If you thought Norman was incredulous about the suggestion that the Major Case Unit needed to shut down its investigations, he's a model of willing submission compared to Colonel Daniels, who is only now hearing the news from Burrell and Rawls. "You're talking about a year's worth of work by my best people," Daniels protests. "To just give up on all that?" Rawls reminds him of the payroll crisis we've been hearing about in one form or another for the past twenty minutes. "Where the fuck is Carcetti?" Daniels wonders, not unreasonably. "The man promised us a new day." The man also promised that his first order of business was to shit-can Burrell, and yet, who is that sitting to your right, telling you that your Major Case Unit is fucked coming and going? Daniels vows to take his case directly to the mayor. Fine and dandy, Burrell says -- but he'll be doing it without his car, since the budget cuts are also claiming the take-home vehicles of anyone with the rank of colonel and below. Hope Cadillac let you keep the car from that TV commercial, Lance Reddick.
Lest you think I've been giving Michael too much grief about letting Marlo and company wrap their tentacles around him, I will concede that the wages of sin may be death, but the perks are hard to beat. Michael's apartment has a ginormous flat-screen TV, a fancy scooter parked in the middle of the room, some fairly nice-looking furniture, and a stereo system that would rival most concert halls. Say, Michael -- Marlo isn't hiring, is he? Michael is schooling Bug on the finer points of Connect Four; this show of genuinely brotherly love is touching and poignant, in spite of Michael's gradual and ongoing transformation into a heartless criminal. Also poignant: his suggestion to Dukie that maybe Dukie should spend less time on the corner and more time taking care of Bug, while Spider gets promoted to corner manager in his place. "So I'd be like a nanny and shit?" asks Dukie, not exactly warming to the idea. But Michael's made his decision, so a nanny is what Dukie will be. Also, Dukie, do you mind if Michael starts calling you "Fredo?" Why? Oh, no reason.
Say, remember the domesticated, relatively sober, dependable family man version of McNulty from Season 4? Yeah, he's dead now. Apparently, drunken, lascivious, danger-to-himself-and-others McNulty murdered him just about the time McNulty re-upped with Major Crimes. At least, that's the version that's holding court in a bar right now, drunkenly ranting about he was lured back from the paradise of his patrol duties with beautiful lies about a new day in Baltimore. "Shit never fucking changes," McNulty seethes. Or at least, it doesn't stay changed for very long, like certain police detectives I could name. Anyhow, the kvetching about how the police brass can't do anything right except for holding on tight to a nickel until it screams is momentarily curbed when Bunk saunters into the bar. Because he doesn't yet have enough liquor in him -- for McNulty, I think the limit is probably just a few drops shy of alcohol poisoning -- he asks Bunk to buy him a drink; in response, Bunk just shows him a handful of unpaid overtime vouchers. While McNulty tries to negotiate a time-slip-for-drinks swap with a not-having-any-of-it bartender, the other cops muse about pulling off a liquor store heist: Bunk offers to knock out the counterman, Kima offers to cover him, and Freamon will take care of the door. But who drives the getaway car? The three look over to McNulty, who's in the process of stumbling over a barstool. "Every plan, a weak link," Freamon sighs. By the way, Wire Cops Gone Bad -- that would never get deleted from my TiVo, HBO programming gurus. I just think you should consider that.