Eighteen years since ‘The Wire’s’ debut, we look back at the show’s last episode and the reason behind it being called “-30-”.
The last episode of ‘The Wire’ perfectly fitted the riveting show’s journey that spanned up to five seasons. The finale episode of ‘The Wire’ left us with the interpretation that nothing really ends. Staying true to its structured storytelling, like in the past five seasons, episode “-30-” of ‘The Wire’ that revolved around Baltimore. Let’s dive a little deeper into what unfolded in its final minutes.
- Why is the last episode of ‘The Wire’ called “-30-”?
- Bubbles happy ending on ‘The Wire’ finale
- Everything takes a full circle in ‘The Wire’s’ last episode
One of the most realistic affirmations of ‘The Wire’ finale was what it implied about the unchanging system. The police remain corrupt, the Greeks continue to import drugs, while others use it. But, out of the many, some end up giving their lives a new and better beginning, like Bubbles.
Why is the last episode of ‘The Wire’ called “-30-”?
For those who aren’t aware, the title is a journalistic term used to signify the end of an article. The 90-minute episode began with the Deputy of Operations, Cedric Daniels, telling the mayor that the serial killer who was targeting homeless people was a bluff by Jimmy. Instead of revealing it to the public, they keep it a secret since the mayor’s office was worried that the truth could hamper Mayor Carcetti’s chances of becoming the governor. Hence, Daniels is told to keep the mess to himself in the promise of a promotion. Most of the last episode of ‘The Wire’ revolved around Jimmy’s antics that would somehow affect the political scenario.
The fate of Marlo Stanfield also revolved around Jimmy, which didn’t make much sense. Marlo was put in jail because of a wiretap, illegally attained by Jimmy. Marlo’s lawyer Levy works out a way for Marlo to walk out of jail, but only with a condition. It is held that if Marlo causes any trouble, he would be sent back to the jail after Carcetti’s election for governor.
One of the issues, that is valid in the real world even today, that ‘The Wire’ aptly highlights is that of news and media houses choosing to prioritize profit over journalistic uprightness. One of the show’s characters, Scott, who is a reporter, fabricates an article about a serial killer who’s targeting homeless men. Even though the city’s desk editor, Gus, tries to get his actions noticed by his bosses, he sadly fails. In the end, Scott wins the Pulitzer Prize for his “reporting”.
Bubbles’ happy ending on ‘The Wire’ finale
In a show where most of the characters have an unhappy ending, Bubbles manages to pull through in ‘The Wire’ finale. He pulls himself out of heroin addiction and homelessness. In the end, he successfully finds a job where he has to sell copies of “The Baltimore Sun”. In the final montage, we see him eat with his sister. This proved that he was finally being accepted into the family. So, not everyone on ‘The Wire’ had a terrible or depressing ending.
In a show where most of the characters have an unhappy ending, Bubbles manages to pull through in ‘The Wire’ finale. He pulls himself out of heroin addiction and homelessness. In the end, he successfully finds a job where he has to sell copies of “The Baltimore Sun”.
Everything completes a full circle in ‘The Wire’s’ last episode
‘The Wire’ finale wrapped things up in the most realistic way possible. Though a lot of its characters ended up dead, some took the place of others. Instead of getting back on his feet, Duquan gets back to drugs, becoming the new Bubbles. Does Duquan turn his life around for the better like Bubbles? Sadly, we never get to know.
Michael Lee becomes the new Omar when he robs one of Marlo’s money sources. Leander Sydnor is the new McNulty when he secretly takes his case to Judge Phelan, just like Jimmy McNulty did in the first episode. Ellis Carver gets promoted to the position of a lieutenant. In the final montage scene, Daniels could be seen as a lawyer. Since he wasn’t too pleased with the political games that would come with the commissioner job, maybe this was a better fit for him.
One of the most realistic affirmations of HBO‘s ‘The Wire’ finale was what it implied about the unchanging system. The police remain corrupt, the Greeks continue to import drugs, while others use it. But, out of the many, some end up giving their lives a new and better beginning, like Bubbles. While some things might be difficult to change on a larger scale, there is still hope.
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