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Felicia "Snoop" Pearson arrested in drug raid
March 10, 2011 11:40 AM   Subscribe

The Wire's Felicia ("Snoop") Pearson has been arrested as part of large scale drug raids according to the Baltimore Sun. Life imitates art, but in this case art had closely imitated life, as Pearson was not a trained actress, but grew up in tough Baltimore neighbourhoods and has a conviction for second degree murder for an act at the age of 14. However in recent years she had been involved in anti-violence campaigns and other work with young people.
posted by philipy (101 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite

 
Entirely possible that she committed the crime of being black in the wrong place.
posted by Malor at 11:43 AM on March 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


I would say that is too bad but it looks like the crime involvement has been ongoing for her too:

Ms Pearson, 30, was convicted of second degree murder [at age 16, in 1996] when she was a teenager.

She served time in prison after the murder, which she committed when she was 14.

Although she was sentenced to two eight year terms for killing another teenage girl, she was released after six-and-a-half years.

and

More recently, she refused to testify as a witness at a murder trial and was arrested at her then-Northeast Baltimore home.

posted by bearwife at 11:45 AM on March 10, 2011


Entirely possible that she committed the crime of being black in the wrong place.

Baltimore?
posted by dhammond at 11:49 AM on March 10, 2011 [12 favorites]


It's all in the Game.
posted by dracomarca at 11:49 AM on March 10, 2011 [3 favorites]


You not lookin' so good girl.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:50 AM on March 10, 2011


Snoop was one of the most compelling TV characters I've ever seen. I think it says something about the entertainment industry that there is seriously no place for an actress like Felicia Pearson - who so convincingly portrayed the real-world aspects of black urban life - to such an extent that she actually had to return to her previous life of crime even after working on The Best Television Show Ever.
posted by windbox at 11:51 AM on March 10, 2011 [20 favorites]


I hope her hair looked good.
posted by incomple at 11:51 AM on March 10, 2011 [16 favorites]


Photo here.
posted by vidur at 11:53 AM on March 10, 2011


. I think it says something about the entertainment industry that there is seriously no place for an actress like Felicia Pearson...

I never really got the impression she was acting, you know? Seemed more like she was being herself and memorizing lines.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:55 AM on March 10, 2011 [9 favorites]


She didn't get there early.
posted by aerotive at 11:57 AM on March 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


She earn that buck like a mufucka.
posted by Uther Bentrazor at 12:00 PM on March 10, 2011 [3 favorites]


It was uncomfortable to watch her character.
posted by goethean at 12:02 PM on March 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


Here we lay a coupla New York boys who came too far south for their own fuckin' good.
posted by superfluousm at 12:03 PM on March 10, 2011


I'm Rick James, Bitch?
posted by ennui.bz at 12:13 PM on March 10, 2011


Why, why WHY!?! can I not get my lovely GF interested in watching The Wire? I would love to watch it all again, but she would just as soon watch a ham sandwich for sixty hours.

In any event, this news is too bad. Snoop was always a compelling character, and Pearson's background brought an added dimension to the whole scene.
posted by Admiral Haddock at 12:17 PM on March 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


MetaFilter: would just as soon watch a ham sandwich for sixty hours.
posted by hippybear at 12:18 PM on March 10, 2011 [3 favorites]


Possible spoiler!
posted by Thorzdad at 12:26 PM on March 10, 2011


Possible spoiler!

The ham sandwich is redeemed in hour 59?
posted by kmz at 12:28 PM on March 10, 2011 [6 favorites]


Also a real life lesbian who has always gone by "Snoop". She was just about playing herself.
posted by dephlogisticated at 12:34 PM on March 10, 2011


Stay true, Admiral Haddock. I had to press my lady for like two years before she finally gave in, and she loved it. Does she have any friends who have seen it? That's what it took in my case.
posted by SpiffyRob at 12:34 PM on March 10, 2011


Police declined to comment on the charges she could face.

Still busy trumping them up.
posted by telstar at 12:35 PM on March 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


Admiral Haddock and SpiffyRob, I was your lady. My boyfriend harped on the incessantly and I finally broke down and watched the first episode just to shut him up. Needless to say, it really stuck the landing and to this day, I'm probably a bigger evangelist for the show than he is.

So yes, AH, I guess you could say I am advising that you harass your girlfriend until she bends to your manly iron will.
posted by superfluousm at 12:45 PM on March 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


Malor: "Entirely possible that she committed the crime of being black in the wrong place."

