Thursday, December 13, 2007

‘The Wire’ writers rock!

Cheers to David Simon, Ed Burns, Bill Zorzi, George Pelecanos, Richard Price, Dennis Lehane, Chris Collins... hell, cheers to me too!... because the writers of “The Wire” (Season 4) have been nominated for a Writers Guild Award.

The bad news? We’re up against the farewell season of “The Sopranos.” Oh well...

Double-congrats to Simon and Burns, who also received an Episodic Drama nomination for the final episode of that middle-school story arc (“Final Grades”). They’re up against episodes of “The Sopranos,” “The Closer,” “Lost,” “Mad Men” and “Dexter.”

Here are the names of all the writers nominated in the Dramatic Series category. (Solidarity!)

DEXTER
Written by Scott Buck, Daniel Cerone, Drew Z. Greenberg, Lauren Gussis, Kevin Maynard, Clyde Phillips, Melissa Rosenberg, Tim Schlattman. (Showtime)

FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS
Written by Bridget Carpenter, Kerry Ehrin, Carter Harris, Elizabeth Heldens, David Hudgins, Jason Katims, Patrick Massett, Andy Miller, Aaron Rahsaan Thomas, John Zinman. (NBC)

MAD MEN
Written by Lisa Albert, Bridget Bedard, Andre Jacquemetton, Maria Jacquemetton, Tom Palmer, Chris Provenzano, Robin Veith, Matthew Weiner. (AMC)

THE SOPRANOS
Written by David Chase, Diane Frolov, Andrew Schneider, Matthew Weiner, Terence Winter. (HBO)

THE WIRE
Written by Ed Burns, Chris Collins, Dennis Lehane, David Mills, George Pelecanos, Richard Price, David Simon, William F. Zorzi. (HBO)

32 comments:

DeAngelo Starnes said...

If The Sopranos win, it'll be for sentimental reasons. That show hasn't been that well-written for the last three seasons.

If I had a vote, Dexter would edge The Wire.

Doctor Memory said...

So the real question here is: who do we have to set on fire in order to get the Emmys to even notice The Wire?

Anonymous said...

Have to parrot Deangelo here, Sopranos has gone down since they stopped the focus on the Christopher character, always the most compeling to me. Mad Men is good, but half of that is nostalgia for the days you could pinch your secretary on the ass.
Nip/Tuck is missing I think. But you're right, Dexter this season and last has been amazing. The last four episodes of this season is some of the best TV I've seen in a long time. My edge would be for the Wire, but the lack of single character focus is always going to make it lose out in the tunnel vision of the voters.

Undercover Black Man said...

I have slept totally on "Dexter." Haven't seen a minute of it.

DeAngelo Starnes said...

^Bruh, you gotta get hip. That's some good tv.

And my vote for Dexter only tells you how baad The Wire is. But Dexter's the shit.

submariner said...

I can almost agree with everything said thus far. Do you watch The Shield?

Undercover Black Man said...

^ Great link, Submariner. ;^D

I was never into "The Shield." Haven't seen much of any dramas on a regular basis for the past decade or so... "Sopranos" and "Deadwood" being the only ones I watched religiously (aside from "The Wire").

Anonymous said...

I like the Closer, even if the episodic open and shut case does run its course after a while. If it were a level playing field (based on the quality of the writing) the wire would win hands down, but life is rarely like that.

can't believe in just over 3 weeks the final season starts, and then in just ten episodes it's all over.

Will they all be 1 hour episodes, or will any be extended? (do you have the insider knowledge?)

machine levine

Undercover Black Man said...

^ No insider knowledge, machine. But those season-enders usually run longer than 60 mins. I would definitely expect so for the series finale.

SJ said...

Dexter is good, but season 2 was a let-down.

Nothing beats The Wire imo (though I love The Sopranos and Deadwood).

Congrats to all the writers, you guys deserve it.

J.K. Mahal said...

Congrats! Love "The Wire."

It's my go-to show for good storytelling and characterization.
Can't tell you how much I appreciate what I've learned from it.

I hope it wins the WGA award. And I agree with doctor memory... what do we have to do to get the Emmys to recognize you folks?

submariner said...

Let's take this a bit further. The consensus currently seems to be that Dexter and The Wire stand out. Why is that?

I say it's because both shows affirm the humanity of elements in society that are typically dismissed as unworthy of our sympathies.

DeAngelo Starnes said...

deep insight, sub. good one.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Starnes.

Nothing edges The Wire. You need to take that back. Dexter is great entertainment, and I enjoy it very much too. But edges The Wire? Damn, makes me really have to question your judgement in all the previous debates with UBM, whether I agreed with you or not.

it's a shame.

Anonymous said...

PS - how did these nominations come about? The Wire didn't air any episodes in 07.

Undercover Black Man said...

Mr. Starnes. Nothing edges The Wire. You need to take that back.

Uh-oh, DeAngelo... you done stepped on a land mine. I coulda warned you... ;^)

Undercover Black Man said...

