The Wire: Season 2 on DVD
After the first 13 episodes (aka Season 1), I knew it was true: The Wire is the best TV show ever made ever, and is sharper, better written, and more consistently immersive than, say, 86% of the movies I've seen in the past few years. I know, it's kind of an unfair comparison... the narrative scope and pacing, the rhythms of the characters, the balance between exposition and style, are all inherently different in a two- or three-hour movie designed to be viewed in one sitting than in a 12-hour show meant to be seen in segments. But still.
So, really the only question was: could Season 2 possibly be as good as Season 1?
Yes. It could... and it may even be better.
I loved the sprawling new case in Season 2, involving hard-bitten stevedores and longshoremen, drug smuggling, a drunk duck, McNulty on a boat, slavery, stolen goods, RICO-obsessed FBI agents, the Greek mafia, wiretaps (of course), run-down old Baltimore Polish neighborhoods, and 14 dead young women. I loved the new faces, especially Amy Ryan's jittery but smart Officer Russell, and the beautifully played insecure insanity of James Ransone's Ziggy. I loved the way David Simon, Ed Burns and their guest writers (including George Pelecanos) also managed to keep the stories moving of all the old characters, cops and criminals, that I had grown so attached to in Season 1. And I really love that tonight I can start The Wire: Season 3!