Quick survey (because I'm not totally up to date on The Wire): If my boss sent out an e-mail this morning with a link to this story and the subject "I knew that girl wasn't acting", that's racist, right?
posted by l33tpolicywonk at 12:48 PM on March 10, 2011


Police declined to comment on the charges she could face.

Still busy trumping them up.


I think it's appropriate (and non-libelous) for the cops not to speculate on future possible charges but I'd like to know what the probable cause was in that warrant. I don't think it's going to be terribly surprising - it's a drug sweep for a heroin and pot operation - but I think that it's entirely INappropriate for law enforcement to refuse to disclose why they are detaining someone. To my mind the remedy that disclosure offers against unjust detention far outweighs other concerns.
posted by phearlez at 12:49 PM on March 10, 2011


Police declined to comment on the charges she could face.

I'm going to choose to believe that they didn't recognize her, but having seen the show and forgot her character, felt that she reminded them of someone who was really dangerous and needed to be held in custody.

Because she seems really scary. Like the kind of person who would shoot you in the head and seal you in an abandoned house. Right?
posted by quin at 12:49 PM on March 10, 2011


The scene where Snoop buys the nail gun in the hardware store is one that I replay in my head very frequently. She was a hell of a character...though it sounds like she maybe didn't need to stretch for the role so much...

My wife, someday, will watch The Wire. She's conceded that I talk about it way too much for her not to watch it. So, those trying to get your mate to watch the finest piece of TV ever made, just keep talking about it incessantly. They will either watch it or leave you. Either way, it was meant to be.
posted by mcstayinskool at 12:50 PM on March 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


that's racist, right?

Huh? How? Someone who played a criminal on TV got arrested for alleged criminal activity. Her race has nothing to do with your boss suggesting that she was playing 'herself' on TV instead of a character.
posted by IanMorr at 12:52 PM on March 10, 2011


I never really got the impression she was acting, you know? Seemed more like she was being herself and memorizing lines.

No, that's the sign of a good actor, I'd say.
posted by morganannie at 12:58 PM on March 10, 2011


If my boss sent out an e-mail this morning with a link to this story and the subject "I knew that girl wasn't acting", that's racist, right?

No.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:58 PM on March 10, 2011 [7 favorites]


I watch the wire but it can be slow and dull, plus a bit too eager to drop the viewer in with zero context and no sense of what's at stake or what's going on. The first halves of the first 3 seasons are a slog.
posted by the young rope-rider at 1:01 PM on March 10, 2011


Okay, fair. My radar's probably just way too heightened about these things.
posted by l33tpolicywonk at 1:02 PM on March 10, 2011


"Got to. This America, man."
posted by Fizz at 1:04 PM on March 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


The first halves of the first 3 seasons are a slog.

Everyone's entitled to an opinion, I suppose.
posted by item at 1:07 PM on March 10, 2011 [7 favorites]


The first halves of the first 3 seasons are a slog.

YOU TAKE THAT BACK RIGHT NOW.

Still, I get what you mean, but found the construction of the plot, story and characters over each season to be completely mesmerizing. There was helluva lot of energy and talent going into the creation of that series.

That's probably why they got tired in the 5th season.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:07 PM on March 10, 2011


If my boss sent out an e-mail this morning with a link to this story and the subject "I knew that girl wasn't acting", that's racist, right?
posted by l33tpolicywonk at 12:48 PM on March 10 [+] [!]


Depends. Did he do the same thing when that guy from the Sopranos went up the river?
posted by Halloween Jack at 1:07 PM on March 10, 2011


Depends on your boss, man.
posted by klangklangston at 1:11 PM on March 10, 2011


I wouldn't believe that article in the Sun. You know how Scott Templeton rolls.
posted by notmydesk at 1:26 PM on March 10, 2011 [7 favorites]


If my boss sent out an e-mail this morning with a link to this story and the subject "I knew that girl wasn't acting", that's racist, right?

Of course it is. She played the role of a murderer named Snoop, while in real life, she's....a murderer named Snoop.
posted by electroboy at 1:26 PM on March 10, 2011


Man that photo is sad...

She was hard work on my English ears but I loved that stone cold killah
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 1:29 PM on March 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


she was great shopping for power tools
posted by clavdivs at 1:30 PM on March 10, 2011


electroboy: "She played the role of a murderer named Snoop, while in real life, she's....a murderer named Snoop."

