The Wire Best To Worst

by hajure | created - 01 Sep 2017 | updated - 19 Nov 2017 | Public

Ranking all episodes of HBO's "The Wire" from best to worst:

Average Ratings (Total; 1st Half; 2nd Half): Season 1 (82,7; 78,4; 87,7) Season 2 (81,1; 77,8; 84,5) Season 3 Season 4 Season 5

Work in progress.

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1. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Bad Dreams (2003)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

The detail makes a desperate move. Nick's deceit is in the open, as Sobotka is overwhelmed by bad news. The Greeks confidently ease out of a brief encounter with the detail and Omar's ... See full summary »

Director: Ernest R. Dickerson | Stars: Dominic West, Chris Bauer, Paul Ben-Victor, John Doman

Votes: 2,811

S2E11

Best Episode of Season 2

92

2. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: The Cost (2002)

TV-MA | 56 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Avon, Stringer and Wee-Bey discuss how best to deal with Omar after the attempted hit on Avon, deciding to let him think they want peace, whilst secretly planning to kill him. As such, Omar... See full summary »

Director: Brad Anderson | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 3,128

S1E10

Best Episode of Season 1

91

3. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Cleaning Up (2002)

TV-MA | 56 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Kima slowly recovers in the hospital. Stringer changes operations in the pit and the towers, rendering the wiretaps and clones useless, and prompting Burrell to begin dismantling the detail... See full summary »

Director: Clement Virgo | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 3,006

S1E12

2nd Best Episode of Season 1

Best Scene of Season 1: "Be A Man"

91

4. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: All Prologue (2003)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Trying to let go of police work and return to his marriage, McNulty gives up on identifying his Jane Doe. The detectives look into Sobotka and his money. For his union, Sobotka tries to ... See full summary »

Director: Steve Shill | Stars: Dominic West, Chris Bauer, Paul Ben-Victor, John Doman

Votes: 2,554

S2E6

2nd Best Episode of Season 2

Best Scene of Season 2: "Omar at the Court"

89

5. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Sentencing (2002)

TV-MA | 66 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

The detail has enough information to arrest Avon and many of his people, but, with Wallace dead, they are unable to bring a charge against Stringer, who is left on the street. However, ... See full summary »

Director: Timothy Van Patten | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,933

S1E13

3rd Best Episode of Season 1

88

6. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Dead Soldiers (2004)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

The brutality at police headquarters continues over the perceived failure of department commanders to rein in the city's crime stats. Another hit by Omar on the Barksdale stash houses goes ... See full summary »

Director: Rob Bailey | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,174

S3E3

87

7. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Storm Warnings (2003)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

The detail uses satellite technology to its advantage. Bodie is unhappy that Proposition Joe's people are selling on his turf. Valchek visits the FBI in an attempt to get real results on ... See full summary »

Director: Rob Bailey | Stars: Dominic West, Chris Bauer, Paul Ben-Victor, John Doman

Votes: 2,523

S2E10

3rd Best Episode of Season 2

87

8. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Game Day (2002)

TV-MA | 57 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

D'Angelo speaks to Wallace, who tells him he wants to go back to school and get out of the Game. However, Malik "Poot" Carr discovers Wallace has started using cocaine to help him deal with... See full summary »

Director: Milcho Manchevski | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,770

S1E9

4th Best Episode of Season 1

86

9. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Lessons (2002)

TV-MA | 56 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

McNulty uses his children to tail Stringer after a chance encounter in a local market, with one of them getting his license plate. As the detail discuss the implications of the pit phones ... See full summary »

Director: Gloria Muzio | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,679

S1E8

5th Best Episode of Season 1

85

10. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: The Hunt (2002)

TV-MA | 56 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

While Greggs' life hangs in the balance, the entire department attempts to hunt down Savino. When Wallace flips, willing to testify that Stringer, Wee-Bey and Bird killed Brandon, Daniels ... See full summary »

Director: Steve Shill | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,784

S1E11

6th Best Episode of Season 1

84

11. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Stray Rounds (2003)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Bodie's disastrous sales efforts result in a tongue lashing from Stringer Bell. Ziggy pulls Johnny Fifty into a new caper that makes the Greeks pay big money. McNulty goes undercover in a ... See full summary »

Director: Timothy Van Patten | Stars: Dominic West, Chris Bauer, Paul Ben-Victor, John Doman

