After the notorious Franklin Terrace public housing towers are razed, the Barksdale drug crew searches for a new home on the streets of West Baltimore. McNulty and the detail look to make a... See full summary »

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After the notorious Franklin Terrace public housing towers are razed, the Barksdale drug crew searches for a new home on the streets of West Baltimore. McNulty and the detail look to make a case against Stringer Bell with a wiretap on a drug ring run by his ally, Proposition Joe. Daniels' promotion is derailed by City Hall due to his estranged wife's political ambitions. Written by Anonymous

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Crime | Drama | Thriller

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TV-MA | See all certifications »
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19 September 2004 (USA)  »

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4:3
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Quotes

Det. Thomas 'Herc' Hauk: [playing music from Shaft on his car stereo] He's a complicated man. And the only one that understands him is his woman.
Sgt. Ellis Carver: Seek therapy.
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Connections

References Shaft (1971) See more »

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Theme from Shaft
(uncredited)
Written and Performed by Isaac Hayes
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metaphors for 9/11 and the War on Terror abound in this sizzling season opener
28 June 2011 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

So the Franklin towers fall while a mayor calls for reform from his pulpit in construction hat and pressed suit. Bodie and Poot argue about the latter's abysmal sexual hygiene record and inability to learn from it. It is clear the theme of season three is going to be reform. And not just from the political standpoint of the new institution of city hall, but can the gangsters change their tradition of violent standoffs in order to expand turf into more civil buyouts and sit-downs with a city-wide cartel?

From the outset, the season draws parallels with 9/11 and the Iraq War. The towers fall and the drugs pour out onto the corners. We are introduced to the Co-op, Baltimore's drug cartel headed up by Prop Joe, which informs Stringer's economic policy as Acting President for the Barksdale administration. "Turf don't mean sh*t if you ain't got product," he tells his baffled gangsta underlings. He wants to extend their good product to all of their rivals, believing peace and profit can co-exist. Over in the Western District, a weary Major Bunny Colvin has also had enough of the same old sh*t.

McNulty however, still believes that if he steps on the bosses' toes enough, he will bring in a case big and get his "ticker-tape parade" as Lester Freamon puts it. The emotional cost of policework and the toll it has on a relationship is another of the season's themes; with Det. McNulty, Lt. Daniels and Det. Greggs each growing further apart from their women at home. McNulty had the door slammed in his face last season so he's already on the prowl for a new mate; Daniels had a more literal door shut on him at the end of season two, only to have another door opened for him at the start of this season by Jimmy's old bit-on-the-side States' Attorney Rhonda Pearlman; and everyone's favourite lesbian cop Keema is feeling neglected by her girlfriend's new priorities as a baby mama.

New kid on the block Marlo provides currently incarcerated Avon Barksdale and his loyal soldiers on the outside a new enemy as well as the detail with a new photo on the board. His stupid punk face and ventriloquist mouth p*ss me off but many think he was a cool gangsta character, representing the new generation of Baltimore's budding business brains in the heroin trade. Bubbles and Johnny re-emerge as prominent characters once again after their relative hiatus in season two.

All in all, this was the most formulaic season within the context of the series, where viewers became comfortable with the codes and conventions of the show before it piled another gritty layer of bureaucracy on top of an already labyrinth narrative in season four, followed by yet another storyline in season five. It returns to the streets that occupied the dual A narrative (police-steets) of season one that took more of a backseat in season two (police-docks-streets), while the city hall characters are only introduced here, the last two seasons would develop them fully rather than wrapping everything up so dramatically as it did with the stevedores last time 'round.


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