Arguing Bodie’s Potential

Herc: How are you home?
Bodie: Juvenile Judge, man, he saw my potential. He expects big things from me.
Herc: Yeah, like what?
Bodie: I don’t know, college, law school, medical school, all that good shit.

There is a lot of talk about promise and potential as Bodie clears up his legal troubles and finally comes home under a laughably-permissive home monitoring system. In the very first phone call that the detail officially monitors, Stringer asks D’Angelo if Bodie has enough “promise” to bring home. The real question is whether this hopper is talented enough to justify the expense and effort of having Levy get him out of jail.

Bad Cop, Good Cop

Stick with what you know–Herc

At the heart of “The Pager,” there is a lengthy sequence that alternates between four unrelated storylines that all take place on a single Friday night in Baltimore. One is all business (Avon and Stringer’s plans to take over new territory) and one is all personal (McNulty’s ill-fated, drunken attempt at constructing a bunk bed for his sons). The other two scenes show the challenges of keeping the professional out of the personal (D’Angelo’s date night with Donette) and the personal out of the professional (Herc and Carver’s failed attempt to flip Bodie).

1.4: Bodie’s Great Escape

Use your imagination–Carver

One of The Wire’s most effective visual techniques is the way it cuts between scenes. By placing a certain image or piece of dialogue next to a related on in the next scene, they subtly reinforce a connection between different subplots or characters. One of my favorite such cuts takes place in the beginning of “Old Cases,” right in the heart of the jaw-dropping sequence where Bodie escapes from Boys’ Village.

The scene begins with a disorienting shot, a fuzzy, decontextualized look at some institutional ceiling. It slowly comes into focus before the camera cuts to reveal Bodie, just coming to from the asskicking that Herc, Carver, and Kima put on him in retribution for punching Mahone.