Votes: 2,291

S2E9

4th Best Episode of Season 2

83

12. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Backwash (2003)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Greggs and Prez tap into the circuit of Russian prostitutes. With two sets of evidence, the detail goes to Pearlman who tells them neither crime merits a wiretap, but a drug connection ... See full summary »

Director: Thomas J. Wright | Stars: Dominic West, Chris Bauer, Paul Ben-Victor, John Doman

Votes: 2,215

S2E7

5th Best Episode of Season 2

83

13. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Port in a Storm (2003)

TV-MA | 63 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

The detail has a setback. Russell and Bunk revisit Philly, looking for evidence. Brother Mouzone talks with Stringer Bell regarding their agreement, leaving Bell to contend with Avon ... See full summary »

Director: Robert F. Colesberry | Stars: Dominic West, Chris Bauer, Paul Ben-Victor, John Doman

Votes: 2,636

S2E12

6th Best Episode of Season 2

82

14. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: The Wire (2002)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Avon takes care of Omar's man Brandon but Wallace, who saw Brandon in the arcade, isn't too comfortable when he sees what they've done to him. Avon gives D'Angelo and Wallace a bonus for ... See full summary »

Director: Ed Bianchi | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,913

S1E6

7th Best Episode of Season 1

82

15. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Undertow (2003)

TV-MA | 57 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Weak product in the pit has Bodie getting heat. Homicide detectives hand out grand jury summonses to stevedores involved in the homicide case, and Port Police Officer Beadie Russell works ... See full summary »

Director: Steve Shill | Stars: Dominic West, Chris Bauer, Paul Ben-Victor, John Doman

Votes: 2,255

S2E5

7th Best Episode of Season 2

81

16. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Old Cases (2002)

TV-MA | 60 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Bodie walks out of detention pretending to be a janitor but Patty is recovering in hospital and is pleased that his injuries will result in a medical pension. Avon Barksdale puts a contract... See full summary »

Director: Clement Virgo | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,870

S1E4

8th Best Episode of Season 1

81

17. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Hamsterdam (2004)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Greggs and McNulty recruit Bubbles to gather street intelligence on the Barksdale gang. Cutty seeks out the Barksdale gang after he loses his taste for the straight life. Bunk feels the ... See full summary »

Director: Ernest R. Dickerson | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,158

S3E4

80

18. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: One Arrest (2002)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Burrell reluctantly sides with Daniels in the disagreement with Rawls, giving the detail more time to make a case against Avon, despite his fears the operation is beginning to sprawl. ... See full summary »

Director: Joe Chappelle | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,702

S1E7

9th Best Episode of Season 1

80

19. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Duck and Cover (2003)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

McNulty goes on a drunken binge of legendary proportions. Fellow stevedores convince Ziggy to fight Maui. Bunk, seeing McNulty's desperation, talks Daniels into asking for him. Daniels does... See full summary »

Director: Daniel Attias | Stars: Dominic West, Chris Bauer, Paul Ben-Victor, John Doman

Votes: 2,272

S2E8

8th Best Episode of Season 2

80

20. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Time After Time (2004)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

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 »

Director: Ed Bianchi | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,206

S3E1

79

21. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: The Detail (2002)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Lt. Daniels puts his team together but the extra help he's asked includes several less than stellar officers. It also includes McNulty, who is obviously in the doghouse. When one of the ... See full summary »

Director: Clark Johnson | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 3,177

S1E2

10th Best Episode of Season 1

79

22. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Back Burners (2004)

TV-MA | 56 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Daniels goes ballistic when the detail gets reassigned to the Western District. Stringer Bell learns from Donette that Brianna is thinking about talking to McNulty. Bunk receives a gift ... See full summary »

Director: Timothy Van Patten | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,107

S3E7

79

23. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: The Buys (2002)

TV-MA | 55 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

After two weeks on the job, the team still doesn't have a photo of their principal target, Avon Barksdale. Freamon has a solution when he hears Avon was a Gold Gloves boxer. In the ... See full summary »

Director: Peter Medak | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,980

S1E3

11th Best Episode of Season 1

78

24. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: All Due Respect (2004)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Omar continues his bold strikes on the heavily guarded Barksdale stash houses. McNulty launches his own investigation into last year's prison suicide of D'Angelo Barksdale. On the streets ... See full summary »

Director: Steve Shill | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,178

S3E2

78

25. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Homecoming (2004)

