone with HBO On Demand able to get the first episode of season 4 today? The HBO website still says it will be available 9/4, but I couldn't find it anywhere in the On-Demand listings.

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#9 of 142 OFFLINE   Raasean Asaad

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Posted September 05 2006 - 01:45 AM

I was able to watch it yesterday with no problem at about 3 o'clock.

Holadem, I don't think there will be any less focus on criminal matters now that Avon is in jail and the Barksdale crew is busted up. I think just like in like in life the target shifts to the new crew and the wire stays up. Now its all about Marlo...
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#10 of 142 OFFLINE   Marty M

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Posted September 05 2006 - 05:03 AM

Quote:
This will be the first time in years that HBO isn't running one of its original series in the 9pm Sunday slot. Apparently, The Wire did better at 10pm (its original time) than at 9pm (which HBO tried for season 3). As a lead-in, HBO is doing movie premieres from 8-10pm on Sundays.
I think ABCs Desperate Housewives in the 9:00 timeslot was effecting the HBO series in that same timeslot. Now that Grey's Anatomy has been moved from its Sunday 10:00 timeslot, HBO has a chance for some decent ratings.

I have HBO on Demand, so I might be inclined to watch an episode early on occasion. It will give me a chance to watch a Sunday night football game.

Quote:
So was anyone with HBO On Demand able to get the first episodes of season 4 today? The HBO website still says it will be available 9/4, but I couldn't find it anywhere in the On-Demand listings.
It was available on my cable system here. I clicked on The Wire and there were three choices. The two specials that aired regarding the upcoming season and the first episode of this season. I think it is episode #38? I'm not at home, so can't say for sure, but it is the only episode that shows up on that screen.
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#11 of 142 OFFLINE   Michael Reuben

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Posted September 05 2006 - 05:46 AM

It appears that Time Warner Cable of Manhattan took Labor Day off. Their HBO On Demand wasn't updated until today with any of the new offerings.

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#12 of 142 OFFLINE   Robert A. Willis Jr.

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Posted September 06 2006 - 05:14 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Marty M
I think ABCs Desperate Housewives in the 9:00 timeslot was effecting the HBO series in that same timeslot. Now that Grey's Anatomy has been moved from its Sunday 10:00 timeslot, HBO has a chance for some decent ratings.

I have HBO on Demand, so I might be inclined to watch an episode early on occasion. It will give me a chance to watch a Sunday night football game.


It was available on my cable system here. I clicked on The Wire and there were three choices. The two specials that aired regarding the upcoming season and the first episode of this season. I think it is episode #38? I'm not at home, so can't say for sure, but it is the only episode that shows up on that screen.


Yep episode #38. I'll watch it again on Sunday.

#13 of 142 OFFLINE   Ryan L. Bisasky

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Posted September 06 2006 - 05:28 AM

apparently according to some sites, the show still won't be broadcasted in hd.
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#14 of 142 OFFLINE   Chad Erickson

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Posted September 06 2006 - 05:32 AM

It wasn't available on Comcast in Minneapolis until Tuesday. I called Monday night and the Comcast rep was stumped as to why it wasn't there. i was a little disappointed that i couldn't see it until Tuesday, but the wait was worth it. I won't give anything away, but it sure looks like it is going to be another great season. Count me in as a person that will be watching the new episode every Monday night and then again in HD on Sunday's.

#15 of 142 OFFLINE   Holadem

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Posted September 06 2006 - 05:35 AM

What's the $$$ per OnDemand ep (if you don't mind sharing)?

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#16 of 142 OFFLINE   Michael Reuben

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Posted September 06 2006 - 07:28 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Holadem
What's the $$$ per OnDemand ep (if you don't mind sharing)?
I don't know whether it's the same on all cable systems, but here HBO On Demand isn't a "pay per view" channel. Once you have it, all listed content is available at no additional charge.

TW Cable of Manhattan used to charge $9.99 per month for its package of "premium" on-demand channels (HBO, Showtime, Cinemax, The Movie Channel). Now those channels are included with the subscriptions to the respective premium services.

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#17 of 142 OFFLINE   Holadem

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Posted September 06 2006 - 12:49 PM

Thanks, Michael.

Do you (or anyone) know if the 2000 miniseries The Corner from the same writer is worth checking out? I understand it threads over much of the same territory, will I have been spoilt (quality wise) by The Wire?

--
H

#18 of 142 OFFLINE   James St

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Posted September 07 2006 - 01:19 AM

I thought it was a pretty good first episode. It introduces the new characters and shows how things have progressed from the end of last season. I thought the opening scene in Home Depot was pretty funny but found it strange to see that genderless anomaly with the corn rows as a part of the "muscle."

#19 of 142 OFFLINE   Scott Hanson

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Posted September 08 2006 - 01:48 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chad Erickson
It wasn't available on Comcast in Minneapolis until Tuesday. I called Monday night and the Comcast rep was stumped as to why it wasn't there. i was a little disappointed that i couldn't see it until Tuesday, but the wait was worth it. I won't give anything away, but it sure looks like it is going to be another great season. Count me in as a person that will be watching the new episode every Monday night and then again in HD on Sunday's.
As Jason said above, it's not looking like it will be in HD. And at least according to the Directv guide, it's not. This just blows my mind. How are half hour comedy shows like Entourage and Lucky Louie (even it's first season) in HD, but yet 'The Wire', a show prime for HD still is not even in it's 4th season. What gives? This is reason enough for me to just wait for the DVDs.

#20 of 142 OFFLINE   Raasean Asaad

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Posted September 08 2006 - 05:05 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Holadem
Thanks, Michael.

Do you (or anyone) know if the 2000 miniseries The Corner from the same writer is worth checking out? I understand it threads over much of the same territory, will I have been spoilt (quality wise) by The Wire?

--
H

Oh it blends in nicely, think of it like this: Homicide tells the story from a beat cops perpective, The Corner tells the tale from an addicts perspective and The Wire is all the politics and special unit type stuff. Taken all together they tell the tale of the "Drug War" in Baltimore (Balmer) perfectly.
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