Monday, October 30, 2006


The Wire No. 44: Unto Others

BLOGGER'S NOTE: As always, know that spoilers lie below, so don't venture further unless you've seen the episode or don't care if you know what happens.

By Edward Copeland
The primary is over and Kima asks Sgt. Landsman if they now have permission to solve the Braddock case now that everyone is done voting — and solve it she does. First, she's encouraged to give a polygraph to the defendant Braddock was scheduled to testify against, learning that the jailed defendant wouldn't make the hit because the witness was a relative — and learning the games that a polygraph is used for by investigators. "No wonder this shit is inadmissible," Kima says. Later, she decides to return to the scene of the crime, tracing bullet trajectories and determining that though the state witness' slaying helped Carcetti win the election, the death actually was accidental, with Braddock catching a stray bullet from someone taking target practice nearby.

Lester on the other hand has reverted to old habits — hauling out his models as he waits for a body to fall having given up for now his pursuit of the missing Lex. Bunk, however, has been enlisted to help in a case that isn't his own. Omar pulls out the get-out-of-jail-free card the prosecutor gave him way back in Season 2 in return for his testimony. Languishing in jail among many men he'd previously robbed, Omar has a five-figure price on his head and barely escapes a hit — so he seeks a favor from Bunk. Bunk resists at first, suggesting Omar make his case in court to which Omar replies, "I'll be seeing God before I swear to him in court." Bunk even broaches the subject of whether Omar was involved in Stringer Bell's murder, but finally relents because of Omar's help retrieving his lost weapon long ago. Bunk's backseat detecting doesn't sit well with the detectives actually assigned to the case, but Bunk does think the case smells funny and does succeed in getting the prosecutor to use her influence to transfer Omar to a county facility following an attempted hit on him in jail and the news he has a five-figure price on his head.

With Omar locked behind bars, Prop Joe finally grabs Marlo's attention, but not because of the poker game stickup — Marlo wants advice about who might be watching him on camera. Prop Joe suggests Marlo steal the camera — if he never hears anything, it's feds. If cops come knocking, it's local — because they are the only ones cheap enough to go ballistic over a missing camera. Sure enough, it works as Herc goes crazy and seeks help from his former partner Carver, who tells Herc they have an enabling relationship. Carver also remembers that he's forgotten to call Bunk and tell him about young Randy's possible help with Lex's murder. However, the detective who takes the message is the same one pissed over Bunk's interference in his investigation of the convenience store slaying and promptly trashes the message. However, Carver offers Herc the suggestion that if Randy can help him and he brings back a murder to the menacing and malicious Lt Marimow, Marimow won't get upset about a stolen camera.

On the school front, thanks to his mother's insistence, Namond begins commanding his own corner for dealing while still going to Bunny's pilot class where he's angered that he can no longer figure out ways to get suspended from school. Bubbles, growing more concerned about the missing Sherrod, shows up at Tilghman Middle School, hoping that perhaps Sherrod has shown up there, which of course he hasn't. He again spots Prez and not realizing he's now a teacher, assumes he's working undercover, gives him a wink and insists that he won't blow his cover. Prez discovers a new way to hold his students' attention when some of the pupils who choose to have lunch in his classroom bide their time playing poker, which Prez takes as an opportunity to teach them about odds and probability, getting Michael to ask if the same skills can help in craps. Prez journeys down to the school's supply room to see if he can find dice in old board games and is shocked to discover that newer editions of math books are gathering dust unused and computers remain boxed and unopened. He takes one back to his room as a teaching tool.

The fallout from the primary continues, with Royce and Carcetti making peace and Royce admitting that he's "halfway glad to get out." Also exiting — Theresa D'Agostino (Brandy Burre), who has left Carcetti's campaign following his spurning of her advances. Carcetti's surprising win has already attracted attention from national Democrats, even though Carcetti still has a general election to win against a Republican named Crawford, though Royce observes that with a 9 to 1 Democratic advantage in voter registration, if Carcetti loses the general, he doesn't deserve the job. Assuming the mantle of ersatz mayor-elect, Carcetti begins examining the police department closely. He's ready to dump Burrell, as was Royce, but he's told by Norman and Odell that a white mayor can't fire an African-American police commissioner, especially since there is no African American close to his rank to succeed him. Norman suggests an outside search but Tommy observes, "If you are talented and black, why would you be in Baltimore?" During his beginning tour of the department though, Daniels catches Carcetti's eyes, even though he's just a major.

Daniels' significant other — Assistant State's Attorney Pearlman — gets to meet her new boss since her old one lost in the election. Ready to hear the worse, she's stunned and elated to learn that her new boss admires her courage in letting MCU release the subpoenas and asks her to be the new head of the violent crimes unit, being in charge of homicide prosecutions. I do have one question that hasn't been answered though: Did Daniels' estranged wife Marla win her election? The show hasn't mentioned the result of her race.

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