The Wire Hamsterdam Recap Season 3 Episode 4 – In the previous episode of Season 3, the politicians are not happy. The city budget is strapped. Police are understaffed and under-equipped. Rawls is putting pressure on the precinct commanders to reduce the number of Baltimore homicides. But crime is going up, not down, and opposition politicians are quick to point out the ineptitude of the governing clan. Out in the streets, beefs between the rival drug crews turn up more bodies on the street. Very embarrassing to Mayor Royce, especially when City Council Chairman Tommy Carcetti is shifting for his job. The Barksdales face challenges on several fronts. Unknown to Avon, Stringer Bell has been making deals with Proposition Joe. This has been working out just fine in terms of profit but how long can he hide the facts from Avon? The Sword of Damocles hanging over the whole business is that Avon Barksdale might soon be released from prison.
The Wire Hamsterdam Recap Season 3 Episode 4
Inner City Blues
During a meeting between citizens and cops, the neighborhood people are plenty angry at what they have to live with. A woman complains that drug dealers are picked up and then put back out on the streets to deal more drugs the next day. The community relations officer conducting the meeting tells the peole that the community has to help by cooperating with police. A man raises his hand to speak: “My cousin Willie did cooperate. He went downtown and testified. He’s deader than Tupac today.” Which is pretty dead in spite of conspiracy theories to the contrary. And so the good people living in bad neighborhoods are left with festering sores. Kids can’t play outside and sometimes their parents make them hide under beds at night to avoid gunfire. Councilman Carcetti is observing the general mood, intending to make use of the fiasco. Colvin speaks to the public to address their concerns: “I can’t promise you it’s going to get any better. I can’t lock up a thousand drug dealers; there’s no place to put them.” Does this sound like your city? Have things improved since “The Wire” Season Three aired in 2004?
Episode 4 opens with Tommy Carcetti attending a council meeting on the West Side. He’s a busy bee, politically. He chats up Cedric Daniels’ wife Marla, who is running for a seat on council. Carcetti’s making the rounds, drumming up support wherever he can. When he’s with his cronies in a bar later in the episode, he slides up on a stool next to Theresa D’Agostino. The two have had some history in the past but Theresa has gone on to be a successful Washington D.C. beltway type. Tommy sleazes up to ask her to run his campaign. You know she will but she’s playing hard to get. Hardball in general – she tells Tommy the reason for her success is that she doesn’t back losers.
Life after Prison
A character known as Dennis ‘Cutty’ Wise (Chad Coleman) was introduced in a previous episode. He’s one of Avon’s ‘soldiers’ and did time with him in prison. He’s served his time and is now released, trying to put his life together. His choices are to get his old life back or to keep on reppin’ Avon. To keep his parole officer happy, he works on a day labor crew which does lawn care. His old girlfriend has raised herself up from the streets and built a professional career. She’s kind to Cutty, but distant. It’s getting a bit too hard for him to keep away from the street life and eventually he succumbs to the temptation. He’s an engaging character and you know “The Wire” writers have thrown him into the mix for a purpose. Hint: He’s looking like the real deal as he’s punching the heavy bag.
Kima and McNulty have used Bubbles as a confidential informant before but now they’ve nailed it down as a real job. $5.00 per hour with a top limit of $30 per day is the pay. Bubbles complains that it’s minimum wage (remember, it’s 2004) but takes the work. Kima and McNulty hope Bubbles can tell them who’s working the corners now that the towers are down. And who are the new people they see popping up on the street? Bubbles goes about his business and scopes the neighborhood pushers, mapping it out for Greggs and McNulty. Most significantly, he comes up with a license plate. McNulty tracks the plate. It leads to Marlo. The two cops are not quite sure who Marlo is but they’re about to find out. Detective Holley says he’d built a murder case around Marlo but Marlo beat the count when a prime witness was found with two slugs in his chest and one in his mouth.
Freamon Battles McNulty
McNulty gained some stripes in this episode as he beefs with Freamon. Freamon is tired of McNulty’s attitude and unwillingness to be a team player. The older detective’s loyalties are with Daniels. “I never though you’d feed me that chain of command b.s,” McNulty shouts to an equally angry Freamon. McNulty is the free-wheeling, and self-promoting narcissist who would really be an unpleasant character if not for the charm of his delivery. Dominic West stood out in this episode for the subtlety of his craft. Freamon also shows a lot of firepower in the brief exchange he has with McNulty but eventually the two discover themselves on the same page. All that drug money Stringer Bell has been making has to go somewhere. McNulty and Freamon have looked more deeply into it and discovered he’s made connections with a corrupt state senator and his real estate developer sidekick. With those two, Stringer Bell has been buying and selling Baltimore apartment houses.
McNulty is surprised one night when he drunkenly shows up on assistant state’s attorney Rhonda Pearlman and finds that Cedric Daniels has beat him to it. The love tryst has the risk of damaging them both but over all seems to be a good fit. So long as McNulty can be discreet and not blab about it to the whole world, Rhonda and Cedric can function in their respective careers. But if the newspapers get wind of such a thing, then what a scandal there would be! “I hope this isn’t going to be a thing,” Daniels prods his underling. McNulty and Daniels hash it out over a drink and the bond of silence is sealed with a handshake.
