Wednesday, April 15, 2009

David Simon

I thought the interview with David Simon that we read in class was really intriguing. I liked how he specifically compared The Wire not with Shakespearean models but Greek ones. It's interesting that he says they created "doomed and fated protagonists who confront a rigged game and their won mortality". I think in a way the characters would feel that this was true. They constantly consider this life they lead to be a game, and they are just the players. The institution of the police department seems like they know that they cannot win so most of them don't even try. They get upset when McNulty goes a step further and wants more action.
This Greek Tragedy of a show is very different from the usual television shows in which "individuals are often portrayed as rising above institutions to achieve catharsis." Simon says the show is about all the "postmodern institutions [that] trump individuality and morality and justice" and in a way this really is the more realistic course a television show can take. The good guys don't always win they aren't even always good and the bad aren't even always bad. You can't split the world into two categories of good and bad, light and dark. There is no force or dark side. It's all very much grey. Rarely does life turn out like televsion. But in the case of The Wire, I think it might get close. And this is something really different and interesting to see. It's kind of eye opening.

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