The Wire

Episode Report Card
Wing Chun: A | 1 USERS: A+
"...A Little Slow, A Little Late"

Omar and Brandon strut out to the van. That...took a while.

At the detail office, Prez works on a puzzle. As McNulty walks in, Prez -- bursting with pride, already -- says, "I beeped you." McNulty says he didn't get it. "Let me see," says Prez. "You want to see my pager?" asks McNulty, practically looking through Prez to see if anyone's still there who's actually worth his attention. Prez holds out his hand for McNulty's pager; he hands it over distractedly. Prez calls out to Kima that he beeped her too, and she breezily asks if he's all right. "714-3432?" he asks. Kima says she got that: "That was you?" He asks whether she tried it, and she says she did, twice, but that it was a non-working number. Prez faux-humbly says that it would have worked if they knew the code. Kima and McNulty share a look, all, "Mom said we were supposed to play nice with baby brother, so let's put in ten minutes and then ditch him." Prez, so excited, reaches into the garbage and pulls out a wadded-up photocopy of the phone keypad, saying that he's as surprised as they are. As he flattens it out, he explains, "I like word-search puzzles. You know, where you've got to find the hidden words? So I thought I could do the same thing with the numbers." He tells an amused McNulty to take the number Prez already sent him, and then, pointing, instructs, "Now, take the 7, and jump it over the 5. You get 3. Jump the 1 over the 5. You get 9. With the 4, you get 6. 3, that's 7, 4 is 6, a 3 again, and 2 is 8. 0 switches with the 5. So 714-3432 is 396-7678. Our number." Kima looks at McNulty, and then Prez: "And that's the code." Prez says it works because it's all about where the buttons are on a phone: "If it was a code that involved math, or algebra, or whatever, these little yos in the Projects wouldn't be able to follow along. But with this, all you've got to do is jump the 5 button. Ain't no math to it, it's just how a phone looks when you look at it." "Prez, you little genius!" cheers McNulty, planting a kiss on him giant enough to elicit a "Jesus!" "I could kill you, that's so good," McNulty rejoices. Prez chuckles, trying to cover how validated he suddenly feels.

As the sun comes up over a pretty institutional building, which we soon learn is a rehab facility; Avon, D'Angelo, and Stinkum are paying a visit. Avon's complaining that D'Angelo's mother keeps bugging Avon to put "him" into a private nursing home, and D'Angelo, without taking sides, says that she's never going to let that go. As they walk through halls much more depressing than the pretty exterior would suggest, Avon defends that he keeps telling D'Angelo's mother that they "can't show this legit money yet, man, especially since he ain't got no insurance." Stinkum says that will come "soon" (eh?). Avon notes that the visibly anxious D'Angelo doesn't like coming there, and he puts a hand on D'Angelo's back, finally expositing that D'Angelo's about to see his uncle: "This is family." D'Angelo knows. Avon's on a roll, though: "Family is what counts. Family is what it's about. Family gonna always be there, 'cause it's blood." I assume it goes without saying that, as they walk the halls, D'Angelo is exposed to all manner of lost souls -- listing to the side on their feet, drooping in their wheelchairs, fighting with nurses who are trying to bathe them.

The Wire

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