I think I was mostly thrown by the past tense - as though there was some sort of "murderer-ness" that you could read by how she acted on a TV show. Regardless, I clearly misunderstood the context.
posted by l33tpolicywonk at 1:30 PM on March 10, 2011


"I watch the wire but it can be slow and dull, plus a bit too eager to drop the viewer in with zero context and no sense of what's at stake or what's going on. The first halves of the first 3 seasons are a slog."

David Simon's often said that his guiding philosophy on the show was "Fuck the casual viewer", and it's precisely that attitude which allowed him to make the richest, most intelligent and most satisfying television show ever. He asks for a little more effort and concentration from his viewers, yes, but that effort's repaid a thousandfold in what the show delivers.
posted by Paul Slade at 1:36 PM on March 10, 2011 [8 favorites]


murderer-ness

That's a Dethklok single, right?
posted by mikelieman at 1:37 PM on March 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


The trick to getting through The Wire for the first time without getting lost in a sea of new information is to start each season by watching (at least) the first three episodes back to back to back. I have no idea how people were able to follow the show watching each episode a week apart. Glad I didn't start watching until it was over.
posted by SpiffyRob at 1:39 PM on March 10, 2011 [5 favorites]


It's likely your boss didn't know about her past either. I live in Baltimore and we're sort of inundated with P.R. stuff from people that were on The Wire. I'd guess he was more remarking on the fact that she was completely believable on the show. Which she was, because she was mostly playing herself.
posted by electroboy at 1:42 PM on March 10, 2011


> I have no idea how people were able to follow the show watching each episode a week apart.

Not having HBO myself, and obtaining all of the episodes in one big shot through nefarious means after the show was finished, I can understand this sentiment. From what I gather from talking with those who are HBO subscribers, they usually caught episodes several times in repeat from week to week so they had pretty much memorized the last show by the time the next new episode was broadcast.
posted by Burhanistan at 1:44 PM on March 10, 2011


"Man, fuck the charge. This here's gunpowder-activated, .27-calibre full-auto no-kickback nail-throwin' mayhem, man. Shit right here is tight. Word. Fuck this nailing up boards, we can kill coupla muthafuckas with this right here."
posted by wherever, whatever at 1:45 PM on March 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


Yeah the only way to watch the Wire is with a box set. One episode a week would be impossible. Season 4 (where Snoop is introduced as a major character) is by far the best IMO. Those kids tear me up.
posted by afx237vi at 1:47 PM on March 10, 2011


"I knew that girl wasn't acting", that's racist, right?

I don't know about racist, but it's not accurate. I think it's worth pointing out that she played the part of an assassin on the Wire, a character that was involved in killing a lot of people and disposing of their bodies on orders from drug kingpins. In real life, she killed someone in a fight when she was 14. She was playing someone with the same name in a similar urban Baltimore setting, but she was most certainly acting.
posted by Hoopo at 1:57 PM on March 10, 2011 [8 favorites]


start each season by watching (at least) the first three episodes back to back to back.

Yeah, this. I rented the first disc of season one, watched the first episode, then the second a couple days later, and then returned it, confused and unimpressed. A while later, I tried it again, and watched a few more episodes in a row. It was the scene where Bunk and McNulty were investigating the cold case murder. The "fuck fuck fuck" scene (in episode four or five, maybe). And then I got, finally, why it was great, and was completely sucked in.

I couldn't even wait for the next disc in the mail, I went out and bought the entire season, then did the same with the rest of the seasons. It's definitely a lot of work to follow all the characters and storylines but well worth the effort.
posted by notmydesk at 2:01 PM on March 10, 2011


I'm pretty sure David Simon (or some other production-type person) says in one of the DVD commentaries that Snoop drove the on-set script supervisor crazy for many episodes of shooting before she eventually started actually saying the lines instead of going off-script constantly, for what it's worth.
posted by zoinks at 2:09 PM on March 10, 2011


I got sucked in after the fact to The Wire, especially after I tried watching with subtitles turned on (which trained my ear after awhile not to need them.) And yes, I now own it too. Best thing I've ever seen on TV.

Re everyone who is wondering why the charges haven't been announced, that's probably happened by now, in what is apparently a very big drug and gang case:

The arrests were the culmination of a five-month investigation by the DEA and Baltimore police, officials said. Authorities were scheduled to discuss details of the case at a 4:15 p.m. news conference.


David Simon had a thoughtful statement about the arrest.
posted by bearwife at 2:12 PM on March 10, 2011 [12 favorites]


Remember, everybody: THERE WAS NO FIFTH SEASON. Believe this, and you will be a much happier person.
posted by orrnyereg at 2:14 PM on March 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


>> The first halves of the first 3 seasons are a slog.

