Wire 106: S02E11 “Bad Dreams”

For this video discussion of Season 2 Episode 11 of The Wire, “Bad Dreams,” Paul Bond and I were joined by UMW #wire106 internauts John Meadows and Ien Harris. Once again, the discussion was focused around screenshots from this episode we found interesting in relationship to design. I’m including the screenshots I shared below, although Paul, John, and Ien had several others as well.

One of the things that has struck me this week is just how closely everyone in wire106 is starting to read this series. The are picking up on broader visual motifs, background information about the actors, deep insights about politics, and more. What I am finding amazing about this version of is that is its part digital storytelling class, part film class, and part literature class. It’s the best of all possible worlds. I couldn’t be happier with where it’s going, and the discussion sessions during the week give a small group from the larger course community the opportunity to get together in real time and share observations, ideas, and  sense of occasion that is a powerful part of any class.

Another thing I enjoyed about this discussion was Ien’s idea when talking about the difference between visual and design elements—a distinction that often get blurry. He notes that design suggests intentionality, a sense of purpose. And this really starts to bring together what Paul and I have been harping on about all elements of this TV series, all the pieces matter. The design is crucial to the over arching argument it is making, a precisely articulated vision of the human costs of the post-industrial, US city under capitalism. It’s all in the design, yo!

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