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Every legend has to come to an end…

Episode #58: “Clarifications”

“A lie ain’t a side of a story. It’s just a lie.” – Terry Hanning
Partlow keeps word of Omar attacking Stanfield’s name from Stanfield. Omar’s mission is ended when he is surprised and killed by a young drug dealer named Kenard. The Iraq veteran comes forward to complain that Templeton fabricated details of their discussion and Haynes is shocked that Templeton’s misconduct involves even this story; Haynes misses the story of Omar’s death. Bunk finally gets a murder warrant on Partlow with a little assistance from McNulty. McNulty asks Carver to provide a surveillance team for Freamon using the serial killer funding and with the extra manpower Sydnor breaks the communications code. McNulty cannot stand to see Greggs spending time on the serial killer case and he admits inventing the killer. Russell warns McNulty that she will leave him if his behavior continues and McNulty comes clean to her too. Dukie finds work with street vendors who collect and sell scrap metal. Carcetti fends off a challenge for the democratic nomination from Prince George’s county and is forced to make promises to Davis, Campbell, and a congressman from the county.

Deceased:

Omar Little

Episode #59: “Late Editions”
“Deserve got nuthin’ to do with it.” – Snoop
Freamon tracks Partlow to a Stanfield resupply and makes multiple arrests including Partlow, Stanfield, and Cheese. Carcetti holds a press conference to celebrate the arrests. Stanfield is suspicious of an informant and orders Snoop to kill Michael. Michael realizes the danger, murders Snoop, and goes into hiding. Suddenly homeless, Dukie moves in with the street vendors. Stanfield learns that Omar used his name on the street and is enraged. Greggs goes to Daniels about McNulty’s actions. Bubbles celebrates a sobriety anniversary and reporter Mike Fletcher writes a profile about him. Haynes launches a more thorough investigation into Templeton’s lies.

Deceased:

Felicia “Snoop” Pearson

7 Responses to “Episodes 58 and 59: “Clarifications” and “Late Editions””

  1. Andrew Ostroff says:

    I was fascinated by certain parallels between the deaths of Omar and Snoop in “Clarifications” and “Late Editions.” We must begin by noting that both are shot in the back of the head, although Omar is unprepared for his end while Snoop has a short amount of time to come to terms with her demise. More importantly, however, is that both murders are performed by youths in the drug game. Kenard kills Omar and Michael murders Snoop, and while we can simply note that both of the shooters came from a group of friends from the show’s fourth season, there is a deeper message to be conveyed.

    One might argue that the Baltimore drug ring has entered into a period of transition. Now that the resupply location has been uncovered, we recognize that the total destruction of the Stanfield Organization is quite possible. That the deaths of two important, veteran players came at the hands of some of the youngest members of the game, to me, validates the vicious circle that is the drug war, and confirms a troubling reality–namely, that this game has players waiting in the wings.

    With this in mind, I am very interested to see how the series wraps up tomorrow evening!

    Reply

  2. Andrew Ostroff says:

    In thinking about this evening’s final episode, I am reminded by one of Professor Mittell’s comments before beginning Season 5. He explained that viewers find the final season to be a bit rushed, and after watching all but the finale, I have to say that I agree. An extra 2-3 episodes makes a world of difference in terms of developing a storyline, and I cannot help but think how we might view Season 5 differently if the creative team was somehow able to delay gratification. Said differently, this season is driven by an ever-evolving plot, and unlike Seasons 1-4, viewers rarely find themselves in the dregs of a case. Of course, solving the murders takes time, but there is always action–a reality that does not always extend to prior seasons.

    Considering previous seasons in relation to this final season, I also wonder how they would be different if only presented in 10 episodes. One of the consequences of a shorter season, I believe, is a loss in realism. There is no denying that Season 5 is the most unrealistic of all five seasons, and thus, I wonder if this is a negative consequence of being forced to present a shorter season.

    Reply

  3. Tom Ladeau says:

    Im sure most people noticed this but I did not until thinking back on it later: Kenard was the kid who was coving the cat with lighter fluid as Omar walked by him earlier in the scene. He also looked at Omar with a mixture of fear and defiance, and he did not run away as the other kids did. I think The Wire’s point with this scene is not just that Kenard is a violent/street hardened kid for his age, but Kenard is serving as an example of what drug culture does to little kids. Throughout seasons 4 and 5 Kenard has been swearing and acting tough just as much as, if not more than, all of the other kids and players in the drug game. His character is funny, in that he is a little kid acting like a tough gangster. He is sad once you realize how serious he actually is, which happens in episode 58.

    Reply

  4. jwmoritz says:

    I particularly enjoyed the scenes between Freeman and Senator Davis in the bar. Getting to see how Freeman manipulate the information he has obtained and put it to use against Davis showed the role of manipulation as a tool in police work, similar to the opening scene of Season 5 but not to the ludicrous extent that McNulty has done. Freeman seems to be genuinely interested in the money trail that he has been investigating, in understanding the path and relationship between dealers, lawyers, and politicians. Conversely, hearing Davis discuss his role and how he took advantage of dealers like Stringer, did not remove the criminal identity that we cast upon him, but it idid reveal the relative ease with which he operates.

    Reply

  5. Alex Oberg says:

    I was struck by the way in which Omar’s demise was depicted in episode 58. He suddenly transforms from an invincible street legend to a dead and forgotten body. Maybe some saw his death as inevitable, but at least we expected him to go out in a blaze of glory and certainly not because of a surprise shot to the back of the head from a young kid.

    While we as the viewers have grown incredibly attached to Omar throughout five seasons, none of the other characters have. The police, including McNulty, Freamon and Bunk, seem relatively indifferent and some are even amused about Omar’s death. The newspaper won’t even publish a paragraph story about his shooting. The fact that Omar’s morgue tags are misplaced provides a solemn end to the episode. Omar was just one guy and will be easily forgotten. Others came before him and others will come after.

    Reply

  6. Chris Anderson says:

    My ideal ending:

    McNulty gets reassigned to patrol permanently. Daniels is around long enough to enforce it.
    Daniels tells Carcetti about Jimmy, and Carcetti takes it as a wake-up call to ACTUALLY reform the police department instead of talking about it.
    Kima gets her shit together and reunites with her g/f.
    Bubbles stays clean, gets featured in the Sun.
    Scott gets found out, preyed on by Gus.
    Carver finds out about Herc and punches him in the face.
    The MCU is populated by Lester, Sydnor, Kima and Bunk. Lester is made sergeant and reports directly to Daniels.
    Someone avenges Omar.
    Marlo gets locked up for good; Snoop’s death is used wisely.

    There are a lot of other threads, but those are my top few.

    Reply

    Jason Mittell Reply:

    I think you only got one of those – but for me, Bubbles walking up those stairs is the most important outcome…

    Reply

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