The Wire
Backwash

Episode Report Card
Wing Chun: B+ | 1 USERS: A
YOU GRADE IT
"Don't Worry, Kid. You're Still On The Clock."

We open with Bodie entering a florist's shop. He's looking around at the wreaths and bouquets and whatever the hell you call those floral sculptures that are like tiny parade floats without the wheels. A guy comes out from the back to ask whether Bodie's looking for anything in particular, and Bodie says he needs something for a funeral. The clerk says he's sorry for his loss. Bodie checks out a sculpture shaped like an angel; the clerk says it's very popular, and Bodie gives him a dubious look. The clerk asks who died, and Bodie says that he and the deceased worked together. "A professional relationship," muses the clerk, looking around. Bodie clarifies, "We wasn't all that tight, but he was still my nigga." The clerk totally gets it, and tells Bodie to follow him. And, you guys, seriously, when I first watched this episode, I said to Glark, "Maybe it'll be a floral thing in the shape of--" only to have the show totally bogart my joke!

Because here's what happens. The clerk leads Bodie into a back room, where, arrayed on the wall, are sculptures in the shape of: a Lexus logo; a BMW logo; a liquor bottle; a dollar sign; a handgun; a marijuana leaf; a cell phone; a machine gun; and a Mercedes logo. YES, REALLY. And the thing is, this obviously isn't something they just came up with for the show; the writers researched it and they know there is a particular subculture that holds funerals where such totems are proudly displayed and commonplace. It's just another example of The Wire teaching something that, otherwise, a white girl from Saskatchewan would never, ever know. So anyway, the clerk says that the Gat is very popular, and that they can do it in white or red or pink. "Pink?!" says Bodie. "Your boy was too fierce for the pink?" chuckles the clerk. "Nah, he wasn't all that," says Bodie. "But damn, when you stand with a nigga, you stand with him to the end. Otherwise, you ain't nothing yourself." But maybe pink would go great with the rest of the funeral -- what if the guy's family's other colour is mint green? The clerk asks, "How your boy fall?" Bodie sighs loudly: "Hung himself. Over at the Cut, man -- strung himself up...I guess he couldn't handle all them years, you know?" The clerk is respectfully silent. "It's a weak-ass nigga, when you think about it," adds Bodie pensively. "But -- ain't no reason to drag his name down no further, you know?" The clerk spreads his hands and nods noncommittally. Bodie turns back to the wall, and tells the clerk he'll take something "in strong colours" -- and in the shape of one of the Towers. Clerk -- still respectful, but maybe with the tiniest hint of dubiety: "You want the arrangement to look like a high-rise housing project?" "HELL yeah," grins Bodie. "And put the numbers 221 in big-ass numbers on the front." The clerk asks whether Bodie wants the sculpture to say anything else, like "Rest In Peace," that suggests how Bodie feels about his loss. But Bodie isn't so emotional about it, and, peeling several bills off a wad, he tells the clerk, "Just make sure the Towers look like they do, all right?" The clerk nods, wondering why he ever decided to drop out of nursing school.

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The Wire

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