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January 1, 2009

Watching "The Wire," thinking about Brooklyn

Atlantic Yards Report

When you're a walking Atlantic Yards encyclopeida, even a highly acclaimed television series gets filtered through the lense of development in Brooklyn:

The epic, brilliant five-season HBO series The Wire, now fully available on DVD, takes off from cops and dealers (working the corners, at right) in Baltimore to portray a more deeply troubled ecosystem, including schools, the port, and the local media, with complex, intertwining plots and an array of indelible characters.

If you watch The Wire through a Brooklyn (or, generally, urban) lens, a minor but recurring plot point becomes ever more noticeable: the profits from the drug trade get laundered into real estate, and the port, one of the last bastions of well-paying union jobs, withers away and is replaced by real estate development.

I'll detail some of the choice moments, then try to reflect on some of the larger implications.


Posted by lumi at January 1, 2009 9:40 AM