> Everyone's entitled to an opinion, I suppose.

Oh, indeed.
posted by vidur at 2:20 PM on March 10, 2011 [3 favorites]


start each season by watching (at least) the first three episodes back to back to back.

I remember renting the first couple of disks of the first season, on the back of the Guardian starting to rave about it over here in the UK soon after it was available, and watching the first episodes one a day... and re-watching the first one at least (with the commentary). That pretty much got me into it. I realised it was bloody good almost from the get go ("Well, if every time, Snot Boogie stole the money, why'd you let him play?" "Got to. It's America, man.") but that started to change once Omar turned and by mid-season I realised it was pretty much the best thing ever.

Summer before last the BBC showed the whole thing with three or four or so episodes a week (with couple of week gaps for sport at season ends). That was a real good pace to watch it.

Course I'm now jonesing to watch it all over again...
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 2:27 PM on March 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


I have no earthly idea why I just watched the Season 4 ending montage. Those boys break my heart. I don't have any idea if Felicia Pearson is guilty, but if she is...

Namond is saved by chance. Why Namond, and not Dukie or Randy or Michael? Chance. Namond is saved from his mother shoving him into the game, Dukie and Michael are in the game all the way, God knows what happens to Randy. Chance.

By chance, Felicia Pearson met Michael K. Williams at a club and ended up as the character "Snoop". That time, chance was on her side. If she's guilty, if she was in the game, I'm saddened, but how can I be surprised? How can I "be her judge in this matter", as David Simon writes? My USA is only interested in her USA when we want to find villains to blame or victims to save. If you're not one or the other, don't worry; we'll pick for you. We'll flip this coin. Chance.
posted by epj at 2:29 PM on March 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


Fizz: "Got to. This America, man."

If anyone's a fan of The Wire and hasn't read it yet, David Simon's book Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets was adapted for the show Homicide but actually contains a great deal of true life stories that made it into The Wire, including the "This is America" scene that opens the series. Great book.
posted by sharkfu at 2:34 PM on March 10, 2011


Why, why WHY!?! can I not get my lovely GF interested in watching The Wire? I would love to watch it all again, but she would just as soon watch a ham sandwich for sixty hours.

Maybe she's sensitive to all the violence. I don't watch the Wire and I've been trying to, like really trying. I can't follow what they're saying when they talk and that gets annoying and frustrating. I only made it to the third episode of the first season. I'll try to just put the subtitles on and mute it, like bearwife.
posted by anniecat at 2:39 PM on March 10, 2011


"I knew that girl wasn't acting", that's racist, right?

No offence, but that's that last type of question I'd pose to this site.
posted by Dark Messiah at 2:41 PM on March 10, 2011


Come on, nobody is going to compare this to the treatment of a certain Hollywood mass consumer (and re-distributor) of illegal drugs who was paid $2 million dollars a week to "play himself"?
posted by oneswellfoop at 2:41 PM on March 10, 2011 [4 favorites]


Maybe she's sensitive to all the violence.

This.

As one of the aforementioned ladies who initially refused to watch The Wire and eventually caved, I can say that my initial resistance was 98%* due to watching the scene in episode 3 where someone gets shot in the kneecaps with a shotgun at close range. If you lady is similarly unsettled by seeing limbs shredded by firearms, perhaps you can promise to warn her of impending on-screen violence. It worked wonders for me and now I luuuuuuuuurve The Wire.

*The other 2% was just to be difficult
posted by Mrs.Spiffy at 2:46 PM on March 10, 2011


anniecat, I don't think I was clear, sorry. I would actually suggest using subtitles without muting. It is seeing the words as you hear them that makes the street dialect come clearly to the ear after awhile. (Also, the sound is not something you want to miss in this show.)
posted by bearwife at 2:47 PM on March 10, 2011


Come on, nobody is going to compare this to the treatment of a certain Hollywood mass consumer (and re-distributor) of illegal drugs who was paid $2 million dollars a week to "play himself"?

I was wondering about that, but mostly from a legal curiosity POV. To a non-American like me, it would appear that there really are different laws for dealing with different social classes.

Can someone more familiar with US drug laws throw some light on why some people just go to rehab while others get locked up, even though both could have been using and distributing?
posted by vidur at 2:54 PM on March 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


> Can someone more familiar with US drug laws throw some light on why some people just go to rehab while others get locked up, even though both could have been using and distributing?