It’s been mention in jest in a previous episode but now it’s official. While Colvin joked he was going to legalize drug dealing, he goes on to do so in this episode. Or at least it’s Colvin’s version of legalization. What he means is that he’s going to push the druggies out of the mainstream and into a subset of vacant blocks where they can do little harm to innocent families. Colvin gathers his police and tells them to begin the herding. It looks like an urban cowpunching scene as the police round up the drug dealers, put them against the walls, and tell them they can avoid prison so long as they keep to the designated area – Vincent Street specifically. The thugs don’t know if Colvin is for real but one of his street detectives elaborates: “Look at it this way. Vincent Street is like Switzerland… er, I mean Amsterdam… where drugs are legal.” The dealers are still not getting it and Fruit says so: “We grind, you try to stop it. Why you gotta’ (expletive) with the program?” It may not be highbrow humor but it’s funny if you can translate it.
Avon’s Parole Bid
Avon Barksdale has been imprisoned for a long time, and has outwardly behaved as a model prisoner, even as he violates many of the rules. To further his own ends, he’s given up a corrupt corrections officer who smuggled drugs and other contraband into the prison. In exchange for these ‘good works,’ he expects leniency as his case comes up for a parole board hearing. There are plenty of hints that he will be released but it hasn’t happened yet. There’s a scene in this episode where Attorney Levy argues for Avon’s release as the result of his seeming cooperation with authorities. At the same time, Rhonda Pearlman has written a letter of condemnation to the parole board offering good reason to deny parole. All they’ve got got to do is count the drug murders while he was on the street. But at the end of the episode, the audience is left hanging.
Other episodes of The Wire reviewed on TV Eskimo:
The Wire Hamsterdam Recap Season 3 Episode 4 characters and cast include:
Jimmy McNulty – Dominic West (Chicago, The Affair, Money Monster, Burton and Taylor, The Hour, John Carter, 28 Days, 300)
Tommy Carcetti – Aidan Gillen (King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, Game of Thrones, Quantum Break, Calvary, Blitz, The Dark Knight Rises)
Bunny Colvin – Robert Wisdom (Ballers, Face/Off, Chicago P.D., Nashville, Ray, Burn Notice)
Rawls – John Doman (Gotham, The Affair, Person of Interest, House of Cards, Damages, Borgia, Blue Valentine)
Russell ‘Stringer’ Bell – Idris Elba (Luther, Prometheus, Thor, Guerilla, The Take, Beasts of No Nation, The Office, This Christmas)
Avon Barksdale – Wood Harris (The Breaks, Creed, Justified, Southland, Dredd, Once Upon a Time in Venice, As Good As It Gets)
Bunk Moreland – Wendell Pierce (Parker, Ray, The Gift, Suits, Ray Donovan, Treme)
Cedric Daniels – Lance Reddick (Fringe, John Wick, Bosch, White House Down, Lost)
Bodie – J. D. Williams (The Second Line, Saint & Sinners, The Night Of, The Good Wife, Happy New Year)
Kima Greggs – Sonja Sohn (Bringing Out the Dead, Shaft, Slam, Luke Cage, The Originals, Domain)
Herc – Domenick Lombardozzi (Frank and Ava, Rosewood, Bridge of Spies, Boardwalk Empire, God’s Pocket, Breakout Kings, Public Enemies, Phone Booth)
Roland ‘Prez’ Pryzbylewski – Jim True-Frost (The Hudsucker Proxy, Singles, Z: The Beginning of Everything, Treme, Hostages)
Sydnor – Corey Parker Robinson (Unstoppable, The Red Road, The Neighborhood, Orange Is the New Black)
Rhonda Pearlman – Deirdre Lovejoy (The Blacklist, Bones, American Gothic, Beauty Mark)
Tosha – Edwina Findley Dickerson (Insidious: Chapter 2, Treme, If Loving You is Wrong)
Dante – Ernest Waddell (Law & Order: SVU, One Tree Hill, About Cherry)
Cutty – Chad Coleman (Horrible Bosses, The Green Hornet, The Walking Dead, Arrow, The Expanse)
Marlo – Jamie Hector (Bosch, Max Payne, Queen of the South, The Strain, Quarry, Power, Person of Interest)
Lester Freamon – Clarke Peters (Notting Hill, London Spy, John Wick, Chance, The Tunnel, Jessica Jones, Show Me a Hero, Midsomer Murders, Treme, People of Earth)
Sgt. Carver – Seth Gilliam (Starship Troopers, The Walking Dead, Still Alice, Nurse Jackie, Teen Wolf, Change in the Air)
Burrell – Frankie Faison (The Silence of the Lambs, Hannibal, Luke Cage, Banshee, The Thomas Crown Affair, Red Dragon, My Other House, The Good Fight)
Tony Gray – Christopher Mann
Wee-Bey – Hassan Johnson (Belly, Brooklyn’s Finest, The Devil’s Own, The Blacklist, ER)
Bubbles – Andre Royo (Super, The Spectacular Now, Empire, Hand of God, Fringe)
Cheese – Method Man (The Deuce, Rebel, Blue Bloods, Keanu, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation)
Col. Foerster – Richard DeAngelis
Donette – Shamyl Brown
Omar Little – Michael Kenneth Williams (Hap and Leonard, The Night Of, Ghostbusters, Boardwalk Empire, Inherent Vice, Kill the Messenger, RoboCop, 12 Years a Slave)
Valchek – Al Brown
Fruit – Brandon Fobbs (Getting On, Southland, The Shield, David’s Reverie, The Republic of Two)
Slim Charles – Anwar Glover (Jamesy Boy, 12 Years a Slave, LUV, The Deuce)
Dr. Randall Frazier – Erik Dellums
Off. Anthony Colicchio – Benjamin Busch (Bright, Generation Kill, The West Wing)
Cheryl – Melanie Nicholls-King (St. Vincent, Rookie Blue, Show Me a Hero)
Proposition Joe – Robert F. Chew (Something the Lord Made, Jamesy Boy, Homicide: Life on the Street)