Submariner wrote: "I say it's because both shows affirm the humanity of elements in society that are typically dismissed as unworthy of our sympathies."

Well, see... I need to tread lightly, never having sat and watched "Dexter," BUT...

Part of what turned me off to the whole premise was this idea of "humanizing" a serial killer. Having read about actual serial killers, I know that these are true monsters. If there's anybody I would write out of the human race, it's this particular type of compulsive, soulless, vicious thief of life.

I don't think (and this may be an unfair assumption) that this show is interested in exploring the reality of evil. Like some of y'all say, it's an entertainment.

Read about G.J. Schaefer if you think the idea of a cop/serial killer is cute.

Wanda said...

well congratulations anyway david. you never know, their might be an upset! :)

Undercover Black Man said...

Thanks Wanda... and to all.

SJ said...

Dexter can't compare to The Wire at all. The Wire really is in a league of it's own. Dexter is merely entertainment...The Wire is much, much more.

But UBM, there are certain themes in the 2nd season (no spoilers here) of Dexter which deal with whether what Dexter is is really evil or not. In any case, it is pure fiction with little basis in reality (Battlestar Galactica is a wonderful show about human emotions and conflict, even though it is sci-fi).

Anonymous said...

the WGA eligibility calendar runs from Oct. 1 to Sept. 30.

...explains how The Wire was able to get noms.

dez said...

And I agree with doctor memory... what do we have to do to get the Emmys to recognize you folks?

Film the show in Hollywood, unfortunately.

Congrats, David and all "Wire" writers! :-) Plus, you really have to check out "Dexter"--it's first-class entertainment and deeper than I think some people are giving it credit for (IMHO).

neptune said...

arriving late to the party...

Congratulations. However, I have to go with either my sentimental favorite, The Sopranos, or my newer fav, Mad Men. Mad Men really is a wonderful period piece of the early 1960s. It's stunning to see so many people smoking everywhere all the time, and in particular, to see pregnant women smoking and drinking.

Mad Men is on hiatus now but should be back next year. The first season's shows can be watched here: http://www.sidereel.com/_television

But again, congrats for The Wire. Always have to support good writing.

DeAngelo Starnes said...

anonymous, please don't let my opinion destroy my cred. A brotha's just trying to be provocative.

On the real tip, The Wire is the shit. It is extremely complex and does an outstanding job weaving various characters' storylines into a singular theme. Seasons Two and Three did this extremely well. And this last season was similarly outstanding.

But Dexter's the new kid on the block.

And so maybe I fell into that Chris Rock line: "Commitment! Or new pussy?"

Dexter's the shit but so is The Wire. And I feel the same way I felt when Oz was the shit until The Sopranos came on board.

Both fell off near the end.

submariner said...

Fiction matters because it can expand the boundaries of the human experience and there are certain aspects of humanity that are lost in mere reporting. Lynn Hunt has recently proposed that conception of human rights was critically linked to the popularity of epistolary novels in the 18th century.

While in no way morally equivalent, what we ask of the soldier during war time is not markedly different than what the serial killer does of his own volition in civil society. This was skillfully examined in the movie In the Valley of Elah.

What killers, serial and otherwise, do is in no way 'cute'. But there is a compression that takes place when we deal with such abhorrent persons. Shows like Dexter and The Wire tune us into frequencies of existence that are usually beyond our listening range. In the case of Dexter, farce is the vehicle of choice.

DeAngelo Starnes said...

^ sub, you're kicking ass.

Dave, I think you found your next debate victim.

And speaking of debate, let's get it on. I'm itching to talk some mo' shit.

Schottzie03 said...

Congrats...my money is on The Wire.

Undercover Black Man said...

Dave, I think you found your next debate victim.

I would need to 'roid up first, DeAngelo.

Speaking of recovery time... that mess with Bro. Nulan interfered with my sleep. I still ain't right.

When I come back at you, I want to be well-rested and sharp as a tack.

Bklyn6 said...

Congrats on the nomination David. Sorry I can't say I love your work, as I've never seen the show. But, judging by the comments here, I need to check it out.

Felicia Pearson (who I'd only heard of for the first time today) was on the Brian Lehrer show today. I haven't listened to the podcast yet, but I believe she was talking about her memoir and connections between her life and her character on the show. The site links to a youtube video of her talking about what happened when she discovered bootleg copies of The Wire.

Undercover Black Man said...

^ That's so funny, Bklyn6! I was actually in the car with David Simon when he got the cell-phone call from Snoop saying, basically, "What you want me to do?" She had caught somebody selling bootleg "Wire" DVDs on the street, and evidently was holding on to him while seeking instructions from Simon.

Thank you for that radio link. I'm gonna post about it.

Bklyn6 said...

I was actually in the car with David Simon when he got the cell-phone call....

LOL. A caller to the Brian Lehrer Show brought this up. He said he'd read the anecdote in a magazine (can't remember which).

Anonymous said...

...oh Mr. Starnes....

I can't stay mad at you...