1) Mandatory sentencing for crack that was set at 100x the level for powder cocaine (since reduced to a mere 18x)
2) Good attorneys cost loads of money but invariably make the difference between suspended sentence/probation and a trip upstate.
posted by Burhanistan at 2:57 PM on March 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


Why, why WHY!?! can I not get my lovely GF interested in watching The Wire

Same reason I can't get my wife to watch it. BECAUSE THEY CRAZY. Tell you what: next time you and your GF are in Portland she and my wife can go hang out with kitty cats or stare into space or whatever the hell it is that they do and we can watch the Wire like proper human beings.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 2:59 PM on March 10, 2011 [4 favorites]


If someone knows of concrete evidence that Charlie Sheen has been using and distributing drugs, you are ahead of me. It is certainly suspected, but that someone talks about using or marketing drugs isn't enough to prove anything -- particularly when that person also seems to have some mental illness issues. As for the proposition that Hollywood types don't get caught or punished, I'd suggest that there are lots of examples to the contrary. Lindsay Lohan and Robert Downey Junior spring to mind.

Also, there is a difference in the eyes of the criminal justice system between using and dealing, especially dealing via gangs. In general, gangs use drugs as means of supporting a full fledged violent criminal enterprise. The Wire does a great job showing how that works.

If "Snoop" is a mere addict, she's not likely to spend much time at all in jail. If she's been involved in a conspiracy to deal drugs, especially via gangs, then she'll be looking at serious time.
posted by bearwife at 3:01 PM on March 10, 2011


Why, why WHY!?! can I not get my lovely GF interested in watching The Wire

Same reason you can't get her to watch Star Wars. She's gone this long without seeing it and she's sick of hearing about it.
posted by electroboy at 3:04 PM on March 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


David Simon on Snoop's arrest:

In an essay published two years ago in Time magazine, the writers of The Wire made the argument that we believe the war on drugs has devolved into a war on the underclass, that in places like West and East Baltimore, where the drug economy is now the only factory still hiring and where the educational system is so crippled that the vast majority of children are trained only for the corners, a legal campaign to imprison our most vulnerable and damaged citizens is little more than amoral. And we said then that if asked to serve on any jury considering a non-violent drug offense, we would move to nullify that jury's verdict and vote to acquit. Regardless of the defendant, I still believe such a course of action would be just in any case in which drug offenses—absent proof of violent acts—are alleged.

Both our Constitution and our common law guarantee that we will be judged by our peers. But in truth, there are now two Americas, politically and economically distinct. I, for one, do not qualify as a peer to Felicia Pearson. The opportunities and experiences of her life do not correspond in any way with my own, and her America is different from my own. I am therefore ill-equipped to be her judge in this matter.
posted by antihostile at 3:23 PM on March 10, 2011 [10 favorites]


Remember, everybody: THERE WAS NO FIFTH SEASON. Believe this, and you will be a much happier person.

Why does everyone hate the fifth season so much? I love the fifth season, its the best one!
posted by jdotglenn at 3:29 PM on March 10, 2011


You can definitely make an argument that she will be judged by her peers, if she's has to undergo a trial in Baltimore.
posted by electroboy at 3:31 PM on March 10, 2011


Why does everyone hate the fifth season so much? I love the fifth season, its the best one!

I didn't mind the 5th season, but man did I hate the finale.
posted by Hoopo at 3:34 PM on March 10, 2011


> I love the fifth season, its the best one!

The 5th season is a glorious monstrosity. People can hate the absurd main plotline if they really insist, but it's really such a great illustration of how the media and reality are in a weird feedback loop.
posted by Burhanistan at 3:34 PM on March 10, 2011


I have no idea what Charlie Sheen was doing. In fact, I have somehow managed to avoid most of the coverage about him here in Australia. I don't follow general celebrity coverage either. It is just that even a casual observer like me catches news snippets and forms an impression. The impression that I carry is that celebrities always seem to be sentenced to rehab or to extremely short jail times.

Thanks Burhanistan and bearwife. I hadn't even thought of additional charges relating to gangs/violence etc. in most drug-related cases.
posted by vidur at 3:37 PM on March 10, 2011


Preach. It's not my favorite season, but the fifth season gave us the Dickensian aspect, dickface Templeton, and long-suffering Gus. Not to mention "Good night, hoppers..."

