The Wire at 20

Over the last decade, I’ve watched The Wire three times in its entirety and I’m nowhere near done with it yet. The show is an incredibly compelling and authentic depiction of contemporary America and a tour de force of storytelling.

I’ve always been too poor or too cheap to have an HBO subscription, so while the show premiered in June 2002, I didn’t get to it until ten years later. My binge-watching of the series has been made possible thanks entirely to Amazon Prime, where it streamed for several years.

In today’s Times, there’s a good — albeit too short! — interview with Ed Burns and David Simon, the show’s creators. They talk about the show’s legacy and, sadly, how none of the lessons of the show have made much of an impact on the societal policies it was critiquing. The consolation prize of having made one of the best TV shows ever seems not to impress them.

It’s worth checking out whether you’re a fan or a future fan of the show. (Yes, those are the only two options.)