March 2, 2024

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The Wire “All Prologue”

Season Two, Episode Six.

Besides the fun of seeing Omar being far more honest and quick-witted at trial than anyone expected, this episode seems to feature families maybe coming together.

Then it ends with families maybe doing the opposite.

Yes, Omar is the lead witness at Bird’s trial.  The voucher for nice clothes he used to buy a tie he half puts on.  Otherwise, he’s in his street clothes.  And he dishes on Bird.  He even gets under the skin of the Barksdale Organization’s attorney when that man tries to expunge Omar’s character since Omar himself is an admitted thief.  As it stands, suggesting that Omar never tried to kill anybody that the courts know about, or that he compares his shotgun to the lawyer’s briefcase…well, that rattles Mr. Levy something good.  Bird is getting life in jail.

McNulty asks Omar once the trial’s over if he really did see Bird kill the witness.  Omar simply asks if McNulty really wants to know.

As it is, McNulty is giving up on the whole murder police thing.  He won’t be finding the body’s real name, so why bother?  He’s even trying to make it up with the wife.  They even go on a date.  And then have some hot sex.

Nick, meanwhile, comes through for his cousin for the destruction of the Camaro.  Using the Greek’s people gets Nick a meeting with Proposition Joe, and even manages to get a refund for Ziggy’s debt based on the value of the car being far more than the value of the debt.  Granted, were it not for the Greek, Joe would have killed both Nick and Ziggy by then, but Nick is fairly smart, and even knows killing Joe’s people won’t be very good business in the long run.  He’ll help the Greek get his chemicals through, but he won’t let Ziggy help because Ziggy screws things up.

That may lead to problems.  Ziggy seems to believe that if one person can do something, he can too.  When he gets the cash from Nick, he buys a round at the bar like his dad and then uses a $100 bill to light a cigarette, something that infuriates Frank and frustrates Nick.  But Frank and Ziggy talk it out.  See, Frank isn’t using a lot of the money on himself.  The detail finds no evidence that Frank has more money than he should.  He really is using it for the union so his men, including his son and nephew, can keep working an honest, decent living.  The grief and concern in Frank’s eyes again underline how much Chris Bauer was wasted on True Blood.

As for the detail itself, Beadie, Lester, and Bunk have the thinnest of thin things to look at, and Daniels realizes there probably aren’t drugs coming in through the docks.  There’s too much money in the union if not in Frank’s personal pocket.  Maybe they’re just looking the other way for smugglers?  Daniels sends Prez and Kima to look into strippers that maybe come from overseas.  Kima has to take her girlfriend along, since that woman is having a bit of a jealous snit over this whole visit-strip-clubs thing.  The thing seems to make Prez more nervous than Kima, though Shardene from the previous season gives the cops an in with a former co-worker.

But that’s how things start.  They end worse for various families.  On one end, McNulty does spend the night with his estranged wife, but she asks him to leave before the kids come home so as not to get their hopes up.  McNulty was already getting his own up, so that didn’t help.

And then, in prison, we see D’Angelo is maybe cleaning himself up.  He’s flushing his drugs, and he’s going to shoulder the burden of his prison sentence.  He won’t play along with his Uncle Avon anymore, though.  D wanted out of the family business, and being in prison keeps him out.  He tells his mother he has to take his licks because that’s what she taught him.  He’s even having literary discussions in the prison library.  It’s hard to say where his head is, but he doesn’t look like he’ll be a help or a hinderance to the Barksdale Organization anymore.

Well, he won’t be much of anything, because a new inmate finds him alone in the backroom of the library and strangles D to death with a belt and makes it look like a suicide.

D’Angelo was no saint, but he deserved far better than anything this show hit him with.