And really, who am I to begrudge David Simon a little axe-grinding in the general direction of the B'more Sun? As a wise police once said, "There you go again, givin' a fuck when it ain't your turn to give a fuck."
posted by superfluousm at 3:39 PM on March 10, 2011


Second time around Season 5 seemed to work a lot better, for me anyway, especially McNulty's arc
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 3:50 PM on March 10, 2011


Out of curiosity, I ran Snoop's name on the Maryland Judiciary Case Search Website. It looks like (other than the murder charge), she's been charged three times. Two drug cases(one Possession of Marijuana, one distribution) and one case that was disorderly conduct plus carrying a weapon openly with intent to injure. All three of those cases were either dismissed(two of them) or she was found not guilty (the other). So maybe she just does have bad luck with the police. It also looks like she was the defendant in a foreclosure action in 2010.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 3:51 PM on March 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


I would actually suggest using subtitles without muting.

We did this. Sometime during the second season, we realized our ears had adjusted enough that we didn't need subtitles any more.
posted by cybercoitus interruptus at 4:04 PM on March 10, 2011


Bulgaroktonos is right, though I gather from one of the Baltimore Sun articles that she admittedly dealt drugs as a juvenile and again after she was released on the murder conviction (which would have been in 2002 if she served 6 and a 1/2 years.) And apparently "Snoop" is her real life nickname, given to her by a real drug dealer with whom she was close.
posted by bearwife at 4:07 PM on March 10, 2011


Why does everyone hate the fifth season so much?

Because the media plot was so self-indulgent on Simon's part, and the McNulty story was just pure batshit insane. All that fantastic work creating a solid, character-driven show in the first four seasons, only to see it thrown away in an attempt to make the character follow the needs of the plot in Season 5, well, it was just such a huge disappointment.

And the media story in particular was a tragedy, because nobody can be in any doubt that there's a real issue in regard to the impoverishment of the media and it's continuing race to the bottom. But Simons had an axe to grind, and so again, he allowed story to be subservient to his need to hone that axe. And you end up with a show that preaches, rather than standing back and showing us how things are, thereby allowing the audience to reach their own conclusions.

The season did get better as it went on, because you adjusted to the jarring shock of such incredible story devices and started watching it along the same lines as you would a season of CSI or Law and Order. It was still better than everything else on TV, it just wasn't the perfect polished gem that had blown us away in Seasons 1 to 4.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 4:12 PM on March 10, 2011 [5 favorites]


She earn that buck like a mufucka.

I'm pretty sure it's 'bump' - as in a bonus.
posted by Sebmojo at 4:18 PM on March 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


Same reason I can't get my wife to watch it. BECAUSE THEY CRAZY. Tell you what: next time you and your GF are in Portland she and my wife can go hang out with kitty cats or stare into space or whatever the hell it is that they do

Ahem. Ham sandwiches, kitty cats, and space are all really super amazing, and if you don't realize that, perhaps you shouldn't be running around calling other people crazy.
posted by louche mustachio at 5:02 PM on March 10, 2011


Because the media plot was so self-indulgent on Simon's part, and the McNulty story was just pure batshit insane

That was the point though, however clumsily made. The hero went batshit insane and tried to work the system, forgetting that the system was working him.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:03 PM on March 10, 2011


Season 5 was also compromised because it was only 10 episodes instead of the 13 episodes in most of the other seasons (Season 2 had 12 episodes). HBO commissioned 13 episodes in September 2006, then reduced it to 10, probably in early 2007. Compressing the story into three fewer episodes, especially if it was on short notice, meant they had to cut some storytelling corners. (The overall storyline was still pretty dumb, though.)
posted by kirkaracha at 5:10 PM on March 10, 2011


Here's an updated Baltimore Sun article in the wake of the press conference. Snoop is charged as an accomplice in a substantial conspiracy case involving allegations of gangs, drug distribution, and violence in East Baltimore (though some of the people charged allegedly have links to California and New York). It'll take awhile to see how this shakes out in terms of how strong the evidence is to each defendant.

I will be especially fascinated if it turns out the case turns on wire tapping, cell phone tracking, or video surveillance. Then it really will seem as if life is imitating art (which imitated life . . .)
posted by bearwife at 5:22 PM on March 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


I hope you know that when she gets out she's gonna be brief with all y'all.
posted by brevator at 6:01 PM on March 10, 2011


The hero went batshit insane and tried to work the system, forgetting that the system was working him.

The problem was, it was all so out of character for McNulty -- in fact, it would have been so out of character for *anybody* who had been a long-standing cop. And out of character for Bunk, who just kinda stood by pointlessly watching while he did that shit.

