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Baltimore drug scene, seen through the eyes of drug dealers and law enforcement.


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5   4   3   2   1  
2008   2006   2004   2003   2002  
Top Rated TV #6 | Nominated for 2 Primetime Emmys. Another 14 wins & 51 nominations. See more awards »



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Series cast summary:
Michael Salconi ...


Set in Baltimore, this show centers around the city's inner-city drug scene. It starts as mid-level drug dealer, D'Angelo Barksdale beats a murder rap. After a conversation with a judge, Det. James McNulty has been assigned to lead a joint homicide and narcotics team, in order to bring down drug kingpin Avon Barksdale. Avon Barksdale, accompanied by his right-hand man Stringer Bell, enforcer Wee-Bey and many lieutenants (including his own nephew, D'Angelo Barksdale), has to deal with law enforcement, informants in his own camp, and competition with a local rival, Omar, who's been robbing Barksdale's dealers and reselling the drugs. The supervisor of the investigation, Lt. Cedric Daniels, has to deal with his own problems, such as a corrupt bureaucracy, some of his detectives beating suspects, hard-headed but determined Det. McNulty, and a blackmailing deputy. The show depicts the lives of every part of the drug "food chain", from junkies to dealers, and from cops to politicians. Written by Yuri

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Read between the lines (season five) See more »


Crime | Drama | Thriller


TV-MA | See all certifications »

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Release Date:

2 June 2002 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Žica  »

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(seasons 3-5)| (Dolby Surround) (seasons 1-2)


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Did You Know?


The character of 'Bunk' Moreland is based on real-life Baltimore detective Oscar 'Rick'/'The Bunk' Requer. The real 'Bunk' also constantly chomped on a cigar and had a taste for fashion. See more »


Throughout the series some Officers are shown on both the day, evening and Night shifts in a short period of time, some even within the same day. The Baltimore police department rarely gives shift changes until the next fiscal year. See more »


Det. William Moreland: [repeated line to McNulty] Happy now, bitch?
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening song is the same, but every season a new version is used with different artists performing in different genres (blues, soul, etc.). See more »


Referenced in Sheepshit (2008) See more »


Way Down in the Hole
Written by Tom Waits
Performed by The Blind Boys of Alabama
(season 1)
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

This isn't just a show about crime - this tries to show every aspect of life in a crumbling society
12 January 2014 | by See all my reviews

Along with TV-shows like 'Oz', 'Deadwood', 'The Sopranos' and 'Six Feet Under', David Simon's 'The Wire' was part of a revolution - qualitywise - in television. Although it is very entertaining, this isn't just entertainment; this is art, pure and simple - and the concept of this show was groundbreaking. On the surface, one might think this is a show about crime, but really, 'The Wire' is about the life and soul of a whole city. Every aspect of the city of Baltimore gets its share of screen time, and the way this is done - the writing, the direction, the amazing performances by the terrific cast; the music, the camera work, the realism... I could go on and on - is just outstanding. On par with 'Generation Kill' (no wonder, since the same creative team was behind both), this is as good as television gets.

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