The Wire
Late Editions

Episode Report Card
Mr. Sobell: A | 4 USERS: A+
"Deserve Got Nuthin' To Do With It"

Let's join the Carcetti press conference already in action. The investigation's continuing, Carcetti says, but there's already one murder arrest for an organization that's been linked to all the bodies found in those vacants. "We did not give up on that investigation," Carcetti lies, "just as we do not give up trying every day to address ourselves to the task of making this city safe and vibrant again." And Carcetti has a message for anyone else in the drug trade: "A day like this coming for you." From his spot in the peanut gallery, the Sun's Bill Zorzi seems as annoyed by this mayoral posturing as I am: "Oh, you are so butch," he lisps. Then Carcetti goes into the standard Partnership for a Drug-Free America patter: drugs destroy individuals, families -- "Don't about the communities," mutters Zorzi, who's obviously seen this movie before -- communities. "Today, the mayor of Baltimore, our state's attorney, our police department, and our communities are saying, 'We have had enough,'" Carcetti concludes. This is something like the third Carcetti press conference we've seen this year, where the Mayor issues a series of grand platitudes before abruptly ending is prepared remarks and beating a hasty exit off the stage. Really, we're about one press conference away from seeing him end one of these things by collapsing one knee while Norman runs up and drapes a robe over him, James Brown-style. Give it up for Tommy Carcetti, everybody -- the Godfather of Bullshit.

The press conference ended, Alma dutifully trots up to the stone bust of Cedric Daniels, identifies herself as a Sun reporter and asks him for a comment. Daniels thumbs through his copy of The Big Book Of Authority Figure Clichés and settles on "It's a good day for the good guys." I would have gone with "We're just taking it one day at a time" or "I put my pants on one leg at a time just like everybody else," but Daniels's choice is nice and suitably bland. Alma asks if maybe he'd like to say something just a wee bit more interesting. Daniels would not, thanks for asking. "Last time the Sun had me in its pages," Daniels says through clenched teeth, "you had me doing things I didn't do." There'll be no money quote for you, little missy -- you'll get colorless clichés and bland pronouncements, and you'll like it.

We're in Booking, where a quorum of Stanfield gang members have assembled to read over the documentation of their arrest -- or, in Cheese's case sounding out the difficult words until someone helps him with them. He's having particular trouble understanding the part about how a "source of information identified the transmission of photographs via cellphone." "Fuck do that mean?" Cheese demands. Well, this is just a guess, mind you, but I'd say it means that a source of information identified the transmission of photographs via cellphone. Cheese offers another interpretation: somebody snitched. "Who the fuck even know?" Monk wonders. Marlo thinks a word with his attorney will help clarify matters some. In the meantime, what about that murder rap you caught, Chris? "From information received," Monk reads off the report, "investigation led to DNA analysis of the victim." Chris figures it was probably a hair sample he carelessly left behind when he beat Michael's stepfather to death. Cheese is still fixated on that "information received" phraseology -- "More of that snitching shit," he grumbles. So who -- apart from the brain trust assembled here -- knew enough about what was going on to drop a dime to the police? Well, there was Snoop, but everyone dismisses that possibility out of hand. "What about your young'un, Michael?" Cheese asks. "Maybe it was him ran his mouth." Marlo does note that Michael was recently interrogated by the police. "I did that thing for him," protests Chris, employing logical deduction that is probably lost on Cheese and Monk. "Why would he talk about it, an' put hisself in?" Well, maybe he doesn't hold up so well under police questioning, Marlo suggests. And there's the small matter of Michael's backtalk, Monk adds: "Cryin' about how June Bug and his people got lit up. Cryin' about how Omar in the street, runnin' his mouth, calling for you to step to." Chris is all "Ix-nay on the Omar-ay alk-tay," but Marlo is understandably curious as to what exactly Monk is referring to. Why, that would be all those times Omar went around calling Marlo a punk. Marlo freaks right the hell out about that: "My name was on the street?" he yells. "When we bounce from this shit here, y'all are going to go down to them corners, let them people know -- word did not get back to me. Let 'em know Marlo step to any motherfucker -- Omar, Barksdale, whoever. My name is my name." He says that last bit with a noticeably unhinged gleam in his eye. Because on a day you've been fingered in a multi-million-dollar drug bust, your primary concerns should be what a guy who's already gotten his brains blown out was saying about you. You have yourself some funny priorities, there, Mr. Stanfield.

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