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The Most Important Episodes Of 'The Wire'

Updated 24 Jun 2019 207 votes 67 voters 3.6k views15 items

List RulesVote up the episodes that mattered the most to the series overall.

HBO’s gritty crime drama The Wire rarely drew more than 4 million viewers and never won an Emmy. However, the greatest Wire episodes show why the series has such a rabid fan base and often tops so many “best shows ever” lists.

Set in Baltimore, Maryland, every new season of The Wire deconstructed a different city institution: substance trafficking, the seaport system, government and bureaucracy, schools, and print news media. However, the heart of the series detailed the elaborate game played between the city’s drug dealers and Baltimore law enforcement. The show was unflinchingly realistic and steered clear of happy endings. Its most consequential episodes often centered on an important player's passing or the tragic consequences of fallible characters that viewers expected more from.

Make your voice heard. Vote up the episodes of The Wire that you think mattered the most.

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