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How to Play Chess

How to play chess from the first season of "The Wire"



I have yet to meet a person who has seen this show and NOT walked away thinking it was (at least) the most intelligent show he or she has ever seen.

This should be required viewing in the same way Faulkner is required reading. Of course, a lot of people miss the point of the show, and glamorize the characters they see. Still, that's the viewer's error.

If there's one drawback to this show, it's that it ruins your appreciation for every other show - it's an unfair measuring stick (nothing compares).


beautiful. one of the best scenes in the whole series... great reference

I tried watching an epesode with a friend and it didn't seem very interesting. It's was mid 3rd season I think, which they told me was not as good as the previous seasons.

Then again, I don't watch TV. I feel like people over hype shows like this because everything else is so bad in comparison.

The Wire = Faulkner!? Maybe I should give it a second try.

yeah, you have to start at the beginning. it is really like a novel: one of the the most intriguing things about the series is the character development. Of course, the dialogue and vocab is beautiful in its obscene and explicit sort of way...

"character development" is one of those phrases that always sparks my interest. I'll see if my GF will netflix it.


I'd say The Wire <= Shakespeare. It's got the fabulous use of dialect that Faulkner has, but the grand and timeless themes of Shakespeare. The acting is fabulous, but the script is what makes it irresistible. By all means, start from the beginning. It's the best TV I've ever seen (not that I see much, since we don't have cable or good reception. Yaay, Netflix!).

FWIW from an English major

That scene is a good metaphor the whole series, and indeed life in modern society. People are pawns, not just the narco soldiers, but the police, the polititians and the teachers. Everyone. The real king is the system, the institutions. That's the main theme of The Wire, and it's not a happy one. But The Wire still manages to show the humanity in all the characters, even the most institutionalized ones. You can't help but care for all the characters in The Wire, even assholes and the murderers. I think the perfection with which The Wire shows this duality is its genius.


I have been playing chess for more than 20 years, and I have never seen better articles than written by GM Jan Markos. You can find some on:


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