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The Wire Episode 58 Review: Omar Bagged Up

February 25, 2008

I did have a hard time keeping this one to myself for the last few weeks, Omar’s death. Though I probably should have gone ahead and mentioned it last week considering the number of spoilers that have been floating about this since the second week of this season (some of them have been comically wrong, though, except about Omar’s death for some reason).

Omar was in part a victim of his own anger, and also of his own code. The streets are no place for personal codes of honor. This is not The Godfather, this is (meta) reality. I don’t think it means anymore than that, and perhaps the writers toying with our need for justice on Marlo, and expecting the police not to be able to deliver. Omar had the entire neighborhood too concerned about what he’d do. I don’t know that the “youngin'” Kennard was so eager to move up the ladder that he’d take out Omar to impress Marlo. I think he was just a scared kid. I didn’t make too much of the tag switch in the morgue. Omar’s “name” was important to him, but we didn’t need the cute bit at the end to make us realize. We understood every time people saw him and started scrambling, screaming “Omar, yo!”

And that was that.

If there are any plot repercussions to his death they aren’t apparent, outside the names provided to McNulty via the hit list found on Omar’s body.

Bunk does come to understand he’ll need a little bit of McNulty’s assistance. Now his integrity is compromised as well. McNulty’s guilt is beginning to gush forth. He’s confessed to Kima and Beadie (congrats to Amy Ryan on the Oscar nom) who are both disgusted with him. Both are officers of the law and may be compelled to report what they know.

Templeton is going to get aired out. The Iraq vet he interviewed complained about the report, and Gus is forced to print a correction as a result.

We know, don’t we, that both lies will be exposed — McNulty’s and Templeton’s. I’m interested to see who gets dragged down along with them. Maybe in the end it’s just McNulty and Templeton. What about Carcetti’s future?

There’s a funny, if too obvious, scene with Kima and McNulty getting an FBI profile on the “killer.” The profile is of course a perfect description of McNulty.

Freamon and Leander crack Marlo’s code. Marlo is going down, and so is Chris, thanks to Bunk. Now, we know Micheal didn’t sell out Chris but he’s sure to be blamed – probably not by Chris, though. Marlo may go down due to the cell phone number that Herc stole from Levy’s office. Levy is sure to figure this out. [Edit: It’s been too long since I’ve been in front of my law books, but I haven’t mentioned the obvious, this is an illegal wiretap and surely Levy will get Marlo off the hook on that count]

Dukie gets a job, of sorts, not before running into Poot, working in a sporting goods store. Rather than give Dukie hope there’s a way out it seems to make him more resigned to his situation. Dukie’s working for a junkie/junk man stealing and selling junk. Hey, isn’t that what happened to Sherrard? Bubs?

Carcetti’s situation becomes interesting. The Congressman representing Prince Georges County, MD, an enclave for wealthy African-Americans, puts out feelers he’s thinking of running for Governor. Carcetti acts fast to try and talk him down, realizing that this is a shot across the bow rather than a serious move. In the end, he has to pay off folks, and he’s back with Nerese and Clay’s grinnin’ ass, back on the prowl after embarassing the DA.

I like the way the season has gone, dry mostly, like a good news article on urban decay, and the only time things turn purple are when we go home with McNulty or hang out with Bubs. Despite, or perhaps because of, the dry approach in the writer’s storytelling, the series is as engrossing as ever. Speaking of the Bubs subplot, shame on me as a Nashville resident for not talking about Steve Earle, who is singing “Way Down in the Hole” this season and portraying Walon, Bubs’ NA sponsor.

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8 Comments leave one →
  1. February 25, 2008 2:03 pm

    It was sad to see Omar go in such an anti-climatic way, no gun battle no standing tall … just done in by getting emotional and sloppy. Sad but seemed like the most likely way it would happen.

    -T

  2. Brendan permalink
    February 26, 2008 12:31 am

    The switch of the name tags at the morgue showed how unimportant Omar was to the rest of society, despite him being such an iconic figure to the viewers. Along the same lines, there is discussion at The Sun about whether to run a story about his death or something else (a real drab event, if I remember) that happened in the city that day. They decide on the latter, leaving Omar nothing more than a name on some paperwork.

  3. February 26, 2008 12:46 am

    Interesting, but the key isn’t that the name was shown switched, but that the mistake was corrected.

  4. Brendan permalink
    February 26, 2008 11:16 am

    On another note, the past two episodes (the 8th and 9th) have saved this season. Before that, for me the story was getting very repetitive. These final episodes have been among the series best;the 9th episode had me through the whole spectrum of emotions: anger, sadness, amazement, laughing my ass off, among others. I won’t give anything away, but if you haven’t seen it your in for a treat.

  5. February 26, 2008 12:17 pm

    I have seen it. In emotional terms I felt last season much more, but I agree that these past couple of episodes have been very good. I’d even include #57 despite it feeling like one big exposition. Simon isn’t working from as many episodes as he’s been able to, so I think to make this season work he’s had to do a lot of exposition as opposed to straight storytelling.

  6. Roga permalink
    February 26, 2008 2:23 pm

    Tell me someone else noticed Omar not limping as he walked into the store right before his demise?

  7. daniel permalink
    February 27, 2008 3:33 am

    omars cold blooded killing of sorvino the episode before set us up for his demise.
    after butchies death i was convinced omar was going to thrill the fans and bring down marlo’s crew single handedly.
    usually omars victims are armed but with sorvino it was outright execution.
    a level of respect was lost for omar then and it made it easier to see him die

  8. February 4, 2010 5:48 pm

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