Prior to that point, the show's strength had been it's continuous credibility -- even when it occasionally stretched that credibility, as with the Hamsterdam episodes -- you never felt, 'oh my God, this is fucking ridiculous.'

And that's precisely how I felt when Simons started driving McNulty into places he just wouldn't have gone to.

I'd love to have heard what Ed Burns had to say on the subject at those particular script meetings.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 6:19 PM on March 10, 2011 [2 favorites]


Dark Messiah: "No offence, but that's that last type of question I'd pose to this site."

Probably doesn't help that I forgot the "ex-" part. But, yeah, pretty much regretted it the moment I hit enter. I'm sure it's too late in the thread to take it back, but if the mods are inclined to be nice to me...
posted by l33tpolicywonk at 6:20 PM on March 10, 2011


Can someone more familiar with US drug laws throw some light on why some people just go to rehab while others get locked up, even though both could have been using and distributing?

A combination of race and class.
posted by entropone at 6:35 PM on March 10, 2011


Because the media plot was so self-indulgent on Simon's part, and the McNulty story was just pure batshit insane. All that fantastic work creating a solid, character-driven show in the first four seasons, only to see it thrown away in an attempt to make the character follow the needs of the plot in Season 5, well, it was just such a huge disappointment.

Yeah, this sums up my feelings about season 5 to a T. I was so pissed off at the McNulty story I barely remember the silly newspaper shenanigans and the caricatures that worked there.
posted by oneirodynia at 6:58 PM on March 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


Can someone more familiar with US drug laws throw some light on why some people just go to rehab while others get locked up, even though both could have been using and distributing?

A combination of race and class.


While there's some truth to this, it's also a pretty glib answer. My experience with the criminal justice system largely comes from having worked as a public defender. At the public defender, all of my clients were lower income; while there was some range they could all be generally said to be "lower class." That said, plenty of them got to do rehab as part of probation rather than go to jail; factors that could generate this outcome:

1) Having no prior criminal record (obviously)
2) Having a limited prior criminal record, especially if the prior record didn't have to do with drugs
3) Enrolling in substance abuse pre-trial (ideally with negative urinalysis results while in treatment)
4) Presenting a compelling story about what treatment was going to work for you this time, if hadn't before (sometimes this is bullshit, sometimes its not)
5) Having the right judge/lawyer/prosecutor

Now, a lot of those factors correlate with race/class. Criminal enforcement is just lower in rich/white neighborhoods making it easier for your average rich white drug user to make it well into adulthood before he gets caught. People with more money can pay for more extensive pre-trial rehab programs that make it easier for them to come with a bunch of certificate and testimonials from sponsors about how well they're doing. Even acknowledging that these factors do correlate with race, it's not as simple as that.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 7:18 PM on March 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


Am I the ONLY white guy who thinks it's hilarious and embarrassing when his friends talk about how much easier The Wire is with subtitles? I mean, for cryin' out loud!
posted by ReeMonster at 7:42 PM on March 10, 2011 [3 favorites]


And by that I mean.. as you watch the show you learn what all the dialect means anyway.. if it's not perfectly obvious by just observing their actions in the show in relation to the words they use.
posted by ReeMonster at 7:43 PM on March 10, 2011 [1 favorite]


All that fantastic work creating a solid, character-driven show in the first four seasons, only to see it thrown away in an attempt to make the character follow the needs of the plot in Season 5, well, it was just such a huge disappointment.

? Simon created that show specifically to NOT be character driven. There was an FPP of a Simon interview a while back and he talked at length about that.
Personally I think that show has to be the greatest thing to ever hit the airwaves. It's genius begining to end.
posted by P.o.B. at 8:03 PM on March 10, 2011


If anyone's a fan of The Wire and hasn't read it yet, David Simon's book Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets was adapted for the show Homicide but actually contains a great deal of true life stories that made it into The Wire, including the "This is America" scene that opens the series. Great book.

This is also true of Simon and Burn's The Corner, even though it was made into a mini-series (directed by Charles S. Dutton). It is a very powerful book.
posted by IvoShandor at 10:17 PM on March 10, 2011



Police declined to comment on the charges she could face.

Still busy trumping them up.

I think it's appropriate (and non-libelous) for the cops not to speculate on future possible charges but I'd like to know what the probable cause was in that warrant. I don't think it's going to be terribly surprising - it's a drug sweep for a heroin and pot operation - but I think that it's entirely INappropriate for law enforcement to refuse to disclose why they are detaining someone. To my mind the remedy that disclosure offers against unjust detention far outweighs other concerns.


