Will the real Baltimore stand up?

After reading all of the assigned readings for today, it was nice to finally be able to hear from the man himself. Yes, David Simon actually has a voice. I feel like everything we have read this far is written with previous feelings about Simon. But now I understand where previous authors have gotten their notions about Simon from. In his interview he appears as a man who wishes to make vengeance against his old job. But more importantly, I feel that I gained a sense of where Simon was coming from when he chose to portray distorted systems in Baltimore.

But what impressed me the most about his interview was his response to the controversy over filming in Baltimore. I understand the Baltimore is essential to the series but as I watch I tend to forget that the series is in Baltimore. You all might not agree with me on this. I agree with Simon that the series can take place in almost any urban area. It would be interesting to watch the series take place in “the traditional dominate locales of New York, Los Angles, Washington, Chicago” but an important characteristic of the show is that it removes itself from the those areas. I appreciate the series more so because it’s not filmed in an area with unique culture (i.e. New York’ as a financial capital) so that the series can focus on important issues. This is what makes the series rich.

 The interview reflected the corrupt institutions Simon depicts on the series. I was surprised to read that the mayor at the time of the airing of the first season wanted Simon to film else where. I don’t think that the series has the intention of bashing Baltimore but rather wants its audience to acknowledge the corrupt institutions in places like Baltimore. The mayor wanted Baltimore “out of The Wire business” until Simon reminded him that if the series were to be filmed in Philadelphia they would get the money but would be depicted as Baltimore. Honestly, the series would have been strange if all the characters were relocated to Philadelphia in the beginning of the third season. Can you imagine it? Me either. This story reinforced the complex and corrupt political institution that really exists in Baltimore. Did the mayor not learn anything when he watched The Wire?

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