“Treme” premieres this Sunday on HBO, and GQ writer Tom Carson makes me excited that creator David Simon has made a worthy follow up to “the greatest television drama in history.”
After writer-creator David Simon’s bleak take on Baltimore in the most epochal cop show ever, The Wire, you may wonder what the deal is with Simon’s smitten view of New Orleans in his new series, Treme. Pronounced “truh-may,” after the Crescent City nabe where it’s filmed, this HBO drama of interwoven lives in Katrina’s aftermath features a rambunctious crew of jazzmen and restaurateurs, not detectives and crooks—and in a laconic way, it’s almost, jeez, hopeful. But what was he supposed to do for an encore, think of even better reasons why we should all give up?
What made The Wire epochal, after all, was that it turned a gritty police procedural into the most thorough indictment of a dysfunctional society this side of Bernie Madoff ‘s rap sheet. By the show’s final season, towing Maryland out to sea and sinking it would have seemed like an act of mercy. Because nihilism isn’t really Simon’s thing, looking for something he could have a little faith in was a logical next step.
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