TV-MA | 57 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Major Colvin instructs his men to use brute force to get the message out to street dealers about his free zone. Avon Barksdale and Stringer Bell discover that real estate development has ... See full summary »

Director: Leslie Libman | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,151

S3E6

77

26. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Hot Shots (2003)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Lt Cedric Daniels lets it be known he is going to leave the department. McNulty pursues the identity of the Jane Doe found floating in the harbor. A pair of young longshoremen, Frank ... See full summary »

Director: Elodie Keene | Stars: Dominic West, Chris Bauer, Paul Ben-Victor, John Doman

Votes: 2,337

S2E3

9th Best Episode of Season 2

77

27. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: The Target (2002)

TV-MA | 62 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Baltimore Det. Jimmy McNulty finds himself in hot water with his superior Major William Rawls after a drug dealer, D'Angelo Barksdale who is charged with three murders, is acquitted. ... See full summary »

Director: Clark Johnson | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 3,977

S1E1

12th Best Episode of Season 1

76

28. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Collateral Damage (2003)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Major Valchek gets back at Sobotka for the church gift fiasco, and a feud begins. Avon Barksdale continues to run his empire from a prison cell. On the waterfront, Port Police Officer ... See full summary »

Director: Ed Bianchi | Stars: Dominic West, Chris Bauer, Paul Ben-Victor, John Doman

Votes: 2,413

S2E2

10th Best Episode of Season 2

75

29. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Hard Cases (2003)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

McNulty goes on a self-assigned moral mission to identify his floater, but his old partner, Bunk, says they have more pressing matter at hand: finding Omar to testify against a Barksdale ... See full summary »

Director: Elodie Keene | Stars: Dominic West, Chris Bauer, Paul Ben-Victor, John Doman

Votes: 2,307

S2E4

11th Best Episode of Season 2

74

30. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Straight and True (2004)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Johnny pressures Bubbles to stop snitching for the detail. Cutty lies to his grandmother about going straight. McNulty realizes pursuing Barksdale and Bell is a losing cause, so he turns ... See full summary »

Director: Daniel Attias | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,160

S3E5

74

31. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: The Pager (2002)

TV-MA | 60 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Avon Barksdale is becoming paranoid and thinks he's being watched. He's also worried his phone is being tapped. He also thinks there's a snitch in D'Angelo's crew and he's told not to pay ... See full summary »

Director: Clark Johnson | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,752

S1E5

Worst Episode of Season 1

73

32. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Ebb Tide (2003)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Detective Jimmy McNulty finds the body of a woman floating in the water while carrying out his new assignment of Harbor Patrol. Major Valchek has his gift to a local parish trumped by Frank... See full summary »

Director: Ed Bianchi | Stars: Dominic West, Chris Bauer, Paul Ben-Victor, John Doman

Votes: 2,575

S2E1

Worst Episode of Season 2

72

33. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Moral Midgetry (2004)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Prez impresses the detail with what he's found out from Bodie's cell phone, information that sends McNulty and Greggs on a road trip. Colvin sees the benefits of his plan working. Carcetti ... See full summary »

Director: Agnieszka Holland | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,273

S3E8

34. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Slapstick (2004)

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Responding to an officer's call for help, McNulty and Prez turn up the wrong alley with unanticipated results. Cutty is surprised to find help from within Baltimore's power structure for ... See full summary »

Director: Alex Zakrzewski | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,153

S3E9

35. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Reformation (2004)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Brother Mouzone returns to Baltimore on a mission of revenge and casts a wide net in his search for Omar. Colvin manages to put off a Sun reporter inquiring about Amsterdam. Pearlman and ... See full summary »

Director: Christine Moore | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,160

S3E10

36. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Middle Ground (2004)

TV-MA | 59 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

The wire begins to yield information about the Barksdale organization. Stringer and Avon reminisce on how far they have come. McNulty finds the way to a key piece of the puzzle in an ... See full summary »

Director: Joe Chappelle | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 3,289

S3E11

37. The Wire (2002–2008)
Episode: Mission Accomplished (2004)

TV-MA | 63 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Avon readies his troops for a seemingly endless war against Marlo. The detail works towards the top rungs of the Barksdale organization with the information garnered from the wire. While ... See full summary »

Director: Ernest R. Dickerson | Stars: Dominic West, John Doman, Idris Elba, Frankie Faison

Votes: 2,690

S3E12



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