To be perfectly clear, the cops don't determine the charges. The prosecutors do. In the case of a massive drug-raid, that can take a bit of time. It is entirely possible that she will be no-papered in this (meaning that the DA will decide not to charge her after all.) So the "no comment" is correct at this time.

That said, I don't know much about how drug charges go down in Baltimore. I still need to watch The Wire and I've only seen clips from ...And Justice for All. But I can say that if you're going to be poor, black, and arrested, do it in DC. We've got the country's greatest Public Defender system, and social services are gaining popularity among the judges to actually help defendants get their lives on track.

That said, if you're white and breaking the law, make sure to do that in DC as well. In a year of watching arraignments at DC Superior court, I maybe saw (or even heard of) one small group of white defendants, some college kids from American who were sold up-river by a campus security guard who smelled pot.
posted by Navelgazer at 11:08 PM on March 10, 2011


I visited Baltimore from my home here in London a few years ago, purely because The Wire had made me so curious about the city. I was reading Simon's Homicide book in a Fell's Point bar when the waitress there said something like "My sister's in that book". She told me which chapter to look in and, sure enough, there her sister was, hiding a gun for her scumbag boyfriend.

Of course, this may simply be the way young black waitresses in Baltimore have a little fun with naive whiteboy tourists. Fascinating trip, though.
posted by Paul Slade at 1:20 AM on March 11, 2011


Am I the ONLY white guy who thinks it's hilarious and embarrassing when his friends talk about how much easier The Wire is with subtitles? I mean, for cryin' out loud!

You're probably not but you're being pretty unfair to folks who are coping with an unfamiliar accent/dialect/slang. I remember feeling that way twenty years ago when my boss at the time commented they'd love to use these management videos done by John Cleese but too many folks had trouble understanding his accent.

As a big Monty Python fan I thought that was insane. Then a few years back my wife and I finally gave in and turned on the subtitles while watching ONCE. There's a skill involved in understanding an accent and it's a lot harder to pick it up and cope via context when there's a lot of jargon or slang or unfamiliar words/concepts.

To be perfectly clear, the cops don't determine the charges. The prosecutors do. In the case of a massive drug-raid, that can take a bit of time.

*nod* I was trying to be careful about that, which is why I mentioned why they were detaining someone rather than what someone would actually be charged with. However my interested layperson knowledge mostly revolves around suspicion stops and the sort of chatter you get out of a Flex Your Rights product. Obviously something very different is going on when there's a warrant and a coordinated raid. Though my sunshine-obsessed knee-jerk reaction is to say that such warrants should be disclosed to the public upon request except in narrow circumstances.
posted by phearlez at 7:54 AM on March 11, 2011


One thing I don't remember seeing in The Wire is anyone innocent being convicted. Though we did see a lot of guilty people walk, right from episode one.
posted by philipy at 10:10 AM on March 11, 2011


"Wire" Actress Arrested in Drug Sweep Held Without Bail
posted by electroboy at 12:30 PM on March 11, 2011


you're being pretty unfair to folks who are coping with an unfamiliar accent/dialect/slang

Second that. I for one actually would like to learn how to hear all that people are saying, not just get the general idea from seeing what they do. Moreover, people don't just talk about what they do. They strategize, they plan, they reflect, and they comment, particularly in the complicated and complex milieus The Wire depicts.

I also have been known to flip on the subtitles for programs with busy soundtracks that run over the voices, movies with unfamiliar foreign accents, actors that swallow their words, and movies with especially complicated scripts. Most recently my husband and I replayed a critical scene in Children of Men (good movie, btw) repeatedly because it was clear that what the protagonist overheard was key to the movie. We could not decipher it, so we turned on the subtitles. The whole movie gained depth from there on out as we realized how much we hadn't been hearing, due to a combination of 1) busy soundtrack 2) overlapping voices 3) British accents 4) heavy use of slang and 5) some use of sci fi type terms unique to the book/movie.

I always wonder what the problem is with people doing something low key like looking at subtitles so they can understand better. If you don't like doing it yourself, fine.
posted by bearwife at 12:32 PM on March 11, 2011


electroboy: ""Wire" Actress Arrested in Drug Sweep Held Without Bail"

subhead: Felicia 'Snoop' Pearson accused of helping fund drug ring


Why do I get the feeling we're about to hear some extremely weak bullshit charges?
posted by telstar at 12:05 AM on March 12, 2011


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